6/20 SJ Earthquakes vs. Seattle Sounders Statistical Review

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Expected team rating = 7.28

Actual team rating = 7.31

Although Salinas played okay, the rest of the team preformed above expectations, with Sanna Nyassi recieving a Whoscored rating of 8.5. Between half-time and the 60th minute when San Jose reclaimed and extended their superior shot total, Cato and Nyassi was the most involved players(17 and 9 passes respectively), with most of the attack coming down the right side.

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San Jose passing map from 45 to 60 minutes

I can not stress this enough: we were extremely lucky to play Seattle this week. Obafemi Martins and Clint Dempsey have the highest passes per game among forwards in the league and are first and third in usage rate (Blas Perez is second). Coupled with the losses of Osvaldo Alonso and Gonzalo Pineda, the two highest midfielders in passes per game, Seattle lost 213.1 passes per game out of their 489.3 passes per game, 43.5% of their total passes. Additionally, Chad Barrett was injured, resulting in them switching out of their normal 4-4-2 formation. Lamar Neagle played as a lone striker, where he had a usage rate of 3.3%, and all of his touches were outside the penalty box.

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Neagle’s touches in the San Jose half

Matias Perez Garcia is probably the attacking midfielder with the least central passes in MLS, because he frequently migrates out wide to combine with the wingers. For the first half, he was more central, but without much influence in the central attacking third. In the second half, he practically permanently moved to the right side.

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MPG First Half

Which forced Shea to move from the left side, where he stayed on for most of the first half, to the center. Nyassi, consequently, switched from straying to the middle to hugging the touchline.

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MPG Second Half

Nyassi also seems to take his scoring opportunities well. He ranks 6th among wingers with more than 10 shots in Scoring Chance Percentage behind Lloyd Sam, Andres Romero, Kelyn Rowe, Lamar Neagle and Diego Fagundez. However, Nyassi averages 2 fouls per game (2nd among wingers with more than 5 appearances) and 0.3 yellow cards per game (tied for second among wingers) and this game he committed 4 and received a yellow card, hindering his performance. His high fouling style is possibly a small factor in why Nyassi leads the team in being substituted off, having been substituted off 12 times.

Finally, over the course of the season, the Quakes have averaged 0.733 through balls per game. Against Seattle, San Jose managed 2, pulling above the average, possibly a sign of a transition to a less crossing-oriented attack. Their last two games achieved 17 crosses, below the season average of 20.

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