As the Premier League season takes its second break for some more international football, we at Opta have decided this was a good time to delve into our data and bring you the best stats and facts. From slow starts to late finishes, read on for 15 great nuggets of information from the season so far.
1. Burnley, Everton, Luton and Sheffield United all lost their opening three Premier League games this season, the first time in English top-flight history as many as four different clubs have done so.
It’s always been difficult for newly promoted teams to adapt to life in the Premier League, but it now feels harder than ever. While Everton have followed up their poor start with two wins, Burnley, Luton and Sheffield United have only two wins between them after eight games since promotion.
2. There have already been five teams finish a day top of the Premier League table this season (Newcastle, Manchester City, Brighton, West Ham and Tottenham) – two more than in the whole of 2022-23 (Arsenal, Tottenham and Man City).
Do we have a title race on our hands? We think we might!
Liverpool and Arsenal – the two teams deemed second and third favourites to win the title by the Opta supercomputer – haven’t even been top yet, as well!
Is it time to get excited about the battle at the top of the Premier League? Or should we just expect City to go on yet another long winning run and win the title at a canter? Time will tell.
3. None of the first 46 Premier League games this season ended 0-0. It’s the joint-longest run without a goalless draw from the start of a PL campaign (level with 2020-21).
Goals, goals, goals! We saw at least one of them in every game until Bournemouth and Chelsea ruined it in their goalless draw at the Vitality Stadium on 17 September. There have been two more since then, both involving Crystal Palace.
4. The three hat-tricks scored on 2 September (by Son Heung-min, Erling Haaland and Evan Ferguson) was the joint-most ever scored on a single day of Premier League football.
The treble of trebles we saw last month featured as many hat-tricks as on 23 September 1995, when Alan Shearer, Robbie Fowler and Tony Yeboah were all on target three times.
5. Evan Ferguson (18 years, 318 days) became the fourth different 18-year-old to score a hat-trick in a Premier League game, and the youngest since Michael Owen against Nottingham Forest in October 1998 (four goals aged 18y 314d).
Chris Bart-Williams (obviously) and Robbie Fowler are the other two players to score a Premier League hat-trick while aged 18, alongside Ferguson and Owen.
6. Phil Foden’s opening goal against Nottingham Forest finished off a 46-pass move – the second longest on record in the Premier League (since 2006-07) behind Nacer Chadli’s goal for Tottenham against QPR in August 2014 (48 passes).
City’s longest passing sequence leading to a goal was finished off by Foden for his first – and so far only – goal of the season, just seven minutes into the game against Forest. This is the route Pep Guardiola’s side took to goal.
On a separate note, we bet you didn’t expect to read the name ‘Nacer Chadli’ when you opened this page, did you?
7. In their 8-0 win over Sheffield United, Newcastle became the first side to have eight different players score in a Premier League match.
Newcastle’s 8-0 win at Bramall Lane was their biggest ever away victory in their league history, and was also Sheffield United’s biggest ever league defeat.
Sean Longstaff, Dan Burn, Sven Botman, Callum Wilson, Anthony Gordon, Miguel Almirón, Bruno Guimarães and Alexander Isak each grabbed a goal as Newcastle ran riot.
8. Crystal Palace boss Roy Hodgson became the first manager to string together five successive unbeaten Premier League visits to Old Trafford (W3 D2).
Is there anything Roy Hodgson can’t do? Since achieving this remarkable feat with a 1-0 win over Manchester United on 30 September, the Palace manager has also become the eighth manager to take charge of 400 Premier League games. He’s going to make it to 500, isn’t he?
9. Liverpool became the first side to receive four red cards in their first seven games of a Premier League season.
An unwanted record for Liverpool, who had not received more than two red cards in any of the previous seasons that Jürgen Klopp had been at the club. And that’s in all competitions.
10. Declan Rice’s 90th-minute winner for Arsenal against Manchester United was the third winning goal United have conceded in second-half stoppage-time in 2023 – they had only previously lost two Premier League games to 90th-minute goals between 1992 and 2022.
More added time has meant more late goals and more drama – something that United had become known for in the Alex Ferguson era. Rice’s winner, however, meant United were on the receiving end of a third late winner this calendar year.
They did roll back the years a few weeks later, though, with Scott McTominay’s double completing an extraordinary late turnaround against Brentford – the latest in United’s Premier League history. It wasn’t the latest the Premier League has ever seen, though. That record was set just a few weeks earlier…
11. Spurs went into the 98th minute trailing to Sheffield United before winning 2-1; it was the latest winning comeback by a side in Premier League history, surpassing their own record (trailing in the 95th minute vs Leicester City in January 2022). Dejan Kulusevksi’s goal in this match, timed at 99:53, was also the latest match-winning goal on record in Premier League history (since 2006-07).
It was the late, late, late show at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium when they came from behind to beat Sheffield United.
12. Luton became just the second team to lose their first four ever Premier League games, after Swindon Town in 1993-94.
Things have got better for Luton since this disastrous start, but their total of four points from eight games so far doesn’t bode well for their chances of survival, even if they are (just) outside the relegation zone… for now.
13. Wolves’ first three goals of the season were scored by substitutes. They’re the first team in the history of the competition to see their first three goals of a campaign scored by subs.
A statistic as quirky as they come. The kind of fact that elicits the kind of equally surprised and satisfied noise that comes out of your mouth when you see your electricity bill is £3 cheaper this month.
Now, we can hear your brain trying to work out what this stat means, but we can save you some time.
Nothing. Wolves’ subs haven’t scored a single goal in the league since those first three. Let’s all move on.
14. Courtesy of a hat-trick against Fulham, Erling Haaland reached 50 Premier League goal involvements in fewer appearances than any player in the competition’s history (39).
It’s quite impressive how Haaland can keep on producing completely unsurprising record-breaking numbers in front goal, but here we are. He is very likely to become the quickest player to 50 Premier League goals at some point this season, too.
15. All five of Darwin Núñez’s assists for Liverpool in the Premier League have been for goals scored by Mohamed Salah; this is the most assists of any player in Premier League history exclusively for one teammate.
A record that surely won’t last a great deal longer, right? Someone else is surely going to finish off one of Núñez’s passes before long. But it’s a nice little partnership Liverpool’s forwards are building up, nonetheless.