Arsene Wenger has praised Arsenal’s efficiency in front of goal but is it really sustainable? Adam Bate examines the statistics that suggest the Gunners will need to create more… Arsenal have scored 24 Premier League goals this season. Theyre among the top four scorers. Those teams also happen to be the four at the top of the table and the favourites to win the title according to the bookmakers. In other words, theyre in good company. Six months half price Upgrade to Sky Sports now to watch Man Utd v Arsenal and get the first six months half price But delve deeper into the numbers and Arsenals success so far has been different to rivals Liverpool, Chelsea and Manchester City. Its been built on efficiency rather than creativity. A side with a reputation for wastefulness in front of goal has been unusually ruthless. Arsene Wenger has noticed the trend himself. Maybe the reason for us scoring freely of late is that weve been making more of our chances, the manager suggested last month when discussing the matter. The final ball is better. Is that because our finishing is better? Watch NOW TV Watch Sky Sports for just ￡6.99. No contract. Its difficult to analyse at the moment, but what is for sure is that we score more goals. We score lots of goals. Thats what our game is about. We have a risky game and therefore its important that we take our chances.Perhaps cruelly, Wenger took the decision to ruminate on Arsenals efficiency ahead of the home game against Middlesbrough. His players proceeded to play out a 0-0 draw and the tune changed. We have to find a way to be efficient even when the games are like that. The Sunday Supplement panel on whether Mesut Ozil will sign a new deal Thats the crux of the problem. Can Arsenal really be expected to sustain such efficiency? Arsenal have scored a goal for every 5.1 chances theyve created this season - better than anyone else. Thats a good thing. But history would suggest it is too good to continue.The next best conversion rate belongs to Chelsea who are scoring a goal for every 5.7 chances they create. Thats the same as champions Leicester managed in being last seasons most efficient side. The season before that, the best rate was a goal every 6.3 chances. Chances created per goal - Selected teams PL Rank Team Chances / goal 1 Arsenal 5.1 2 Chelsea 5.7 3 Liverpool 5.7 5 Man City 6.1 16 Man Utd 8.8 17 Tottenham 9.5 Across those two seasons Arsenal scored a goal every seventh chance. At that rate they would have scored no more than 18 goals this season. In other words, Wengers side have already scored six more goals than their previous finishing record would have suggested.Arsenals shot conversion rate this season is 14.4 per cent. Again, its a good sign. Leicester had the best rate last season and Chelsea had the best the year before that. Both won the title. But neither topped 13.0 per cent. A dip seems inevitable and that could be an issue. Arsenal conversion rates Season Goals per game Conversion rate 2010/11 1.89 11.0% 2011/12 1.95 11.6% 2012/13 1.89 12.4% 2013/14 1.79 13.8% 2014/15 1.87 11.6% 2015/16 1.71 11.4% 2016/17 2.18 14.4% The reason is that some of Arsenals other underlying numbers are not so impressive. They rank seventh for shots and eighth for shots on target. They are sixth for clear-cut chances created and, unusually for the Gunners, as low as eighth for total chances created.In this sense, they have gone backwards. Arsenal were the only team to create more clear-cut chances than Leicester last season and were joint-top alongside Chelsea the year before. Arsenals dip in creativity 2015/16 rank 2016/17 rank Total shots 4th 7th Shots on target 2nd 8th Chances created 4th 8th Clear chances created 1st 6th Back then Wenger would praise his players for creating chances and bemoan his teams luck. Now, when scoring late goals against Southampton and Watford, its a new line. When Theo Walcott scored twice at Hull, Wenger said: Hes efficient and thats what you want.Thats a big change as Walcott had the worst clear-chance conversion rate of any player who regularly found himself in such positions last season. He converted only four of 15 opportunities that hed be reasonably expected to score according to Opta. Along with Theo Walcott, Oliver Giroud and Alexis Sanchez were two of the 12 players to miss 10+ clear chances last season Walcott and Olivier Giroud were seen as the chief culprits when it came to Arsenals wastefulness but no one man was responsible. Alexis Sanchez, Mesut Ozil and Aaron Ramsey also ranked among the 20 Premier League players who missed eight clear chances or more.Arsenal missed more big chances than any other Premier League team last season and that wasnt all down to the huge volume of opportunities they were creating. They had the worst conversion rate of any top-half team too. But at least they were creating the chances. Highlights of Arsenals 1-1 draw with Tottenham at the Emirates Stadium Arsenal fans wont be too worried just yet if the goals keep coming. But with Santi Cazorla missing, the side has lost a little something from deep. Alex Iwobi, meanwhile, has made a fine start but appears to be a knitter of play rather than a man to open defences on his own. Two shots on target in 565 minutes tells a tale.Against Tottenham last time out, Arsenal had plenty of endeavour but their trademark craft