World Cup: Passing Stats for England-Germany and Mexico-Argentina

JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA - JUNE 27: Gonzalo Higuain of Argentina breaks away to score the second goal for his team during the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa Round of Sixteen match between Argentina and Mexico at Soccer City Stadium on June 27, 2010 in Johannesburg, South Africa. (Photo by Lars Baron/Getty Images)

We saw a 4-1 game and a 3-1 game today, but they couldn't have been played any differently. First, because Argentina and Germany built up big leads, we'd expect possession and passing to be in England and Mexico's favor, and it is:

Minutes Pass F Weighted Pass A Weighted % of Passes % of Weighted % Possession
England 93.1 379 82 320 75 54 52 52
Mexico 95.0 350 84 347 65 50 56 49

Even though they were down and had nothing to lose, the English did not completely dominate possession. Let's look at what happened when the game was tied or within a goal:

England Minutes Pass F Weighted Pass A Weighted % of Passes % of Weighted
Tied 19.7 448 88 315 72 59 55
Down 1 42.7 418 87 247 62 63 58

The English completely controlled the play but allowed Germany to score. Compare that to Mexico:

Mexico Minutes Pass F Weighted Pass A Weighted % of Passes % of Weighted
Tied 25.0 299 64 547 96 35 40
Down 1 7.2 213 36 476 66 31 35

In this case, Argentina dominated the game. We'd expect Mexico to have very little chance of winning if they only had the ball 30-40% of the time.

Let's look at our four qualifiers for the Round of 8 so far:

Minutes Pass F Weighted Pass A Weighted % of Passes % of Weighted
Uruguay 20.2 365 93 223 40 62 70
Argentina 25.0 547 96 299 64 65 60
Ghana 39.1 352 78 304 58 54 57
Germany 19.7 315 72 448 88 41 45

I think Argentina is the strongest of the group so far, having so thoroughly controlled the game against a very good Mexican team. But there's no denying that Uruguay is much more likely to beat Ghana than Argentina is Germany. If I were the Germans, I wouldn't get complacent - they did not play all that well against England, and Argentina will abuse them if they own 55-60% of the possession when the game is close.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Arctic Ice Hockey

You must be a member of Arctic Ice Hockey to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Arctic Ice Hockey. You should read them.

Join Arctic Ice Hockey

You must be a member of Arctic Ice Hockey to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Arctic Ice Hockey. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9355_tracker