Analysis: Dominic Calvert-Lewin and xG

His stats are not showing a wasteful striker, but simply one not getting enough chances. His xG is about level with the goals he scores.

Steve Ferns 24/09/2019 99comments  |  Jump to last

I know a lot of you hate stats but I'm going to go there. There's something called xG — Expected goals. You'll see it used on Match of the Day but few understand it. Basically every chance gets a score from 0.0 to 1.0 as to how likely you are to score. So Pickford from a goalkick will be like 0.01 whereas a tap in into an empty net will be approaching 0.99. It's a good guide to see if you "deserved" to win. If you hit the post 100 times and conceded a jammy goal, then your xG should show that.

For example, our results and xG results so far are :

Palace away - actual score: 0-0 — xG score: 0.87 - 1.22
Watford home - actual score: 1-0 — xG score: 0.83 - 1.17
Aston Villa away - actual score: 2-0 — xG score: 0.86 - 1.26
Wolves home - actual score: 3-2 — xG score: 1.49 - 2.00
Bournemouth away - actual score: 3-1 — xG score: 1.42 - 1.51
Sheff Utd home - actual score: 0-2 - xG score: 1.26 - 0.51

So, basically this shows we were lucky to beat Wolves and Watford as they had chances to win. We were unlucky to lose each of the games we lost as we had the better chances in each of the games, although the Bournemouth xG score was only slightly in our favour. I can see how a lot of you can just dismiss this as a load of old bollocks which is why I never posted this stuff on here before.

However, I thought that I might be of interest to some as it also relates to players. So you take your crap, can't hit a barn door with a banjo striker and look at his goals scored v xG. For example, Sergio Aguero has an xG of 6.41, but has scored 8. This reveals a striker who is more than taking his chances. The player with the second best xG this season is Rashford, but his tells a different story, he has scored 3 but should have scored 4.12. Tammy Abraham has scored 7 but his xG is 3.24, so he is another more than taking his chances.

How does it apply to Everton? Well here is a list of players, goals and xG:

    Goals xG
1 Richarlison 2 1.61
2 Calvert-Lewin 1 1.35
3 Iwobi 1 0.87
4 Sigurdsson 0 0.85
5 Kean 0 0.81
9 Bernard 1 0.24

An interesting one is Walcott. 4 appearances, but only 59 minutes and an xG of 0.54 which works out at 0.82 per 90 minutes, showing what we all know which is how he gets chances but wastes them.

Now if you look at Calvert-Lewin's xG over the seasons for the Premier League:

  Apps Mins Goals xG shots/90 mins
2016/17 11 340 1 1.25 1.85
2017/18 32 1,8611 4 5.44 2.03
2018/19 35 1,763 6 6.17 2.65
2019/20 5 320 1 1.35 1.69

Despite scoring, he got hammered by a few on the live forum. His stats are not showing a wasteful striker, but simply one not getting enough chances. His xG is about level with the goals he scores.

He got hammered for "finding his level" and being a "Championship" striker. What you see is he has 8 goals in 8 games in the league cup. He's played the following games:

Blackpool R1 2015 won 3-0, scored 1;
Newcastle R2 2015 lost 4-1, scored 0 (played 15 mins as sub);
Crewe R1 2016 won 2-1 AET; scored 0 (played 37 mins as sub);
Sunderland R3 2017 won 3-0, scored 2 (played on the right wing);
Chelsea R4 2017 lost 2-1, scored 1 (played 26 mins as sub);
Rotherham R2 2018 won 3-1, scored 2;
Lincoln R2 2019 won 4-2 (played 16 mins as sub);
Sheff Weds R3 2019 won 2-0, scored 2.

So, yes, I see why some dismiss the goals because it is lower league opposition. But the lad has played 8, scored 8 and only started 4 of those games. Surely this is telling you, and we don't have xG here to help, that Calvert-Lewin is getting better chances, more chances, is shooting more and so is scoring more. If this is indeed the case, then it rubbishes those who say the lad cannot finish. Clearly he can. He just needs to get more chances.

That's not to say he doesn't need to work harder on the training ground. It is not just for him to point to a lack of chances, but it is for him to work on getting those chances. For example, if we played Harry Kane instead, then he would get more chances than Dom. His movement, his runs, and his positioning is far superior. Dom needs to keep working on this. He can improve it. He can get better. And yes, he can finish.

Editorial note: This article was lifted from the comments section of the match report from this evening's 2-0 win against Sheffield Wednesday in the Carabao Cup.

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Reader Comments (99)

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Mike Gaynes
1 Posted 24/09/2019 at 00:07:28
No, Calvert-Lewin doesn't get many chances, in considerable measure due to our crappy passing in the final third, but the last paragraph is key -- he doesn't anticipate his chances and get into position to finish them as well as he needs to. And yes, he needs to focus on that issue on the training ground.

However, I question the inherent implication that he doesn't "work" hard enough on it. We don't see him in training, but his fitness levels and improved skills imply that he bears down hard. So is "work harder" the solution to the goalscoring problem? It is -- IF you believe that being in the right place at the right time is a skill that can be learned. I'm of the belief that it's at least as much instinctive, a natural talent, as a work-developed skill.

Personally, I've never doubted his ability to finish his chances. He can and he does. But I can remember too many of the rare occasions when our attack does produce a great final ball across the goalmouth, and Calvert-Lewin isn't there to make the late move or headlong lunge we have seen so often from not only brilliantly talented strikers like Aguero and Sterling but also lumbering finishers like Costa and Giroud. It's not the spectacular strikes that make great strikers -- it's the "easy" ones, the headers from 4 yards and tuck-ins from 8 yards, that the best scorers always seem to find. Calvert-Lewin found one today on the second goal with a late adjustment, a couple of backward steps away from defenders and into perfect position.

I cannot remember a previous example.

Steve Ferns
2 Posted 25/09/2019 at 00:24:39
Mike, I'm not suggesting Calvert-Lewin is anything but a hard worker. I just think this is something he should focus on. The second goal is a perfect example of something that can be worked on. I don't think the movement he made there needs to come natural. You can coach that. You can make it natural. Repetition and analysis makes it so.

One of the problems Calvert-Lewin has is who he's learning off. Is it any wonder that he is one of the best strikers in the Premier League in the air? He's 6'-2" so he's a decent height, but he's not 6'-5". There's plenty of Premier League strikers of his height who are not good in the air. I think he might have some natural ability there, but working with Ferguson has got him to a level where there will not be much improvement from here.

So imagine if he also worked with someone like, say Tony Cottee. I use him as an example of an ex-Everton striker with the ability to sniff a goal out and score. Super Kev Campbell also seems to be out of a coaching job, he could certainly score in a scramble. These guys could impart their knowledge, tricks, and advice to Calvert-Lewin and help him better learn the art of poaching a goal. Failing that, he could always turn to the "fox in the box" who is already on our books.

