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Archive for the ‘Inside the Numbers’ Category

Inside the Numbers: Rubio Rubin’s assists
   November 5, 2014 (7:15 AM) by Matt Benson

This will be a short one, but Rubio Rubin picked up his fourth assist in league play over the weekend (highlights).  According to Squawka, his four assists are tied for the fourth most in the Dutch Eredivisie so far in 2014-15.


Not bad for an 18-year-old.

And yes, the Eredivisie is a goal-scoring league (3.20 goals per game this season), especially when compared to England (2.80), Spain (2.72), Germany (2.66), Italy (2.51) and France (2.36), which means more chances for assists.  And yes, more younger players get playing time in the Eredivisie, but here is how his four assists stack up against other players 20 or younger in Europe’s “Big Five” leagues (as well as the Eredivisie) so far in 2014-15.


In a time where Jurgen Klinsmann is not happy with various players across Europe, you would have to think ol’ Klinsi is happy with the playing time and Rubin’s play this season.  Hopefully it continues for the rest of the year.

Categories: Inside the Numbers, Rubio Rubin

Inside the Numbers: A look at last year’s Championship
   July 30, 2014 (6:35 AM) by Matt Benson

I posted some numbers last Wednesday and I thought I would post some more this week with the English League Championship starting up a week from Friday.

As the same as last week, all these numbers are coming from the website Squawka, which gets its numbers from Opta.  I will state this from the beginning, some of these are just basic numbers that make the various guys look good without any help from me, while some other things were edited down until I was able to get someone on a list.  I was trying my best to make the various Americans look good (USA! USA! USA!).  That said, here we go.

Tim Ream is coming off his best season at Bolton, winning Player of the Year honors by both the team and the fans.  While he shifted between centerback and left back, he did his job well and without fouling opposing players.  Ream committed only eight fouls on the season in 3675 minutes played.  His 0.20 fouls per 90 minutes was the lowest rate in the Championship last season among defenders who played in at least 35 games.


Danny Williams will miss the beginning of the season after having an operation performed on his knee.  Much like Alejandro Bedoya, Williams did a good job of putting his shots on frame.  Squawka has a stat called shot accuracy percentage, which is shots on target (minus blocked shots) divided by total shot attempts (minus blocked shots).  Williams put nearly 60 percent of his shot attempts on target and this is with 27 of his 40 total shot attempts coming from outside the penalty area.


Duane Holmes is one young player who is looking for more playing time in 2014-15 and will likely get it at Huddersfield Town.  The 19-year-old midfielder appeared in 21 games last season between Huddersfield Town and a loan stint with Yeovil Town.  In fact, only four players under the age of 20 logged more minutes last season in the Championship than Holmes’ 776 minutes.


Another young promising player in the Championship is centerback Will Packwood.  While Packwood appeared in only 12 games in the Championship (he did play eight games in League Two on a loan stint with Bristol Rovers), he was very active when he did play.  Packwood averaged 16.17 interceptions/blocked shots/clearances per 90 minutes in 2013-14, easily the most among players under the age of 22.  Also, his 12.83 clearances per 90 minutes was also the most among players under the age of 22.


We are one week away from the Championship starting up and hopefully those four players (and Jonathan Spector, Eric Lichaj and Zak Whitbread) continue to play well in 2014-15.

Categories: Danny Williams, Duane Holmes, Inside the Numbers, Tim Ream, Will Packwood
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Inside the Numbers: A look back at last season
   July 23, 2014 (8:00 AM) by Matt Benson

As a new season approaches, I thought I would take a quick look back at last season.  I know I wanted to do something with numbers when I came across the website Squawka during the World Cup.  It has a bunch of numbers pulled from Opta data and puts it in a nice little stat search engine.

From there, I decided to play around with it until I was able to find some Americans on some top lists.  I will state this from the beginning, some of these are just basic numbers that make the various guys look good without any help from me, while some other things were edited down until I was able to get someone on a list.  I was trying my best to make the various Americans look good (USA! USA! USA!).  That said, here we go.

