Opinion

How Did Palace Players Do From A Statistical Point Of View?

Everyone loves a statistic and while they do not mean an awful lot in the general scheme of things, TEB enlisted the help of Devin Mendenhall to break down the season for the mighty Eagles.

So, without any messing around we delve straight into the numbers which are for players who have played twenty games or more unless otherwise specified.

PATRICK VAN AANHOLT

  • 5 goals (tied 2nd among defenders)
  • 1.3 shots/game (3rd for defenders)
  • 1 dribble/game (tied 4th among defenders)

Ended the season on fire and if that form continues you can see why PVA could be counted as one of the best offensive full backs in the Premier League.

JAMES TOMKINS

  • 2.3 interceptions/game (2nd among defenders)
  • 7.9 clearances/game (3rd overall)
  • 3 goals (tied 3rd among centre backs)

High ranking in both interceptions and clearances. In other words, opposing forwards do not really touch the ball when he is on the field.

MAMADOU SAKHO

  • 6 wins, 4 draws, no losses is his record when paired with Tomkins.
  • 0.8 goals against/game when paired with Tomkins. The team had a 1.67 ratio over the rest of the fixtures.

Formed a formidable partnership with Tomkins that went undefeated when starting together.

AARON WAN-BISSAKA

  • 4.1 tackles/game (1st for defenders, 2nd is Jeffrey Schlupp with 3.1/game)
  • 1.7 crosses blocked/game (tied 1st among defenders)
  • 1.4 dribbles/game (4th among defenders)
  • These statistics are based on players who have played more than 6 games to include Wan-Bissaka.

Is it too soon to be excited? Slotted in with ease at the end of the season and even after missing a few games, the youngster returned and played well in the last game of the season. No complaints if this is our starting back four next season.

YOHAN CABAYE

  • 2.5 interceptions/game (tied 1st overall)
  • 1.5 key passes/game (tied 8th among midfielders)
  • 2.4 tackles/game (tied 13th among midfielders)
  • 1.5 crosses/game (7th overall)

Cabaye’s tenacity is underrated. If you ask anyone in the world who had the most interceptions in the Premier League I am pretty sure no one would answer, Cabaye. So smart positionally with Luka Milivojevic and also gets forward and makes important passes evidenced by his high key pass and cross statistics. Hopefully, we can keep him this summer.

LUKA MILIVOJEVIC

  • 10 goals (1st among midfielders)
  • 2.4 tackles/game (tied 13th among midfielders)
  • 2 fouls/game (tied 2nd overall)

The Captain. Solid, dependable, smart. Organises the side and thrived when partnered with Cabaye. Also knows how to knock a penalty in and is pretty decent at free kicks too.

RUBEN LOFTUS-CHEEK

  • 3 dribbles/game (4th overall)
  • 2.6 fouled/game (tied 1st overall)

One of our best loan signings ever. So smart and strong on the ball as seen by his dribble and fouled statistics.

ANDROS TOWNSEND

  • 7 assists (tied 14th overall)
  • 2.3 dribbles/game (tied 12th overall)
  • 1.3 crosses/game (tied 11th overall)

Worked tirelessly all season long. With better finishing from Christian Benteke, he could have had a few more assists and if he works on his shooting accuracy, could have had a few more goals. Provides the distraction for Wilfried Zaha and often plays the part of the unsung hero, working super hard but never getting the statistics to prove it.

CHRISTIAN BENTEKE

  • 5 Assists (tied 4th among forwards)
  A B C D E
2017/18 31 3 20 0.74 0.15
2016/17 36 15 12 0.75 1.25
2015/16 29 9 9 0.62 1.00
2014/15 29 13 7 0.69 1.86
2013/14 26 10 14 0.92 0.71
2012/13 34 19 11 0.88 1.72
  • A = games
  • B = goals
  • C = big chances missed
  • D = goals + big chances missed
  • E = goals / big chances missed

This table shows that Benteke had the most bizarre out of form season anyone could have imagined. He averaged about the same number of total chances (D) as he has in other seasons but he was poor at converting. The big Belgian has never even been close to as bad as he was at any other point in his career. He will get chances no matter what. If he can get his ratio back up with either or a combination of luck, confidence, and whatever else, then he will be back to scoring 15 to 20 goals for us.

WILFRIED ZAHA

  • 9 Goals (tied 10th among forwards)
  • 1.8 key passes/game (tied 14th overall)
  • 4.1 dribbles/game (2nd overall)
  • 2.6 fouled/game (tied 1st overall)

What can you say? The numbers do not say it all but what they do say is, we have one of the best dribblers and creators in the entire league in our team (even if other fans and Gareth Southgate don’t recognise or even realise it). He has been scoring at a higher rate over the last two seasons and takes his chances well. His increase in key passes points to adding even more skill to his game. He is no longer only a dribbler, he can pass and shoot as evidenced by the numbers.

After our first 7 losses, this was our record for the rest of the season. This isn’t just playing good over a few games against easy opponents, this is playing really good for more than ¾ of the season. For ¾ of the season, we were 7th best and would qualify for a spot in the Europa League! Do we dare to dream? Palace in Europe?

Over these games, we are also the only team other than the top 6 to have a positive goal difference. It is incredible to think how good we were under Roy Hodgson and how quickly he turned it around after the awful start we had under Frank de Boer.

 

 

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Jay Crame

Jay Crame

Jay is the founder of TEB and site editor. An avid Palace fan since the late eighties with a passion for music and far too many other sports. Presenter and producer of The Meridian Sports Show on Meridian FM.

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