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Who is the best player in the premier league/who will have the best season next year? Watch

  • View Poll Results: Best player in the premier league
    Sanchez
    7.26%
    Ozil
    6.45%
    Hazard
    12.90%
    Mata
    1.61%
    Diego Costa
    2.42%
    Daniel Sturridge
    4.84%
    Raheem Sterling
    3.23%
    Robin Van Persie
    4.03%
    Vincent Kompany
    3.23%
    John Terry
    1.61%
    Fabregas
    4.03%
    Mertesacker
    0.81%
    David Silva
    1.61%
    Sergio Aguero
    8.87%
    Yaya Toure
    34.68%
    Other
    2.42%

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    (Original post by jam277)
    I said between Hazard Sanchez and Aguero. Not that he is better than Aguero.

    I also would say Chelsea's style of play and our results have improved because Oscar has become better and we have competent strikers who can put away chances as well as having Fabregas.

    Finally Willian played much less games last season which always skews stats. 25 apperances in the prem 7 of which came as a sub. Hazard played 35 in the prem with 3 sub appearances.
    All his stats are per 90... (I'd presume. If they're not then there's no credibility and you may as well ignore list him, but I'd be pretty sure). Sub appearances in general don't affect stats too much anyway, but there's not a huge discrepancy in the games played/subs ratio anyway there, not enough to make a significant difference.

    And not going to comment on what you said bro, your word has no value lol
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    (Original post by pane123)
    What do you think he excels at? As I said to the other guy, it's dribbling and that's about it. I do think he's a very good player but your love for him is quite odd.

    He was the 4th best dribbler in the league last year, which is no surprise. He was the 8th best key passer, which isn't really a surprise. What is surprising is how crap he is at everything else a player like him should be good at.

    Despite providing plenty of key passes, he provided only 0.22 assist per 90 minutes, making him the 39th ranked assister in the league last year. Maybe we can give him the benefit of doubt due to the lack of quality strikers at Chelsea last year, so let's move on.

    OK, he scored a lot of goals, but, combine this with his assists, and his goal contribution was 0.53 per 90 minutes. To put that into perspective, he was the 38th best contributor of goals in the EPL last year. Midfielders with these kind of stats tend to be found at mid to lower table clubs.

    I must also point out that his goal scoring exploits were made to look much better than they actually were thanks to penalties. Looking at only non-penalty goals, Hazard scored 0.31 per 90, placing him 36th in the league. Not too surprising for a player who managed only 2.27 shots per 90 mins (63rd in the league), is it?

    Big data has changed the way we analyse football and Hazard isn't as good as you think he is. Maybe his dribbling makes him look better than he is. Maybe you fancy him. Or maybe you base all your football knowledge on this:
    Could you give us links, and put filters on as well (10 x 90mins played minimum). edit: and it'd be nicer if you could break it down into 'x rank for midfielders in the league' rather than 'x rank for all players in the league'. Your fourth paragraph is heavily affected by the third paragraph so that leaves it kinda worthless.

    Fwiw I agree on the whole...
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    (Original post by JamesR12)
    There was no real need to add this - you could have won the discussion without it. Resorting to it shows a bit of desperation/arrogance which I don't think you needed to show.

    Numbers are good, but fallible. Based on last season's numbers Sterling was a finisher on the level of Aguero and Suarez, eg. Don't want to offer my opinion on you guys' original debate but numbers or no numbers, Hazard is not the best player in the league.
    In real life I would not have added it, but my use of statistics was being ignored by people who are claiming to have more knowledge because they go to Chelsea matches. I needed something to qualify my opinion, or perhaps set myself apart. I wouldn't expect a reasonable person to ignore such clear statistics, so I had to do something.

    A common counter argument on TSR is "do you even watch football?" and the answer is a resounding "yes". Watching more football doesn't make me better than anyone, but it does mean I'm likely to know what I'm talking about, although not necessarily more than anyone else. Mentioning the amount of football I watch wasn't desperate, nor was it arrogant, it was simply an attempt to put to rest the ridiculous assertion that I do not watch football.

