"Penalty Kick to Chelsea!"


The use of data to inform and illuminate is gradually creeping into the mainstream media with varying degrees of success. The best examples legitimately combine excellent writing, an engaging narrative and data collection and interpretation, to produce… Read more ›


Preview of the 2015 SSAC Research Paper Competition


The MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference has always been more of a sports business conference through the years, but since 2010 the conference has had tracks in which presentations on various topics in sports analytics have been presented.  This year the Research Paper competition returns to the SSAC, but this time with tracks for publications on Baseball, […] Read more ›

Juventus, Arsenal to upset Champions League group-winning opponents


ESPN FC’s Alejandro Moreno believes this year’s clash between City and Barca will be similar to last year when Barcelona won 4-1 on aggregate.

The final four first legs of the Champions League Round of 16 take places this week. Here is a statistical look at the four matches this week, complete with Soccer Power Index (SPI) projections.
Manchester City vs. Barcelona
Barcelona is a 74 percent favorite to advance according to SPI, but was unlucky in its draw, as only Juventus would have been a worse potential opponent of Barca’s seven possibilities.
Man City was even unluckier, as it would have been favored against half of its six possible… Read more ›

2015 SSAC Soccer Analytics Panel Preview: Grounds for Optimism


Later this week, I will attend my fifth MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference, which encompasses the transition of the conference from a one-day meeting of academics and sport insiders to a two-day cultural event on sports analytics and sports business.   I have attended all of the conferences in which there was a dedicated panel […] Read more ›

Brief rumination on PDO


James Yorke has a post here today about PDO. I have thoughts about several of the points raised but it’s simpler to write them here than just send a long string on twitter. It’ll be in a quote/response format. “…then you get a grey area where some people multiply the derived figure by 1000, some … Continue reading Read more ›


Stats in favor of Real Madrid, Bayern ahead of Champions League return

ESPN FC’s Gab Marcotti disagrees with Alejandro Moreno that PSG should not be written off just yet ahead of their Champions League round of 16 match against Chelsea, where he feels the side can turn its fortunes around.

The Champions League knockout round begins Tuesday. Here is a statistical look at the four matches this week, complete with Soccer Power Index (SPI) projections:

PSG vs. Chelsea (Tuesday)

Chelsea is a 65 percent favorite to advance to the quarterfinals, according to SPI, but despite that, was unlucky to draw PSG. According to SPI, only Juventus would have been a worse possible matchup of the five possible options for Chelsea. It was a middle of the road draw for PSG, who would have been favored… Read more ›

Sixty-two days, seventeen matches

Sixty-one days ago – today is day 62 – Tottenham Hotspur lined up in Turkey to play their final Europa League group match against Besiktas which they went on to lose 1-0. Two days earlier, Liverpool drew 1-1 with FC … Continue reading Read more ›