CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA - JUNE 11: Fernando Muslera of Uruguay takes a goal kick during the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa Group A match between Uruguay and France at Green Point Stadium on June 11, 2010 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)
I've written a bunch of content over the last couple of weeks and it's probably a bit much to find what you're looking for in the midst of it. So this is an attempt to organize and highlight the most salient bits of analysis.
I'd call these six pieces "general" work, since they deal with the fundamentals of ball possession and shot totals. The fundamental takeaways from these pieces are: 1) Ball Possession is very important; 2) So is passing into the offensive zone; 3) Teams shoot more when they're losing; 4) Having a player sent off completely distorts the game. These are all obvious concepts, but the intent here is to put some numbers on what we know about soccer.
- Score Effects on Shot Rates
- The Value of a Goal by Minute and Score
- Territory and Shooting
- Passing, Shooting and Winning
- Pass Completion by Field Zone
- The Impact of Having a Player Sent Off
- How Many Goals are Corner Kicks and Goal Kicks worth?
The second set of analytical pieces relates to shooting. Here I've looked at where players shoot from, how often they score, where they put the ball in the net, and also what the fundamental limit is for shot distance.
- Shot Location and Shooting Percentage
- Shooting Percentage by Target Area
- Goal Distances and Targets
- Longest Goals in the English Premier League
- English Premier League Penalty Shot Percentage
The third set of pieces is World Cup specific analysis:
- Group A Passing and Shooting Summary
- Group B Passing and Shooting Summary
- Group C Passing and Shooting Summary
- Are Scoring Levels Historically Low
- Largest Margins of Victory in World Cup History
- Player Positioning relative to the Goal (through 6/13)
- Passing and Winning (through 6/13)
- Passing Leaders (through 6/14)
- Offensive Passing Leaders (through 6/14)
- Ten-Longest Goals in the 2010 World Cup (through 6/20)
- Playmaking: Brazil v Cote D'Ivoire
- Dominance of North Korea: Brazil v Portugal
It's a bit more difficult to draw conclusions from single games in the World Cup, but we can still see trends over the course of 90 minutes. As teams play more games, we'll be able to get a better sense of how well they've played and what their strengths and weaknesses are.