    I made no mention of my gambling exploits in previous posts, but these guys felt able to laugh at what I was saying and were dismissing me as some kind of idiot. Making money from gambling is exceptionally difficult and the fact that I am able to do it further suggests I might know what I'm talking about. I don't see it as any different to someone saying, for example, they work as a lawyer in a thread asking for legal advice; I know I would listen to the lawyer before I listened to Joe Bloggs.

    If you remove this part, I don't think there is anything in my posts, or in the responses to my posts, to suggest I had to resort to desperate measures. Gambling is my job and mentioning that is in no way arrogant.
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    (Original post by JamesR12)
    All his stats are per 90... (I'd presume. If they're not then there's no credibility and you may as well ignore him, but I'd think). Sub appearances in general don't affect stats too much anyway, but there's not a huge discrepancy in the games played/subs ratio anyway there, not enough to make a significant difference.

    And not going to comment on what you said bro, your word has no value lol
    Bit in bold you just responded to me and you've commented on what I've said.

    10 appearances makes a lot more difference. Also as I've said before Ramires has a passing average of 83% last season and 86% before so to talk about Willian's passing accuracy doesn't hold too much weight in this discussion, especially when you consider that Chelsea were a counter attacking team for about half their games and generally played direct football unless they faced a bus.

    Furthermore this guy is skewing stats as Willian had 2.6 key passes per game in the league while Hazard had 2.7 key passes per game in the league. Willian got 1.5 dribbles per game and Hazard got 3.8 per game. It's the 13/14 season in the league that I am using.
    http://www.whoscored.com/Players/334...ry/Eden-Hazard
    http://www.whoscored.com/Players/29463/History/Willian

    It was a good troll. But he's been outed.

    If we also go by the assists per 90mins last year Hazard gets double the amount as Willian...
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    End of the day, Alexis Sanchez makes both Hazard and Willian look like Kalou II
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    (Original post by Zürich)
    End of the day, Alexis Sanchez makes both Hazard and Willian look like Kalou II
    Sanchez will get injured and lose his form soon enough it's almost guaranteed at Arsenal.
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    (Original post by JamesR12)
    Could you give us links, and put filters on as well (10 x 90mins played minimum). edit: and it'd be nicer if you could break it down into 'x rank for midfielders in the league' rather than 'x rank for all players in the league'. Your fourth paragraph is heavily affected by the third paragraph so that leaves it kinda worthless.

    Fwiw I agree on the whole...
    I'm not entirely certain from where Squawka gets its statistics, but the comparison matrix isn't bad:

    http://www.squawka.com/comparison-matrix

    This will allow you to compare Hazard with any player you want. The main problem I have with Squawka is that it doesn't list 'non-penalty goals' but it should do the job. Just keep in mind how many goals players scored from penalties when looking at overall attacking scores, for example.

    All the statistics I shared were per 90 minutes and Squawka allows for that. Unfortunately, Opta doesn't provide stuff like this free of charge.
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    (Original post by jam277)
    Sanchez will get injured and lose his form soon enough it's almost guaranteed at Arsenal.
    Dunno, think Alexis might be immune from that tbh. He's like some kind of Apache warrior. I would say that he's currently in beast mode, but when is he out of it tbh?
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    (Original post by Zürich)
    Dunno, think Alexis might be immune from that tbh. He's like some kind of Apache warrior. I would say that he's currently in beast mode, but when is he out of it tbh?
    Yeah, hopefully for you he's more of a Giroud. That guy is another immune beast, played an entire season as main striker when he did get an injury came back 2 months early...
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    (Original post by jam277)
    Yeah, hopefully for you he's more of a Giroud. That guy is another immune beast, played an entire season as main striker when he did get an injury came back 2 months early...
    I think Sanchez had a knock last year at Barca but other than that has pretty much always been fit. He's got a similar body shape to Ronaldo, huge ****ing thighs etc, so it's genuinely quite hard to get at him physically I think

    Yeah you can sort of tell looking at Giroud that he'd be hard to injure long term. Kind of frustrating though because the guy is built like a wardrobe and should be throwing defenders around the box like rag dolls but more often than not he himself ends up on the deck.

