Some recent blog posts
I would like to share some of the interesting posts on various blogs I have read the last couple of days.
Daniel Staley (@dstaley56) has made a great job when he analysed if passing the ball might be a better choice than direct shooting when taking freekicks. Read at eplindex.com or at his personal blog. The data come from this year’s English Premier League (EPL) season. Even if more exact data are needed and more seasons/leagues should be included it can probably be concluded that mixing up direct free kicks with trick freekicks (through balls etcetera) would increase the conversion rates.
Aaron Nielsen (@ENBSports) has produced a great book with all EPL stats you can imagine. It is called 20 Years of the English Premier League – A Statistical and Informational Account and “includes complete statistical data of all seasons, clubs, players, goalkeepers and managers since the league began in 1992”. Incredible work that can be freely downloaded here!
Dave Willoughby (@donceno) has taken a look at some of the stats from the European Championships. It is of course (as he also mentions) hard to make too much out of such a small sample of games, but he has found some interesting stuff. E.g. that the much criticised FIFA ranking could be used as a rather good predictor of the tournament outcome.
Finally, for those of you who understand Swedish, take a look at Kalle Karlsson’s (@Kalle__Karlsson) blog (mainly focusing on EPL). He has made some tremendous work and showed before the Euro final that Spain actually created more goal scoring opportunities without a natural number nine (Fabregas) than with one.