Should Coutinho Take Liverpool’s Corners?

I recently looked into whether Liverpool were better at defending set pieces this season (here), and the numbers suggested that they weren’t. The Reds then proceeded to let in dead ball goals against Hull, Swansea and West Bromwich Albion in three of their next four league matches. Either I might have a clue regarding what I write about on here, or I’m a jinx. You decide.

Anyway, that article was prompted by a John Aldridge column in the Liverpool Echo, and something he has said this week (here) inspired me to write another quick post. When talking about Liverpool’s performance at Crystal Palace, Aldo said:

The fact that we’ve found a corner taker is also a real positive. Our corners have been horrendous for a long time, I could never see us scoring from them. But Philippe Coutinho put in some really good deliveries and hopefully we’ll stick with him now… When we had Suarez and Steve Gerrard deliveries, you could see the percentage of goals getting knocked up.

Have Liverpool found a decent corner taker in Coutinho though? Or did the Reds benefit from some random variation at Selhurst Park?

Continue reading

Joe For Jordan: Stat Comparison

As Jordan Henderson is the only Liverpool player who has appeared in every match in all competitions this season, Brendan Rodgers doesn’t have any recent experience of planning his match squad without the England international being available.

Henderson’s red card in the final minutes of Liverpool’s 3-2 win over Manchester City means that the Reds’ manager will have to plan for his absence for three of the final four games of the season. My assumption is that Joe Allen will take Henderson’s place, so I thought I’d take review the stats to see how the two players compare this season.

Continue reading

Henderson and Comolli

I finally found time to listen to the podcast of Sky Sports’ debate on football analytics, from December last year. If you’re interested in such things, I thoroughly recommend it (link).

One of the contributors was Liverpool’s former director of football, Damien Comolli. His comments on the scouting of Jordan Henderson in 2011 particularly piqued my interest, as they made me wonder if my chance quality work might have given the Sunderland man’s impressive chance creation figures some important context.

Continue reading

Swansea 2 Liverpool 2: Stats Zone Analysis

After my first attempt at analysing a match via Stats Zone two weeks ago, I’ve again taken to the app to cast my critical eye over Liverpool’s 2-2 draw away at Swansea City.

Although I am happy enough with a point, as it maintains the Reds’ five point advantage over their corresponding fixtures from last season, there were many areas of the performance that left a lot to be desired.

Continue reading

Newcastle 0 Liverpool 6: Stats Round Up

Whenever the Reds have a big win I like to summarise the key statistics, and their emphatic victory at St James Park is no exception!

Continue reading

In Praise Of Jordan Henderson

During Liverpool’s 2-1 win at Villa Park on Sunday, I was surprised to hear the co-commentator Alan Smith award the man of the match honour to Steven Gerrard.

Sure, the Liverpool captain scored the winner (which was his second in three league games after three-and-a-half years without one) and acrobatically cleared a goal bound shot off the line, but overall I felt he didn’t contribute as much as Jordan Henderson did.

The Tomkins Times run a stats round up after every match (the latest of which you can read here, if you’re a subscriber), where they list the top three Liverpool performers for various stats. Surprisingly, Henderson didn’t feature anywhere, so it seems his performance was based on a solid performance in a variety of areas, rather than shining in one.

Continue reading