    Giroud is naturally like that though whereas you can tell Sanchez has just been going ape-**** in the gym for years
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    (Original post by pane123)
    Good comeback, guys.

    Nickini, let me know if you see any more "tenfold improvements" from Hazard.

    I'm not sure why you guys are so determined to stick up for Hazard and insist he's doing things he isn't. I really like Hazard and I'm not saying he's a bad player - he's very good indeed - but it's pretty obvious he was overrated last season. Failure to recognise this is bordering on delusion.

    Maybe you think the 'old school' approach is better, but a Premier League team with you two as scouts would be relegated pretty quickly.
    I didn't literally mean tenfold lol, was talking more about the effort he's putting in getting up and down the pitch. Should have guessed you'd take that literally.

    As has been pointed out already you're very quick to cherry-pick the numbers to what suits your agenda; earlier you claimed Hazard's goal/assist output was not high enough for him to be considered a top player...but when you were arguing Willian was more important than Hazard a comparison between their goal totals was suddenly "meaningless", even "absurd".

    I had a look into your claim of Hazard's stats not matching up to Gotze, Lewandowski, Reus, Suarez, Messi, Ronaldo etc., and for this season roughly all his stats bar assists/goals (and comparing goals scored would be "absurd" and "meaningless" right?) have been equal to, if not superior in some instances, those players. He's also made the most dribbles and had the most "take-ons" in Europe by some distance which you glossed over, 0.79 more a game than Messi in fact. By your own definition Hazard has been a top player this season.

    Stats are useful to an extent but they do not give enough context or information to solely base your opinion on. The 'key pass' metric is defined by Opta as "A pass that leads to a shot on goal that is not converted", and therefore, for example, considers a 5-yard sidewards pass to a teammate who then blasts it over the bar from 40 yards as somehow equal to a 20-yard defence splitting throughball which forces the keeper into a fantastic save. This applies equally to assists too should the ball actually hit the back of the net.
    Then given how 'Chances Created' is calculated by key passes + assists, that's three stats which would consider said 5-yard pass to be something as noteworthy as the aforementioned throughball - when in reality this is obviously not the case.
    In addition, given the definition of 'Chances Created', the ball must reach a teammate who then takes a shot for it to be considered a 'Created Chance'. This means a cross whipped across the face of goal which a teammate is inches away from turning into the back of an empty net does not count as a 'Created Chance', but rather as a failed cross/pass. And so according to the wizards at Opta that 5-yard pass I mentioned earlier was more noteworthy and more of a "chance" than said cross - when in reality that isn't true whatsoever.

    Another example is Young's goal line clearance against Stoke on Tuesday. That will go down as a block in the stats, the same as if he'd got himself in the way of a shot at the edge of the box (ie. a shot which possibly could be on target rather than one which was a certain goal) - when in reality, the goal line clearance saved United 2 points. Again, the stats simply do not provide enough context to give a reasonable picture whatsoever.

    As I asked earlier, where is the stat for space created? Pre-assists? Again I'll bring up Schurrle's goal against Burnley, Fabregas had the space to be in such a position and make that pass thanks to Hazard running past Burnley's entire team and pulling them all out of position:


    (Doesn't show the whole run but you get the idea)

    Hazard had a massive impact in creating that goal, but what do the stats have to show for it? A dribble and maybe more than one take on if he's lucky. Afterwards he also makes a good run further dragging a defender out of position - which again, doesn't show up on the stats.

