Posts Tagged ‘League’

2018 Division 1 Review

April 27, 2018

The 2018 league saw the continuation of Galway’s upward curve as well as perhaps a chink in the Dublin armour as they lost a regular league game for the first time since March 2015. As will be outlined below Galway played the league differently to everyone else and make an interesting hook when reviewing various metrics; they have thus been added to the recent “Big Four” when reviewing how individual teams perform.

A few of the metrics were introduced in the Week4 review (here) so this review can be seen as an extension of that piece now that we have more date.

Possessions
In boxing they say that styles make fights. In football team set ups and tactics make games. Dublin v Donegal, at 103 possessions during the game, had 26 (34%) more possessions than Dublin v Galway in the league final.

Below are the top and bottom five individual team possessions recorded throughout the 2018 league

Galway continues to play a different game to everyone else. Of the 36 individual team outings (two each per the 18 TV games) Galway’s volume of possessions only once came close to the average of 45.2 a game when they recorded 44 against Monaghan. Otherwise their remaining four fixtures all ranked in the bottom five in terms of possessions. Only in the aforementioned Monaghan game did they have more possessions than the opposition – in that instance two. In the other four games they lost the possession battle by 3, 6, 7 and 8 respectively.

Whilst the spread of possessions at 26 (max = 103, min = 77) would appear to be wide it is actually more condensed than the 2017 Championship when the spread was 34 (113 possessions in the Galway v Mayo game and 79 in the Carlow v Dublin game). Yep that’s the same Galway one competition and about six months removed. I am currently finding it very hard to reconcile the Galway of 2017, which was involved in games with 113 and 110 (QF v Galway) possessions, with that of the 2018 league where the possession count never topped 86!

As well team possessions we also have the number of successful passes within each possession. This can be used as a proxy for that dreaded word – transition.

Dublin’s method of continually probing whilst stretching teams wide has been readily commented upon and it shows up here. They own six of the 11 sequences where there was a minimum of 20 player touches. Those possessions and their outcomes are listed below.

After first producing this table I was asked if it was meaningful that only four of these possessions led to a score. I don’t believe so (a) as the volume is too small to make any concrete statements on and (b) the intention wasn’t always to score – some of these were teams playing keep ball to wind down the clock.

Whilst the above table is “interesting” it doesn’t provide any usable insight. That will come. For instance; once enough data is gathered we can see whether moving the ball through multiple players or the quick strike is more productive. Which teams play fast on the counter – and which teams do not. Until then – we’ll have to do with the “interesting” table!

Another way to use the possession data is to see where the possession originated from and overlay shot data to see how effective teams are depending on where the move starts

At a league wide level

– just under half of all possessions originate from kickouts (34% on your own 15% on the opposition’s)

– 46% come from turnovers (17% inside your own 20m line, 16% between the 20m and 45m lines with the rest picked up higher up the pitch outside your own 45)

– the remainder coming from restarts and shots gone awry (short, blocked and picked up, off the post etc.).

Just knowing that alone you can see why kickouts are such a focus. But should they be? Teams shoot as frequently on their turnovers as they do on their own kickouts. Despite, notionally, teams not being as set when they turn over the ball inside the opposition’s 20m line they allow shots less often than on short kickouts. Dropping the ball into the keeper’s hands is not the mortal sin we have been led to believe ….

But averages simplify the process completely. Some teams are better at transitioning from a kickout – others from turnovers. The below table shows the shots per possession, by where the possession originated from, during the 2018 league

Surprisingly Dublin didn’t excel anywhere and were (relatively) poor on their own kickout. Galway – as is necessary given their low possession game – were above average in all phases. A measure of their efficiency – they won four of the ten restarts and scored 0 – 04; they regained the ball 5 times from shots dropping short, coming off the post etc. – they scored 0 – 05.

Offensive Production

A few things that jump out

– Average Conversion Rate at 55.7% is a 3.3% increase on the 53.9% recorded during the 2017 Championship. There are many reasons as to why this might be but it is just worth noting for a rising ship should lift all boats.

– Dublin did not produce more shots than the opposition (Tyrone actually produced an extra 2.5 shots per game – small sample size alert – whilst only Mayo produced less shots per possession) but were head and shoulders above everyone else when it comes to shooting accuracy. Noteworthy, however, that this was just a continuation of their 2017 form when they recorded a 62.3% Conversion Rate.

– Galway have been very accurate but in a different way to Dublin. Dublin were 60% from play whereas Galway were 52%. But Galway had a significantly greater volume of their shots skewed towards the higher percentage deadballs (26% of Galway’s shots were from deadballs as against 18% of Dublin’s). If the frees dry up, or McHugh’s radar is off, can they generate enough shots from play to overcome their low possession and average Conversion Rates?

– Mayo struggled offensively throughout the league. Their shots per game and their accuracy were both well below the league average. They will be fervently hoping that come the Championship they will be back up to their 2017 levels when they produced 0.63 shots per possession, with a 54% Conversion Rate, across ten games.

Another aspect of attacking play is the frequency that teams go for goal. We all know that goals can inflict monumental damage no matter when they occur (Dublin in the 4th minute against Tyrone in the 2017 semi-final?) but knowing and doing are different things. Do teams go for goal at different rates?

Anyone surprised to see Dublin be so far ahead of the opposition on the frequency of their goal attempts? Me neither. Though I am somewhat surprised to see just how bunched the rest of the teams were. That gap, and bunching, was not evident during 2017 (below). The differing quality of opposition – as opposed to the league when everyone’s opponent is of a comparable standard – feed into the higher rates observed in 2017.

Player level

SHOOTING FROM PLAY

The average Conversion Rate for all attempts from play is 47%. There are reasons why a particular player’s results might vary from this (shooting more against better teams, close in shots versus those from the wings etc.) but it is a very useful yardstick. In that context Dublin’s trio of Kilkenny, Scully and Basquel are off the charts. I don’t care if all shots were taken against beaten dockets (they weren’t) or if there was absolutely no pressure (there was) – that is incredible shooting.

Considering he is Donegal’s main man, and has the added responsibility of taking the frees, McBrearty’s numbers are no less stellar. Defenders know he is getting the ball, they know he is shooting off his left (15 of the 16 point attempts were off his left), yet he still produces.

Comer’s returns look unusual in that he has a very high Conversion Rate but has below average Expt Pts. The simple explanation for this is his poor returns on goal attempts. He had four shots at goal across the five TV games scoring 0 – 03. This helps his Conversion Rate enormously (75%!) but harms his Expt Pts return as he’d be expected to score 1 – 02 from those four attempts.

DEADBALLS

It is a rare enough deadball table that shows Dean Rock comprehensively outplayed but Barry McHugh did just that during this league campaign. Brennan & Clifford also had better Conversion Rates than Rock but their Expt Pts mark was very similar to his showing that they converted slightly easier frees more often.

McHugh’s shooting was not only more accurate (90% Conversion Rate vs 83% for Rock) but also much better in terms of Expt Pts (+2.4 vs +1.1) indicating he converted much harder frees at the same, or a better, rate. Given the aforementioned lack of possessions Galway have a higher need to squeeze as much out of each one as possible. They did this throughout the league in no small part due to McHugh’s proficiency.