Kieran Kinsella
3 Posted 25/09/2019 at 01:08:45

Your reply to Mike reflects my thoughts. Dunc has the skill set Lukaku lacks so should have been a good coach though yielded minimal results with hold up and heading. I've said it before I know but Shearer credits Dalglish with turning him into a prolific finisher and it was a lot to do with subtle movement. Likewise, Anelka with Wrighty. We need a finishing coach.

Dave Bowen
4 Posted 25/09/2019 at 01:14:44
The problem with Calvert-Lewin is as you've correctly stated, movement and anticipation. He's a converted midfielder and as such doesn't think like a natural striker. If we still had Lukaku, his XTC or XR3 thingy would be far higher & we'd be winning more games.

Some posters on TW seem to think Calvert-Lewin is a good finisher (personally I don't). With Walcott statically making the best chances although not taking them, maybe he should coach Calvert-Lewin!

Don Alexander
5 Posted 25/09/2019 at 01:44:40
Steve, I credit you with being a young (compared to me) Toffee but your piece states it's not a statistical analysis before, in my opinion, going on to demonstrate a so-called statistical analysis of Calvert-Lewin par excellence.

To me, Calvert-Lewin is unlikely to be a legendary scorer. That doesn't bother me. We've never really really had one since Tommy Lawton, and before him Dixie. In my time Young, Vernon, Pickering, Royle, Sharp, Cottee, Ferguson (and especially him given his innate squandered talents), Yakubu and Lukaku have all fallen short as "legendary scorers".

Lineker and, in his distant day, Latchford probably qualified but in doing so we won fuck all, again.

I want to see Calvert-Lewin become one of two forwards who teams fear, and I think he will. Sharpy was a centre-forward of similar physical dimensions and he made the opposition's defence fear him not just (rightly) on account of his goals but mainly on account of the threat he presented for the other members of the team to score.

I think Heath, Gray and Clarke, all forwards, would agree.

John Pierce
6 Posted 25/09/2019 at 04:46:10
Steve sorry to poke at the article, is finishing actually his problem? I don't think it is.

Mike, the hard work or ‘bearing down' (brought a wry smile to me that did) is about buying a lottery ticket EVERYTIME, and not being put off that your supplier can't put the ball in the right place.

Does Calvert-Lewin do that? My observations are he doesn't get in those type of positions often enough to give himself a tap in.

Our opening game v Palace he drove me nuts. We made the running for the first 30 minutes and there were 2/3 very good crosses, had he made a lead every time he'd have tapped home at least one. He was on his heels, does he believe the ball is gonna come?

The other facet of his game, does he create anything for himself? In short, no. I think he relies too much on the framework of the system and when he does have the ball, lacks selfishness in key areas.

So he seems to stink the place out when we don't create chances, and doubly so because by and large he doesn't create for himself. I never think oh Calvert-Lewin is gonna spank one from 20 yards. His instinct is to find a colleague.

I'm not sure many strikers of that type get picked regularly at pPremier League level?

I still don't see him ever being a regular or the clubs go-to centre forward. The development curve just isn't there.

Oh almost forgot Mike – I've finished Webb's biography. Some decent bits but a bit bland. Thought he was ‘shithouse' for taking the OBE for himself and forgetting his assistants. I wished he para-phrased an assessment or printed one for the book from one or two of the big games.

Darren Hind
7 Posted 25/09/2019 at 05:34:15
He's now scored three of the five chances he's had this season. =I know his critics will make daft arsed claims like "it was only a Championship side" and whilst I can concede we as a team may not have created those chances against Premier League opposition. The goal post are not bigger against lower league opposition. The goalies are not smaller... Chances created are still as hard (or as easy) to put away. When Calvert-Lewin got the chances, He buried them, just as Rhino told us he would

Calvert-Lewin could easily score 12-15 a season (He might anyway) but he would have to be played as an out and out striker.
The role Silva asks him to play is one which is designed to get the team up the pitch. He plays a role which in many ways, is at the expense of his own scoring opportunities.

I believe most of the criticism of Calvert-Lewin is born out of ignorance. The "cow's arse with a banjo" jibe makes me cringe. After three seasons, those footballing eggheads who make these jibes have still not noticed the distinct absence of a banjo...or cows

Like every forward, Calvert-Lewin will miss chances again this season. The difference between him and the others is that he will be hammered for it, for weeks... by his clubs own fans,

Forwards for top teams, like Aguero and Salah, don't have to contribute much else to their teams, but they have already missed more chances than Calvert-Lewin will get all season.

Karl Masters
8 Posted 25/09/2019 at 06:47:32
If we need a finishing coach, I hear Peter Beardsley is available. One of the very best.
Paul Tran
9 Posted 25/09/2019 at 07:26:40
That's an interesting piece, Steve. I've got no problem with stats, just when they are barely relevant and used as a substitute for using your eyes.

I'm a big fan of horse racing stats, but there, the protagonists are all moving in the same direction to the same place. And in my work, I use science/research to back up my material.

My eyes tell me that we don't create enough chances. The best strikers miss them and they often carry the can when they miss the one chance they get.

My eyes tell me that we don't commit enough players in dangerous forward areas. That's why the stats brigade are amazed that we have lots of possession and corners, while creating few chances.

When they create a stats app that measures purpose and bravery, perhaps more people will notice?

Stats measure what they can measure. Their overuse can stop you noticing the things we need.

Tony Abrahams
11 Posted 25/09/2019 at 07:35:48
That's a very good explanation, Paul, and to go a little bit further with regards teaching Calvert-Lewin better movement, then what about Francis Jeffers, who is still on the Everton coaching staff?

I've been watching Everton for nearly 45 years now, and Franny was such a natural talent, possibly only Linekar had better movement and I wonder how much he could teach Calvert-Lewin?

Paul Tran
12 Posted 25/09/2019 at 08:05:16
Tony, sometimes that talent around movement is so inate that some talented players find it hard to impart that skill to others.

The ability to communicate your ideas effectively is so critical in coaching & management, more so in a sport where the players are so well paid.

Look at the Howard's Way trailer, where Reidy says he'd have run through a brick wall for Howard. Notice how Klopp's players are with him, how hard they work. Same with Guardiola. No doubt Klopp & Guardiola crunch the numbers and drill their players senseless, but they get the message across effectively, and that's often the difference between the good and great.

Dean Johnson
13 Posted 25/09/2019 at 08:08:17
X goals, what a load of old bollocks.
Kevin Prytherch
14 Posted 25/09/2019 at 08:35:41
I think one of the most frustrating parts about Calvert-Lewin is when he gets a half chance that he might not be expected to score, the shot is often weak and doesn’t test the keeper. If you look at Lukaku, if he had a half chance it would be drilled low and hard, he might not score it but he would make the keeper work and there would be the possibility of a rebound.

I hope these two give him the confidence to kick on as it was looking like he was feeling the pressure of not scoring and snapping at chances. I still think that he could get 12-15 a year as long as we play to our strengths and the oppositions weakness.