was absent after the frenzy of the first half. We couldnt find the creativity, the fluency around the box and all the things we are used to, said Wenger of that performance. Man Utd vs Arsenal November 19, 2016, 11:30am Live on Get Sky Sports Get a Sky Sports pass Victory at Manchester United on Saturday would see Arsenal briefly go top of the Premier League nevertheless. Its precisely the sort of game where the efficiency theyve been showing would be ideal - an occasion where one chance could be the difference.But if the Gunners are to stay at the top of the table theyll need more than efficiency. Theyll need to up their creativity levels and their shot volumes too. Because history suggests that the current numbers are just not sustainable.Upgrade to Sky Sports now to watch Man Utd v Arsenal this Saturday and get the first six months half price! 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Never got sick or hurt while frolicking in the fields of Claiborne Farm in Paris, Ky.MONTREAL -- Jack McInerneys first goal in an Impact uniform was the lone bright spot in an otherwise bland showing by Montreal on Saturday. McInerney, acquired by the Impact last week, scored in his debut -- a 1-1 draw to the Chicago Fire at Montreals Olympic Stadium. Both teams are still winless six games into the MLS season. Montreal (0-3-3) was slow and uninspired for long stretches. The Impact entered the game with an MLS-high 91 shot attempts, including 34 on target. But they were kept relatively quiet by Chicago (0-1-5), hitting the target only twice -- both in the first half. One of those was McInerneys first goal as an Impact, scored in the 42nd minute to give Montreal the 1-0 lead. "Other than the goal, I didnt do well at all," said the 21-year-old McInerney, unhappy with his performance despite getting off the mark with his new club. "I didnt find the ball much out there. But its only the first game. Ive only been here a week." After two good chances by the Fires Jeff Larentowicz, who skied a shot from just outside the six-yard box in the 35th minute, and Patrick Nyarko, whose 37th minute blast was blocked by defender Eric Miller, the Impact took a surprise lead when Marco Di Vaio received a pass and found an onrushing McInerney, flicking the ball onto his path with his head. The newest Impact player walked in all alone, slowed down on the breakaway, and rifled his shot past Fire goalkeeper Sean Johnson. McInerney, who was drafted fifth overall by Philadelphia in 2010, was acquired last week from the Union in exchange for Andrew Wenger. McInerney scored 12 goals in 31 MLS appearances last season for the Union, including twice against the Fire. Impact coach Frank Klopas, playing against his former team for the first time since being let go in October 2013, says he is confident he can build on the chemistry between Di Vaio and McInerney, his two main strikers. "There were moments when they were good," said Klopas, who played for the Fire in the late 90s and coached the squad for 81 games over three seasons between 2011 and 2013. "For sure, its going to get better as time goes on," he added. "We talked about moving the ball quickly, switching the ppoint of attack, looking to combine with both strikers in order to break through.dddddddddddd" The Impact moved the ball quickly at the end of the first half to break the deadlock, but they did little of it in the second half. Instead, they took three shots, all of them off target, werent awarded any corner kicks, and accumulated 10 fouls. The Chicago Fire, on the other hand, spent a lot of time in Montreals half, dictating the run of play. They directed 17 shots at the net over the course of the game, controlled possession for most of it, and were awarded 10 corners. And all the Chicago corners finally made the Impact pay in the 54th minute. Off a corner, midfielder Larentowiczs header rang off the crossbar before falling to Mike Magee, who squared it across to Quincy Amarikwa in the 18-yard box for his third goal of the season. "Its not obvious, its not easy," said midfielder Patrice Bernier. "Its tough, actually. Youre at home, you take the lead, you need to get points from that." Despite the single point for the draw, the Impact are still stuck in the Eastern Conference basement with three points from six games. Theyve now drawn three straight after opening their season with three losses. "Lets focus on the positive: we havent been losing those games," said Bernier, who came on as a substitute at halftime. "Its a long season. I prefer starting a season slowly and ending it with a bang rather than starting strong and disappearing by the end of it. "Teams are better than us, and we deserve the results were getting. We need to get out of this rut. Other teams wont help us out of this. Its up to us." The Impact look to turn the tide against conference-rivals Sporting Kansas City in their next game, on April 19. Notes: Montreal was without midfielder Hernan Bernardello, who left last weeks game against the New York Red Bulls after landing awkwardly on his right ankle. ... The Impact and Fire play each other twice more this season. ... This was the last game of the season at the Olympic Stadium for the Impact. The team plays its opening game at Saputo Stadium on April 26 against Philadelphia. ... There were 19,313 people in attendance. ' ' '