    Chelsea play Newcastle tomorrow at 12:45, watch that and you might see why we're all so adamant Hazard is our best player.
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    (Original post by Nickini)
    I didn't literally mean tenfold lol, was talking more about the effort he's putting in getting up and down the pitch. Should have guessed you'd take that literally.
    I know you didn't literally mean tenfold, but you did mean he has improved defensively, which isn't true.

    (Original post by Nickini)
    As has been pointed out already you're very quick to cherry-pick the numbers to what suits your agenda; earlier you claimed Hazard's goal/assist output was not high enough for him to be considered a top player...but when you were arguing Willian was more important than Hazard a comparison between their goal totals was suddenly "meaningless", even "absurd".
    A comparison between only their goals and assists is absurd, as midfielders have to do a hell of a lot more than just that - Willian is better at the 'hell of a lot more than that' part. Also, I am not saying Willian would be better than Hazard if he played in Hazard's position. What I'm saying is that, based on last season, Willian's overall output - defensively and offensively - was of more importance to Chelsea than Hazard's. I have shown you why on several occasions.

    (Original post by Nickini)
    I had a look into your claim of Hazard's stats not matching up to Gotze, Lewandowski, Reus, Suarez, Messi, Ronaldo etc., and for this season roughly all his stats bar assists/goals (and comparing goals scored would be "absurd" and "meaningless" right?) have been equal to, if not superior in some instances, those players. He's also made the most dribbles and had the most "take-ons" in Europe by some distance which you glossed over, 0.79 more a game than Messi in fact. By your own definition Hazard has been a top player this season.
    I don't care what they are this season, it was last season he was overrated. The season is too young for stats to have much significance, but I can believe that Hazard may finish this season as a top player. I still, however, insist that Fabregas is Chelsea's best player, but we are going over old ground here.

    If Hazard finishes this season with stats like a player like Reus achieved last year, I will be the first to admit that he's a top player. I love players who dribble like Hazard and I'll be delighted if he can improve in the areas I've highlighted. At no point in this debate have I said Hazard does not have the ability to be a top player. I did say I'll be surprised if he becomes a 'top 5 in the world' player, but it's an opinion I'll be happy to revise.


    (Original post by Nickini)
    As I asked earlier, where is the stat for space created? Pre-assists? Again I'll bring up Schurrle's goal against Burnley, Fabregas had the space to be in such a position and make that pass thanks to Hazard running past Burnley's entire team and pulling them all out of position:

    Hazard had a massive impact in creating that goal, but what do the stats have to show for it? A dribble and maybe more than one take on if he's lucky. Afterwards he also makes a good run further dragging a defender out of position - which again, doesn't show up on the stats.
    OK, fair questions. I guess the stats don't exist. However, your point only holds if we assume the other players who were better than Hazard last season didn't create space or pre-assist. I don't have stats, but I do know these players weren't standing like statues when they weren't making a key pass. Messi, for example, drags 3 or 4 defenders out of position several times in matches.
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    (Original post by pane123)
    I know you didn't literally mean tenfold, but you did mean he has improved defensively, which isn't true.
    He has though. He's far more willing to track back this season, yet another aspect of football which the stats do not show. There's more to defending then just tackling.

    A comparison between only their goals and assists is absurd, as midfielders have to do a hell of a lot more than just that - Willian is better at the 'hell of a lot more than that' part. Also, I am not saying Willian would be better than Hazard if he played in Hazard's position. What I'm saying is that, based on last season, Willian's overall output - defensively and offensively - was of more importance to Chelsea than Hazard's. I have shown you why on several occasions.
    How is it absurd when you're comparing two players overall importance to the team? Goals are what win you games and Hazard scored a significantly higher number than Willian, to the point where he's our top scorer and his goals are winning us games/points, take out Hazard and where do those goals/points come from?

    You are aware they both essentially play the same position right? Hazard on the left, Willian on the right, although they sometimes interchange. Hazard has more freedom and generally gets forward more often in comparison to Willian who is generally more defensively minded, but at the end of the day they're both attacking midfielders.

