In the last international break I looked at the TSR (total shots ratio) and schedule strength of the 20 teams in the Premier League. TSR is a good indicator of a team’s actual performance after a small number of games. It has some obvious drawbacks (not all shots are equal) but is simple to calculate. (See the excellent StatsBomb.com for more information)
Last time out
The findings from last time (see here) turned out to be reasonably good predictions.
After seven games, TSR suggested Newcastle were unlucky to be near the foot of the table, a fact born out by their recent resurgence.
By contrast, Hull, Leicester and Villa were over-performing according to the statistics. All three have since fallen towards the wrong end of the table.
Swansea and QPR also seemed to be bucking the trend but haven’t seen much of a change.
So what does the picture look like now?
Teams above the line have more points than their shot ratio would suggest, teams below have fewer.
West Ham, and particularly Swansea, appear to be two of the most over-performing teams. This makes sense as you would not expect them to finish in their current top five positions.
Another surprise team this season, Southampton, are also way above the line. However, they still have the second best TSR overall, so their league position looks more sustainable.
Chelsea are the most over-performing team of all but surely they are less likely to regress. Score effects may be affecting their numbers, or something more complicated may be going on related to the quality of their squad and Mourinho’s tactics.
From last time, Newcastle are now pretty close to their expected position but QPR still seem to be doing a lot worse than their shot ratio suggests.
Other teams that are under-performing include Burnley, Liverpool and Arsenal.
I would definitely expect Liverpool to start climbing the league table, although the news that Daniel Sturridge will be out for another six weeks won’t help.
Arsenal have the highest TSR in the division. Has their relatively disappointing start been due to bad luck or are the statistics misleading?
Who has had the toughest schedule?
Last time I also looked at how tough a team’s opponents had been to date. Using last years finishing positions I created an average rank of opponents faced. As we are now further into the season, the discrepancies in schedule have evened out somewhat but there are still notable differences.
Villa and QPR have had the toughest games so far. Leicester and Manchester City can also take some solace from a difficult start.
Southampton’s amazing form can be somewhat explained by the easiest schedule of all twenty teams. Manchester United must also worry that they only sit seventh after a relatively soft start.
Do these statistics tell us anything? Who do you think should be lower / higher in the table than their current position? Let me know in the comments below.
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