Sam Hoare
15 Posted 25/09/2019 at 08:56:51
Good piece Steve. Funnily enough I was thinking of writing an article on xG to show how we had been slightly unfortunate this season and poor finishing was holding us back.

In terms of Calvert-Lewin, I've always been a fan of his and its no co-incidence he was leading the line during our impressive run at the end of last season. I've always said I don't care how many goals the striker gets so long as the team wins.

He's still young and I think he has alot of the attributes to become a very capable striker (its laughable how people still call him a Championship striker) given how many times he has played in the Premier League). My biggest concern with him is hunger. I think most of the top strikers just had this burning desire to score goals and it is that which often spurned them on to make that optimistic run into the box, to gamble on a defender missing a header or making a mistake.

I don't quite see that hunger in Calvert-Lewin yet. Maybe it's not hunger, maybe its belief or competitiveness or alertness. Perhaps he's too selfless (and that's maybe why Silva likes him). There's just a certain something lacking at the moment and I hope he can find it or learn it because I think having the raw attributes is a very good start but he needs that little bit more if he is to become a mainstay in a team with top 6 aspirations and get the 10-15 goals required to get people off his back.

John McFarlane Snr
16 Posted 25/09/2019 at 09:02:24
Hi Steve, I have an intense dislike of VAR and stats, I believe that the game I grew up watching has changed beyond recognition, and that some spectators are [by studying stats] being sucked into the trap which is changing a sport into a science.
David Pearl
17 Posted 25/09/2019 at 09:26:07
If DCL was in the box more he’d score more goals. He has the wide wingers chasing back to our own box leaving him alone up there having to run the channels and Siggy trying to push close to him leaving a space in midfield.

He got himself a couple goals last night so hopefully that gives him some confidence to demand balls into areas he wants them. As I’ve said a few times perhaps the players need this game against City.

Interesting stats Steve!

Joe McMahon
18 Posted 25/09/2019 at 09:29:13
Personally I'd prefer someone like Ian Wright/ Les Ferdinand working with him rather than Duncan Ferguson. Those guys could finish chances.
Rick Tarleton
19 Posted 25/09/2019 at 11:30:51
I think these stats are interesting and informative. Two other factors seem important: the ability of strikers to read the game so that they get into the right position to receive passes that can lead to strikes and possibly, most important of all, having the players around the strikers who can find them with passes and open up defences.
I for one feel better about DCL for having read this, so thank you, Steve for the article and the research.
Kevin Latham
20 Posted 25/09/2019 at 12:44:00
I’m with John Mc (16) on this I think. Over the last few years we seem to have taken up an obsession with stats, some useful and many not so. And they can prove anything if argued correctly- 78% of stats show that 😉. I accept that I’m old school and probably out of touch with the modern game but I don’t necessarily believe that you need stats to show how good Messi is, only to watch him. I understand the impact that science is having on the beautiful game but I’m not convinced that it makes it any better or more enjoyable to follow
Danny Broderick
21 Posted 25/09/2019 at 12:45:01
I was pleasantly surprised to see the club publish DCL’s stats on twitter after these goals:

100 appearances (of which 56 starts)
20 goals

These stats aren’t as bad as his detractors would have you believe. He’s now 22, so most of these appearances have been made as a young lad playing up front on his own against some of the best defenders in the world.

What I see with DCL is a young lad who is giving it his absolute maximum to succeed, and you can’t ask any more than that. He could have done with a season in the Championship in my opinion - he would have really kicked on by scoring 20-25 goals against Championship opposition. The confidence he would have gained from that would have been enormous, but obviously we as a club have decided not to do that. I put Tom Davies in the same category.

As a striker in this team, even Aguero would be pulling his hair out at the paucity of the service. You get very little from centre mid. On the right, who knows what Coleman is going to do when he goes marauding forward. He doesn’t normally cross it, if he does it’s over hit and floated in. Same with Richarlison, who always cuts in and runs into traffic. Great cross for DCL against Bournemouth, but I can’t recall too many other instances where he whips crosses in for the strikers.

On the left, who knows what Bernard will do when he has the ball? He mainly gives it to Digne or the centre mids - I don’t recall him giving the strikers too many assists. The fly in the ointment is Digne, who is obviously a striker’s dream, whipping cross after cross into the box.

DCL is by no means the finished article, but he has potential. If we can improve the supply, he may get 15 goals this season, which would be a decent return.

Martin Mason
22 Posted 25/09/2019 at 13:06:51
Very good analysis. When I see him I see a very talented footballer not a dud. He could make a beautiful midfield player too.
Roman Sidey
23 Posted 25/09/2019 at 13:26:02
Steve, good analysis, but you use lucky and unlucky to describe some of our results. Can't agree with that. You score expected chances if you hit them well enough. If you have a shot on target that doesn't score, you didn't hit it hard enough in the right spot. That's not luck, it's execution.

Calvert-Lewin's xG stats may paint a certain picture, but what I (and a lot of supporters) see when he plays is a player who is regularly not in the best spot to score, is not as good in the air as some think (someone called him one of the best strikers in the air in the league... please...), and is generally an underwhelming footballer.

His two goals last night against the Owls will hopefully give him some more confidence and hunger going forward, but let's face it; his control for the first goal would have seen a Prem League defender deal with it easily, and his second goal was the type of tap-in that doesn't happen too often outside those cup ties.

As has been mentioned, he has Duncan Ferguson coaching him so it really is no mystery why he's developing very slowly. At 22, almost 23, he's almost running out of time to develop the extra skills he needs to kick on.

Jay Wood

24 Posted 25/09/2019 at 13:30:21
There are some on TW who express their rabid disdain for stats (even though they are given to using themselves to 'prove' a point in their own posts), but I take a Paul Tran @ 10 view on them.

Some stats are definitely helpful and informative, but as Paul says, you should not and cannot rely on statistical evidence alone, but also empirical evidence - that which you can observe with your own eyes.

All praise to Steve Ferns for compiling this, but I must confess - even though it sets out to demonstrate that DCL's goalscoring to chances ratio is not as bad as some claim (a player I like and defend on here) - this kind of statistical data is too dependent on a contrived, possibly even artificial, formula. Nor is it easy for any layperson unfamiliar with it to quickly calculate or interpret.

I know American sports are big on these types of data and ratios, calculated to the n-th decimal point. I fancy there is a little bit of US-influenced creep into the creation of such formulas in English 'soccer'.

In very simple terms, DCL has now scored 20 goals and made 10 assists in 100 appearances for Everton (just 56 of those in the starting XI) in 5181 minutes game time. The ratio of goals to games then is 1 in 5 games. Calculated by minutes played, that improves to 1 in four games.

If you want to go further and calculate his goals scored to minutes played based on just his last two appearances, he scored on the stroke of half-time at Bournemouth then was withdrawn on 71 minutes. 1 goal in 27 minutes, let's say. He scored 2 in 10 minutes last night, so accumulatively, 3 goals in 37 minutes.

At that rate, he HAS to play against City at the weekend. Even if they run riot as they did against Watford and score 8, with DCL's ratios we have a sniff of a draw!

