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Wednesday, August 26, 2020

OT - Soccer Thread - Brave New World

OK, 2019-2020 is over, 2020-2021 has begun, except for Celtic who have already ended the interesting portion of 2020-2021.

EPL - September 12
La Liga - September 12
Bundesliga - September 18
Ligue Une - Already underway
Serie A - Unknown, possibly September 12
UEFA Champions League - Playoffs September 22, Group Stage October 20

Euros next summer,  CONCACAF Qualifying starts October 7 (Alphonso Davies and Canada start October 8).  Olympics start July 21 (Women) and July 22 (Men).  Women’s Euros scheduled for next summer are moving to 2022 which might be a good thing for them (and us) with the World Cup in the winter.

Jose Needs an Absurd Ukulele Concert Posted: August 26, 2020 at 08:13 PM | 436 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: off topic, soccer

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   401. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: October 20, 2020 at 02:48 PM (#5984064)
And a 94th minute winner by Brugge! They probably still will not be favored to advance, but the gap between them and Lazio ti advance will not be that large now.

edit: game featured a seriously great shot by Lovren for Zenit, leading to a luckless own goal.
   402. I am going to be Frank Posted: October 20, 2020 at 03:17 PM (#5984072)
Took me a while to find the United game. United starting Tuanzebe, Lindelof and Shaw in a backline along with Fred and McTominay in the midfield in a 5-2-1-2/3-4-1-2. Telles in what I think is his United debut. They look ok defensively, but Neymar and Di Maria are trouble with the ball at their feet running at people. United has been able to find a little bit of joy from Rashford and Martial running off their defender's shoulders. PSG seems like they'll be able to break through.

edit 1: And Martial draws a penalty - subject to review.

edit 2: Fernandes pk gets saved! But VAR shows Navas was off his line so it will be a retaken and Fernandes makes it this time.
   403. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: October 20, 2020 at 03:26 PM (#5984073)
I'm opposed to using VAR for this rule, although goalkeeper encroachment has also always been quite annoying. That said, if they do enforce it so carefully, seems awfully unfair to allow the offensive players to hesitate so much in their run-ups.
   404. I am going to be Frank Posted: October 20, 2020 at 03:35 PM (#5984075)
Yea if you're going to enforce goalie on the line, the exaggerated run up needs to be stopped as well.

Also, the 'don't put the offside flag up immediately' has to be annoying to defenders who have to sprint back 'just in case' with the high line.
   405. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: October 20, 2020 at 03:42 PM (#5984077)
Obviously spoke to soon. If Lazio holds on to win, it will be Dortmund and Lazio as big favorites to advance. Obviously, Dortmund doesn't want to lose today, but Brugge beating Zenit did thema favor, as Brugge is certainly the least fancied team in the group.

United is giving PSG all they can handle. Even without the pen they've outplayed them. PSG looks quite sluggish.

edit: of course, aside from the pen the biggest actual chance on a shot by far was the point blank save early against Kurzawa, so maybe it's a tad more even than I remember.

Sevillla/Chelsea looks like a snoozer. WTF.

Leipzig up 2-0 despite being out xGed at home against Basaksehir, who seem to have had two big misses from right in front. Exact same deal with Lazio over Dortmund.
   406. I am going to be Frank Posted: October 20, 2020 at 04:53 PM (#5984088)
Rashford has not had his shooting boots on today - until his goal. A nice win for United.
   407. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: October 20, 2020 at 04:54 PM (#5984089)
Crazy game United/PSG--lots of chances for both teams but neither could get a high xG shot off for the most part. PSG really did seem to come out flat. Sluggish on offense with lots of big holes in the defense. Maybe it was the rain? They didn't really seem like they wanted to be there.

Speaking of not being there, did Chelsea and Sevilla even bother to play soccer?
   408. I am going to be Frank Posted: October 21, 2020 at 01:29 PM (#5984290)
Madrid down 0-2. Varane with an own goal. Not the best couple of games he has had in European club competition.
   409. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: October 21, 2020 at 01:40 PM (#5984294)
Long work call, but was able to turn it on just in time for 0-3. What is happening?

