The Times has analyzed last season’s results, taking into account all the teams’ efforts on goal that hit the woodwork, and calculating what the points tally wood look like if those chances had gone in the back of the net.
First off the boring news; Manchester United would still have won the Premier League – despite being number one woodwork hitters, they did so mainly in games which they went on to win anyway. Arsenal on the other hand would have been 13 points better off if their efforts hadn’t bounced off the post and bar, and the Times journo’s read this as meaning that it is possible that:
“they did relatively poorly last season only because of the freakish luck of being deprived of points by posts and bar all the time.”
The battle to avoid relegation last season brought some more interesting conclusions:
“Finally, to poor old Sheffield United. If their woodwork shots had counted, they would not have gone down. It would have been goodnight Fulham instead.”
So were Arsenal as unlucky last season as this report makes out, and if so should we really be surprised by their success this season?