The Power of Goals blog has an intriguing post mining the latest analytics data dump on information regarding the awarding of yellow cards in relation to playing position and number of fouls. Lots of interesting stuff in there, although this graph jumps out:
The author, Mark Taylor, explains:
The chart demonstrates the handicap under which defenders have to operate, they are over twice as likely to receive a card for committing the same number of foul challenges as are strikers, the players they are more often challenging for the ball. Strikers only become more likely than not to leave the pitch with a caution when they have conceded 8 or more fouls compared to just 4 for defenders. Midfielders are allowed 5 challenges before a caution becomes odds on and are also treated much less leniently than out and out attackers. A striker who infringes frequently near to the opponents goal rarely seems to be cautioned for persistent fouling, whereas a defender risk this penalty much earlier in the cycle.
Taylor goes on to look at the handicap for visiting sides, although includes some useful caveats. The entire piece is well worth your time, and demonstrates already what interested bloggers can do with even the basic data dump. Stay tuned!