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Team Performance

Currently browsing: Team Performance
  • 25 Apr 2019

    Peak Tottenham

    A lot was made of Tottenham’s ‘failure’ to sign any players during the summer window. That there were no new faces adorning the club website was often seen as a sign that the club would fail to match their recent high standards.

    Yet here we are with it currently looking likely that Tottenham will virtually match […]

  • 18 Apr 2019

    Rank outsiders, deserved winners

    It has been wonderful to watch Ajax’s Champions League campaign. A thrilling ride made easy to enjoy by the positive, attacking football that has been the bedrock of their success.

    The intertwining strands of the Ajax narrative are compelling. The club has a rich history in youth development and is the custodian of some of Europe’s […]

  • 28 Mar 2019

    Mind the gap

    As we head into the final stretch of the football season, the prospect of playing in a different league next year looms large. The only consolation for fans of relegated clubs is that they have a chance of bouncing straight back. For teams in contention for promotion or the play-offs, the dream of a place […]

  • 14 Mar 2019

    Squeaky bum time

    So we have a title race on our hands! Well, at least in the Premier League.

    Excitement in any title race lies in its inherent uncertainty, at least for those impartial onlookers. Less so perhaps for those clubs involved, where bums are likely to stay squeaky right up until the last match.

    Take the Premier League title […]

  • 23 Jan 2019

    When winning is not enough

    The Economist published an article last week exploring which head coaches are able to consistently lead their teams to overperform the overall talent level in the squad. This is one of the most important functions of a head coach, but not the only one. As we have argued before, in addition to winning on the […]

  • 13 Sep 2018

    Head of tactics

    There are three main ways in which a head coach/manager can improve a team:

    Improve the squad through transfers
    Improve individual players through coaching
    Get better performance from the same set of players through tactics

    Traditionally, managers have accumulated all three of these functions. However, there is no particular reason a single person should be in […]

  • 16 Aug 2018

    The early-season paradox

    On Saturday, Chelsea host Arsenal in a match that is ostensibly a chance for both teams to continue to assess their own progress under new head coaches. The narrative goes that given it’s early in the season, it would be wrong to read too much into the result, and in any case there is plenty […]

  • 09 Aug 2018

    Bounceback-‘ability’

    After his side climbed the table from 22nd to 6th in 2004, then-Crystal Palace manager Iain Dowie famously coined the term ‘bouncebackability’ to praise his side’s impressive rebound. The term has stuck – it even entered the Oxford English Dictionary the following year – and is now attached to any team who comes back from […]

  • 13 Jul 2018

    We shouldn’t be here

    So France vs Croatia it is. For France, it’s three World Cup finals in six tournaments, a mightily impressive feat. Croatia meanwhile become the smallest nation to reach a World Cup final since Uruguay in 1950, a fitting reward for a golden generation. Our model gives France a 62% chance of lifting the trophy.

    Both countries, […]

  • 05 Jul 2018

    Predict the unpredictable

    Football never ceases to surprise us, and this World Cup has been no different. The early eliminations of Spain and Germany have been in keeping with a tournament that has been much more competitive than many thought.

    When we published our pre-tournament forecast last month, like everyone else we made Brazil, Germany and Spain among the […]