Stats and how you present and interpret them can prove almost anything you want. The empirical evidence is that DCL in scoring his last 3 goals demonstrated he is a prodigious header of the ball, has excellent control and a stonking shot on him, and is capable of good movement to sniff out and finish fox-in-the-box like chances.

More of the same, more frequently, and his goal to game/minutes ratios will continue to improve.

John McFarlane Snr
25 Posted 25/09/2019 at 13:53:26
Hi Kevin [20] as a supporter I don't see the need for stats, I believe I know what contributions players give to the team effort, simply by watching them, stats may well be of use to the coaching staff, but I have no interest in them

I can't imagine what Steve Bloomer would make [of what I deem, the scientific element that is being introduced into the game], having described Everton's approach to football when he said [in the 1920s], "They always manage to serve up football of the highest scientific order, and worship at the shrine of craft and science" I myself would be satisfied if the only science I witnessed was confined to the pitch.

Martin Mason
26 Posted 25/09/2019 at 14:14:52
At least stats give you a quantified objective view. Surely that is better than opinion or in supporting opinion?
Dave Ganley
27 Posted 25/09/2019 at 14:28:18
I'm of the same vein as John Mac to be honest, I cant stand the amount of data produced by football in general, possession, corners, shots, passes completed etc, most of them are just meaningless to me. We had 70% of possession last Saturday and around 16ish shots, means nothing, we got beat and deservedly so.
I don't mean to diminish your efforts though Steve in compiling this as it's good that you are defending DCL in the wake of a lot of negativity. If we need to produce stats then the one stat that would interest me is how many times we have a break on then turn back on ourselves? We talk about the speed of which RS and City break yet when we have an opportunity we don't take that chance and opt for safety first, often to the detriment of safety first as it gets us in trouble by trying to just keep possession. Which brings me on to DCL and lack of goalscoring opportunities. As others point out, he has a dearth of chances per game/season really so it's pretty hard to judge how good/bad he can be. This possession nonsense and keeping the ball at all costs has plagued us since Martinez was with us. If you don't take a risk on the break how are we going to create chances? It has happened too many times with too many players for it to be coincidence. It seems ingrained that we cant break fast so I guess this must come from successive managers. You don't need stats to see that. I get sometimes you need to be patient but it absolutely drives me daft the amount of times we give up promising field position to take the safe option. Turn back on yourself, keep ball and then the opposition has nicely set 2 banks of 4 waiting for us. It's no wonder DCL and others struggle for goals when the whole team rarely takes a chance and breaks quick.
Kieran Kinsella
28 Posted 25/09/2019 at 14:36:40
Data can be counter productive. Remember the long ball was based on data from some retired RAF pilot. Also in the NBA their obsessed with data and high percentage shots. Few years back the USA dream team lost to Puerto Rico who simply dribbled, took three point shots ie just played and the US had no response.
Andrew Dempsey
29 Posted 25/09/2019 at 14:41:41
I don’t know why he’s being used as a hold-up player, his back-to-goal work isn’t great, and anytime he’s involved in build-up play, he looks like an acutely limited player.
He wants the space to run in behind, clearly, and finish instinctively.
Is that space there in most games in the Premier League?
He’s a useful guy to have in our squad, and I really hope he starts banging them in, but, my ‘expected goals’ for Calvert-Lewin is zero in our next twelve games.
Gary Carter
30 Posted 25/09/2019 at 14:44:52
This is all well and good but it doesn’t seem to take into consideration the other attribute vital to a striker other than finishing, getting into space to give yourself the chance to be found with a pass. Calvert-Lewins goal return is over the course of years not a few games
Paul Hewitt
31 Posted 25/09/2019 at 14:47:06
Expected goals. What twaddle. You either score or you don't.
Francis van Lierop
32 Posted 25/09/2019 at 15:00:56
Thanks for explaining the xG Steve.
I only see it on MOTD, the exact meaning was something of a mystery.

I too have faith in DCL.
Like I mentioned on the match thread, I Twittered his debut goal for the England U21 side (02/09/17), against our national youngsters.
A real Everton goal with Ademola Lokkman giving a very good assist.
We all want Dom to put away chances like this.

Kevin Latham
33 Posted 25/09/2019 at 15:02:51
John (25), we could be in a minority here. Stats have their place, but at times are used for the sake of it and can often be used to prove or disprove the same point. Stats would probably show that Bobby Moore won very few headers and had no pace, although he was the greatest defender I ever saw. No disrespect whatsoever to Steve F, whose pieces are always informative and well argued, I guess it just goes to show that we all see football from different perspectives.
Ray Robinson
34 Posted 25/09/2019 at 15:24:59
Our style of play certainly does not help any striker but no amount of stats / data will convince me that DCL, fine player though he can be, is a natural finisher - despite his fine goals last night. He simply isn't emphatic enough, nor have a top striker's instinct to regularly get into those positions that might profit from a chance.

A high percentage of his goals result from headers - which he is good at - and against lower level opposition. A 10 goal a season premier league striker max in my opinion. Might suit the team better if paired with another striker - but most teams don't play that way any more.

Despite his shortcomings, I still like him as a player. We need to work out how to maximise his assets.

John McFarlane Snr
35 Posted 25/09/2019 at 15:45:00
Hi again Kevin, [33] I didn't see Match of The Day, I was on my way home from Greece, [holiday] but I wonder how many goals Manchester City were expected to score. Regarding being in a minority, I feel quite comfortable with this status and I go to each match with an open mind, I hope for a good result rather than expect one, experience has taught me to adopt this attitude, together with a few miserable weekends, I'd hate to see what the stats of those would indicate.
Darren Hind
36 Posted 25/09/2019 at 16:04:08
"this kind of statistical data is too reliant on contrived, possibly even artificial, formula"

A genuine laugh out loud TW moment

Tony Everan
37 Posted 25/09/2019 at 16:09:18
Dom is improving, I think he is stronger and a bit more experienced now.

The pertinent question could be will he continue to improve?

He needs to, he will know that too, but he is still on an upward curve and I don't see why not.

he is young and will thrive on confidence, games like last night should be a massive boost for him. He will be picked as a starter against Man City and Burnley, tough games and an excellent challenge for him to show us more.

I think he is a diamond and needs the fans on side to help him develop.

John Pierce
38 Posted 25/09/2019 at 16:09:58
Martin, statistics are certainly qualified but rarely objective. Every person that uses them has an agenda to help them illuminate their point, just as much as people who just use an argument to persuade people.

Statistics get you in the door, they put you in the conversation.
After that it’s down to your eye and what see. But seldom are the all statistics used to give a full picture.

PT. I’m minded of how receptive these players are to Silva with your comments. Coaches,
I believe should always start with buy in, often that can be created by the players themselves. One simple, core idea around which they can unite. Sliva’s methods have to be linked to that idea so the players can easily relate.
My question would be with his heavy detail and intense style, are the players bought in?

Joe Corgan
39 Posted 25/09/2019 at 16:17:23
A long article summed up in the last paragraph.

DCL takes his chances pretty often. Problem is, he often in the position to create or take chances. As such, the statistics don’t mean much.

Kieran Kinsella
40 Posted 25/09/2019 at 16:26:01
I personally hate the pass completions stat. It puts all blame on the passer. Visionary midfielders look like ass clowns when their teammates aren’t on the same wavelength
Christy Ring
41 Posted 25/09/2019 at 16:51:06
Regardless of stats, the service DCL is getting, is scarce to say the least. His work rate and running the channels, is excellent, and being isolated upfront, makes scoring a lot harder, but give him the service, as he showed last night, he will score, could of had four last night.
John Pierce
42 Posted 25/09/2019 at 16:54:54
Kieran, so true.

Peter Beardsley would have been eviscerated. He was light years ahead of that 90s team. I cried every time he put the ball in a perfect spot and not one of those lads on the receiving end had a clue.

Mike Gaynes
43 Posted 25/09/2019 at 16:58:00
John P, just wanted you to know I did respond to your Webb comment... not sure why my post was deleted, but I didn't ignore you!
Steve Brown
44 Posted 25/09/2019 at 17:11:02
" empirical evidence - that which you can observe with your own eyes." That makes no sense at all, Jay.

Unconscious biases, blindspots, filters all mean that what you observe is of itself neither statistically reliable or valid - and certainly not 'empirical'. That is why observations are supported by tests (ability/situational/personality), that are based on norm groups using yes you guessed it, stastical data that demonstrates a correlation coefficient.

Do we think the Everton staff assess DCL's performance by debating whether 'he could hit a cow's arse with a banjo' or by watching back the tape of the match and seeing if their player data supports or contradicts what they interpret? Including xG.

Jay Wood

45 Posted 25/09/2019 at 17:18:16
Steve @ 44.

"empirical evidence - that which you can observe with your own eyes. That makes no sense at all, Jay."

Not familiar with different types of evidence, Steve?

He is the Cambridge University Dictionary definition of 'empirical':

"based on what is experienced or seen rather than on theory".

But then, what do they know? They've only been publishing since the year 1584.

Winston Williamson
47 Posted 25/09/2019 at 18:22:29
I only like statistics when they back up my argument. Otherwise, I hate them!

Seriously though, I like these stats Steve F. Thanks for posting. Very interesting, as they back up my own opinion of Calvert-Lewin. 😁

Andy Crooks
48 Posted 25/09/2019 at 19:33:21
I like this article, Steve. Well argued and researched. I think, and have thought for some time, that Dominic will be a top player. Those two goals will do him a power of good.

Strangely, the pieces on here that I like are the opposite of what I post. I like the historical stuff, Rob, John McFarlane, Dave Abrahams and others. I like tactical analysis (Steve) and transfer stuff (Sam Hoare).

I guess that none of the above type their pieces so hard that their fingers ache, nor, I suspect, do they foam at the mouth while posting their articles. I will try to learn from them.

John Pierce
49 Posted 25/09/2019 at 19:47:02

Was the response so controversial, expletive laden chat? 😳.

Shame I’d have loved it.

Mike Gaynes
50 Posted 25/09/2019 at 19:52:58
Nah, JP, no such fun... just pointed out that Webb 'fessed up to his poor behavior in the OBE incident and that his colleagues apparently forgave him, since they worked together on more big games and came to his final game.
Sondre Haga
51 Posted 25/09/2019 at 19:59:01
The way we play, our striker is very isolated. We don't play through the channels at all. Our attacks are always up the wings and crosses in to an isolated striker who is up against at least two defenders. Our problem is not our striker, but the system. Even Aguero would struggle to score 15+ for us.
Eddie Dunn
52 Posted 25/09/2019 at 20:28:44
Calvert-Lewin is improving and the two goals as well as the one at Bournemouth are bound to boost his confidence.

He will become/is already a decent striker. On his finishing ability, I recall Finch Farm video from about 18 months ago when he, Rooney and Davey Klaassen did a few set routines including some dummy defenders. The outcome was Klaassen and Rooney were far more clinical than Domenic. In fact, it was a little surprising to see just how poor Domenic's touch and finishing was.

I think he is better now but it was an insight into the lad's skills at that time.

His major problem is being expected to do so much donkey work on his own. He is a superb athlete but often has to work on his own with little support.

Doing the high press and the target man as well as running the channels. He is a model pro and will have a good career, but I think he is having to do too much and needs someone nearer to him.

Stan Schofield
53 Posted 25/09/2019 at 20:32:56
John@16: I agree, apart from replacing 'science' with 'pseudo-science'.

Steve's analysis is interesting, but a problem with indices like xG is that they can be interpreted according to personal taste. Although football is a simple game, the formulation of conclusions from specific pieces of data tends to be flawed because the complex nature of how a player fits into the overall setup of the team is difficult or impossible to capture using numbers.

A simple example was Lukaku, who scored loads of goals but in a way that incited much disagreement on ToffeeWeb about his overall contribution to the team. Calvert-Lewin is at the other end of the 'goal spectrum' from Lukaku, but incites similarly intense debate.

John McFarlane Snr
54 Posted 25/09/2019 at 21:57:55
Hi Stan [53],

I readily admit to being a bit of a dinosaur, but I don't need to know what percentage of possession Everton have enjoyed, or distances players cover etc, the only statistic that matters to me is how many goals we have scored in relation to our opponents. I also believe that because players and match officials are human mistakes will inevitably be made, this is the reason we attend matches, the uncertainty is what attracts us.

As a lover of good football I am just as likely to applaud the play of the opposition, which sometimes leads to nearby fans in the Park End giving me funny looks. An example I often use is, if Calvert-Lewin drives a 20-yarder into goal, the reaction is, "No goalie in the world would stop that" whereas if the opposition centre forward scores exactly the same type of goal, Deane should have blocked the shot, Pickford was too far off his line, to me that's a blinkered attitude, and I'm afraid that at the age of 81 I'm too set in my ways to change my views.

Stan Schofield
55 Posted 25/09/2019 at 22:28:00
John, I think what you've said expresses reality. Analysis can be interesting, and I've learned a fair bit from Steve's analyses of the way Silva sets up Everton. However, I do think there are limits to analysis, with most things not being amenable to it in a realistic way.

With any team, you only need to lose or gain one player to change fortunes dramatically, or the manager to make one tactical change that upsets or improves how the team gels. Although a simple game, like other simple games (like chess, for example), there are so many complex possibilities that can 'hinge on a sixpence', that analysis can fail to capture the idea of a system being more than simply the sum of its parts.

It doesn't look to me like you need to change your views at all.

Roman Sidey
56 Posted 26/09/2019 at 08:16:54
John @54, I'm very similar to you when at any live match. I recently retired from rugby (four times) and in the last five or so seasons I would even be that guy on the field - lying at the bottom of a ruck telling the guy who just clobbered me how good his tackle was.