Mayo’s deadball woes were very evident throughout the whole campaign. As a team they were 69.5% (0 – 32 from 46) on deadballs leaving 0 – 05 behind them when compared to what the average Conversion Rates on those 46 attempts would be. This was very similar to the 2017 returns where they returned 69.4% (0 -50 from 72) and an Expt Pts mark of -5.36.

ASSISTS

We have started to introduce the idea of Expt Pts for assists and below is a plot for the 20 shooters listed above. It is important to note that for this metric the more games you play the higher your Expt Pts on assists will be as unlike Expt Pts for shooting there is no negative return. You assisted a shot; the outcome is irrelevant. A “per 70 minutes” metric would be much better and this is what will be produced during the 2018 Championship

That being said Fenton remains an absolute beast – he is no midfielder. Rather he is a master puppeteer centre half forward laying off ball to the shooters and/or converting at a ridiculous rate himself.

Despite the above notes on the volume impact we can see the affect Comer and Clifford had throughout the league. Their shooting was by no means stellar but their involvement in setting up teammates was excellent as measured by the impact of their assists. Comer’s direct running plays a part here – Galway took a shot directly from 11 possessions in which Comer was fouled, the next highest was 5. Granted there is huge discrepancy in the volume of minutes played but that is stark.

Defensive Production

Dublin allow more shots, on a per game and a per possession basis, than the other big teams which, when you consider their recent dominance and the fact they won the league is a remarkable thing. But even more remarkable is the poor Conversion Rate from Dublin’s opposition. The average is ~56%; Dublin’s opponents are at ~47% whilst no one else dips below 53%. Why would this be?

We have never been able to concretely attribute poor offensive numbers to either good defending or poor attacking. To date we have had to assume it is a mixture of both. But there are some obvious things we can look at when one teams’ numbers are so out of step with the norm.

Frees; Frees are converted much more readily than attempts from play. If the ratio of frees faced by Dublin is vastly different than that of other teams this would affect the overall Conversion Rate. It is different but not vastly; 22% of the shots faced by Dublin were frees as against 24% for everyone else. That equates to about 0.25 frees per game which isn’t really worth a whole lot in terms of Conversion Rate divergence. Dublin’s opposition converted frees at 73% – the league as a whole was 77%. Small gains but nothing earth shattering.

From play; So if it is not frees then it must be from play. The league average conversion rate on point attempts was 49% (the 47% mentioned earlier also includes goal attempts); Dublin only allowed 39%. That old chestnut – excellent Dublin defending or poor attacking? It is not strong Dublin defending per se – I chart the pressure applied to each shot and the Dublin defence applies “strong or severe” pressure to the shooter at a league average rate (44% for the league, 42% for Dublin). There is something in where Dublin’s opposition shoot from however; against Dublin 47% of the point attempts come from the wings between the 20m & 45m lines – the league average is 38% and if we remove Dublin that drops to 36% for the other six teams. So in a sense it is Dublin defending. We have seen that they allow more shots per game but they “let” you shoot from more disadvantageous regions – this would also feed into why their pressure % is not as high as expected.

Playing Dublin; But then again we have another overriding theme – the pressure of playing Dublin. When we restrict the pressure index to central shots only Dublin are relatively poor – only 31% of opponent’s shots centrally were taken under strong or severe pressure as against the league average of 44%. Low volumes but still! The kicker is that 53% of these central shots against Dublin were converted as against 63% for the rest of the league. We cannot place this performance on Dublin defending – indeed the opposite is true. The Dublin pressure is less intense. Teams missed the simplest of shots (centrally and under no pressure) at a higher clip.

Enough of Dublin! The conversion rate of Tyrone’s opponents is almost comically high. I double checked just to be sure. In Tyrone’s three games Dublin hit 68% of their shots, Monaghan 63% and Kildare 62%. It is only three games, and the comparable 2017 return was a combined 48% (five games) so I’m sure Mickey Harte and the backroom team are not overly concerned.

Kickouts

On the whole all teams are winning a lower percentage of their own kickouts when compared to the 2017 Championship campaign (73% won in 2017, 66% won in 2018) with none of the highlighted Division1 teams bucking this trend. Part of the reason for this is that the volume of short kickouts has dropped (a consequence of the new rule – either directly or indirectly as teams kicked longer in anticipation of the press that will surely come during the Summer) from 47% in the 2017 Championship to 40% in the 2018 League. Teams win their own short kickouts at a 94% clip so if there are significantly less of them the overall win rate will suffer. There was also a drop in the percentage of kickouts past the 45m line won by the kickout team – from 56.9% to 54.5%. Small enough but when you combine the two – a greater volume of longer kickouts with these longer ones won less frequently – we get a decent drop in the win rate.

Outside of the win rates it is interesting to see who is the most productive. Dublin are generally considered Kings of the kickout but in terms of net effectiveness they were only above average in this league campaign whilst Tyrone actually outperformed them in 2017. Mayo were very good on their own kickout during the league – they will be hoping that their overall Conversion Rate picks up so that they can build on this strong platform.

As is becoming a theme Galway was the outlier. Their net returns on kickouts are very low when compared to the other big guns – with one of the main reasons being that they continue to shun the short kickout. In their five TV games they went short on 27%. Mayo were 55%, Dublin were at 47% with Kerry and Tyrone at 41% apiece.

Volumes become low when we begin to segment like this so the percentages become less reliable however given that they are going short at a lower rate this allows the opposition to “tee off” on their longer ones. When they went past the 45m line Galway won 50% of their kickouts; the comparable figure was 65% for Dublin and 57% apiece for Kerry and Mayo.

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2018 Division 1 Overview – post Rd4

March 8, 2018

Below is a quick overview of some of the more interesting numbers coming out of this year’s league. When listing individual teams, under any specific metric, note that it will be confined to those teams with at least three games played (see NOTE1)

Possessions

Team Possessions

11 games covered which equates to 22 returns – of which Galway have the three performances with the least amount of possessions. Not just the three lowest though – their two games against Donegal and Mayo are a full six possessions lower than the next lowest recorded by any other team. Intriguingly it is not that they are completely slowing games down and “dragging” the opposition down with them. They have easily lost the possession battle in all three games; by totals of 6 (v Kerry), 7 (v Mayo) and 8 (v Donegal).

Player possessions

That impression you have of Dublin dominating possession? Yeah it is not merely an impression. Of all team possessions with 20 or more player possessions (essentially player touches or strings of passing) Dublin have six of the top 11 and are the only team to top 30 player possessions in the one move.

Offensive production

Team

Perhaps surprisingly Dublin are not the most prolific offensive team in terms of output. They are below the average in the number of shots per game and shots per possession they attempt. What they lack for in quantity they more than make up for in quality however. They have a wonderfully high Conversion Rate on the shots they do take. Alloy this Conversion Rate, with the high volume of possessions, and you get your high scores.

Galway are highly proficient when they attack (high shots per possessions and Conversion Rate) but as noted above their (current) weakness could be the inability to create enough shots, through low possession counts, should the radar be off.

