When I was young I was interested in statistics but few were available to the average fan. We had league tables of course but little else. We had no idea regarding various statistics that are available today. Now you can know possession percentages, passes, completed passes, touches in opponent’s box, shots, shots on target, expected goals, distance covered by individual players and whole team and many more etc. etc.
Are we really interested in all these details? Some are I guess but to most of us the only real statistics of any importance are the goals scored in each game, the result, and the subsequent effect on the league table. Of course detailed statistics will have greater importance for the clubs themselves when analysing performance of individuals and the team as a whole. Bookmakers will also be interested when setting odds for games.
Having said all that I’ll now use some freely available statistics to look ahead to our game at Old Trafford this afternoon.
In their last 14 fixtures at Old Trafford against West Ham, Manchester United have won 11, drawn 3, and lost 0.
Manchester United have come out on top in their last 4 games against West Ham.
In their last 14 home Premier League games against all opponents Manchester United have won 8, drawn 5, and lost 1.
In their last 14 Premier League away games West Ham have won 2, drawn 2, and lost 10.
West Ham have kept just 2 clean sheets in their last 17 Premier League away games.
West Ham have scored just 3 away goals in the Premier League so far this season.
As an away team manager David Moyes has the following record at Old Trafford- won 0, drawn 4, lost 11.
There are thousands more that almost all point to a Manchester United win. But statistics didn’t indicate that Brighton would thrash Chelsea yesterday, that Leeds would win at Anfield last night, nor any other upsets that occur in football.
The odds for the match result are 4/6 for a home win, 15/4 for an away win and 3/1 for the draw.
With all this information I’ll predict the result of the game. I’ll go for a 2-2 draw. My bookmaker will offer me 16/1. He doesn’t think it’ll happen. I won’t mind being wrong if West Ham win the game. It hasn’t happened for 15 years. Not since that Carlos Tevez famous winner.
We’ve lost our place in the top half of the table following yesterday’s results. I’m hoping for a win to regain it but would be happy with a draw.
It’s about time we defied the statistics and the odds. What are the chances?