Salah vs Son for the Premier League golden boot: Who will win with a game to go?


(A version of this piece was originally published on April 15. It has been updated to reflect results in the Premier League since then and the recent form of Mohamed Salah and Son Heung-min) The two favourites for the Premier League golden boot are in contrasting spells of form. Mohamed Salah has scored three times in his last 10 games, while Son Heung-min has 10 goals in the same period. …”
The Athletic

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Orlando Pirates seek Zen in Uyo


“The Orlando Pirates who won the Africa Cup of Champions Clubs in 1995 did not really need a coach. Why would they? They had hellraisers. Irascible characters such as Mark Fish and the late Marc Batchelor. With a ball at his feet, the spectacularly destructive Jerry Sikhosana. Ball thieves Phiri Tsotetsi and Brandon Silent, and the barnstorming wing Helman Mkhalele. They were a side of hard men. Innocent Mncwango, Gavin Lane, Bernard ‘Shoes’ Lushozi, Marks Maponyane, John Moeti and Fish never shied from a challenge. They had style merchants. …”
New Frame
W – Fadlu Davids

Ranked: The top 10 defensive midfielders in the Premier League


“Defensive midfield is one of the most underrated and undervalued positions in modern football. These pivots are so often crucial to the success of their teams but can so often be overlooked for individual recognition, or in Manchester United’s case just overlooked entirely from the squad. So we’ve looked over the 2021/22 Premier League season and, taking into account the players enduring class in the years prior as well as their performances this season, come up with a list of the 10 best defensive midfielders in the Premier League. …”
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Introducing playstyle wheels – The Athletic’s way of capturing ways a team play well (or not)


“There are a lot of numbers in football that measure success. Goals and points are the original analytics, and newer stats such as expected goals and possession value are just increasingly fine-grained ways to model how likely goals are to happen. They’ll give you the bottom line: is this team or player doing things that help put the ball in the net or keep it out? Basically, are they good at football? It’s harder to measure how they’re good at football. …”
The Athletic

What Is ‘Project Red Card’


Data analytics has become an integral part of sports in the last decade or so. As technology around sports is evolving so are the questions regarding it. One such petition that looks to safeguard players from big firms collecting player data,called ‘Project Red Card’. In 2021 the petition gathered momentum. Finally in 2022 is set to be tried in court as a class action lawsuit. Now it has become a highly debated topic in European football. Player data often provides the clubs with information that can drastically alter a player’s performance. Thus in the modern game data collection and processing are paramount for clubs to gain an edge. …”
Foot the Ball