Donegal are shooting from everywhere with near on 30 shots per game – but their relatively low Conversion Rate is indicative of the fact that a lot of these are from “outside” the shooting zone.

Kerry’s new forward unit with O’Sé, Burns & Clifford are chugging along nicely whilst Mayo are struggling.

Player – shooting

The above table shows all players with at least 8 shots from play (see NOTE2).

Brannigan is currently on fire scoring 2 – 06 from his 10 shots as is McBrearty’s left peg (all 13 shots are point attempts with the left). Noticeable how these two are then followed by a squadron of Dublin attackers. This is to be somewhat expected given Dublin’s 65% Conversion Rate as a whole but it is still striking when you see that they have five of the top7 shooters by Expt Pts.

Player – assists

So this is new. I have started to track assists as another tool to view the front 8. This is somewhat subjective as a number of shots will come from players themselves making the breakthrough thus not producing an assist; or a defender might foul the ball thus providing the opposition with a shot from a free (does the player who induced the foul get an assist?); or the last pass may be an incidental popped hand pass (see NOTE3). As with any new metric there’ll have to be an element of trust on this one!

Unlike the shooting, which can have a positive or negative Expt Pts depending on whether the shots were converted, assists can only have a positive Expt Pts as the Expt Pts will relate to the point attempt rather than the shot outcome. But what we can do is plot the Expt Pts for shooting versus the Expt Pts for assists and get a more complete picture of a player’s offensive involvement

The above chart shows the shooting/assist Expt Pts interplay for those players listed previously with at least 8 shots from play. Where you want to be is in the top right quadrant (highlighted by the green circle) with a high positive Expt Pts for shooting (thus being very accurate) and a high Expt Pts for assists (thus showing a high level of attacking involvement).

Can we consider Fenton a midfielder? These offensive numbers are off the chart – high volume of shots, with high accuracy and high assists production. On his assists he has won three frees that led to Dean Rock attempts at goal, set up Kilkenny for his goal against Tyrone and also provided the assist for seven point attempts. Phenomenal.

McBrearty has two less assists than Fenton (9 v 11); he also has won three frees (that he himself took) but has set up two goal attempts and four point attempts.

Given his accuracy from play (0 – 09 from 13 point attempts) and the fact that he is Donegal’s main free taker (0 – 17 from 20; 85% Conversion Rate and +0.8 Expt Pts) it is some feat to also be so high on the assist chart. He is a very different player to Fenton but currently no less phenomenal.

The only problem with the first chart is that it hides the “non shooters”. Purely listing by the volume of assists we see the likes of A O’Shea, P Conroy and S O’Sé start to rise to the top.

Defensive production

Again perhaps surprisingly Dublin do not show up as best in class here. They allow more shots per possession than anyone else which, allied to their more open games, leads to more shots allowed per game than anyone else. What is noticeable however is the low quality of the opposition’s shooting (Conversion Rate at a very low 45%).

This low Conversion Rate can undoubtedly be attributed to excellent defending (more pressure on the shooter and/or teams taking shots from less favourable positions) but there must also be a mental aspect to this – teams forcing attempts knowing they have to keep up.

The argument against this is perhaps Galway. Their defensive numbers are very similar to Dublin’s yet it would be hard to argue that teams are under the same mental pressure when facing Galway as they are when facing Dublin.

I would contend however that Galway defend differently – tighter, more aggressive – and it is this that gives them the same defensive edge that Dublin seem to gain from their opponent’s mentality. Still it is definitely something worth looking at after the league – do teams shoot differently against Dublin as opposed to against anyone else?

On the offensive summary we commented on Kerry & Donegal’s higher numbers which was a nod to the fact that they had a good balance in attack (Kerry) or a defined game plan (Donegal could be deemed “shoot on sight”). They are both struggling on the back end however.

Kickouts

When looking at these tables it is again important to reference NOTE1 below – any changes may be as a consequence of natural differences between league and Championship rather than wholly attributable to the changes in the kickout rules.

Having said that there has definitely been a change in kickouts with the proportion of kickouts going short (landing inside the 45m line) dropping from 48% in the 2017 Championship to 37% this league campaign. That’s dramatic enough and the sample size – at 28% of the 2017 Championship games – is representative. Come the end of the league we can expect the proportion of short kickouts to have dropped by c10%.

We have seen Marks increase but not to any great degree. Instead we are back to the future where breaking ball is becoming more important. I define such kickouts as “contestable” (outside the 45m line and not claimed through a Mark – see NOTE4).

Kickout teams have increased the proportion of “contestable” kickouts they win but in both the 2017 Championship & 2018 League campaigns teams only manage to win c50% of their own “contestable” kickouts.

There are some interesting titbits looking at kickouts by team

Galway weren’t as fond of the short kickout as others in 2017 but have almost eschewed it completely so far with only 14% going short (remember the average is 38%). Given that the kickout team gets the ball ~95% of the time when it goes short this also explains why they are losing the possession battle as noted earlier (as does the fact that they are below average in winning their own “contestable” kickouts).

Donegal’s drop off is as pronounced (60% of kickouts in 2017 Championship went short versus 25% in the 2018 League) however this could be attributed to a change in philosophy under Declan Bonnar as much as anything else.

Dublin’s short ones have dropped off completely (66% in ’17 down to 44% thus far) – getting ready for the Summer perhaps when they expect a high press from the opposition? Also noticeable that despite their athleticism, and Cluxton’s radar like aim, they are only average on “contestable” kickouts.
Mayo & Kerry appear to have completely ignored the new rule (playing possum and not showing their Summer hand?). Kerry have been very good on their own kickout claiming a high of 69% of their own “contestable” kickouts.

Notes

Note1; 11 Division1 games in total. All shown on TV so any bias can be aimed at TG4 and/or EIR! Only Division1 game not completed thus far is Monaghan-v-Tyrone
Where there are comparisons to 2017 Championship numbers it is worth noting that we have no real previous comparisons between League and Championship campaigns. There has always been the sense that the League will be different but we just don’t know (I have been particularly lazy in not doing league campaigns before!).
This point, that there may be a natural difference between League & Championship, is particularly important when we come to kickouts as we have the additional overlay of the new kickout rules. Just because numbers change here does not mean it is as a direct result of the law changes – there may also be a natural difference between League & Championship outputs.

Note2: As an aside this shows the problem with judging players through their shooting. Even the most prolific shooter – McBrearty at 13 shots in three games – has a very small sample size

Note3; I have ~84% of shots not having an assist.

Note4; acknowledging that not all kickouts past the 45m line are contested – nor indeed that all Marks are un-contested. Still – it’s an easy label.

O’Connor & Rock from frees (Rd3 of league)

March 3, 2017

From an analysis and review standpoint I am forever railing against recency bias. This “railing” comes about however because of its pervasiveness. It’s an in-built near automatic response. And of course I fell into the trap myself.

Watching the Mayo – Roscommon game last week Cillian O’Connor missed a central free about 33metres out and I had immediate flashbacks to (a) a number of missed frees in the previous round against Kerry and (b) that missed free in last year’s All Ireland final.

