Tag: Bundesliga

  • Wonderkids: Florian Wirtz

    Florian Wirtz has all the credentials to become one of the top attacking midfielders in Europe, in our view. Technically gifted, Wirtz’s dribbling and vision are his main skills, while he is also very dynamic and covers a lot of ground during matches. Furthermore, various external factors lead us to believe that this 17-year-old wonderkid…

  • Top heading players in European football

    Headings require three key skills: a good timing, jumping reach and coordination. In the top 5 leagues, three forwards stand out for their heading skills: Giroud (Chelsea), Pavoletti (Cagliari) and Carrillo (Leganes). In the current season, the “king” of headers is Leonardo Pavoletti, who has already scored 9 headed goals.  Mexico City, Sunday 21 June…

  • Bend it like Beckham: the top free-kick takers in Europe

    Who have been the best free-kick takers in Europe over the past five years? Lionel Messi? Cristiano Ronaldo? According to our research, neither of the two. After analysing all the free-kicks taken in the top 5 European leagues since 2014/15, we arrive to some counterintuitive conclusions.  Andrew is attempting yet another dribble. The defender tackles him with energy.…

  • The Vitruvian Goalie: A deep dive into the goalkeepers' stats

    Goalkeepers save 69% of the opponents’ shots on target, on average. The save ratios differ greatly depending on whether the shots are taken inside or outside the box (60% and 85%, respectively). This suggests that, to be relevant, the save ratio needs to be considered along with the quality of the shots faced by the goalkeepers. To…

  • Ball possession in European football (part 3)

    Final part of our trilogy of posts dedicated to ball possession in European football. We look into the recurring build-up patterns of four top European teams: Barcelona, Man City, Napoli and Bayern Munich.  Third part of a trilogy The FIRST PART OF THE TRILOGY (LINK) was an introduction to ball possession. How it is calculated and…

  • Ball possession in European football (part 2)

    In this second post of our trilogy on ball possession, we expand the analysis we started in the first part, digging into the build-up habits of the top European teams. We propose the ratio of passes on total touches, as an indicator of “good football”. Napoli are topping the tables on this measure. Man City…

  • Ball possession in European football (part 1)

    This is part one of a trilogy of posts dedicated to the role of ball possession in football. In this post, we look at how ball possession is calculated and how the focus on ball possession is often (not always) a synonym of success. We also start digging into the bidirectional causation problem: do the teams play…

  • Crossing: An effective strategy?

    Crossing is still very much used by the top European teams (18.6 per match, on average). However, we doubt the efficiency of such an attacking strategy. We calculate that only 1 every 64 crosses is directly translated into a goal. Is it worth trying? We conclude it is not, unless you have someone like Mauro…