A bad loss at home here to Shakhtar puts Real Madrid in a big hole. Their group is tough from top to bottom.
   410. Jose Needs an Absurd Ukulele Concert Posted: October 21, 2020 at 02:08 PM (#5984297)
They are not playing at the Bernabeu which I should have realized. Anyway, here's the current and soon to be changed final paragraph of the Wikipedia entry for DiStefano Stadium;

Following the COVID-19 pandemic and to facilitate the ongoing renovations of the Santiago Bernabéu, Real Madrid's senior team moved the rest of their home matches of the 2019–20 season at the Alfredo di Stéfano behind closed doors, starting 14 June 2020 in a 3–1 league win against Eibar.[3][4] That 6 September, still behind closed doors, the ground hosted the Spain national team in a 4–0 UEFA Nations League win over Ukraine.[5] Real Madrid like getting bummed at this ground

Updated last line;

Real Madrid like bumming Barcalosers at this ground
   411. jmurph Posted: October 21, 2020 at 03:15 PM (#5984324)
Oh City...
   412. I am going to be Frank Posted: October 21, 2020 at 03:45 PM (#5984331)
Madrid has caught the disease of a lot of teams - 'the defense is crap'. Madrid looked slow and uninterested. Shakhtar had a lot of chances. I'd expect the xG to be very high for them.

Munich looks very good. Kimmich showed it all on their first goal. Wins the ball on a diving tackle, gets up and puts an inch-perfect pass to Coman and voila 1-0. Now it's 2-0. Maybe the lost depth will catch up to them over the season but they should be favorites. Suarez looks weird on Atletico.
   413. spivey Posted: October 21, 2020 at 03:55 PM (#5984337)
This is no excuse, but Madrid did rotate a fair amount. They were without Ramos, as well, and it's really amazing how much worse their defense consistently looks without him. They're also a team that I feel like defends from the front, and having Vinicius and Benzema on the bench at the start of the match hurts that.
   414. I am going to be Frank Posted: October 21, 2020 at 04:57 PM (#5984366)
Apparently 10 members of Shakhtar's 1st team tested positive before the match so they couldn't play. Ramos is a big loss, but this is Madrid.

   415. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: October 21, 2020 at 08:58 PM (#5984406)
That's just nuts. Unfortunately it probably won't make any difference in the long run, but we can dream.

Biggest loser of the first found was PSG, since they lost at home and they are in a group with the best third-placed team, who also won (Leipzig, or if you like, United). PSG is still favored to advance over Leipzig, but it's far less of a sure thing now.

Real Madrid lost at home, but it was to the least fancied team who probably still won't advance and the other game was a draw. So that;s bad for their advancement hopes but not terrible. Dortmund lost on the road to a team already picked to advance, and the third placed team lost. That's unfortunate but really doesn't put them in much of a hole at all.

   416. Jose Needs an Absurd Ukulele Concert Posted: October 22, 2020 at 09:32 AM (#5984500)
I came here to make the same points as AuntBea. I'm a bit less sanguine about Dortmund that you are. Zenit and Brugge are good enough (and Dortmund comparatively weak enough) that it could get them. Real should be fine but they need to get their #### together with Gladbach and Inter the next two weeks.

Can we also note how remarkable it is that this competition is taking place in virtually the exact same format as years past? I really never thought they'd be able to play a full group stage starting as late as they did.
   417. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: October 22, 2020 at 10:56 AM (#5984526)
Betting odds changes after round 1. They think Real Madrid took the biggest hit (of the favorites). If you think, like 538 does, that Leipzig is better and Man United worse than the odds do, than PSG gets docked more. 538 has them each losing about 21%, and Dortmund 18%.

After 1 round, all the favorites are still in line to advance, though not all the top teams are still favored to win their groups.