Was this latest missed free a sign of some cliff having been reached? Was one of Mayo’s most consistent weapons beginning to malfunction? Of course not.

oconnor-post-rd3

In the three league games to date O’Connor has hit 79% of his frees. Well above the ~72% Championship average. On Expt Pts his tally is -0.39; he has basically scored what is expected. Now the argument could be made that someone with O’Connor’s reputation should be in positive Expt Pts territory. Fine. However we must always remember that the Expt Pts tally is based off Championship returns. Frees taken in (mainly) pristine weather on (mainly) pristine surfaces. O’Connor is fine. To be slightly off in the middle of the league is acceptable? For comparison Dean Rock is running at 75% conversion rate with an Expt Pts tally of -0.86.

rock-post-rd3

What I did argue however in last year’s All Ireland review is that O’Connor had an arc outside of which he was vulnerable (the missed free in the drawn All Ireland being right on this arc). Given weather, pitch conditions etc. it is fair to expect that arc to contract at this time of year and if we placed this contracted arc over O’Connor’s frees to date then I would suggest that arguement is still relevant. He has taken 6 frees on the edges of this constricted arc and converted 3 – 50% Success Rate. He has also missed his only 45.

So in conclusion – bloody recency bias!! But O’Connor is generally fine and still remains one of the most consistent free takers once within his range.

Dublin v Kerry 2016 League Final

April 26, 2016

Over 70 minutes (or ~75 these days) that’s a paddlin’.

Team Possessions Attacks Shots Scores Exp Pts
Dublin 60 50 33 2 – 18 21.60
Kerry 47 27 19 0 – 13 9.10

With a full complement of players you are liable to mental and physical fatigue having ~10 less possessions going into the last ten minutes. You just cannot afford to go a man down against Dublin given the pace at which they play the game.

I’m not sure there’s any benefit to be had looking at the game as a whole. Dublin ran riot in the last ten minutes attempting seven shots and scoring 2-03. But the demarcation point was probably the red card ten minutes earlier in the 50th minute. At that stage the score was 0-13 to 0-11 and whilst Dublin were on top it was still competitive. To that end below are the numbers up until the red card.

Team Possessions Attacks Shots Scores Exp Pts
Dublin 40 32 22 0 – 13 12.17
Kerry 33 22 16 0 – 11 8.11

Dublin had more possessions and were finding it easier to get the ball inside Kerry’s 45 (83% Attack rate to Kerry’s very poor 57%). More possession and a higher attack rate will naturally lead to more shots. One crumb of comfort for Kerry is that once inside the 45 they were producing more shots (73% Shot rate to Dublin’s 69%).

One reason for this higher shot rate is the range that Kerry were shooting from. In the period up to the red card Dublin had 17 point attempts from play and all bar two were within ~30 metres of goal. Dublin were working the ball in close attempting higher percentage shots. Hence why on a 59% (13 scores from 22 shots)Success Rate they were only ~1pt above Expected.

Dublin shooting pre red card
Kerry shooting (V Dublin 16 league final) pre red

Kerry on the other hand were taking much harder shots but were converting them at a very high rate as evidenced by the Success Rate of 69% (11 from 16) and an ExpPts of +2.89. Reviewing the semi-final win over Roscommon I was interested to see whether the fast, accurate start Kerry had produced there, and against Cork, could be repeated. The accuracy was – they only missed two shots from play in the first half with one of them being Marc O’Sé’s attempt in the first minute. The speed however wasn’t. They need to be taking more shots, or get a goal, to keep up with Dublin.

Re goal attempts; Darran O’Sullivan’s left footed effort after 22 minutes was the only one Kerry have managed across the last two finals (here & the All Ireland final in September). Dublin had four in the All Ireland final and one up until the red card here. Granted they didn’t convert any but if/when they meet again the goal attempts cannot be 5 -1 in Dublin’s favour. They will eventually convert!

Brogan

Speaking of converting – Bernard Brogan had an ominously good day. Prior to 2015 his returns from play were well below what was required for a forward of his calibre (combined ExptPts of -4.78 over the three years) but with the burden of the free taking duties removed he exploded on the 2015 Championship with an ExpPts return of +14.26 across 38 shots.

Brogan 2015 shot chart
Brogan 2015 shooting

As his shot chart above shows he played much closer to goal in 2015. He did the same here scoring four points from his four shots and setting up both goals. Dublin are not short of options up front but they may not need to exercise them if Brogan maintains his 2015 form.

Kickouts
As ever with Dublin games the kickouts were a focus for a lot of the build-up. Kerry had some success here in the All Ireland final getting their hands on three of Cluxton’s ten short kickouts and the expectation was that they were going to do a similar “press” here. No such luck. Dublin dominated their own kickout winning 89% (16 of 18). More tellingly they managed to score 0-07 directly from those 16 possessions.

When discussing the kickouts pre game a lot of focus is on the Dublin kickout but little emphasis is placed on just how good they are on the opposition’s kickout. Here Kerry went past the 45m line (were forced to go past?) on 19 kickouts winning the possession battle 11-8. Despite this supremacy they only scored 0 – 02 from these possessions whilst Dublin managed to produce 0 – 04 from the 8 kickouts they won.

Dublin dominated their own kickouts with a net return of 0 – 06 (Kerry managed 0 – 01 from the two Dublin kickouts they won) and had a net return of 0 – 02 off Kerry’s contestable kickouts. That’s 0 – 08 to the good on kickouts alone without mentioning the goal.

Kickouts going askew are a natural hazard of using short routines. The idea is that over time you will gain more from the 95% successful short kickouts than you will lose from the 5% that go wrong. That is fine in a macro sense however over 70 minutes one going wrong can be devastating and with the frequency of short kickouts increasing we are seeing more and more erroneous ones being punished to the full. Donegal in the 2014 All Ireland final, Roscommon at the end of their first Division one game against Monaghan and now this. All punished by clinical forwards.

Kealy’s kickout wasn’t the first to go wrong. It won’t be the last.

Appendix

Shot Charts

Dublin’s shooting
Dublin shooting (V Kerry 16 league final)

Kerry’s shooting
Kerry shooting (V Dublin 16 league final)
x = missed, disc = score, yellow = deadball, black = normal time from play, red = goal attempt

Kerry v Roscommon 2016 League SF

April 14, 2016

For those new to the blog, or who haven’t been here for a while, please find a refresher on the definitions and how the numbers are compiled here

Team Possessions Attacks Shots Scores Exp Pts
Kerry 45 33 26 3 – 15 16.74
Roscommon 50 40 33 0 – 14 17.49

Although the 70 minute overview doesn’t read too badly for Roscommon this game was over by the 18th minute when they were attempting just their fifth shot. The gulf is probably better represented by the below comparison.

Kerry v Roscommon league SF Expt Pts

By the time of that fifth shot Kerry had scored 1-06 from their opening ten shots. Almost as impressive as that strike rate is how they killed the game instantly inside three minutes. Cooper bagged his goal with an excellent finish from the left of the small square. Kerry then went on to win the next three Roscommon kickouts scoring a point off each. Roscommon went in to the 12th minute 0-03 to 0-02 down and emerged in the 16th minute 1-06 to 0-02 down with their only possession of the ball being 3 goal kicks. Absolutely clinical.

