I’ve already made my arguments this morning for Jose Mourinho’s continued stay at Real Madrid. Now, a brief look at his club’s numbers against Barcelona’s under Tito Vilanova. Note these are limited to La Liga and the Champions League.

Barcelona’s total shot ratio to this point of the season is 0.616. For reference, Barcelona finished second in the league last season with a TSR above .650 (for more on the predictive power of TSR, read James Grayson’s post on the subject).

Real Madrid’s TSR meanwhile was .677, higher than their average from last season when they won La Liga. There is solid evidence Real Madrid has been more dominant on the pitch in both the league and in Europe.

Meanwhile, Barcelona’s PDO was 1091. Because PDO makes a rapid regression to the mean of 1000, it’s a good measurement of luck. The higher a PDO, the luckier a team.

Real Madrid’s PDO? 993. That indicates a likely correction for both sides as the final two thirds of the season progresses, and gives a bit of evidence on behalf of the explanation that Real Madrid’s poor start is somewhat down to luck. It certainly gives heft to the argument that Real Madrid’s “poor form” could help carry the club back into the title race.

Like this sort of clap-trap? Join our Soccer Analytics Forum here.

Comments (6)

  1. I would suspect that this is where the collision of tactics and advanced statistics occurs.

  2. Have you see any of Real Madrid’s games in La Liga this season? Or at least the ones they’ve lost?

    They’ve been undone by teams following similar tactical templates where Mourinho continues to try and overpower physically strong sides when a more patient, passing approach is needed.

    Instead Madrid resort to long balls towards Ronaldo/Ramos(!) and long range efforts from about minute 60 which teams like Sevilla, Betis etc didn’t have much trouble dealing with.

    [It's great to see the use of statistical analysis in football coverage, but do either TSR/PDO take into account the quality of shot (inside vs outside the box etc)?]

  3. what’s the standard deviation on PDR ?

  4. Interesting, but your use of tense is confusing. No, I’m not the grammar police, I’m honestly confused about which stats refer to this season & which to last season. No one’s ever told me how smart I am, so it’s probably just me.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *