6/7 Regular Season: SJ Earthquakes vs. FC Dallas – Statistical Preview

In order to find out which players to watch against FC Dallas, the same analysis for the linchpin article was undergone for FC Dallas with a few minor revisions. First, a form column titled form was added with the average of the player’s last three games ratings in order to see if any players were on a hot / cold run of form. Then, the delta column was added which is the difference between the Form and Actual Rating to see if the player is currently under / over preforming. Finally, Passes Per Game was added to find which players complete the most passes and therefore should be have a higher influence. Only included are players likely to play against San Jose who have more than three starts.

Raw Data:

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Final Table:

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Looking at the data, San Jose should focus on the right side as Tesho Akindele and JeVaughn Watson have two out of the highest three R values. Doing something about Watson will be hard to implement, but pinpointing Akindele will be easier because of his drop in form. David Texeira, the player with the highest R value is a sporadic starter and may not even play – he has only three starts so the data is skewed. Victor Ulloa seems like a gem of a player, as he has a high average rating, decent form, a small standard deviation and a high passes per game, so Chris Wondolowski and Matias Perez Garcia may want to specifically put more pressure on him to decrease Dallas’ ball circulation. Fabian Castillo and Mauro Diaz are interesting players – they are erratic, courtesy of their high standard deviations, but post high average ratings and yet have relatively low R values compared with expectations. Most of Dallas players are in poor form – Walker Zimmerman is the only player preforming above his average (but he too is very erratic) – as Dallas usually start fast and erode over the course of the season.

Also, looking at FC Dallas’s stats, they are not too different stylistically from San Jose.

Stat SJ Rank DAL rank
Passes 19 20
Possession 16 17
Passing Accuracy 18 20
Short Passes 20 19
Aerials Won 6 2
Long Balls 7 15
Goals in Box 7 1
Goals outside Box 20 15
Headed Goals 9 18
Open Play Goals 18 4
Goals from Corners 8 5
Goals Conceded inside Box 13 11
Goals Conceded outside Box 8 1
Headed Goals Conceded 6 3
Shots inside Box 8 13
Shots outside Box 13 20
Shots On Target 16 13
Chances Created 11 16
Accurate Crosses 10 14
Accurate Corners 11 19
Successful Dribbles 6 2
Dispossessed 16 17
Defensive Actions 9 1

Looking at the data, FC Dallas’ major strengths are goals inside the box and winning aerials. However, they seem to struggle with goals from outside the box. Since the Quakes will be missing Fatai Alashe and Khari Stephenson has been filling in a similar role over the last few games, I am expecting Dom to start Khari again and instruct him to take more long-distance shots. Hopefully they will be more effective than against Toronto, where Stephenson struggled getting his shots out; Two out of his three shots were blocked. Additionally, and a bit surprisingly, Dallas have also conceded quite a few headed goals, something Adam Jahn or Mark Sherrod will try to exploit on Sunday.

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