Not all of Kerry’s league games were televised but this is not the first time we have seen them sprint out of the traps this year. Against Cork, by the 20th minute, they bagged 0-10 from their opening 12 shots killing that game off too. It will be interesting to see how they start against Dublin in the final.
Speaking of that final what may also be illuminating is the kickout battle. Michael Quirke had a good article in the Examiner during the week stating that Down, Donegal, Cork & Kerry won just five of Dublin’s kickouts combined. Now we can argue the merit of that stat (did those teams push up? How many were short & thus uncontested?) but the crux of the article is that Cluxton is a potent weapon for Dublin. I think on that we can all agree.

And yet in the All Ireland final Kerry managed to seriously pressure Cluxton winning three of their ten short kickouts (unheard of previously) whilst Mayo also managed to break down the kickout routine at the end of the drawn replay.

On the other hand Kerry might be worried about their own kickouts. In that final Dublin lorded it over them in the second half until that dominance forced Kerry to go short in the last quarter. Here Roscommon got their hands on 60% (12 of 20) of Kerry’s contestable kickouts. Granted that return was aided by Roscommon winning five of the last six Kerry kickouts. It could be argued that Kerry had switched off towards the end whilst Roscommon were still working trying to eek something from what was to that point an excellent league campaign (& still is). But even still prior to this the count was seven apiece on contestable kickouts.

What of Roscommon?

Roscommon shooting (V Kerry 16 league SF)
x = missed, disc = score, yellow = deadball, black = 1st half point attempt from play, white = 2nd half point attempt from play, red = goal attempt

Their shooting was poor here. Not necessarily the shot selection but the execution with some very simple chances missed in the first half. Scoreboard pressure after Kerry’s early onslaught? Or something else?

Looking at the four (vs Monaghan, Donegal & Kerry twice) league games charted Roscommon attempted 102 shots scoring 2 – 56. This is against an Expected Return of ~63 points. That’s not a bad return at all when you consider the weather and pitch conditions (the Expt Pt is modelled on Championship games) and the fact that they were stepping up in regards the quality of opposition. It would appear from this distance that there is no glaring issue with their shooting.

Another element that stands out on the above chart is just how clean in front of the goal is. Kerry managed to stop Roscommon having any shots at goal. In the other three games Roscommon manufactured five shots at goal scoring 2-02. Not exactly prolific and perhaps one area they can take away to work on.

One final point to note on Roscommon is their short kickout routine. Short kickouts going astray is an occupational hazard for teams that employ the tactic but it was a short kickout that effectively cost them the game late on versus Monaghan and here again they found a Kerry man wiiiide open inside their own 45 on a short one (different keepers on both occasions). This doesn’t count the numerous instances that I visibly winced as a defender received the ball with the attackers bearing down on him.

Short kickouts are fine – and will go astray – but Roscommon seem to flirt with danger more than most.

Appendix

Kerry shooting chart

Kerry shooting (V Roscommon 16 league SF)

Dublin v Donegal 2016 League SF

April 12, 2016

There is no point pretending that this game was anything other than a run out. As Chris McNulty commented on Twitter (@chrismcnulty86 – a good follow on all things Donegal) Donegal took the game so seriously that they didn’t train all week. I have completely forgotten who, so apologies for not crediting, but some other wag commented that it was like an exhibition match at the opening of a new ground (see note1). It just had that feel to it.

Still. The two teams may not have engaged as if it were the height of Summer but we we’ll fire up the numbers and see what it throws up.

Team Possessions Attacks Shots Scores Exp Pts
Dublin 52 46 30 1 – 20 18.87
Donegal 46 38 27 0 – 13 16.08

In the opening league game between these two Dublin were restricted to a 76% attack rate and 21 shots. Here it was an 88% attack rate and 30 shots. Again in that opening game Dublin managed (or maybe more accurately the Donegal defense allowed) 0.29 points per possession. Here it was 0.44. There was just no bite to Donegal.

It was not like there was a huge difference in opportunities between the halves either. The goal at the start of the second half did not see Donegal switch off. Both, by some statistical quirk, had stat lines of 26 possessions with 23 attacks and 15 shots. Dublin were slightly more accurate in the first half with a conversion rate of 73% (0-11 from the 15 shots) though the second half conversion rate of 67% (1 – 09 from 15) was also very efficient.

Although they may not take much from the game one positive aspect, from a Dublin perspective, is that their early accuracy came despite the fact that two of their main strife force, Brogan & Mannion, combined for a mere two shots in the first half.

What of Donegal? It may come as some surprise to note that – in pure shooting terms – they were not all that far behind Dublin.

Dub - Don league SF Expt Pts

The above graph shows the team’s respective shooting broken down into actual score vs Expected score (see note2). Donegal, despite what was noted above re application, were on track with Dublin up until the ~33rd minute. Dublin tagged on 0 – 03 at the end of the first half and kicked off with a goal at the start of the 2nd but up until then Donegal were right with them.

The “but” quite obviously comes with caveats. The first being that whilst teams with average returns from the shots attempted would have been level around the 33rd minute Dublin are not average. Nor in their own ways are Mayo or Kerry. Dublin outperformed their Expt Pts from the get go (as an aside Kerry did something vaguely similar against Cork. That day they score 0 – 10 from their first 12 shots inside 20 minutes and were up and gone. It will be interesting to see the starts both teams make, or are allowed make, in the final. But I digress). On top of this Donegal lagged behind what was expected. One of the hallmarks of the 2012 & 2014 teams was their remarkable accuracy in games where the shot counts were very low. They will need to regain this accuracy.

A second point on the Donegal shooting was just how reliant they were on Murphy & McBrearty. Here they accounted for 70% of Donegal’s shots (Dublin’s top 3 marksmen in terms of Volume – Rock, Brogan & Kilkenny accounted for 52% combined). In the opening league game this duo accounted for a more realistic 45% of shots.

Part of this over reliance on Murphy & McBrearty was Donegal’s volume of shots from frees. In total they had 11 shots on goal from free kicks. Dublin had a mere four (plus one 45). Relying on frees as a way to keep the scoreboard ticking over is a tried and trusted manner but in many ways it is dicey proposition as gaining a free is not always within your control. You are reliant on the defender’s, and perhaps more importantly the referee’s, complicity.

Finally Dublin’s Expt Pts was boosted by creating goal chances. They had four shots at goal in total scoring 1 – 01 (about what is expected). Donegal only manufactured the one shot at goal and that a weak, in terms of where the shot was taken from, one from Murphy in the dying embers of the game that went straight at Cluxton. In fairness in the three other Donegal league games that I charted (Roscommon, Kerry & Dublin) they came out even in goal shots in all three so this game may not be emblematic.

So is there hope for Donegal? Absolutely. Over the two games they created as many shots as Dublin. In the first game, when they were not at full tilt but were at least more inclined to try than here, they were able to restrict Dublin’s shooting. But there are also some obvious dangers. They must ensure the shooting volumes are not as concentrated as in this game and also improve their accuracy from play (1-06 from 27 shots over the two Dublin games for a success rate of 26%). The control – in terms of game tempo and shot selection – needs to re-emerge. Goals need to be kept to a minimum. The restrictive game plan does not lend itself to chasing games.

