We Are Liverpool – Poetry In Motion

A charity single has been released today (Monday 7th April) to raise money for the Hillsborough Justice Campaign. It’s a version of the ‘We Are Liverpool’ chant.

Not that this is a reason to buy it, but I play bass on the track, and it is an honour to be involved in this project. The guy organising it has got other Liverpool fans to contribute vocals so perhaps someone you know (or you yourself) is on there too?

Here is the I-tunes download link, and as I say, all profits go to the HJC.

It’s only £0.79, and the money is obviously for a very worthy cause.

Justice for the 96.

Is Time On Liverpool’s Side?

We keep hearing (from Jose Mourinho, mainly) that Liverpool are challenging for the title due to them not having to play in Europe (as if Champions League income doesn’t help with that particular ‘chore’, but let’s ignore that for now).

Whilst it is true that the other teams in the top four have played more games than the Reds this season, I thought it’d be interesting to break it down per player to see what the extra workload is. After all, these teams have bigger squads as they have more money to spend, so what difference do the extra games make per man?

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Joe For Jordan: Stat Comparison

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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.

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Brendan Rodgers: Liverpool Elite

As the Liverpool title charge continued with a thrilling 3-2 victory over Manchester City, the result meant that Brendan Rodgers set a couple of memorable records. In doing so, in one way he joined the club’s managerial elite.

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Reds vs Blues: Shots On Target

Having recently taken a look at the transfer spending of the current Premier League top three, as well as reviewing their record with big chances, I thought it was time to look at how they have fared with shots on target. As Liverpool and Manchester City meet at Anfield this weekend, I will look at their stats in this article, and factor in Chelsea ahead of their visit to Merseyside in two weeks time.

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It’s A Rich Man’s World (2014)

One of the top ten most read articles on this website is a look at the difference in transfer spending between Liverpool and Manchester City.

Written in May 2012, I have proceeded to add a postscript every time the teams have met since, to measure what has happened in the intervening transfer windows.

As Liverpool are currently deeply involved in a title race with a pair of financially doped teams who they have to play in the next three weeks, I thought I’d post a quick new piece to compare the transfer spending of all three championship challengers.

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Liverpool: League Leaders In More Ways Than One

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As a statto, it’s always a joy to find a new source of football information that you’ve never seen anywhere else. It’s a rare treat these days, but today I stumbled across this.

It contains the data on how long each team in the Premier League has been leading and losing this season, and for previous campaigns too. I thought it was worth a look to see how Liverpool compare to their own past efforts, and those of other top performing sides too.

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The Big Three’s Big Chances

The title of this article is not my attempt to reposition Liverpool as part of a three-team elite alongside the financially doped blue titans of Manchester City and Chelsea; rather, I have decided to follow up my recent piece on Liverpool’s record with big chances with a look at the tallies for their title rivals.

As they both still have to visit Anfield this season, I was very interested to check out their form with regards to top quality goalscoring opportunities.

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Liverpool’s Big Chances

There has recently been a fantastic addition to the already great Stats Zone app: big chance data. Also sometimes referred to as clear-cut chances, big chances are defined by Opta as:

A situation where a player should reasonably be expected to score usually in a one-on-one scenario or from very close range.

Whilst the much missed EPLIndex site was a great source of the basic big chance data (so whether they were scored or not), using Stats Zone we can now see where on the pitch the chances occurred, and whether or not they were on target. Needless to say, my first thought upon discovering that this information was available was to see how Liverpool have fared at both ends of the pitch in 2013/14.

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Are Liverpool Too Reliant Upon Their Strike Duo?

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As I noted in my last post, Liverpool are scoring so many goals that all manner of Premier League records have already gone or are in their sights to be broken. The much fabled Suárez and Sturridge partnership added four to their tally for the season at Cardiff on Saturday, so I thought it would be interesting to see how regularly Liverpool have scored both with and without the duo on the pitch this season.

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Reds March On, Records Keep Falling

After an impressive victory, I often like to try to analyse the match and maybe post some of the key stats. But Liverpool are smashing so many records with every game, and my head is spinning as the title charge continues, so after the 6-3 win at Cardiff, I’ll simply post a few facts about the records that have gone, and those that are in sight.

