Friday, February 21, 2014

Math Time

I know a lot of people have been wondering how Sunderland striker Jozy Altidore continues to get good playing time despite bagging just one goal in 23 EPL appearances thus far this season. And while the chart below is meant to numerically display the struggles experienced by the Black Cats strike stable, it also drops a couple clues as to why Gus Poyet is backing the US striker to pay off.



You may notice amid the wreckage that the No. 17 shirt leads all Sunderland snipers in percentage of shots put on frame. Of course, as we could have guessed, Altidore is by far dead last in shots taken (or to an extent is it facilitated?) - the combo of Fletcher and Borini let rip once every 36.45 minutes, the American is at 56.88. It must be said, though, that the overall strike force average of one shot taken per 41.77 minutes of game time is disgraaaaceful. And I count myself as an attacker, so you know I would super-snort that adjective dripping with righteous indignation. The teams midfielders and wingbacks, who never met a pointless shot from 26 meters that they didn't adore, should forfeit a meal or two. Maybe they could see how it feels to go hungry. It is also worth noting that Altidore has created as many chances for teammates as Borini and Fletcher combined. Even with the goal slump, it appears quite obvious why he keeps getting PT.

By the way, The Daily Mail article these stats are drawn from also contains some comments from the Sunderland manager about each of his forwards. Some folks may wish to notice the continuing lack of complaints - tactical, technical effort, attitude or otherwise - from the boss.







- Greg Seltzer


30 comments:

Tom said...

Nice post, Gregor.

BH said...

How much of the on target percentage is poor shots from Jozy right at the keeper? It seems like when i see him shoot they go right to the keeper.

I like jozy but I am coming to the point where I see too many excuses for why he doesnt score.

TrueCrew said...

What is the manager going to do, rip his own players publicly? These are the players Poyet has, the window is closed. He has to build them up the best he can, they have to keep up this year. There is no help coming.

The fact that you take a lack of public criticism for an endorsement is curious.

Greg Seltzer said...

Erm, coaches criticize players all the time. Poyet has criticized players this season. And the only "endorsement" (not the word I would use, by the way) in this post is one that explains why he continues to get plenty of starts/playing time despite not scoring.

brian said...

nice 'stats' sheet. but i still only see one goal in 23 games... no bueno. its typically midfielders jobs to create and strikers to score. jozy is a striker.

dikranovich said...

well, the jozy is starting today in highbury. maybe he can score a goal to honor dennis bergkamp.

ot: borussa monchengladback has a 35 year old starting at left back today. I wonder will FJ will line up next season for them?

Greg Seltzer said...

Highbury is no more, you mean the Emirates.

As for FabJo, that remains to be seen.

Greg Seltzer said...

@ brian: I am merely trying to get across why he continues to start, which many are questioning.

dikranovich said...

jozy may not be playing in highbury, he'd probably do better if he was on a smaller field, but he does need to higher a body language specialist

dikranovich said...

sorry, he needs to *hire*

dikranovich said...

double ouch to 0-2 in the bronze game and jozy being yanked at halftime.

dikranovich said...

FJ, that's how you bump up future contracts. Nice job

Jacob Klinger said...

The whole body language thing is a curious obsession to me - not for me. In American sports kids have positive body language emphasized to them over and over again. Across the pond (ie. in soccer) no one seems to mind. In fact, some of the best players of all time and certainly this generation have terrible body language.

Probably tells us more about sports' role in childhood development in respective cultures than anything else, but I do think fans tend to zero in on it when they have nothing better to discuss.

dikranovich said...

yak, maybe the sunderland manager takes notice of body language as well, and he is also an American. he did remove jozy at halftime.

Greg Seltzer said...

Ah, so what did the body language of Adam Johnson do then?

dikranovich said...

I don't think a manager is required to make a double substitution for the same reason for both players being subbed.

dikranovich said...

which is to say jozy could have been subbed out because he was showing poor body language every time his teammate made a pass that was not right to his feet, and just generally sulking around the field.

meanwhile adam Johnson could have been subbed off because he has been trying to play through injury and he just needed to come out. he does have as many goals as all sunderland attackers combined, or maybe one less.

Greg Seltzer said...

Muh huh. What is this injury again? Remind us of this great unknown injury you dreamed up that does not exist.

*Any* person who has *any* notion of trying to fault Altidore in the slightest for that half against Arsenal has an Altidore problem. Or advanced brain damage.

dikranovich said...

oh gregor, my little bee with an itch. nobody here gives a flying f about adam Johnson, but sunderland were 3 nil against, this weekend with him on the pitch, and 1-1 with him off it.

Greg Seltzer said...

Maaaan, it must be tiring to be you.

Jay said...

Why hasn't anyone created a twitter account solely for the purpose of republishing Greg's dismissals of dik? I want to star and retweet.

Greg Seltzer said...

Ha! You gave me a good laugh there. And wow, I guess that would mean I had truly made it. Just do not name the Twitter handle "Old man says... "

dikranovich said...

as usual aunt esther, a foolish dog barking at a flying bird.

commentary was made regarding the poor body language being exhibited by jozy during the arsenal game, before halftime of the game. at halftime he is subbed out, and his team is down 3 nil, and he is a striker.

I don't know, maybe he was hurt.

#fjtogladback242

Greg Seltzer said...

His team was down 3-0 and he is a striker??? Oh well, then 40 lashes to Altidore for allowing those goals and only giving himself 12 touches. in the attack end.

But shouldn't we also blame Mannone for the lack of offense and for facing 25 shots? When do we discuss the body language of all the other players for no good reason?

dikranovich said...

are you saying jozy was pulled at halftime of a game his team was down in, for a reason other than poor body language?

greg, why discuss the body language of the other players? they were not pulled at halftime of a crucial game. our jozy was.

Greg Seltzer said...

Yes, he was pulled for a reason other than body language. Good grief.

dikranovich said...

if not body language, or injury, or a big lead, what reason would the manager have for pulling his striker at halftime?

justinwkoehn said...

The game was already out of hand. Resting/avoiding injury for Cap One Cup Final would be a guess.

Greg Seltzer said...

Giving his two most in-form attackers, if not also the two most likely to have impact against a top team, extra legs for the approaching cup final? I do not know for a fact if that is why, but at least it makes sense with them down 3-0 and those attackers barely more than furniture. Altidore was quite arguably the most effective Sunderland player in the first half. Of course, that is not saying much and his sample size of touches was tiny. Johnson, however, was abysmal in that 45 minutes. I do not think he is in any sort of immediate trouble, either.

dikranovich said...

ok, the final of the capital one cup is this sunday. so the sunderland coach figures his players that are nothing more than furnature out there, can use the break, even in a relegation battle.

clearly jozy will be in the starting lineup. it will make sunday morning a little more enjoyable.