Daniel Agger in 2011/2012
Daniel Agger seems to be a target for Manchester City. For that reason Stephen McCarthy performed an interesting analysis well presented in this blog where he compared Agger with Martin Skrtel and Jamie Carragher for some typical defending metrics (in last four year’s EPL seasons). From this analysis it seems that Agger actually is more of a battling type of player than his two team mates and his overall statistics don’t seem to be very impressive.
I decided to look at Agger’s performance in another perspective. How did the team perform with Agger on the pitch compared to in total? Of course I should maybe compare Liverpool’s performance with/without Agger, but I simply didn’t have the time to get the data right. For the same reason the analysis is only done for the last season, leaving the sample size rather small.
Methodology: Pick out the (22) games where Agger was on the pitch for more than one half and compare the team’s performance in that games compared to in total.
Results: In the table below the ratio of wins, draws, and losses are given for Liverpool with Agger on the pitch and in total. It can clearly be seen that the team got more points with Agger on the pitch.
In a defensive perspective the number of goals conceded is maybe a more interesting metric than wins and losses. The last column in the table accounts for that. In the 22 games that Agger played more than 45 minutes Liverpool conceded 19 goals, leaving an average of 19/22=0.86 goals per game. In Liverpool’s total 38 games they conceded 40 goals. Thus, they conceded 1.05 goals per game in average.
Conclusions: Last year Liverpool performed better with Daniel Agger on the pitch than without. Of course more in-depth analysis is required to analyse how important he is for the team (e.g. by taking more seasons and the quality of the opponents in the games he participated in into consideration), but this statistics are at least in Daniel Agger’s favour. The question is, is he really worth £20m or more?
Edit: Here you can (among other things) read that Liverpool only conceded every 107 minutes that Agger was on the pitch, but every 71 minutes without him.