Feature

Arsenal the place for goals on opening day

11 Jun 2018
Danny Welbeck, Arsenal

When they face Man City on 12 August the Gunners can aim for a third straight record-equalling feat

If you want goals on opening weekend, Arsenal may be the team to watch. 

That's because for the last two seasons in a row, the Gunners have opened with a seven-goal thriller. 

After being on the wrong end of a 4-3 defeat by Liverpool in 2016/17, they edged Leicester City by the same scoreline in the season just gone, both times at Emirates Stadium. 

Never have there been more goals in a Matchweek 1 fixture. 

It remains to be seen whether under their new head coach, Unai Emery, the north Londoners will play in such an open fashion.

Emery's Paris Saint-Germain side did plunder 108 goals on their way to winning the Ligue 1 title last season, 23 more than their nearest challengers.

But Arsenal do face Manchester City on 12 August.

Pep Guardiola's side broke a Premier League record by scoring 106 goals on their way to the title last season and the Gunners will be hard-pressed to keep the defending champions at bay. 

Highest-scoring opening-day matches 
Season Match
1994/95 Crystal Palace 1-6 Liverpool
1994/95 Sheff Wednesday 3-4 Spurs
1995/96 Southampton 3-4 Nottingham Forest
2009/10 Everton 1-6 Arsenal
2016/17 Arsenal 3-4 Liverpool
2017/18 Arsenal 4-3 Leicester City
Seven-goal thrillers

The seven goals shared in the highest opening-day fixtures fall behind the highest-scoring match in Premier League history.

That was Portsmouth 7-4 Reading, the only match to ever feature 11 goals.

Five other fixtures have had 10 goals, four of which involved either entertainers Arsenal or their north-London neighbours, Tottenham Hotspur.

Highest-scoring matches overall 
Season Match
2007/08 Portsmouth 7-4 Reading
2007/08 Spurs 6-4 Reading
2009/10 Spurs 9-1 Wigan Ath
2011/12 Man Utd 8-2 Arsenal
2012/13 Arsenal 7-3 Newcastle
2012/13 West Brom 5-5 Man Utd
Also in this series 

Part 1: The impossible job: Compiling the fixture list
Part 2: How the Premier League fixture list is compiled
Part 3: Can 2018/19 live up to last season's opening salvo?
Part 5: Who can match Ravanelli's dream debut?
Part 6: Can debutant managers start with a bang?
Part 7: Man Utd kings of the opening weekend
Part 8: Aguero eyes record for opening weekends
Part 9: Mourinho points the way for managers on opening day

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