Tim Howard is coming off one of the best seasons of his career as he recorded 15 shutouts during the 2013-14 Premier League season, his second most in a single season since coming to Everton.  And the 15 shutouts were the third most in the EPL in 2013-14.  After looking at the Top 5 European leagues (England, Spain, Germany, Italy and France), he was in the Top 15, but most of the guys ahead of him were on teams who were really good and didn’t face a lot of shots.  After narrowing down the search some more, I was able to find that Howard was one of two goalkeepers from a Top 5 European league who registered at least 15 shutouts over the 2013-14 season while also recording 90 or more saves.  As for the other goalkeeper, CONCACAF pride.


Moving onto another American goalkeeper in the Premier League.  Resident goalkeeper guru Will has said in the past when comparing Tim Howard and Brad Guzan, Howard is more a reactive goalie while Guzan is a little bit more aggressive at coming out to get balls, especially on crosses.  After a simple search, no goalkeeper from a Top 5 European league came close to claiming as many crosses as Guzan last season.


Most of the time when you look at interception lists (when a player cuts out an opposition pass), it is usually filled with defensive midfielders and centerbacks, but Geoff Cameron has taken these skills to the right back position at Stoke City.  His 91 interceptions were the sixth most in the Premier League, fourth most among defenders and second most among right backs.


Heading over to France, Alejandro Bedoya had a decent debut season at Nantes.  Squawka has a stat called shot accuracy percentage, which is shots on target (minus blocked shots) divided by total shot attempts (minus blocked shots).  And Mr. Bedoya ranked fourth in this category among Ligue 1 midfielders with at least 40 total shot attempts last season.  Basically he was putting his shots on frame.


That is it for this week.  I will be back next week with a English League Championship edition as that league starts up on August 8.

Categories: Alejandro Bedoya, Brad Guzan, Geoff Cameron, Inside the Numbers, Tim Howard
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Inside the Numbers: Julian Green’s goal
   July 2, 2014 (10:38 AM) by Matt Benson

I was able to piece this list together between MisterChip and other online sources, but Julian Green became the 11th youngest player in World Cup history to score goal with his goal against Belgium last night.  When taking out duplicate names, he is the eighth youngest individual player to score a goal in World Cup history.


When I was 19 years old, I was a freshman in college trying to figure out how to smuggle cheap beer into my dorm room, not scoring goals at the World Cup.  But the future appears to be bright with Julian Green.

Categories: Inside the Numbers, Julian Green

Inside the Numbers: Tim Howard had a decent season
   May 13, 2014 (3:04 PM) by Matt Benson


I was just doing a quick scan of various stats from this past season in the Premier League, and not overly shocking, Tim Howard ranked up there in many different goalkeeping stats.  Among the 20 guys who played in at least 20 games this past season, Howard ranked in the top five in save percentage, GAA and shutouts, while also placing in the top ten in saves per game.





And going back to the start of the 2006-07 season (his first year at Everton), only two goalkeepers have recorded more clean sheets in the Premier League than Howard.


Well done, Timmy.

Categories: Inside the Numbers, Tim Howard
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Inside the Numbers: European Scoring Leaderboard
   January 28, 2014 (8:30 AM) by Matt Benson


I did this a couple times last year with Jozy Altidore, but I decided to take a look at where Aron Johannsson’s 20 goals in 2013-14 stack up across Europe.  After digging around the top leagues in England, Spain, Italy, Germany, France, Portugal and Netherlands, while looking at all goals scored for their club teams in all league/cup/European competitions, ArJo is one of 10 players with at least 20 goals through games of Monday, January 27.


Not bad, Mr. Bacon.

Categories: Aron Johannsson, Inside the Numbers

Inside the Numbers: Matt Besler’s debut year with the USMNT
   January 14, 2014 (9:00 AM) by Matt Benson

After watching that video by US Soccer on Matt Besler and Graham Zusi from last week, it got me thinking:  How impressive was Besler’s first full year with the USMNT?