    How is it that the media, pundits, fans and people who watched Chelsea in general almost unanimously say Hazard was Chelsea's best player last season? How is it that Hazard won Chelsea's PotY and the PFA Young player of the Year, but not Willian? How come Hazard was virtually undroppable (playing over 1000 minutes more than Willian) from the Chelsea team whilst Willian was rotated? Is Mourinho wrong? Are all these people who actually watch said players wrong because the stats say differently? Or maybe, just maybe, the stats don't give a complete picture.

    You have "shown [me] why" by quoting data which gives an incomplete picture, which when questioned over, you fail to respond?

    I don't care what they are this season, it was last season he was overrated. The season is too young for stats to have much significance, but I can believe that Hazard may finish this season as a top player. I still, however, insist that Fabregas is Chelsea's best player, but we are going over old ground here.

    If Hazard finishes this season with stats like a player like Reus achieved last year, I will be the first to admit that he's a top player. I love players who dribble like Hazard and I'll be delighted if he can improve in the areas I've highlighted. At no point in this debate have I said Hazard does not have the ability to be a top player. I did say I'll be surprised if he becomes a 'top 5 in the world' player, but it's an opinion I'll be happy to revise.
    Perhaps he was overrated, but again, you're basing your entire point of him being overrated on stats, three of which I have already questioned the reliability of, to no response.

    Fabregas has been average/gone missing in several of our games this season, whereas Hazard has been outstanding for all bar a couple - which is why Chelsea fans almost unanimously say Hazard has been our best player.

    OK, fair questions. I guess the stats don't exist. However, your point only holds if we assume the other players who were better than Hazard last season didn't create space or pre-assist. I don't have stats, but I do know these players weren't standing like statues when they weren't making a key pass. Messi, for example, drags 3 or 4 defenders out of position several times in matches.
    No it doesn't, as my point isn't that Hazard is better than all those players, but rather that stats do not give a true indication of what goes on in a football match - and therefore your entire premise of 'Fabregas being Chelsea's most important player' and 'Willian being more important than Hazard' is essentially baseless.

    Where is your response to the crux of my post? I'll repost it again for you:

    Stats are useful to an extent but they do not give enough context or information to solely base your opinion on. The 'key pass' metric is defined by Opta as "A pass that leads to a shot on goal that is not converted", and therefore, for example, considers a 5-yard sidewards pass to a teammate who then blasts it over the bar from 40 yards as somehow equal to a 20-yard defence splitting throughball which forces the keeper into a fantastic save. This applies equally to assists too should the ball actually hit the back of the net.
    Then given how 'Chances Created' is calculated by key passes + assists, that's three stats which would consider said 5-yard pass to be something as noteworthy as the aforementioned throughball - when in reality this is obviously not the case.
    In addition, given the definition of 'Chances Created', the ball must reach a teammate who then takes a shot for it to be considered a 'Created Chance'. This means a cross whipped across the face of goal which a teammate is inches away from turning into the back of an empty net does not count as a 'Created Chance', but rather as a failed cross/pass. And so according to the wizards at Opta that 5-yard pass I mentioned earlier was more noteworthy and more of a "chance" than said cross - when in reality that isn't true whatsoever.

    Another example is Young's goal line clearance against Stoke on Tuesday. That will go down as a block in the stats, the same as if he'd got himself in the way of a shot at the edge of the box (ie. a shot which possibly could be on target rather than one which was a certain goal) - when in reality, the goal line clearance saved United 2 points. Again, the stats simply do not provide enough context to give a reasonable picture whatsoever.

    Care to explain that?
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    You simply do not understand the importance of numbers, do you? Why do bookmakers use algorithms instead of sending you to the game with a notepad and pencil? Why does Opta exist? Top managers use Football Manager, which costs about £30, so imagine what you would get for the kind of money big clubs spend for big data.