In my coed rec 7-aside football team I would always tell the opposition goalie if they'd made a good save, or even congratulate an opposition striker on a well-taken goal. Took my team mates a while to understand what it was all about.

My issue is, when I'm watching on TV, perspective is lost and everyone on the field is an idiot.

Derek Taylor
57 Posted 26/09/2019 at 13:56:34
Whoever 'converted DCL into a striker' didn't make much of a job of it, did they?

Has he ever been tried in midfield whilst at Everton ? He's a grafter and although we've got dozens of them, worth the experiment.

John McFarlane Snr
58 Posted 26/09/2019 at 14:12:40
Hi Roman [56] I'm sure that there are many more like you and I, and I believe that Harry Catterick got it wrong when he described Brian Labone as 'The last of the Corinthians.' I know it was a statement made in recognition of Labone's sportsmanship, but even the most passionate supporter of any team, must appreciate good football when they witness it, and praise it [even though that praise may be given grudgingly].
Michael Lynch
59 Posted 26/09/2019 at 14:21:03
Stan @53 - I would agree with that. And you're right, DCL is almost the anti-Lukaku. Both are frustrating unless you accept that their strong-points outweigh their negatives, and that their strengths can be complemented by their team-mates. I don't bother much with statistics, except goals scored and goals conceded by the team, and points won by the team, but I do go to every home game. I like DCL, I can see what he does and what he doesn't do. Played with the right kind of footballers alongside him, he's an asset to the team. However, if the mix doesn't work - and right now it doesn't seem to - then he's a luxury player; a stiker who doesn't strike very often. If perhaps he was played with a natural striker (or two) alongside him, and not expected to be the main goalscorer, then his value to the team might become more apparent.
Steve Ferns
60 Posted 26/09/2019 at 15:16:54
Please can we stop referring to Calvert-Lewin as a converted midfielder. The lad has only ever played professionally at the top end of the pitch, that is on the wing or as centre-forward. Except for one game when the genius that is Ronald Koeman thought that he would make a good right back.

This includes his time at Stalybridge Celtic and Northampton Town on loan and for Sheff United. He may have played a few games in midfield for a youth side, but it was a youth side. Ross Barkley played centre-half for our youth side, but you couldn't call him a converted centre-back. Jack Rodwell always played centre-back for our youth side. Would you also believe that when we last won the youth cup, our right winger, wearing number 7, and getting crosses in, was a certain Anthony Hibbert. It doesn't matter where you played as a kid, Hibbo was no winger and just because he played there as a kid didn't mean he was an attacking full-back with defensive frailties.

Calvert-Lewin is a striker. There's nothing about his game that would make me want to slot him into midfield. He's not a converted midfielder. He is a forward, preferably a central one.

Don Alexander
61 Posted 26/09/2019 at 15:46:10
I'm in "the dinosaur" contingent on stats. With us, the fact is that only very occasionally do we get possession, flow forwards in numbers, and create a proper chance or goal (and that must do the heads in of ANY of our centre-forwards). Instead our team seems to have insufficient belief in themselves to play the game in the most attacking way, being seemingly content instead to retain possession even when it means stymying our own goal-threat. The snag always comes though when we don't retain possession due to a poor pass of some alert defending from the opponent, him generally having been given time to intercede because of our reluctance to pour forwards.

To me (and others) it seems comparatively straight-forward this football lark. Take a leaf out of rugby league Marco, do your best to immediately bust through their defence EVERY TIME you have possession and, when it gets desperate (6th tackle analogy folks - see Youtube our US friends), still hoick some sort of pass to somebody who's been ordered to do what their 'keeper least wants to know about.

James Stewart
62 Posted 26/09/2019 at 16:06:31
Some stats can be useful but personally I find the xG stats utter nonsense.
Jay Harris
63 Posted 26/09/2019 at 19:24:03
Im like Sir John, A bit of a dinosaur.

The only statistics that matter to me are how many goals he scores and how many games we win and no matter how you dress that up neither is satisfacory.

Steve, I am not anti DCL, in fact tthe lad is a great workhorse and wins a lot of balls in the air but throughout his career he has never been a prolific goalscorer.

Now he may and hopefully will score goals but he does not have the instincts of an Aguerro, Vardy nor a Kane and if we are to become a force again that is what we need.

Dave Lynch
64 Posted 26/09/2019 at 19:41:01
Yep... The only stat that matters is how often he hits the back of the net.

He could stand still for 89 and a 1/2 minutes for all I care, but if he scored a goal every other game i'd forgive him.

Work rate with no gaols return is not acceptable for a striker.

John McFarlane Snr
65 Posted 26/09/2019 at 20:00:05
Hi Jay [63] as I have stated in an earlier post, stats may play an important part in a coach's preparation for a match, but I can't imagine having a meaningful discussion in the pub over how many touches player X had or how many kilometres he ran.

Regarding individual players, like any other fan I have my favourites and some I'm not so keen on, but I don't believe in slating any player publicly. I have also expressed the opinion that anyone who plays for the team that sits at the bottom of what I still call the 4th Division, can play football better than most of the spectators, and to hear some of the things directed towards international players I consider unacceptable.

I will however confess to saying, that in the 70 years of watching Everton, Ross Barkley is the most frustrating player I have seen in an Everton shirt, beating Gary Jones, Peter Beagrie, and James McFadden to that honour, but even then I did not subject them to some of the comments spoken or written by some posters.

Steve Ferns
66 Posted 26/09/2019 at 20:05:35
John, no one discusses how many touches a player had. The point of the article was how you can use stats to help you understand the game better. Calvert-Lewin doesn’t score enough goals, so it’s assumed he cannot finish. The statistics do not back that up. So it’s something else. The statistics show he doesn’t shoot enough and he doesn’t get enough chances.

This merely quantifies what your eyes show you. It’s not to replace what you see but to help you understand what your eyes are telling you.

As for why Calvert-Lewin does not get enough chances, then your eyes can tell you whether it’s the service, his movement, his isolation or a combination of these or indeed another factor.

Tony Hill
67 Posted 26/09/2019 at 20:11:30
Despite what he recently claimed, I think he lost confidence over a period of time. He may be coming out of that. He strikes me as one of those players who could suddenly click, and exceed expectations, when people have decided on a particular view of him.
Steve Ferns
68 Posted 26/09/2019 at 20:21:31
Tony, you are spot on. In an interview with FourFourTwo, he discussed self-doubt. You can project confidence even if you don't feel it. Many of us do it everyday in our own professional lives.
John McFarlane Snr
69 Posted 26/09/2019 at 20:31:15
Hi Steve [66],

I believe there's been a misunderstanding, I never stated that your article mentioned how many touches a player has. I was addressing the use of stats in a broader manner.

To clarify the issue, in various guises (TV, newspapers etc) these sort of stats are quite prominent, it's obvious that you place more importance on your stats than I do. I am in no way critical of your article, you approach football in a different way to me, but if we can both get some enjoyment from our involvement, then there's no harm done.