Note1; if you have a twitter account it’s probably better to follow me there (@dontfoul). I tend to have game “scorecards”, like the below, up a lot quicker than the blog posts. Plus by having the game capsule up there I don’t feel the need to get every stat up here!

Dub%20-%20Don%20league%20SF%20Overview

Note2; I have a piece half written on Expected Points which I will publish prior to the Championship. In essence it is the same measurement as the weighting that has been used heretofore but (hopefully) is a lot more readily understood.

Appendix

Shot Charts

Dublin’s shooting
Dublin shooting (V Donegal 16 league SF)

Donegal’s shooting
Donegal shooting (V Dublin 16 league SF)
x = missed, disc = score, yellow = deadball, black = normal time from play, red = goal attempt

Cork V Dublin 2015 League final

April 28, 2015

For those new to the blog, or who haven’t been here for a while, please find a refresher on the definitions and how the numbers are compiled here

Overall

Team Possessions Attacks Attack % Shots Shot % Scores Success % Weighting
Cork 57 28 53% 21 75% 9 43% -1.711
Dublin 57 43 75% 33 77% 22 67% +2.969
Avg 37.0 28.7 77.7% 14.7 51.2%

Dublin will be very pleased with their day’s work but if Galvin wanted to nit-pick on something over the coming months it could be that this facile victory was built upon a second half when the game was done. In that second half their shooting returns were 12 of 15 (80%) with a weighting of +3.127. They were not clinical enough in the first half – against a better team they may find themselves in a hole with such finishing.

Still they *did* score 1-21. The above is cribbing for the sake of cribbing.

Cork on the other hand won’t be searching too hard for bulletin board material throughout the Summer. They had low shot volumes with poor execution but this all stemmed from the very low volume of attacks they had (28 to Dublin’s 43).

Although they had enough ball to be in the game they were wholly unable to use it. Cork only managed to get every other possession (53% in total) into the opposition’s 45. Dublin pressed hard up high which stifled Cork’s ability to move the ball. This was encapsulated in a little snippet around the 16th minute in the first half. About 30m out Brady hand passed a ball to McManamon but as the ball arrived McManamon slipped. Instead of lamenting his bad luck Brady chased down Cadogan, who had picked up the ball, and pressured the ensuing pass. Cadogan kicked the ball straight over the sideline – a Cork turnover, and possible counter attack, was snuffed out before it had even begun.

Shots from Play

Team Shots Scores Success % Weighting
Cork 14 3 21% -2.582
Dublin 24 14 58% +1.744
Avgs 21.4 9.7 45.3%

Perhaps the most surprising return from the game was that Dublin only managed one shot at goal from play – when Jack McCaffrey hit the post in the second half. In 2013 25% of all their shots were at goal. The new conservative Dublin or just a one off?

Elsewhere Rock, Kilkenny and Andrews were very good hitting a combined 8 from 8 with a weighting of +4.078

The most disappointing aspect of the day was Cork’s exceptionally poor shooting. Hurley & O’Neill are two of the best marksmen in the game but they were 1 from 5 on the day. Daniel Goulding missed three as well for good measure.

As a whole Cork only had nine point attempts from play converting one. Although the shooting was undoubtedly affected by the limited volume Cork’s problems were not solely limited to moving the ball up the pitch.

Shots from deadballs

Player Shots Scores Success % Weighting
D Rock (Dublin) 7 7 100% +1.312
D Connolly (Dublin) 1 1 100% +0.182
S Cluxton (Dublin) 1 1 100% -0.269
C O’Neill (Cork) 5 5 100% +1.410
B Hurley (Cork) 1 1 100% +0.064
J Hayes (Cork) 1 0 0% -0.603
team avgs 7.2 4.9 68.7%

A good day all round with only Cluxton’s very long range free and Hayes’ last kick of the ball missing the target.

Although O’Neill converted two less than Rock his weighting comes in higher due to the nature of the frees both attempted. Only two of Rock’s seven frees came from the wings whilst O’Neill converted three from the wings – including a 45. Rock’s volume basically made up for O’Neill’s difficulty.

Kickouts

Corks’s kickouts Won % Turned into an attack % Shot %
Cork 24 77% 14 58% 9 38%
Dublin 7 23% 6 86% 5 71%
Dublin’s kickouts Won % Turned into an attack % Shot %
Cork 1 7% 0 0
Dublin 13 93% 10 77% 8 62%

Dublin lorded their own kickouts winning 93% (13 from 14).

Cork were also strong on their own kickout – winning 77% (24 from 31) but this drops to 65% when the short kickouts are removed. That in itself is not bad but the high volume of short kickouts is somewhat padding the stats.

Although they got their hands on the football Cork struggled to get the ball upfield once the kickout was won. Of the 23 kickouts they won inside their own half Cork only managed to move 57% ( 13 of the 23) into the opposition’s 45

Cork have been very fond of the short kickout in the past two games – 40% of the 57 kickouts dropped short of the 45 – it will be interesting to see if they persist with this method throughout the year and whether that continues into them struggling to get attacks off against better teams.

Shot Charts

Cork’s shooting
Cork shooting (v Dublin)

Dublin’s shooting
Dublin shooting (V Cork)

x = missed, disc = score, yellow = deadball, black = 1st half from play, white = 2nd half from play,

Players with >= 3 shots from play

Shots Scores Success % Weighting
B Brogan (Dublin) 4 2 50% -0.172
D Rock (Dublin) 3 3 100% +1.495
C Kilkenny (Dublin) 3 3 100% +1.417
K McManamon (Dublin) 3 1 33% -0.636
D Goulding (Cork) 3 0 0% -1.175
B Hurley (Cork) 3 0 0% -1.184

Dublin V Monaghan 2015 League semi final

April 13, 2015

For those new to the blog, or who haven’t been here for a while, please find a refresher on the definitions and how the numbers are compiled here

Overall

Team Possessions Attacks Attack % Shots Shot % Scores Success % Weighting
Dublin 48 41 85% 28 68% 17 61% +2.626
Monaghan 39 33 85% 28 85% 16 57% +2.832
Avg 37.0 28.7 77.7% 14.7 51.2%

In terms of outcomes both teams posted similar numbers – just one score in the difference with high Success Rates & Weightings.

How both teams went about amassing their shots was the big difference. Dublin had a huge lead in terms of possessions, fuelled as we will see below by their utter dominance at kickouts, and whilst they converted those possessions to attacks at a high rate (85%) they then stalled once they got inside the Monaghan’s 45. This flow – a high attack rate combined with a low shot rate – is to be somewhat expected when you come up against a defensive set up which Monaghan would generally be regarded as.

Monaghan on the other hand were living on comparative scraps but they were ruthlessly efficient with what they had. They had a full 8 attacks less than Dublin but managed the same volume of shots. And those shots were no forlorn haymakers – their accuracy was on a par with Dublin.

Shots from Play

Team Shots Scores Success % Weighting
Dublin 20 10 50% +1.032
Monaghan 21 11 52% +2.283
Avgs 21.4 9.7 45.3%

Again excellent shooting from both teams though Dublin will possibly be concerned with the lack of cutting edge in the second half. Yes they scored 0-08 in that second half but that only contained six shots from play in that entire half with only two in the last 25 minutes.

