Liverpool have played just ten games (all competitions) in the 2021-22 season so far. It would be early to take anything of major significance from Liverpool statistical analysis. But one can surely analyse some meaningful insights from the past 2 seasons.
As per FBRef, Liverpool have the most expected goals, either with or without penalties, and they have had the most shots on target too.
Liverpool’s statistical analysis also highlights that the xG difference is the second-best in the division.
Liverpool’s expected goals against is a little high at 1.15 per 90 minutes and ranked joint-eighth in the Premier League. Only Manchester City and Brighton have faced fewer shots on target at the back end of the pitch.
Before moving into the concern, let’s understand Post-Shot expected goal
The concern begins, when we combine expected goals and shots on target, then the issue comes to light for Liverpool.
Post-shot expected goal data has a lot of importance in a pairing of the two statistics. It shows the value and quality of an attempt at the goal.
How likely the opposing goalkeeper is to save the shot? If it’s blocked or off-target then its post-shot value is zero.
This helps us in understanding two things. In attack, we can get an idea regarding the finishing quality of a team. At the back, is a team making it harder for their opponents to make the most of their opportunities?
The concern related to Liverpool Statistical Analysis
Liverpool in the 2017/18 season, expected goals in the league was a total of 306, while they have allowed 156.7, which gives them a difference of 149.3 xG.
Liverpool’s post-shot numbers for each end of the field, we see its 324.7 and 148.6 respectively, meaning their difference on this front is 26.8 better than it is on the standard expected goals.
This means they have added value with their shooting and diminished their opponents with their defending.
In 2017/18, they added a total of 3.3 expected goals with post-shot efforts in attack and defence. With these statistics, the Reds finished the season on the fourth position.
This figure escalated to 13.0 the following year, as they collected 97 points and finished second in the 2018/19 season.
And moved again to 18.9 when they won the league in 2019/20.
In the 2020/19 season, the Reds finishing went downwards from 72.6 expected goals to become 69.2 in the post-shot model. On the other side, opposition sides collectively added 2.7 xG.
The return of Van Dijk and Joel Matip from long-term injuries ensured that opponents have lost value on their xG in 2021/22. In attack, the post-shot xG difference is 2.3 lesser than the regular expected goals after seven games in the Premier League.
After 38 matches and it would end up at minus 12.5, which would be the fourth-worst figure in the five seasons the data covers.
Liverpool are challenging for the League title this season, they definitely need to improve their post-shot numbers. With a number of high-calibre players in the squad, it is expected to overcome deficiencies.