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Reason Man City & Liverpool dominates!

One thing they have in common is neither team spends much time passing in their own third of the field, with Liverpool's only consistent pattern coming from balls out wide to their fantastic fullbacks, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andy Robertson.

Moving into the attacking third, most of Liverpool's unique passing comes from right-to-left diagonals, which once again feature the fullbacks. Alexander-Arnold and his joystick of a right foot lead all Liverpool players in expected assists with 4.3; next closest is Roberto Firmino with 3.1 and then Robertson at 2.3. Alexander-Arnold also tops on the team, per data from Stats Perform, in completed passes into the penalty area with 5.7 per 90 minutes -- way ahead of Sadio Mane's second-most tally of 2.8.

While the creative burden carried by Liverpool's fullbacks is nothing new -- TAA was first and Robertson was second on the team in assists last season -- the frequency with which they pass to each other has increased. In fact, it's become one of the team's defining stylistic quirks: Alexander-Arnold steps on the ball, looks up and launches a cross-field ball right into Robertson's stride to switch play and exploit any space. Per data from Cheuk Hei Ho, the number of fullback-to-fullback passes has increased over Jurgen Klopp's tenure:

Man City's approach is different. They create sustained, effective possession in the opponent's half in a manner we've only really seen from ... other teams coached by Pep Guardiola. They complete 196 passes in the attacking third per game; Liverpool are next-best at 143. They complete 82 percent of their passes in the final third; Chelsea are next-best at 76 percent. They average 50 touches in the opposition box; Liverpool are next-best at 33. They take 21 shots per match; Liverpool are next-best at 17. They create 3.36 expected goals per game; Liverpool are next-best at 2.24. And they score 3.09 goals per 90 minutes; Leicester are next-best at 2.45.

Pick just about any stat for attacking effectiveness and City are way ahead of anyone else in the league.

You can't create that kind of dominance with any predictable patterns or tendencies. City are able to play the majority of matches in their opponent's third for two main reasons: Guardiola is a master at creating attacking spacing, and their threat can come from anywhere. In terms of non-penalty expected goals+assists per 90 minutes among players with at least 400 minutes of game time, City have the four most productive attackers in the league -- Sergio Aguero, Gabriel Jesus, Raheem Sterling, and Kevin De Bruyne, along with Riyad Mahrez (sixth) and Bernardo Silva (eighth). No other team has more than two players in the top 10.

However, if there's one defining feature of City's attack this year, it's the sight of Kevin De Bruyne, seemingly harnessing the Earth's rotation and whipping in a ball behind the defense from a few yards off the right corner of the penalty area. Across Europe's Big Five leagues, De Bruyne completes more passes into the penalty area per 90 minutes than any player.

posted 1 week, 4 days ago

Hafi will want to marry you

posted 1 week, 4 days ago

Why?

posted 1 week, 4 days ago

I think you should analyse Man Utd too. For hafi.

posted 1 week, 4 days ago

Nicely cut and pasted

posted 1 week, 4 days ago

Cool

posted 1 week, 4 days ago

comment by Ole-Dirty-Baz ta’rd (U19119)
posted 13 minutes ago
I think you should analyse Man Utd too. For hafi.
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1 billion XG per game but Rashford is rubbish and so is DDG for conceding every shot he faces

posted 1 week, 4 days ago

Nah it's probably drugs.

posted 1 week, 3 days ago

The way both teams play is or should be common knowledge already.

If you want to be more precise you can add the types of players that are used to do what jobs and in what formations when they attack and defend.

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