Brian Harrison
70 Posted 26/09/2019 at 21:30:28

While stats can give an indication of things, it can't be an absolute, and as you say in your last paragraph in post 66 which is most relevant, whether it's his movement or service or isolation which cant be covered by stats. Is it his lack of movement that means he doesn't sometimes get into positions that may be a Vardy or Kane or an Aguerro would have done that can't be assessed.

So when its considered chances he had to score it doesn't and can't take into account if he had taken up different positions he would have had many more chances than he has.

So I think, when looking at stats, there are too many factors which can't be assessed to give an accurate picture.

Kevin Latham
71 Posted 26/09/2019 at 22:34:31
Would it be fair to say that each of us has our own take on stats and all of these views have their own merit?

For some of us, like myself, they're incidental to what our eyes tell us when watching the game, whereas for others they have far more significance. Personally, I don't feel that stats help me understand or make more sense of what I'm seeing.

It's certainly not my intent to come across as a smart arse there, I just think that in general it's an age thing: in my case 63, and I like some other posters (judging from some earlier comments) tend to put more emphasis on what I see rather than what stats say or don't say.

If stats are your thing great; equally great if your thing is observation. If we all saw the game the same way then each thread would have loads of posts saying ‘I agree with the first post.' All we do is put our views out there and, thank God, there are lots of different views to kick about and discuss.

Who is to say who's right and who's wrong? (Doubtless someone will tell me now! 😄) Isn't this what makes the site so vibrant and fun after all?

Drew O'Neall
72 Posted 26/09/2019 at 23:14:49
Here's an idea; during the week when they're all on the training field, the manager tells Coleman, Richarlison, Digne et al, where to cross the ball in certain situations. Then he tells Dominic where to be in those situations. If the ball's not there, the crosser gets a rocket; if Dom's not there, he gets a rocket.

I don't see anyone getting a rocket and I don't see any consistency of delivery location so perhaps the manager needs a rocket.

Tom Bowers
73 Posted 26/09/2019 at 23:29:19
Stats don't mean much today except the one that shows you scored one more than the opposition on any given day. I think that the sports broadcasters in the UK have become too much like the Americans for spouting all kinds of useless numbers during a match.

The game has become consumed with all kinds of strategies but the common theme is keeping possession which becomes meaningless if having 75% possession and then lose the game.

Having quick players who high press like RS is the best strategy as they always keep the opposition on the back foot and usually score early to boot making it doubly difficult for the opposition to get back in the game.

Regarding Calvert-Lewin, I think he is performing no worse than any of the other attacking players this season and we all would like to see a big improvement from all of them. Five goals in six games (3 of those in one game) is abysmal considering the teams they have played.

Hard to see them getting any joy against Man City unless there is a really big improvement.

Roman Sidey
74 Posted 26/09/2019 at 23:56:45
John, if you want to see the ultimate sportsmanship in modern sport, have a look at this quick clip:


Two professional Aussie Rules players high fiving after one has kicked an absolute gem of a goal. And the player on the defending team is a first year player.

Chris Cole
75 Posted 26/09/2019 at 23:57:20
Thanks for the article Steve. What I take from it is that we aren't creating many chances as a team. Very disappointing, given the kind start to the season we were granted by the fixture list.

On the general stats debate, I prefer to trust my own eyes over stats for players I watch every week but stats are useful for players I don't watch all the time (prospective signings, fantasy football etc).

Re Calvert-Lewin: he's our best striker, it's not his fault the club spent big money on a raw talent rather than a proven one who might have replaced him. I hope everyone gets behind him.

Confidence is massive, especially for goalscorers – Calvert-Lewin scored against Bournemouth and was then dropped for the next match v Sheff Utd – that can't have done much for the lad's confidence! Why do managers feel the need to over-complicate things? If your striker is scoring then he's starting.

Tom Bowers
76 Posted 27/09/2019 at 01:46:31
Silva's performance will be under severe scrutiny over the next 3 or 4 games as these results and goal scoring is totally inexcusable.
Michael Kenrick
77 Posted 27/09/2019 at 03:20:21

Could you argue that dropping Calvert-Lewin for the Sheffield Utd match was ultimately beneficial in that he romped away with two quick goals when recalled against Sheffield Wednesday?

According to the collective wisdom of TW posters, this now means he is choc-full of confidence, having scored 3 in his last 2 starts. I expect him to score 4 when he starts against Man City.

James Hughes
78 Posted 27/09/2019 at 08:17:06
Michael I am loving your backing for the lad and four goals against Citteh will do me fine. just as long as they don't score five!.

I am too dense to follow goals -xG formula as it seems a bit of a spurious correlation... I do know my phone is 4G, so will leave it there. Have a good day fellow blues
Trevor Peers
79 Posted 27/09/2019 at 08:31:09
The stats may prove DCL isn't getting enough chances, but surely that's down to Silva's tactics, there's no guarantee he would of took them anyway, going by his past form in the premiership.

We definitely missed a trick in not signing a decent striker in the summer. It should of been our top priority and is the main reason for our bad start, it would of given the club a huge lift especially with the easy start we had, we could of been in a really good position in the league. Hopefully B&S will put that right in January.

Ian Hollingworth
80 Posted 27/09/2019 at 08:48:18
The only stats that matter are
Last trophy win 1995
Last league title 1987
Last European trophy 1985

I hope our latest crop of over hyped and over paid players get to see the new Howard Kendall movie as I saw more passion in the movie trailer than from the current team on match days

Dave Abrahams
81 Posted 27/09/2019 at 08:58:28
Michael (77), if Dominic scores four against City you’ll highlight the two sitters he missed.
Chris Cole
82 Posted 27/09/2019 at 09:17:15
If he starts, more like.
I'll argue that players play better when they feel they're not playing for their place every single game and when there's a belief that a good performance might actually keep them in the team for the next match, six days later.
DCL scored his only good chance (keeper always favourite for the through ball), but maybe Marco told him that we're prioritising the Carabao over the league.
0 points from 2 games against newly-promoted teams...

Alexander Murphy
83 Posted 27/09/2019 at 09:32:35
DCL simply does not get presented with sufficient goal scoring opportunities to deliver a return much higher than he achieves.

We've just signed a scorching hot property in Moise Kean, but to date he looks no more likely to bag 15-20 this season than DCL.

That says plainly to Me that it's not the players, it's the system.

Sam Hoare
84 Posted 27/09/2019 at 09:41:32
There can be no doubt that we are not creating enough chances.

Though that does not necessarily mean that the responsibility of the striker.

Some strikers create their own chances; Lukaku was top class at this. He had the capacity to get the ball at the edge of the box and use his strength and size to run into the box and get a shot away. Quite a few of his goals came from almost nothing.

Other strikers enable the creation of chances with the intelligence and timing of their runs and excellent positioning. Van Nistelrooy was maybe the king of this; always in the right place and making good runs.

