Premier League: 10 things to look out for this weekend

January 12, 2018


Huddersfield Town’s Terence Kongolo, left, gets stuck in during the Terriers’ Third Round FA Cup match against Bolton Wanderers.
“… 10) A happy Monday for post-Hughes Stoke? Like the revolution, the first match of Stoke’s post-Mark Hughes era will be televised, as they travel to Manchester United on Monday night. At the time of writing, the identity of Hughes’ replacement is yet to be confirmed, but whoever is in charge for this match, it constitutes something of a free swing for a team in the relegation zone but far from doomed. Given the likelihood of a new manager bounce (or perhaps more pertinently, the old manager’s absence) and the fact Stoke are unbeaten in eight Monday night Premier League matches, it would not be a huge surprise to see the Potters emerge with a point. …” Guardian

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Measuring Changes In Attacking Style In The Premier League

January 12, 2018

“Back in November we applied a clustering algorithm to find out which Premier League clubs had similar attacking styles. We wanted to see what we could find using match summary stats that anyone with an internet connection could get hold of. Our main rule was that we wanted to avoid using pure outcome stats, e.g. shots on target, completed passes, completed crosses, goals, assists etc. We thought we’d run the risk of just clustering teams together on how good/lucky they’d been so far. We didn’t use anything too fancy, just per game stats based on the way teams attempt to attack; shots from outside the box, inside the box, open play, set pieces, short passes, long passes, dribbles, crosses and how much they use the wide areas when they attack. …” StatsBomb


The 100 best footballers in the world 2017

January 4, 2018


“Our panel of 169 experts from 63 nations compile a list of the greatest male players in 2017. Click on an individual to read more about their year. …” Guardian


La Liga At the Break: Valencia, Girona and Atlético

January 4, 2018

“In just a scant few days the La Liga teams will return from their truncated winter rest. Before we dive head first into the home straight of the season, let’s take a look back at what the first chunk of games has taught us, shall we? This isn’t technically the halfway-point as Spain’s domestic break comes after 17 games rather than 19. Don’t worry though, we’re not about to let that get in the way of a good ol’ rummage through the numbers! …” StatBomb


Football Manager 2018 review

January 3, 2018


“It’s been 18 months since I signed for Celtic. During my first season, I impressed with a clean sweep of domestic trophies and qualification to the knockout stages of the European Champions League. At this point, this year’s campaign promises much of the same, and the board, press and fans love me. But things are boiling over in the dressing room, and I’m fast losing the confidence of my players. How did this happen? Six months earlier, star man Tom Rogic turned in a few dodgy performances and was dropped to the bench. Several weeks later he came knocking, unimpressed with his situation. I promised him more first team football, but failed to keep my word. And as one of my most influential players, my untrustworthiness sparked an internal revolt. To make matters worse, the media has now caught wind of our troubles. Introduced to the series this year, Football Manager 2018’s new Dynamics system is its most distinguished feature. …” PC Gamer, W – Football Manager 2018, Football Manager (Video)


The All-Bundesliga Teams – Third Team All – Bundesliga – Outfield Players

January 3, 2018

“You know the drill by know, using heaps of video and stats I’ve selected the three best teams of the Hinrunde in the 2017\18 Bundesliga. Sven Ulreich was the goalkeeper of the third team, here are his three defenders, coz we’re going hipster 3-3-3-1. …” Bundesliga Fanatic (Video)


Roy Hodgson wields the Croydon Way to halt Manchester City juggernaut

January 3, 2018

“The technical areas were a study in difference. On one side was the pencil thin, shaven-headed figure of Pep Guardiola, arms folded, sleek in his black bomber jacket. In the other were two figures dressed in black but that was the only similarity between them. That football could have produced two such disparate groups, practically separate species, is testament to its infinite richness. …” Guardian – Jonathan Wilson