Monaghan’s accuracy from play can, in the main, be attributed to C McManus with a generous helping from D Clerkin. McManus was 5 from 6 with a weighting of +2.566 – his only miss was a dubious one as well coming in from the wing on the right I adjudged he attempted a shot with the outside of his foot – he may well have been attempting a pass across the goal.

Clerkin came on at half time and managed 3 points from 4 shots with a weighting of +1.258. Some cameo.

Shots from deadballs

Player Shots Scores Success % Weighting
D Rock (Dublin) 8 7 88% +1.594
C McManus (Monaghan) 3 3 100% +0.955
R Beggan (Monaghan) 3 1 33% -0.569
P Finlay (Monaghan) 1 1 100% +0.163
team avgs 7.2 4.9 68.7%

All the regulation frees were converted.

Due to the nature of the weighting Beggan probably gets harshly dealt here. His three attempts were monstrous ones (two long, one wide on the 45) so 1pt feels about par. A negative weighting is harsh.

Monaghan will be disappointed with their defensive discipline. As highlighted they had stymied Dublin in the second half however let them keep the scoreboard ticking over through frees. All Rock’s frees were “gettable” and given their hitherto fore reliance on deadballs you would think Monaghan would be equally as conscious of not giving them up at the other end.

Turnovers

Team “coughing up” possession Volume Shots from Turnovers %
Dublin 23 15 65%
Monaghan 13 7 54%

A very low turnover volume from Monaghan – considering how few possessions they had compared to Dublin it was imperative that they make the most of what they had. This they did.

Kickouts

Dublin’s kickouts Won % Turned into an attack % Shot %
Dublin 18 75% 15 83% 8 44%
Monaghan 6 25% 6 100% 5 83%
Monaghan’s kickouts Won % Turned into an attack % Shot %
Dublin 16 64% 15 94% 12 75%
Monaghan 9 36% 6 67% 6 67%

This was Dublin’s main strength throughout the day. If we remove all short kickouts, and define the remainder as contestable, Dublin won the kickout battle 24-8 and outscored Monaghan 0-10 to 0-04 form the possessions emanating from these kickouts. There was a period in the first half where, after Dean Rock had missed his only free, Dublin got their hands on a Monaghan kickout three times in a row scoring three points. If nothing else Monaghan showed remarkable resilience to stay in the game given the problems they were having getting primary ball.

Shot Charts

Dublin’s shooting
Dublin shooting (V Monaghan 15 league)

Monaghan’s shooting
Monaghan shooting (V Dublin 15 league)

x = missed, disc = score, yellow = deadball, black = 1st half from play, white = 2nd half from play,

Players with >= 3 shots from play

Shots Scores Success % Weighting
C McManus (Monaghan) 6 5 83% +2.544
D Clerkin (Monaghan) 4 3 75% +1.258
K Hughes (Monaghan) 4 2 50% +0.412
K McManamon (Dublin) 3 2 67% +0.704
B Fenton (Dublin) 3 2 67% +0.540
D Connolly (Dublin) 3 0 0% -1.184

Dublin V Derry 2014 league final

April 28, 2014

For those new to the blog, or who haven’t been here for a while, please find a refresher on the definitions and how the numbers are compiled here

Overall

Team Possessions Shots Shot Rate Scores Success Rate Weighting
Dublin 57 47 82% 23 49% -0.290
Derry 29 20 69% 11 55% +0.931
Champ avg (’12 & ’13) 35.8 27.6 77.2% 14.1 51.0%

The numbers just prove that Dublin were as dominant as they looked to be in real-time.

For the second game in a row Dublin’s shooting was below average, recording a Success Rate of 49%, but like in the Cork game that doesn’t really matter a damn if you can have 27 more shots than your opponent (it was 17 more shots in the Cork game).

In last year’s Championship the highest number of attacking possessions was 49 for, coincidentally, Dublin against Westmeath. This is now the second game in a row where they have smashed through that with 57 possessions here and 54 against Cork. In both games their Shot Rate was in the low 80 percentile. Dublin’s huge scoring is not down to their shooting prowess but rather the relentless nature of their attacking play. In the last two games they have overcome below average shooting with a phenomenal volume of shots.

Shots from Play

Team Shots Scores Success Rate Weighting
Dublin 42 19 45% -0.301
Derry 16 10 63% +2.366
Champ avg (’12 & ’13) 20.3 9.2 45.4%

Again not much to be said here except to once again underline Dublin’s dominance. B Brogan & E O’Gara had as many shots from play (10 fro Brogan, 6 for O’Gara) as the entire Derry team.

Once again Dublin were goal hungry. The percentages may not be as gaudy as the Tyrone game – where 40% of Dublin’s shots from play were shots at goal – but it did return a healthy 24% this time around. That’s 10 shots at goal in the one game. Converting three is about par for this team.

Derry did have 6 goal attempts themselves getting 1-03 from those 6 shots but it was the 20th minute before they had an attempt for a point from play. Dublin had already taken 15 shots at that stage.

Shots from deadballs

Player Shots Scores Success Rate Weighting
B Brogan (Dublin) 3 3 100% +0.333
S Cluxton (Dublin) 2 1 50% -0.322
M Lynch (Derry) 2 0 0% -1.119
E Bradley (Derry) 1 1 100% +0.232
B Heron (Derry) 1 0 0% -0.547
team avgs (’12 & ’13 Champ) 7.3 4.9 66.7%

The intensity was long gone from the game and this can be viewed by the fact that not one shot in the second half was from a dead ball.

One of the weaknesses of the weighting is exposed here as although Lynch’s two attempts were from scorable sectors, (Sectors 4 & 6 respectively), both frees were more or less on the touchline.

Not that it mattered but I thought it a strange decision from McIver to take off Heron just as they had received a free, in Sector 4, favouring his left foot. Take him off after the free? Or let Bradley, who took a subsequent free from the same side, take it? Yes it would have been Bradley’s first touch but would that have been any worse than asking Lynch to convert from the right sideline with his right foot? As I said not a decision of any great consequence but I just thought it odd.

Kickouts

Dublin’s kickouts Won % Turned into a possession % Shot %
Dublin 14 100% 12 86% 7 50%
Derry 0 0% 0 0
Derry’s kickouts Won % Turned into a possession % Shot %
Dublin 14 37% 13 93% 11 79%
Derry 24 63% 15 63% 11 46%

Dublin’s dominance was all encompassing. They had 14 kickouts and won all 14; we didn’t see where two landed (but given the flow of the game, and the time from the kickout, it was obvious that Dublin had garnered possession) and seven of the remaining twelve went short, so Dublin would be expected to win the majority but still; to gather all 14 is some accomplishment.

For all the problems that they had Derry did ok on their own kickouts. In total they had 38 but won possession on 63% of those (24 to Dublin’s 14). It was what happened next that hampered them – from the 24 that they won they only managed 11 shots from that possession; Dublin also managed 11 shots but from the relatively meagre 14 Derry kickouts that they won.