    (Original post by Nickini)
    He has though. He's far more willing to track back this season, yet another aspect of football which the stats do not show. There's more to defending then just tackling.
    His more detailed defensive stats do suggest his defensive output has improved overall, but only marginally. My stats help you realise that Hazard's increased tracking back might well be pointless. OK, he might force a player to make a pass, but it's odd that you have noticed an increase worth mentioning, yet the stats don't pick up on anything to a large degree.


    (Original post by Nickini)
    How is it absurd when you're comparing two players overall importance to the team? Goals are what win you games and Hazard scored a significantly higher number than Willian, to the point where he's our top scorer and his goals are winning us games/points, take out Hazard and where do those goals/points come from?

    You are aware they both essentially play the same position right? Hazard on the left, Willian on the right, although they sometimes interchange. Hazard has more freedom and generally gets forward more often in comparison to Willian who is generally more defensively minded, but at the end of the day they're both attacking midfielders.
    It's not absurd to compare them, it's absurd to compare only them. You said something along the lines of "Hazard had more goals/assists so is obviously more important". That's far too simple a statement to make, when there is much more to being a midfielder.

    So what if they're both attacking midfielders? If anything, this strengthens my point: 2 players in the same position and one made a bigger contribution to the team than the other.


    (Original post by Nickini)
    How is it that the media, pundits, fans and people who watched Chelsea in general almost unanimously say Hazard was Chelsea's best player last season? How is it that Hazard won Chelsea's PotY and the PFA Young player of the Year, but not Willian? How come Hazard was virtually undroppable (playing over 1000 minutes more than Willian) from the Chelsea team whilst Willian was rotated? Is Mourinho wrong? Are all these people who actually watch said players wrong because the stats say differently? Or maybe, just maybe, the stats don't give a complete picture.
    Hazard is quite exciting to watch and it's nice to have a player who is willing to dribble. Hazard seems to be immune from criticism, which I find odd. Players who don't score goals tend to win these awards when the team has done well, and Chelsea weren't great last year, making it easier for the main scorer to draw the plaudits. The answer to your question, though, is I do not know. Willian is your unsung hero.

    Let's say PSG had made a stupid offer of £50m for Hazard and he left before the start of last season. There were players who went on to have much better seasons than he did, and Chelsea would have been able to sign one of them. If Hazard wasn't there, someone else would have scored the goals, perhaps at a better rate.


    (Original post by Nickini)

    Where is your response to the crux of my post? I'll repost it again for you:

    Stats are useful to an extent but they do not give enough context or information to solely base your opinion on. The 'key pass' metric is defined by Opta as "A pass that leads to a shot on goal that is not converted", and therefore, for example, considers a 5-yard sidewards pass to a teammate who then blasts it over the bar from 40 yards as somehow equal to a 20-yard defence splitting throughball which forces the keeper into a fantastic save. This applies equally to assists too should the ball actually hit the back of the net.
    Then given how 'Chances Created' is calculated by key passes + assists, that's three stats which would consider said 5-yard pass to be something as noteworthy as the aforementioned throughball - when in reality this is obviously not the case.
    In addition, given the definition of 'Chances Created', the ball must reach a teammate who then takes a shot for it to be considered a 'Created Chance'. This means a cross whipped across the face of goal which a teammate is inches away from turning into the back of an empty net does not count as a 'Created Chance', but rather as a failed cross/pass. And so according to the wizards at Opta that 5-yard pass I mentioned earlier was more noteworthy and more of a "chance" than said cross - when in reality that isn't true whatsoever.

    Another example is Young's goal line clearance against Stoke on Tuesday. That will go down as a block in the stats, the same as if he'd got himself in the way of a shot at the edge of the box (ie. a shot which possibly could be on target rather than one which was a certain goal) - when in reality, the goal line clearance saved United 2 points. Again, the stats simply do not provide enough context to give a reasonable picture whatsoever.

    Care to explain that?
    I'll have to come back to read this part in more detail, but what is your point? Are we talking about Hazard or is this simply a criticism of statistics? I'll be happy to answer, regardless of which it is.