At the moment i'm not sure any of our strikers fall into these categories. Kean in time I think could become the former as he seems to have good dribbling skills and the ability to beat a man. DCL could become the latter; his movement is improving though I think his anticipation has a way to go yet.

Liam Reilly
85 Posted 27/09/2019 at 10:24:12
Brilliant article from Tim Cahill on the art of Heading on the Sky Sports site:

Why don't they bring him in to coach DCL and Kean on movement in and around the box? Surely it's a no brainier - just don't get it.

Steve Ferns
86 Posted 27/09/2019 at 10:43:04
Because he has not got his badges Liam. He is doing the basic ones at the moment with the Welsh FA. Hopefully, after he's got them we can get him into the youth setup. But some may argue that we've got too many ex-players. It also depends on where he wants to live. He might want to be back in Australia.
Liam Reilly
87 Posted 27/09/2019 at 11:18:36
I could be wrong Steve, but thought he could still work whilst he was studying for his badges. Didn't Southgate take over at (was it) Boro without all of his badges? Not sure if he had them all when the got the England job either.

Regardless of badges, Cahill knows how to find space in the box and was a great header of the ball. Out of all the ex players we have at the club; he's one I'd welcome.

John McFarlane Snr
88 Posted 27/09/2019 at 11:22:26
Hi Steve [86] I thought you may have responded to my post [69] where I clarified the comments I made regarding the use of stats. I was in no way criticising your use of stats, I suppose it's a case of 'One man's meat, is another man's poison'.

I, [rightly or wrongly] assess the player/team performances on what I see, and I don't feel that I need stats to tell me if a player is performing well or otherwise. I rely on the experience I have gained over the years, and I don't take into consideration the fact that a glaring miss can be totally dismissed, because the player concerned averages a goal every other game, [a miss is a miss]

I know that you enjoy discussing tactics and formations, whereas I just see 11 players competing against 11 players, and derive enjoyment or disappointment from the experience, but as I have hinted 'each to his own'.

Paul Tran
89 Posted 27/09/2019 at 11:48:32
Steve #86, I'd argue that there are too many ex-players at the club. How many of them have played in World Cups, how many have shown anything like the spirit and infectious will to win that Cahill has? I'd have him in like a shot. Could he not come in in an 'advisory' capacity until he gets his vadges? The question is, do Everton actually want someone like that on the coaching staff?
Eric Myles
90 Posted 27/09/2019 at 12:14:44
Aren't statistics a poor 3rd after lies and damn lies in an argument?
Stephen Davies
91 Posted 27/09/2019 at 13:48:55
Paul #89
Absolutely correct.
Weve been a bit of a safety net for ex staff when we should be employing innovative and positive thinking coaches ( I do hope Cahill is in someway involved in this club in the future)
Tony McNulty
92 Posted 27/09/2019 at 13:51:14
Steve (OP) Well done for pulling this information together. It illustrates why TW is always worth a look.

Eric (90) I would argue that statistics can be useful as a catalyst for triggering debate and helping to think matters through. And that is exactly what has happened in this thread.

Gordon Crawford
93 Posted 27/09/2019 at 13:54:27
If you hold the left bumper and play a one two with DCL then he should make more runs into the box, I t’s the same on the PlayStation 4.

In all seriousness I wish it was as easy as this. The lad just doesn’t make enough runs in the box and when he does he’s usually late.
I agree with Steve that people should stop referring to him as a midfielder who gets to play up front.

Steve Ferns
94 Posted 27/09/2019 at 14:01:33
John, no offence was taken. Statistics are only going to keep coming more and more into the game and analysis (and that’s just for the TV viewer). Meanwhile the next innovation in statistics is measuring the quality of passing and the use of space. So says Duncan Alexander of Opta, the official statistics partner of the PL.

I’d also have Cahill in like a shot. But look outside at the moment. Does the Australian really want to live with this miserable weather or does he want to where the sun always shines (well kind of)?

I think any ex pro can make a decent assistant coach. I think most of us could too. It’s not hard. Whether Tim could be a lead coach, head coach or manager is a different story, but one step at a time.

Dave Abrahams
95 Posted 27/09/2019 at 17:01:36
Steve (94), you don't have to look outside, Tim follows the money, have a look at his career, England, very ambitious, nothing at all wrong with that, China, India, Australia, Samoua (sic)America, back to England, an agency in Australia one in Dubai, an academy in Australia, on to tv as a pundit.

A coach's job might appeal to him, the wages wouldn't and it would be a toss-up if he made a good coach, we need someone who's proved he is a good coach and motivator, like a young Brian Kidd at Man Utd and Man City.

Paul Tran
96 Posted 27/09/2019 at 19:08:19
Nowt wrong with a sportsman following the money after his playing days have finished, Dave. He had a fabulous mindset as a player and his comments about our play are generally on the money.

You and Steve are right, he may not want to work with us. He might not be that good a coach. But the one thing missing from our club is mental strength and mindset. I'd be appalled if the club wasn't asking him.

Dave Abrahams
97 Posted 27/09/2019 at 19:21:27
Paul (#96), I did say early in that post ‘ nothing wrong with ambition' I think making money comes under that, and that seems to be his aim in life and coaching wouldn't pay what Tim is used to.
Jerome Shields
98 Posted 27/09/2019 at 22:52:32
Calvert-Lewin is a good forward. If he was in the Championship he would be top scorer. Definitely of Premier League standard.

In Silva's system where Calvert-Lewin leads the high press, he is the best we have. Silva's system means he is dependent on those around him.

That's where his problems lie. As Mike has said pass completion in the final third is a problem, has been for sometime. Only rest bite was at the end last season.

Movement and passing in the midfield is not fast enough, meaning that runs are too early and players are not available

Predominant wing play and taking the easy wing option, rather than central attack, means there are fewer opportunities of creating chances to run on to, or to do anticipatory runs. The crosses now are predictable and easily defended against.

The other factor is players going missing Sigurdsson, Walcott and Tosun, of course does not help either.

The only weàkness I see is in the ability to turn and beat his marker, but Silva does not appear to encourage this

These great stats seem to me to point to these weaknesses and recurring themes

Paul Jones
99 Posted 27/09/2019 at 23:51:35
Stephen @91...

Weve been a bit of a safety net for ex-staff when we should be employing innovative and positive thinking coaches. (I do hope Cahill is in someway involved in this club in the future.)

Your post contradicts itself in the space of one sentence. No room for sentiment or unfounded hope. We need to be ruthless on and off the pitch!

Paul Birmingham
100 Posted 28/09/2019 at 00:08:38
If Everton called Tony Cottee, he would, arrive on barefoot. But he's got more to offer mentally in terms of sports psychology than anyone at Finch Farm.

Cottee lived the cause on and off the pitch.He was Blue Nose, and still is. That's my view as a biased TC supporter, from past to eternity, and now.

Paul Tran
101 Posted 28/09/2019 at 05:03:00
Fair enough, Dave. It's a matter of how much he wants it, isn't it? But I hope we're asking!

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