Of the 24 kickouts that Derry won only 6 were kicked short. Whereas Dublin kicked 7 short and managed to convert 6 into attacking possessions and three into shots Derry didn’t get one shot from their 6 short kickouts and only managed one attacking possession. Winning primary ball from their own kickouts was not the issue – it was the second phase and moving it through to Dublin’s 45 that stopped them in their tracks.

Turnovers

Turned Over Shots from Turnovers %
Dublin 33 24 73%
Derry 25 9 36%

 

Misplaced Pass Tackled Shots not going dead Mishandled possession Fouled ball
Dublin 18 4 6 4 1
Derry 13 3 6 2 1

After adding kickouts to the data last year the plan is to record turnovers this year. At a high level shots that go dead, either through going wide or being a score, will not be covered here as they are either covered in the shooting stats or the kickout stats (or both).

Dublin had 32% more turnovers than Derry (33 to Derry’s 25) however it is what Dublin did with that turnover ball that is so striking. They managed to get a shot from 73% of those turnovers compared to just 36% from Derry. We have no reference points for either of these two numbers but the gap in returns would appear huge!

Dublin managed to score 1-09 from their 33 turnovers (30% conversion rate) whilst Derry scored 0-05 from their 25 (20% conversion rate).

The spread of turnover types are very similar though Derry did misplace 5 more passes whilst also mishandling twice as many balls as Dublin (granted at very small volumes).

Shot Charts

Dublin’s shooting
Dublin (v Derry) shooting
Derry’s shooting
Derry shooting
x = missed, disc = score, yellow = deadball, white = play

Players with >= 2 shots from play

B Brogan scored 1-06, which is an excellent return, but he took 13 shots to achieve it. His combined weighting for those 13 shots was -0.007 i.e. for the type of shots he undertook his returns were bang on average.

Flynn & Connolly had very good games with a combined 1-05 from 10 shots (60% Success Rate & a weighting of 1.592) whilst after a poor shooting performance against Cork ( 1 from 6) A Brogan pulled the horns in and chipped in with two points from two shots.

A quick note for O’Kane who tried valiantly to raise the team from centre half back. He managed three shots with his only “miss” being a quick spectacular volley that ricocheted off a Dublin player standing on the line.

Shots Scores Success Rate Weighting
B Brogan (Dublin) 10 4 40% -0.34
E O’Gara (Dublin) 6 3 50% -0.041
D Connolly (Dublin) 5 3 60% +0.877
P Flynn (Dublin) 5 3 60% +0.715
K McManamon (Dublin) 4 1 25% -0.930
M Lynch (Derry) 3 2 67% +0.778
G O’Kane (Derry) 3 2 67% +0.525
E McGuckin (Derry) 3 2 67% +0.459
A Brogan (Dublin) 2 2 100% +1.281
C O’Boyle (Derry) 2 2 100% +1.094
C Reddin (Dublin) 2 1 50% +0.142
D Byrne (Dublin) 2 0 0% -1.207
E Lynn (Derry) 2 0 0% -1.207

Derry V Mayo 2014 League

April 15, 2014

For those new to the blog, or who haven’t been here for a while, please find a refresher on the definitions and how the numbers are compiled here

Overall

Team Possessions Shots Shot Rate Scores Success Rate Weighting
Derry 40 33 83% 17 52% +0.467
Mayo 41 29 71% 17 59% +1.107
Champ (’12 & ’13 avg) 35.8 27.6 77.2% 14.1 51.0%

That old chestnut – goals win games. The outputs are pretty evenly matched. There was only one possession in the difference with Derry being more efficient with their Shot Rate whilst Mayo were more accurate with their shots.

Shots from Play

Team Shots Scores Success Rate Weighting
Derry 24 12 50% +1.683
Mayo 21 10 48% +0.538
Champ avgs (’12 & ’13) 20.3 9.2 45.4%

Considering they were down to 14 men for the majority of the game that is an excellent effort from Derry to outperform Mayo. The main protagonist for Derry was Mark Lynch who hit an excellent 4 scores from 6 shots with a weighting of +1.495.

Of course the corollary of this is that against 14 men Mayo will be disappointed to only produce an average number of shots from play. Doherty stepped up to the mark for them, taking 5 shots, but he only connected with 2 of them; no one was able to replicate Lynch’s performance for Mayo.

Shots from deadballs

Player Shots Scores Success Rate Weighting
M Lynch (Derry) 8 5 63% -0.670
B Heron (Derry) 1 0 0% -0.547
A Freeman (Mayo) 8 6 75% +0.482
A Moran (Mayo) 1 1 100% +0.087
team avgs (’12 & ’13 Champ) 7.3 4.9 66.7%

Much of the post match discussion was around the volume and type of frees. Both teams had 9 shots at goal from deadballs; all Derry’s attempts were from frees whilst Mayo had seven frees and two 45s.

Over the two semi finals Mayo gave away a shot from a free on every 4.44 of the opposition’s possessions; for the same metric Derry gave away 5.85 frees per opposition possession, Cork 7.71 and Dublin 17.5

Lynch had a wonderful game but his place kicking was below average. Now those returns might be on the harsh side as two of his misses were from outside the 45. The volume of frees from outside the 45 is low, so the averages from these sectors may be weaker than the other sectors but the evidence we have to date suggests that he should have done better (or not taken the shot on at all from that far out).

A quick note for Lynn who won four of Derry’s shots from frees; it is a small statistic that will not show up anywhere but vitally important to any team.

Kickouts
Mayo won 60% of all kickouts (29 versus 19) and managed 5 more shots from those wins (19 shots to Derry’s 14). As ever those bare numbers don’t tell the whole story.

Mayo won a disproportionate 79% of their own kickouts (19 to Derry’s 5) however this is padded by the volume of short kickouts that Mayo employed. All bar one of those short kickouts occurred post the Fergal Doherty red card as Derry funneled back trying to set up with 14 men.

Rob Hennelly was too quick for TG4’s cameras on three occasions so of the 21 kickouts that we could fully chart 9 were taken short. Mayo won all 9 attempting 5 shots. Of the remaining 12 Mayo won 7 getting 5 shots whilst Derry won 5 getting 3 shots. So that is a shot differential of +7 for Mayo on their own kickouts.

Derry won possession on 58% of their own kickouts (14 to Mayo’s 10). Unlike Mayo Derry only went short once. Of the remaining 23 kickouts Derry won 13 getting 10 shots whilst Mayo won 10 getting 8 shots. A shot differential of +2.

A case of Mayo winning the kickout battle but Derry ultimately winning the war.

Players with >= 2 shots

Shots Scores Success Rate Weighting
M Lynch (Derry) 6 4 67% +1.459
J Doherty (Mayo) 5 2 40% +0.156
C O’Boyle (Derry) 4 2 50% +0.515
L Keegan (Mayo) 4 1 25% -0.485
M Sweeney (Mayo) 3 2 67% +0.224
A Moran (Mayo) 3 1 33% -0.192
E Varley (Mayo) 2 1 50% +0.215
S McGoldrick (Derry) 2 1 50% +0.003
C McFaul (Derry) 2 1 50% -0.417