After a fairly dour derby stalemate at Anfield, it has proven difficult to find much of interest to write about, and I do like to try to assess as many Liverpool games as I can.
Whilst the Reds now have six clean sheets in their last ten games (tick), their failure to score meant they had their third 0-0 in the last five matches (cross). There was only five shots on target in total, so it isn’t much of a shock that both teams drew a blank.
So I thought I’d look at which team dominated the percentage of shots in the box as the match progressed. Long-term this will require further investigation (perhaps in the quieter summer months!) to see how relevant it is, but when I compiled the figures it appeared to illustrate the flow of the game pretty well.
As I’ve noted many times previously (thanks to a tweet from Dan Kennett), only one in forty-four open play shots results in a goal, so when trying to assess the stats from a match you may as well ignore them. The key to success is shots in the box.
The below graph shows what percentage of their shots each team took from inside the box as the match progressed (with the numbers along the bottom relating to the total number of shots by the team). You can see that whilst Everton dominated in the first half, the Reds powered back after the half-time break.
As the match progressed, Liverpool were taking more shots inside the area, whilst Everton were restricted to speculative punts from distance. Indeed, the Blues only had one shot in the box in the final sixty-six minutes of the match, whilst the Reds had all eight of their shots within the box in the same period.
Another way to look at it is the graph below; it shows what percentage of the eleven shots in the box Liverpool had as they ticked by one-by one:
From the match’s fifth shot in the box, which took place in the 49th minute when Sturridge missed the goal after being set up by Coutinho, the Reds dominated the shots-in-the-box tally. They definitely finished the match the stronger, but weren’t able to make a break through and take the three points.
When I have more time I will compile the figures for other matches this season, but watching the match my instinct was that each dominated a half more-or-less, and this seems to back it up. Food for thought for the future anyway.