                          current  former   delta  
Group A                                        
Bayern                        95    89       +6         
Atlético                      75    72       +3 (despite the loss)
Salzburg                      23    30       -7 (failed in a must win)         
Lokomotiv Moskva               7     9       -2    

Group B
Real Madrid                   60    82      -22 (this has tightened more than I thought it would)
Internazionale                58    64       -6
Shakhtar Donetsk              42    19      +23      
Mönchengladbach               40    35       +5

Group C
Manchester City               96    93       +3
Porto                         45    51       -6
Olympiacos                    36    20      +16
Marseille                     23    36      -13 

Group D
Liverpool                     93    89       +4
Atalanta                      76    59      +17
Ajax                          27    45      -18
Midtjylland                    4     7       -3

Group E
Chelsea                       78    75       +3 (could this group be any more boring?)
Sevilla                       76    69       +7
Rennes                        29    38       -9
Krasnodar                     19    18       -1

Group F
Lazio                         79    62      +17
Dortmund                      69    79      -10 (still in decent shape)
Club Brugge                   30    15      +15
Zenit                         22    44      -22

Group G
Barcelona                     94    89       +5
Juventus                      94    89       +5 
Dynamo Kyiv                    9    15       -6
Ferencváros                    3     7       -4

Group H
Manchester United             78    66      +12
PSG                           68    81      -13
Leipzig                       49    43       +6
Basaksehir                     5    10       -5
   418. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: October 22, 2020 at 03:00 PM (#5984592)
Napoli was upset at home by Alkmaar, the team picked to finish third in the group. With Sociedad also winning on the road, Napoli put themselves in a bit of a hole. They'll still probably advance, but it's now a little iffy. The other favorites all won, with Granada upsetting PSV (almost a co-favorite in the group) on the road.

Rangers with the huge road win against Standard Liege, their rivals for second spot in the group. Rangers are now strong favorites to advance.

Dundalk had the lead for a while before losing at home against the second worst team in the group, Molde. Stats say Dundalk was still handily outplayed.
   419. The Marksist Posted: October 23, 2020 at 04:56 PM (#5984788)
Bamford: decent.

Villa: still Villa?
   420. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: October 23, 2020 at 05:01 PM (#5984789)
Strong win by Leeds on the road. It's what we would have expected coming into the year, but Villa has been better than advertised, so it's a bit of a surprise today.

Game was a lot closer than the 0-3 scoreline though. Infogol had it as 1.45-2.26. 538 had it the same (1.6-2.3).

Leeds continues to be quite fun to watch. 538 had their non-shot xG as 3.0. Leeds' not-shot xG has generally been higher than their shot xG this year. That was also an Arsenal phenomenon back with Wenger when they played flowing, easy-on-the-eyes soccer.
   421. Jose Needs an Absurd Ukulele Concert Posted: October 24, 2020 at 11:26 AM (#5984876)
This is weird. I’m watching El Clasico and it has been entertaining over the first hour despite the absence of crowds. There have of course been goals (2-1 at the moment) as it seems there are everywhere this year. On the one hand the absence of the crowd really takes away a fair amount of the excitement. However, given the way the goals are flying in I’m wondering if there is some reason the absence of crowds is having an impact. I don’t know WHY that would be but it seems to be the case.
   422. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: October 24, 2020 at 12:19 PM (#5984884)
Goals per game is way down in La Liga so far this year: 2.17 as of now. Also, xG is down in La Liga almost as much as goals. xG is up in the EPL very slightly (2.92 v 2.75 or so), but not nearly as much as actual goals, which is way way up (3.53).

Across the two leagues, xG is actually down.
   423. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: October 24, 2020 at 12:59 PM (#5984888)
I think that weak free kick was the first shot of the game by either team--in the 28th minute. It is raining hard, I guess.

edit: they are crediting Pulisic with a long range shot in the 18th minute. That free kick might not have been credited as a shot.
   424. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: October 24, 2020 at 01:12 PM (#5984890)
That play by Maguire was much worse than the one in the Clasico. (Both on balls in the air, but otherwise very different types of fouls, so you can squint and understand why they called the one and not the other. But still.)
   425. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: October 24, 2020 at 01:19 PM (#5984891)
Boring first half. Not a lot of open play, but the most open chances fell to United, who had the slight edge in xG as well. It would be hard to say that either team really looked better.
   426. I am going to be Frank Posted: October 24, 2020 at 02:08 PM (#5984897)
That was a penalty on Maguire. Still don't know how VAR didn't give that to Chelsea. I guess you would have gotten pretty good odds on a 0-0 draw prior to the match although both teams playing conservatively should have been expected based on all the noise both teams have been facing. A Fred/McTominay partnership does give United a lot of energy, mobility and coverage in the midfield.

