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Expected Goals stats tell the story after Wolves 1 Newcastle 1

4 weeks ago
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Expected Goals is widely agreed to be the best way of measuring how well Premier League clubs play in any particular game.

To get a better look at how sides are doing, the Expected Goals (xG) metric allows you to get a better picture of just how teams are performing.

Expected goals (xG) is a statistic used to work out how many goals should be scored in a match.

With every single shot awarded an xG value based on the difficulty of the attempt, with factors including distance from goal, type of shot and number of defenders present affecting the value.

The higher the xG of a particular shot, the more likely a goal should be scored from that shot.

The xG value of every shot in a game is then used to calculate the expected goals in a particular match.

So rather than just the usual basic statistics of how many shots each team has, Expected Goals factors in where shots were taken from and how good a chance was and whether defenders in the way etc.

These are the weekend’s Premier League Expected Goals stats (actual final scoreline in brackets) by Understat:

Friday 23 October

Aston Villa 1.50 v 2.38 Leeds (0-3)

Saturday 24 October

West Ham 0.26 v 0.89 Manchester City (1-1)

Fulham 1.05 v 2.81 Crystal Palace (1-2)

Manchester United 0.65 v 0.22 Chelsea (0-0)

Liverpool 2.40 v 1.40 Sheffield United (2-1)

Sunday 25 October

Southampton 0.74 v 0.29 Everton (2-0)

Wolves 0.76 v 0.25 Newcastle United (1-1)

Arsenal 0.74 v 0.74 Leicester (0-1)

As you can see, in pretty much every case the winners matched up with the Expected Goals stats.

The team that works the best chances most often in a match, gives itself the best chance of winning.

So Southampton, Liverpool, Crystal Palace and Leeds were very much deserving of their wins on balance of play/chances.

Arsenal (0.74) and Leicester (0.74) very even on chances / play with Vardy getting that late winner.

Man City (0.89) with the better of West Ham (0.26) but Antonio’s spectacular goal earning a point.

Whilst Man Utd (0.65) edged it against a Chelsea (0.22) side who only had one shot on target.

As for the game at Molineux, Wolves (0.76) had more than three times the better expected goals stat than Newcastle United (0.25).

Indeed, Steve Bruce and his team barely registering as an attacking threat and only Chelsea had a lower Expected Goals stat over this past weekend.

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