December 7, 2021

Misfiring Arsenal hit 34-year low after another scoreless outing

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Mikel Arteta’s men have scored only nine times in nine league matches – their worst run for more than 30 years

Arsenal have now managed only nine goals in their first nine Premier League matches – the club’s lowest tally since 1986-87.

Mikel Arteta’s side were again held to a blank on Sunday as they picked up a point in a scoreless draw against Leeds at Elland Road.

It was an encounter in which it took them more than an hour to muster a single shot on target, while their opponents had 25 efforts over the course of the encounter.

The offensive misery that the Gunners endured was summed up by Nicolas Pepe being dismissed for a petulant headbutt early in the second half.

For Arteta’s men, it was the fourth time in five Premier League matches that they had experienced a shutout, with the only goal they have scored during that run a Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang penalty against Manchester United at Old Trafford in a 1-0 win.

The season actually started quite brightly for the Gunners in front of goal as they routed Fulham 3-0 then scored another couple goals in a victory over West Ham.

Shortly before the match against the Hammers there had been optimism about Arsenal’s offence, which was in part generated by the new contract that Aubameyang had signed, ending speculation over his future.

The Gabon international, though, has scored only that single penalty since putting pen to paper on the fresh deal.

He has often found himself shunted out to the left wing, however, and there has been a significant push for him to be handed a more central role. Club legend Paul Merson, for example, has called for Alexandre Lacazette to make way for the former Borussia Dortmund and Saint-Etienne forward.

Though Aubameyang did start through the middle against Leeds, he was still unable to find the back of the net.

Arsenal will hope to get back on the goal trail in midweek when they go to Molde in the Europa League. Victory in that match would guarantee their place in the knockout stages with two rounds remaining.

Their next challenge in the Premier League is a home encounter against Wolves next Sunday, with Arteta’s men seeking to move up from their current position of 10th.