I know the Cavani signing has a strong stench of a Falcao redux, but I hope he still has some left. He was a fun player to watch.
   427. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: October 24, 2020 at 02:25 PM (#5984898)
A draw was probably all either team deserved. United had the best chances though, and were at home, so probably are ruing the draw a little bit more than Chelsea.
   428. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: October 24, 2020 at 03:29 PM (#5984903)
No apparent home field advantage in the EPL so far this year. Home teams have 17 wins, and 24 losses, with 11 draws. That's also a fairly expected number of draws--you might have expected 12 in 52 games coming into the year. No team with with 3 home games has a perfect record this year--Liverpool and Arsenal are the last two, with a perfect 2 wins in 2 games so far, with Liverpool looking currently trailing Sheffield United.

The other three Top 4 leagues are almost exactly .500 at home. That means overall in almost 200 games across the top 4 leagues (equivalent to half a single season of a 20-game league) there has been no evident HFA so far, at least by wins/losses.
   429. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: October 24, 2020 at 03:51 PM (#5984905)
Selective endpoints, but over the last 7.5 EPL games there have only been 12 goals scored, just over 1.5 per game. About 19 expected goals, which is only slightly below average for 7.5 games (about 20.5).

Basically, EPL teams were outperforming their xG by a lot until recently, and since then have been underperforming by a lot. The most likely explanation at this point might be random chance, though I'm open to other theories.
   430. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: October 25, 2020 at 10:43 AM (#5985227)
2-0 Southampton, with a third called back due to offside by a foot.

Looks like the invincibles probably won't have to wait until March to breather easy this year.
   431. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: October 25, 2020 at 11:00 AM (#5985232)
If Everton doesn't come back today, it will be the first time in the EPL that there have been no teams undefeated after 6 games.
   432. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: October 25, 2020 at 11:31 AM (#5985239)
And now down to 10 men. So that's that.
   433. spivey Posted: October 25, 2020 at 11:39 AM (#5985241)
Everton's energy has been awful today, but they also don't really look very athletic. They've been chasing shadows trying to break up Southampton's passing, and can't really handle the pressing either. I realize they're not playing their strongest XI, with Richarlison out and both Iwobi and and Sigurdsson starting. But they've been bossed in midfield and along the flanks. Some of it is tactical too, as Ings has been dropping in between the lines both unmarked and to outnumber Everton in the middle of the pitch.

It's great for the league that you have mid-table and lower table teams that actually try to play real soccer rather than all of them just parking the bus. Maybe that always was the case and I just pay more attention to soccer tactics, but it feels like it's really ramped up in the last 5 or so years.

My understanding is that Southampton are notorious for playing a suicidal high line, but I haven't really seen Everton even try to play over the top more than once or twice.
   434. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: October 25, 2020 at 01:24 PM (#5985255)
Wolves sure are boring. Week after week. Put Traore in!

1st half xG (infogol): 0.12-0.10
   435. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: October 25, 2020 at 01:35 PM (#5985256)
Wolves so far this year: 5 goals and about 4.5 xG in 5.5 games. They haven't been especially good on defense either, giving up an expected 8.5 goals in 5.5 games. What's saved them is they have only given up 7 goals while most of the league has given up more than expected, and they've distributed their goals very well. By xPoints they've been the mot outperforming team in the league so far.

   436. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: October 25, 2020 at 05:28 PM (#5985280)
Smash and grab by Leicester, who, prior to the Vardy goal, had done basically nothing (less than 0.1 xG).

After a weekend of low scoring games, the xG per game is pretty much dead even with what you would have expected coming into the year (2.82 goals per game), and that's with more penalties than normal, so non-penalty xG is probably a little bit below normal.

Goals scored is still quite high of course--we are now at 3.36 goals per game through 56 games. That might still be an EPL record over any 6-week period, but even if so probably by a very small amount. You never know of course, but at this point I'm not expecting the rest of the year to be way out of wack for goals scored.
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