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Rodgers’ Reds: Goal Bonanza

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Many people were surprised in the summer of 2013 when Brendan Rodgers told the Liverpool Echo:

“I’m looking to bring 20 more goals into the team…when I look at the reality of it we scored 47 goals the season before I arrived and this time got 71, and we hope to add to that amount.”

Considering that the Reds had just scored the second most league goals the club had managed in a Premier League season, it sounded like a slightly outlandish claim, not least as many thought the defence was the end of the team requiring more attention.

Yet with nine games to go, Liverpool are now just one strike shy of the record seventy-seven they amassed in 2008/09, and so are very likely to amass more than twenty more than they did last season. How has the goal scoring forecast varied across the season, and how has this impacted the defence?

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Which Win At Old Trafford Is The Greater?

Following a fantastic 3-0 victory by Liverpool over Manchester United, the debate amongst Kopites has begun over whether this victory was better than the famous 4-1 win in 2008/09.

Whilst there is no way to settle it conclusively, I thought I’d take a quick look at the match stats and make a judgment that way.

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Brendan Rodgers’ Cross To Bear

Due to a fixture scheduling quirk that has been brought about by various teams’ cup involvement, Liverpool’s trip to Old Trafford this weekend is Manchester United‘s first home game in over a month.

Their last run out at the self-styled Theatre Of Dreams was a 2-2 draw with Fulham, which was notable for the Red Devils setting a new Premier League record for the number of crosses by a team in one game: eighty-two. Eighty-two!

Liverpool are widely perceived to struggle with crosses defensively, so I thought I’d take a closer look at this issue ahead of the match on Sunday.

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Game 29 Proves Significant

League matches don’t get much bigger for Liverpool than their next one: Manchester United, away. As chance would have it, the meeting happens to fall on the fifth anniversary of the weekend when the Reds returned home along the M62 with all three points following a fabulous 4-1 win at Old Trafford.

Thanks to the home match with Sunderland being postponed, the United away fixture is Liverpool’s twenty-ninth league game of the campaign, just as it was in 2008/09.

Out of curiousity, I decided to see which matches have been the twenty-ninth in the seasons in-between, and it turns out you won’t have forgotten any of them. They have all proved to be significant; some for good reasons, others not so much.

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Sturridge and Suárez: An Equal Partnership?

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Luis Suárez and Daniel Sturridge continue to score and score and score some more. The duo have scored twenty-five goals in the fifteen league matches they’ve appeared in together this season, with Arsenal the only team to shut out them both out, at the Emirates in November. The Reds have scored every twenty-eight minutes that both of the players have been on the pitch in the league this season; quite simply, they are a phenomenon.

Accusations regarding selfishness follow them around though, both pro and anti; Sturridge most notably could have played Suárez in for an almost certain goal during Liverpool’s 4-0 Merseyside derby win, and Suárez perhaps could have benefitted by being more single-minded in the Reds’ 3-0 victory over Southampton last time out.

But what’s the true picture? Does one snub the other too often? And how creative are they as a partnership?

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Brendan Rodgers: Sub Standard?

By scoring with his first touch in the Reds’ 3-0 win at Southampton, Raheem Sterling bagged the seventh league goal by a Liverpool substitute since Brendan Rodgers took charge of the club in the summer of 2012.

I wasn’t sure if seven goals was a particularly decent contribution by Liverpool’s bench or not, and it turns out it isn’t, as the table below demonstrates.

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LFC Goal Involvement 2013/14

I have written an analysis for The Tomkins Times which looks at which Liverpool players have been involved in the build up to goals this season, beyond the readily available goal and assist statistics.

Using data from the official Liverpool site (as pictured below, when all eleven players were involved in Raheem Sterling’s goal away at Tottenham), I have been able to record who has been involved the most often. There is a surprise near the top of the list…

It’s a free piece, so please have a read of it here

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Southampton vs Liverpool: Chance Quality Preview

I last wrote a Chance Quality preview ahead of Liverpool’s recent home match with Arsenal, because the two sides are the top two for overachieving on the number of assists they’ve had this season, and so I thought it was worth a closer look.

The Reds’ next match sees them face up with Southampton, who are currently ranked fourth, so I thought it was worth looking at the data again. The figures show that Liverpool are likely to face a stern test on the south coast.

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