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Shots on Target Ratio Expected Goals Ratio All of these metrics are tested for their correlation to future performance in terms of future points per game and future goal ratio.
This is done for each match round of the season. For example, after 8 match rounds played, all twelve metrics are computed over match days 1 to 8 and compared to points per game and goal ratio from match round 9 to the end of the season.
This is done by fitting a linear model and noting the correlation in terms of R squared. This process is repeated for each metric at every match round, to obtain R-squared values for each metric at each point in the season.
Points per Game and Goals Ratio The first graphs show the output of the two historically available parameters: This is basically the equivalent of looking at the league table and expecting trends to continue as they do.
Not a bad habit, and it does certainly hold valuable information, but it has several disadvantages too. Most notably, the correlation takes a while to pick up, settling down around week Also, beyond that moment, hardly any improvement is made with respect to predicting future performance.
A final interesting remark is that Goals Ratio is quickest to pick up information, but Points per Game might just be a touch better in the final stages of the season. This ties in with the statistical intuition that goals are the more frequent occurrence, and therefore pick up signal earlier, but also collect more noise along the way.
Note that the graphs drop off after the halfway point of the season. This does not indicate that the model becomes worse, but rather that there is more variety in the outcome parameter.
The slight kick-up at match day 34 reflects the fact that Bundesliga and Eredivisie seasons are 34 matches long and the rest of the leagues in the dataset play 38 match seasons. Total Shots Ratio A little under four years ago, a concept called Total Shots Ratio made its way into the then quite small world of football analytics.
Pioneer James Grayson explored it on his bloga site that is still a great read to get yourself acquainted with the development of football analytics.
Total Shots Ratio, of TSR, proved a very interesting way to rank teams, without having to resort to direct output like goals scored or points won.
Shots attempted do reflect the balance of play, and the metrics does recognize under or over performing teams. Look at that massive boost of knowledge early in the season.
It now proved possible to identify the strength of teams as early as after seven of eight match rounds, with an accuracy comparable to what traditional methods could only achieve at their height in mid-season.
TSR, like Goals Ratio, forms an improvement early in the season by picking up signal a lot earlier. After all, shots are roughly 10 to 11 times more frequent than goals.
In the end, it turns out that this method collects noise at a faster rate too. Not all shots are equal, and some teams have tactical setups that allow them to consistently perform better or worse than TSR suggests. As is shown in the sharp drop in performance that TSR shows after match round Theoretically, SoTR could be a nice method to lose the noise that weakens TSR in later stages of the season, hopefully without losing too much of the early signal that makes the method so powerful.
I was wrong, it seems. Despite holding roughly one third of the sample of TSR — around 1 in 3 shots is on target — the SoTR metric picks up its signal equally fast and holds it longer.Feb 27, · Opinions expressed by Forbes Contributors are their own.
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