11 weeks have past by in Ligue 1 (if you missed week 11, here’s our customary roundup: http://everydayiszlatanday.com/2014/10/28/ligue-1-roundup-week-11-2/) . Marseille are still atop the table, but for the first time their potential title quest is being questioned. Lyon have been the most in-form side in Ligue 1 and are back in a Champions League spot (albeit it’s a CL playoff spot and Lyon proved that the playoffs for European football can be much tougher than expected). There’s also other subplots in the league: Nantes are 5th despite having a transfer ban that won’t be lifted until the summer of 2015, Monaco have finally begun to rebound after the worst start imaginable, PSG are only 4 points off of Marseille and 6 points separate 9th place Rennes from 20th place Guingamp.
11 weeks seems like a decent time to do some data dumping for the French Domestic League. Below is a number of shot data led statistics with the league average at the very bottom so we can see a rough barometer for how well teams has played versus the rest of the pack through 11 games:
A Few Notes/Ramblings:
- I decided not to include PDO in the data above. Lately there’s been talk about the usefulness of the stat in football, something you can read in much greater detail in Richard Whittall’s piece on 21st Club: http://www.21stclub.com/blog/2014/10/28/in-defence-of-one-of-the-most-controversial-stats-in-football-analytics. I may experiment with PDO for Ligue 1 in a historical matter in the future but for now I’ve decided to not include it and simply just use pure shot data, percentage of shots on target on offense/defense and Open play Goal %.
- Bordeaux are 6th currently and until recently were in a Champions League position. I’m a bit unconvinced of them being good enough to be in European football next season let alone be in a top 3 position. Bordeaux are around average in pretty much every statistic in that picture other than their Open Play goal conversion rate, and their Open Goal % could be explained a little with Diego Rolan and Cheick Diabete’s finishing being above average relative to their shot volume. Bordeaux have been historically solid when it came to shot suppression, and under ner manager Willy Sagnol their defensive data is around league average. Sagnol perhaps is still trying to implement his ideologies on the club and 6th place for Bordeaux is where they’ve roughly finished in the last few years. We’ll see how their defensive work shapes out over the next stretch of games
- Lorient’s Open Goal % pretty much screams of the absence of Vincent Aboubakar. He contributed 14 non penalty goals last season for Lorient, which was massive in Lorient finishing in the top half of the table. They’re actually doing rather decently in non conversion statistics, which may be an indicator that they should be all right in the long term but it doesn’t look good that the only match they’ve won in their last 7 matches was against probably the worst team in Ligue 1.
- Bastia… you’re not good. I’m sorry Claudio Makelele.
- I’ve taken my fair amount of shots on Monaco on Twitter this season, as have a lot of people. Yes, James Rodriguez and Radamel Falcao aren’t walking through that door, but this is still a very young and talented squad they have. Yannick Federick-Carrasco has had his ups and downs (though he was spectacular versus Bastia last Saturday) and Dimitar Berbatov is maybe on the decline, which would put Monaco in a pickle in terms of who plays as the ST/CF in their 4-3-3. One thing I do wonder is whether they’ll use the money from the money they recoup on player sales like perhaps Joao Moutinho to fund for more players in their prime instead of having a massive dichotomy between their very young core and their over 30 players. Either way they’ll be fine in the long run and will be in the thick of it for the Champions League next year.
- I’ve already given my two cents on the problems Lille are facing this season so I won’t rehash them again. Inefficient is probably the best word to sum it all up
- Speaking of inefficient, there’s our good friends Nantes look down upon many other teams in fifth place. It’s weird, their data is pretty much similar to Lille except in terms of shot location. Both them and Lille would be very interesting to look at in terms of game states (how teams fare when leading, trailing or tied). This is an avenue I may look into in the future if I have enough time to do so. Nantes though have two players I enjoy watching in Georges-Kévin Nkoudou and Jordan Veretout, and Veretout in particular is becoming one of the better creative midfielders in Ligue 1.
- Not much else other than that, Saint Etienne have the best TSR in Ligue 1, the top 3 have offensive data that out laps the competition, and again pray for Claudio Makelele.