While Manchester City’s 6-3 victory over Arsenal was exciting for the neutral spectator, it continued a trend in matches between top clubs in the league where defensive errors are leading directly to goals. Some bigger matches of the past three seasons include Manchester United’s 8-2 win over Arsenal, Manchester City’s 6-1 win over Manchester United, Arsenal’s 5-3 win over Chelsea, the 3-3 Chelsea-Manchester United draw and Arsenal’s 5-2 victory over Spurs, which has bucked the previous trend of tightly played matches between top sides that were generally tight affairs.
This can be viewed multiple ways. Either attacking players are getting more polished in the league, defenders are getting weaker or central midfield play is less composed and features more bad giveaways than in the past. Honestly, from where I sit I can view this from all three angles.
Perhaps the influx of talent to the Premier League from Spain, Italy and Germany has created a league where a greater premium has been placed on finishing and attacking play than in the past. Pace, which previously was one of the key components in England to buying defenders and attackers, have given way to other attributes.
A counter-argument can be made that because of the officiating doctrine today, defenders are playing less aggressively on set pieces and in the final third, leading to more goal scoring opportunities.
The question for World Soccer Talk readers is why are we seeing more and more goals in the biggest league games? Post your opinions in the comments section below.