With midweek games coming fast and furious, this may not sit the best with the established post timeline...but here we finally have the update to my statistics effort from last week with our strange/frustrating/promising team effort from Manchester over the weekend.
But first, a few changes!
Gone are a few colors, replaced with a more uniform green/red shading, comparing this week's numbers to the previous week's. The aim is to provide a visual reference to how a player's performance changed with regards to his previous average (red = worse, green = better, no shading = unchanged). On columns that use this shading, the best overall performing player is now simply identified with a bold outlined cell. Once I finish compiling last season's statistics, I will look to expand this visual reference by also including a comparison to the previous season (bold = better, italics = worse).
Tweaks have been made to the defense/90 calculation to also include tackles & fouls. This is still nowhere near perfect, as all defensive actions are weighted the same when they clearly shouldn't be (not to mention the distinct lack of proper defensive statistics...but that's a whole different story).
I also simplified the PASSING INDEX calculation and made it directly dependent on Passing Threat and Pass Mobility (which, in turn do take into effect the other indicators). The CREATIVITY INDEX also got a slight adjustment, with the Ballhog Factor coming in as a negative adder.
For a full run down of all my custom indicators, check out last week's introductory post.
With Lampard getting subbed at the half, we're down to just 4 players who have played the full 450 minutes. This includes both our starting fullbacks, so it was especially nice to see a full runout for both Ryan Bertrand and Paulo Ferreira versus Fulham.
Ashely Cole takes over the mantle of most accurate passer...just fractions of a percentage point over Juan Mata, who does remain our highest rated player by The Guardian's readers. The same readers, despite giving our players pretty horrendous marks for the United game, did at least correctly recognize that this was by far Fernando Torres's best game of the season. 'Nando also becomes the first repeat winner of the coveted WaGNH Man of the Match polling.
Nothing all that remarkable here. Danny Sturridge still technically leads in (League) Goals/90, having played the least minutes of the other 7 goal-scorers (8 goals; 8 different goal scorers in league). There is an error in the spreadsheet, however, as Danny's actual goals/90 should be 0.7, instead of 1.0. Maybe if he cut down on his long range shooting (0/3), he'd maintain that 1.0 average.
Ramires has taken over the mantle of worst shooter, having missed all 8 of his shots so far...some more painfully than others.
I also realized here that the StatsZone App does not count shots from corner situations as Set Piece shots, so I went back and filled in that information using the Chalkboards from The Guardian. Branislav Ivanovic is our clear leader in this category. Not surprising, considering his diet of unruly children and whiny puppies.
Lots to look at here, if you're so inclined...the two highlights for me were Jose Bosingwa taking overtaking Lampard in total passes attempted and Juan Mata drastically improving in corner accuracy (went 6-for-8 against United).
I think this is where the new shading works best, as we can clearly see who had good games against United (Ramires, Torres) and who was just flat out terrible (Lampard, Ashley Cole, Romelu Lukaku to a certain extent). On a sidenote, the Lampard Factor, the 'Maka' Factor, and the Ballhog Ratio are shaded so that lower values are recognized as better, while the rest of the categories follow the more obvious higher is better paradigm.
Juan Mata remains clearly our most creative player (Didier Drogba may be a close second, but he's helped by a somewhat smaller sample size). Mata is miles above anybody else on the team in Chances Created/90 and thus remains our most threatening passer as well as overall creativity leader. Jose Bosingwa, despite his limited showing over the weekend, is continuing to show strong in many categories, especially in Positive Passing.
Lastly, we have defense, where Ivan the Terrible remains the clear leader. Despite my personal unease whenever he's lined up at CB, his numbers show strong. Obviously, statistics aren't everything...but I can see a case made easily that justifies his continuing selection (best clearance ratio of any defender, by far the most interceptions, 100% tackling success, all the while committing the least amount of fouls of any defender).
The creators of the StatsZone App have confirmed that they will have Champions League statistics as well, although there is no word on exactly when (in their words: "soon")...hopefully that truly will be sooner rather than later, so I can start including those as well. I do not, however, see much hope for being able to flesh these out completely with Carling and FA Cup data...so some of our fringe players may not get a complete and fair shake in this.