He went from not being in the USMNT picture (No bio in the USMNT media guide for 2013.  His only mention is in a recap of the 2012 US Open Cup.) to someone who played in 12 games and logged the fourth most minutes by any field player in 2013 (and he met Kim Kardashian).  Only DaMarcus Beasley, Omar Gonzalez and Jozy Altidore saw the field more.  One could argue that he is probably the #1 centerback on Jurgen Klinsmann’s depth chart as of right now.

So I dove into the USMNT media guide to try and find other players who recorded 10+ caps in their first year with the USMNT and found nine guys who have done this all-time.


Sort of a mixed bag, but it was still an impressive year for Besler.

The January camp has been good to some USMNT players in recent years (Geoff Cameron, Stuart Holden, Graham Zusi and Matt Besler to just name a few).  While this January is a little bit stronger than past camps, there could be a player or two who impresses Klinsi enough to get future looks (possibly sneak on the World Cup roster?).

Categories: Inside the Numbers, Matt Besler, US Men's National Team

Inside the Numbers: Catching up with Dempsey
   December 25, 2013 (3:00 PM) by Matt Benson


Just wanted to a quick post showing you where Clint Dempsey’s goals rack up in the Premier League/Fulham (heading into Boxing Day).  His 57 career Premier League goals are tied for the 17th most among current Premier League players.


While his 50 league goals with Fulham are the most in club history in the Premier League era.


I am probably going to buy some old English First Division stat books (since I am a dork), so I am hopefully going to investigate some more into Fulham’s history in the new few weeks.

Categories: Clint Dempsey, Inside the Numbers

Inside the Numbers: Roma’s winning streak
   November 1, 2013 (5:33 AM) by Matt Benson

If you follow this site on a regular basis, you know that I am into numbers and history.  Here is what I was able to find online about Roma’s current winning streak.  A lot of these numbers come from the Spanish stat guru Mr. Chip (or what I can find online).

* Roma’s 10-game winning streak to start the season is the longest in Serie A history.  The previous longest streak was eight by Juventus, done in 1930-31 and 1985-86.  Juventus actually won its first nine games in 2005-06, but that record was expunged by the match-fixing scandal from that season.

* Roma is the third team all-time from one of the top five European leagues (England, Spain, Italy, Germany and France) to start a season by winning each of it first 10 games.  Tottenham began the 1960-61 season with 11 straight wins while Manchester United began the 1985-86 season with 10 consecutive wins.

* Going back to last season, Roma has won each of its last 11 games in Serie A action, tying the club’s longest streak in top-flight play and the second-longest winning streak in Serie A history.  Roma also won 11 in a row during the 2005-06 season.  The longest winning streak in Serie A history is 17 by Inter Milan, set during the 2006-07 season, which is also the longest winning streak by any team from one of the top five European leagues.

* Roma has only given up one goal this season, becoming the first Serie A team to surrender only one goal through its first 10 games since Cagliari in 1966-67.  And Roma hasn’t given up a goal in each of its last seven Serie A games, tying the longest streak in club history.

Categories: Inside the Numbers, Michael Bradley

Inside the Numbers: Lots of hat tricks this month
   September 27, 2013 (7:15 AM) by Matt Benson

Herculez Gomez came back from injury last night and put three balls in the back of the net (highlights).  It was his first multi-goal game since March 1, 2013 (vs. Jaguares) and the second hat trick by an American in consecutive days.  Aron Johannsson also had a hat trick against Sparta Rotterdam in the Dutch Cup on Wednesday (highlights).  It was Johannsson’s first hat trick since scoring four goals against Horsens while playing with the AGF in the Danish Superliga on August 27, 2012.

Using our fun little goal tracker, here are all hat tricks at the club level by Americans playing outside the US in 2013.


Also of note regarding Herc, he now has 12 goals in 17 CONCACAF Champions League games since 2011-12.  It is still early in the 2013-14 competition (only five guys have 3+ goals this year), but he is the only player with 3+ goals in CONCACAF Champions League action in each of the last three tournaments.

Categories: Aron Johannsson, Herculez Gomez, Inside the Numbers
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