    I did notice you said "solely base your opinion on" and I would like to remind you we have addressed this point already. I have well formed opinions on football and I am using statistics to back up my opinion.

    After a quick glance, you appear to be insinuating that Hazard did a lot of important stuff in matches, none of which was picked up by stats. That's really odd. Hazard must be from another planet if he managed to be world class last season doing only things that statisticians can't record.

    Do you not think the other players who ranked ahead of Hazard in various stats might have been doing all this 'invisible' stuff, too?
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    (Original post by Nickini)
    Another example is Young's goal line clearance against Stoke on Tuesday. That will go down as a block in the stats, the same as if he'd got himself in the way of a shot at the edge of the box (ie. a shot which possibly could be on target rather than one which was a certain goal) - when in reality, the goal line clearance saved United 2 points. Again, the stats simply do not provide enough context to give a reasonable picture whatsoever.

    Care to explain that?
    Context is only meaningful for individual incidents. But that one incident is not statistically significant, over thousands of minutes, these outliers will wash out and you'd get a figure which perfectly describes the players contribution. If you have enough data, you have enough to predict average long term results. That is a statistical certainty.

    You'd be described at what statisticians can predict. They'd be able to tell you to 95% accuracy how many times out of 100 Ronnie O'Sullivan would pot a tricky long shot given enough data.
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    why the **** isnt eriksen on that list???

    eriksen would walk into any team and if he played for city or chelsea would eaassilly be best player in league
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    (Original post by Parano!d)
    why the **** isnt eriksen on that list???

    eriksen would walk into any team and if he played for city or chelsea would eaassilly be best player in league
    Tbh I would put eriksen in the thing now, take out sterling.
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    (Original post by Parano!d)
    why the **** isnt eriksen on that list???

    eriksen would walk into any team and if he played for city or chelsea would eaassilly be best player in league
    (Original post by jam277)
    Tbh I would put eriksen in the thing now, take out sterling.
    People forget about him because he plays in an underachieving team, I guess. He'll be off to a top club if Spurs don't sort their act out.
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    (Original post by pane123)
    You simply do not understand the importance of numbers, do you? Why do bookmakers use algorithms instead of sending you to the game with a notepad and pencil? Why does Opta exist? Top managers use Football Manager, which costs about £30, so imagine what you would get for the kind of money big clubs spend for big data.
    I understand their importance fully, I am simply stating they are not infallible: there are many aspects of football which they do not/cannot record, and certain statistics (key passes, assists, chances created) which, due to the nature in which they are recorded, are unreliable, which you have yet to refute despite me bringing it up on two occasions.

    His more detailed defensive stats do suggest his defensive output has improved overall, but only marginally. My stats help you realise that Hazard's increased tracking back might well be pointless. OK, he might force a player to make a pass, but it's odd that you have noticed an increase worth mentioning, yet the stats don't pick up on anything to a large degree.
    That's because, as I already have stated, stats do not record tracking back beyond distance covered, which again fails to provide any sort of context. Neither do they record something such as a player hassling an opponent into giving the ball away beyond perhaps an interception to the player who receives the ball. Yet another way in which a player could be doing his team a great service which stats would fail to identify.

    If your stats do not record everything, how can you claim conclusively Hazard's tracking back has not improved (for example)?

    It's not absurd to compare them, it's absurd to compare only them. You said something along the lines of "Hazard had more goals/assists so is obviously more important". That's far too simple a statement to make, when there is much more to being a midfielder.
    I'm comparing "only them" because you stated "Willian is more important to Chelsea than Hazard."

    So what if they're both attacking midfielders? If anything, this strengthens my point: 2 players in the same position and one made a bigger contribution to the team than the other.
    So why did you say "if [Willian] played in Hazard's position"?

