A successful season is often built on solid foundations, but which Premier League clubs have been the most resolute defensively this season?
Here are the six teams with the most Premier League clean sheets.
Manchester United – 8
Manchester United have recorded eight shut-outs in the Premier League this season, with the Red Devils having already matched their total from the entire 2021/22 campaign.
Erik ten Hag bolstered his squad with the addition of Lisandro Martinez from Ajax last summer and the centre-back has formed an encouraging understanding with Raphael Varane at the heart of the defence.
Lisandro Martinez’s game by numbers vs. Crystal Palace:
92% pass accuracy
61 passes completed
7 ball recoveries
3 aerial duels won
2/2 tackles won
2 ground duels won
The Butcher. 😤🔪 pic.twitter.com/3jIkHLUaRO
— Statman Dave (@StatmanDave) February 4, 2023
Luke Shaw’s return to form and the improvement of Diogo Dalot and David de Gea has added to a more secure-looking United side this season, one which has won 11 of 13 games since the season’s restart post-World Cup.
Manchester City – 8
Manchester City boasted the joint-best defensive record in the Premier League last season, the foundation on which the club’s title success was built.
Just two teams have recorded more clean sheets than Pep Guardiola’s side so far this season, with City having recorded eight clean sheets as Ederson chases the Premier League’s Golden Glove for a fourth consecutive season.
The match-winning moment from @NathanAke! 🙌 pic.twitter.com/FKG5O8sLtj
— Manchester City (@ManCity) January 28, 2023
Guardiola has chopped and changed with his personnel at the back, but City’s control of possession often provides a level of security to the club’s backline. Nathan Ake is enjoying the best period of his career at the Etihad, while Rico Lewis’ emergence from the academy set-up saw City sanction the departure of Joao Cancelo to Bayern Munich last month.
Chelsea – 8
Chelsea have endured a challenging campaign to date but boast one of the Premier League’s best defensive records this season, recording eight clean sheets from 21 fixtures.
Just two teams have conceded less goals than the west Londoners, whose biggest issues lay further forward. Thiago Silva’s evergreen excellence continues to stand out at Stamford Bridge, while the Blues have brought in Benoit Badiashile to partner the veteran as part of their record-breaking recruitment drive.
Graham Potter will hope that Reece James and Ben Chilwell can soon return to boost his side’s season, with the contribution of the full-back duo at both ends of the pitch having been missed during their absence from the side.
Brentford – 8
Brentford continue to punch above their weight in the top tier of English football, with the Bees – among the pre-season favourites to be relegated – pushing for a place in Europe.
Thomas Frank’s team are unbeaten in nine league games and have conceded just once across their last five, form which has seen Brentford beat Manchester City, West Ham and Liverpool to climb to seventh in the table.
David Raya’s performances in goal and elite distribution continue to see the goalkeeper linked with Premier League rivals, while Ben Mee has emerged as one of the signings of the season at centre-back.
Nine unbeaten, looking strong and enjoyed getting a goal in too 😁 pic.twitter.com/9rGe7cheYf
— Ben Mee (@Ben6Mee) February 4, 2023
The 33-year-old was picked up on a free transfer after Burnley’s relegation, with his unfashionable arrival a rarity for a club often focused on emerging talent. It has proven a shrewd signing from Frank as Mee has added priceless presence to Brentford’s ranks.
Arsenal – 9
Arsenal are chasing a first Premier League title since 2003/04 after a club-record start to the season.
Pre-season expectations were of a push for Champions League football after a six-season absence from Europe’s elite, but the Gunners have produced a brilliant run of results to move five points clear at the top of the division.
The north Londoners rank second for Premier League clean sheets this season, having conceded just 17 goals from their 20 league fixtures.
Calm as you like 🧊 pic.twitter.com/0j3tsvZbQB
— Arsenal (@Arsenal) July 30, 2022
William Saliba has been outstanding since his introduction into the side, forming a fine partnership with the improving Gabriel after several seasons of development out on loan.
Ben White has also adapted to a new role at right-back, while Oleksandr Zinchenko has been a superb signing after arriving from Manchester City. The Ukrainian has added title-winning experience to a team who have surprised so far to move into championship contention.
Newcastle – 12
Newcastle lead the rankings for clean sheets so far and have posted a phenomenal defensive record under Eddie Howe this season.
The Magpies have kept as many clean sheets (12) as goals the club have conceded in the Premier League this season, form which has placed Newcastle in a strong position to secure Champions League qualification.
Nick Pope in the #PL this season: 12 clean sheets in 20 matches 🔥
Could the @NUFC man chase down @PetrCech's clean sheet record of 24 from 2004/05? 🧤
➡️ https://t.co/8DUyZqMfhm pic.twitter.com/eiVCIMiCUP
— Premier League (@premierleague) January 29, 2023
Even given the ambition of Newcastle’s Saudi-backed project, the club’s progress this season has exceeded all expectations.
Nick Pope has been an inspired addition in goal and leads the race for the Premier League’s Golden Glove, with Bruno Guimaraes having hailed the England shot-stopper as the best goalkeeper in the world after he recorded a 10th clean sheet in a row during the club’s Carabao Cup semi-final win over Southampton earlier this month.
Sven Botman has also been a commanding presence in an impressive debut season in the Premier League, after Howe finally secured his long-term transfer target in the Dutch defender. Newcastle’s miserly defence has contributed to a superb season, one which has seen the Magpies lose just once in the Premier League.
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