Unlike last season's monthly (or thereabouts) round-ups, this year we've been doing individual, per-match reports on your community player ratings votes. Since we're right around the halfway mark, it's time to a look at a bigger picture for a second. As always, be reminded to not put too much stock into these things. It is all just a bit of fun. Usually.
What all the fake Futura, Microsoftified Gill Sans, and (bleh) Arial Narrow above will tell you (especially if you click on it twice to make it legible) is that while the festive period has filled us with oodles of hope and excitement, we've been somewhat inconsistent over the vast majority of the season. As if you needed a sobering reminder, right?
Only three players have garnered a ratings average of at least a 7.0, and two of them are just backups with small sample sizes. Eden Hazard is the third and your clear leader so far for player of the season.
- Oscar, Petr Cech, and John Terry are your three highest-rated regulars after Hazard. Those three are also tied for second with four man of the match awards; Hazard is first with five, three of which have come in our last six matches. Merry Christmas!
- Fernando Torres is by far your highest-rated striker with 6.5; Eto'o and Ba are two of the three lowest-rated players in the squad.
- Strikers have won six man of the match awards combined, all coming in a span of eleven matches from late-September to mid-November.
- Players rated higher so far this season than last: Bertrand (+1.3), Torres (+0.8), Terry (+0.6), Oscar (+0.3), Azpilicueta (+0.3), Ramires (+0.3), Cahill (+0.2), Ivanovic (+0.1).
- Players rater lower so far this season than last: Ba (-0.7), Mata (-0.5), A.Cole (-0.3), Lampard (-0.3), David Luiz (-0.2).
- Highest-rated newcomers: Schwarzer (7.3), Willian (6.8), Schürrle (6.5).
- Attacking midfield pecking order: Hazard (7.1), Oscar (6.9), Willian (6.8), Mata (6.6), Schürrle (6.5), De Bruyne (6.1). The gap from 1st to 4th is the same as from 4th to 6th.
- Highest-rated team performances: Liverpool H (7.4), Bayern N (7.4), Schalke H (7.4). The matching 3-0 away wins at West Ham and Southampton follow at 7.3.
- Lowest-rated team performances: Basel H (4.9), Stoke A (4.9), Newcastle A (5.0). Highest rated loss is the 1-2 away to Sunderland (5.7).
- Highest-rated individual performances: Hazard v. Sunderland A (9.7; highest on record), Torres v. Schalke A (9.2), Torres v. Man City H (9.2).
- Lowest-rated individual performances: Eto'o v. Stoke A (3.4), Lampard v. Basel A (3.6), Cech v. Stoke A (3.7). The only other individual performance rated below a 4.0 is Lampard's outing v. Newcastle A (3.7).