    Hazard made a bigger contribution to the team by scoring 13 more goals than Willian. Willian's defensive work is impressive and he is superior in that regard, but you do not rank attacking midfielders based on their defensive output alone, otherwise that would make Willian one of the best in the world. I've already explained why 'key passes' and 'chances created' are unreliable data which you have yet to refute which is the only attacking aspect of Willian's game which your stats could claim to be better than Hazard, apart from pass completion %, which yet again is another statistic which lacks the context to be conclusive else we might as well conclude Koscielny/Terry/Flamini are the best passers in the league.

    Hazard is quite exciting to watch and it's nice to have a player who is willing to dribble. Hazard seems to be immune from criticism, which I find odd. Players who don't score goals tend to win these awards when the team has done well, and Chelsea weren't great last year, making it easier for the main scorer to draw the plaudits. The answer to your question, though, is I do not know. Willian is your unsung hero.

    Let's say PSG had made a stupid offer of £50m for Hazard and he left before the start of last season. There were players who went on to have much better seasons than he did, and Chelsea would have been able to sign one of them. If Hazard wasn't there, someone else would have scored the goals, perhaps at a better rate.
    Except he's not immune from criticism? Mourinho criticised him last season, he got a lot of flack for failing to track back during our CL semi defeat against Atletico and there was a period of last season where Chelsea fans wanted to see him dropped due to poor performances. Hazard also gets criticised in general for not putting up a large number of goals/assists (as you yourself are doing). You don't know what you're talking about here tbh.

    I'll have to come back to read this part in more detail, but what is your point? Are we talking about Hazard or is this simply a criticism of statistics? I'll be happy to answer, regardless of which it is.

    I did notice you said "solely base your opinion on" and I would like to remind you we have addressed this point already. I have well formed opinions on football and I am using statistics to back up my opinion.

    After a quick glance, you appear to be insinuating that Hazard did a lot of important stuff in matches, none of which was picked up by stats. That's really odd. Hazard must be from another planet if he managed to be world class last season doing only things that statisticians can't record.
    Where did I say (or insinuate) any of that? None of that paragraph was to do with Hazard, but was a criticism of statistics in football in general.

    Very well, how much did you watch Chelsea last season or this season? I never accused you of not watching football, but rather of not watching Chelsea, as your claims of Willian/Cesc being more important than Hazard are in line with that of someone who does not watch Chelsea, or at most very infrequently.

    We've already established statisticians cannot/do not record tracking back, pre-assists, or space created etc. and yet all are important aspects of football. Surely that alone is enough to declare statistics inconclusive no?

    Do you not think the other players who ranked ahead of Hazard in various stats might have been doing all this 'invisible' stuff, too?
    I quite literally said: "my point isn't that Hazard is better than all those players, but rather that stats do not give a true indication of what goes on in a football match". How is that not clear that I was criticising statistics in general? :rolleyes:

    Anyway, not sure if I cba for this any more. I'm just repeating myself here and you're not responding to my main points, just trying to accuse me of insinuating Hazard to be god's gift to football. If you want to address my main points (statistics not recording everything and therefore being inconclusive, certain statistics lacking the context to reliably analyse a situation etc.) then feel free.
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    (Original post by Zürich)
    Context is only meaningful for individual incidents. But that one incident is not statistically significant, over thousands of minutes, these outliers will wash out and you'd get a figure which perfectly describes the players contribution. If you have enough data, you have enough to predict average long term results. That is a statistical certainty.

    You'd be described at what statisticians can predict. They'd be able to tell you to 95% accuracy how many times out of 100 Ronnie O'Sullivan would pot a tricky long shot given enough data.
    In that particular incident Young essentially won United 2 points which could be crucial at the end of the season. That is just as meaningful as Mata's goal at the other end except you'd never know it looking at the statistics.

    I'm not saying statistics are useless, in the example you gave they are probably very accurate. I'm saying they're not conclusive or infallible. It's like how one player could make a fantastic last ditch tackle to prevent a 1v1 with the keeper, whilst another could win the ball at the halfway line only to rescind possession immediately - obviously one tackle was more important to the team but you wouldn't know it just by looking at the statistics.
 
 
 
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