Good morning to all of you. How have you been? The preseason is nearly over. It’s been an unbelievably quick spell: the Euros, the Olympics and an Arsene Wenger cheque book on steroids has really helped quicken the pace, even with the dead-weight stories of Robin van Persie, Nicklas Bendtner, Andrey Arshavin and the like.
Amidst the news of Alex Ferguson meeting Arsene Wenger personally over trying to sign van Persie, the time to our first match against Sunderland draws closer and closer.
In a two-part season preview, I will bring you both a crystal-ball, match-by-match prediction of the season, before providing a more broader outlook on the season to come and how preseason has affected it.
Soon after Robin van Persie released his infamous, poorly judged ‘statement to the fans’, I decided to list out all of Arsenal’s fixtures and make intuitive guesses about what each result would be. Purely crystal ball stuff; it was hardly the most scientific of efforts. Nevertheless, I soldiered on, made the predictions and added up the points. I then made the effort to compile every single points tally across all 20 positions on the Premier League ladder for every team over the past five seasons. This allowed me to figure out what the average points requirement for every position is, and how many Arsenal would require by season’s end to reach certain goals.
This resulted in me digging up an old project from my Third-Gen days, and slapping it here on Jimmy Gooner.
I give you: The Hype Meter.
At the moment, prior to our first league game, the data is all blank. But with any luck, there will be a nice big, fat 100% on it after the Sunderland match.
How it works: I take all those preseason predictions for every single league match, and align them next to what happens in reality every week. Healthy percentages and an upward curve will only boost the ‘Verdict’, which predicts what placing Arsenal will get at season’s end.
Obviously, it’s all guesswork and nothing’s guaranteed. When I first tried this with Third-Gen, the predictions were all largely optimistic, culminating in a predicted season-end tally of 96 points. In the 2009/10 season, Arsenal never came close to that.
This time, the predictions have been overly negative. I’m expecting the worst in many a match this year. You can decry me for being a doom-monger, but if this season does actually go to the optimist’s plan, it will mean a nicely inflated Hype Meter.
Like I said, it’s all rather dire as far as predictions go. All of them were made under the assumption van Persie was leaving and well before Santi Cazorla was even a whisper in the marble halls. If I made them all over again, they might have been back into the 90-points region which is hardly realistic.
Anyways, the month-by-month predictions can be found here. In total, I’ve scrounged up 65 miserable points for Arsenal. On the average Premier League table over the last five seasons, that would leave Arsenal stranded in fifth place.
Losses to Man City, United, Chelsea and even Fulham feature in there, so give it a read and slam me for my misery-guts attitude.
The Hype Meter will be a regular feature throughout the season, updated after every league match. It’s all a bit of pseudo-bullshit fun, so don’t get too hung up on it. Unless things really get dire, in which case we can all start waving our arms about while screaming frantically.
My next post will be Part 2 of my season preview: A much more detailed, slightly more optimistic prediction of the season to come, factoring in how our new signings should fare in the league, as well as our hopes in the cups and European competition.
Share your thoughts on where you think Arsenal will place in the comments section. For now, it’s good night from me.