Very few of us have got time to watch a lot of European football, but a lot of us want to keep up with what’s going on there. (Every Team Needs A) Ron’s round-up will take you through every game, giving you everything you need to know quicker than the time it would take to watch a highlight reel of all these games. [I’ve only done Friday and Saturday games because the idea just could not wait (and would have required double the work)]
Key: ‘Deep’ = Completed passes into the final third; ‘Set-ups’ = shot assists completed into the final third in the direction of the Danger Zone (central strip of the box); ‘SoT’ = shots on target; 1H/2H = first half/second half
Granada vs Real Madrid
Though the overall shot count makes it seem as though Granada were competitive, 7 of their 13 came from outside the area, chasing the game all the way after being 3-0 down within half an hour. They had territory in Madrid’s half, but there’s also a lot of backwards Granada passes around the edge of the final third, indicating an inability to break through the defence.
Sevilla vs Real Sociedad
Although Sociedad are doing well this season, Sevilla drawing at home is surprising, particularly given that they completed 14 passes in the opposition penalty area versus Real Sociedad’s 2. How they weren’t able to turn this advanced possession into more shots is a mystery.
Barcelona vs Villarreal
Nothing needs to be said. Barca dominated and scored at even intervals throughout the match. They didn’t let up.
Atletico Madrid vs Eibar
Despite Atletico’s apparent shot dominance, they took 7 of their 10 second half shots from outside the area, clearly desperate for a goal – which eventually came. The passing and shot on target stats suggest Eibar were in this, but Atleti scored from 20 yards and edged it.
Sporting Gijon vs Las Palmas
Sporting Gijon made more of their possession in every way – advanced possession, creating chances, and scoring them.
Bayern Munich vs Darmstadt
While Bayern looked to have dominated this game on the shot stats, the optimal shot* count stood at just 4-2, perhaps explaining their lack of goals. Dominant possession-wise, although that’s to be expected against Darmstadt – they made 38 of their 45 tackles and interceptions in their own half. They missed a penalty in the 84th minute, however, sparing Bayern’s blushes.
*[a concept developed by Julien Assuncao here, taking open play, footed shots inside the box]
Ingolstadt vs Bayer Leverkusen
Leverkusen’s underperformance continues apace with a disappointing draw against Ingolstadt. Of their 6 shots on target, 3 were from outside the box and a further 2 were headers. It doesn’t bode particularly well.
Koln vs Werder Bremen
Not much needs to be said. Koln scored early goals and stopped trying to score in the second half. 7 goals from 13 shots on target makes it a hectic old game (on average, conversion rate of shots on target is around 33%).
Dortmund vs Hoffenheim
Dortmund missed a penalty in the 14th minute and going 2-0 up that early could have changed the face of the game from the fairly even looking result that we got. It should be noted that although the possession split was 42%-58%, Dortmund had the lion’s share of territory at 60%-40%.
Borussia Mönchengladbach vs Augsburg
An astonishing 11 of Gladbach’s 18 shots were taken from outside the box, 7 of which were in the second half as they were chasing the game. The goal came at the death, unfortunately for Augsburg who had been far more efficient, or direct, in their possession.
Frankfurt vs Wolfsburg
It looks an even, if not particularly exciting, game. Wolfsburg were fortunate to score 2 from their chances, but they did edge the optimal shots count* 2-4.
Hertha Berlin vs Leipzig
Leipzig made the most of their time on the ball. Created effective chances. Not much else to report.
Juventus vs Torino
That Juventus only just managed to come out of this match with a draw, after playing for more than a third of it against 10 men, perhaps signals a bad day at the office. 9 of their 22 shots were outside the box, but Torino did well to block 7 (split 3-4 between the halves). Some of the unlocking talent must have struggled, because there were an awful lot of high backwards passes in the second half.
Napoli vs Cagliari
28 shots! 13 of these were outside the box though, and the optimal shot count of 11-5 makes the tie seem a little more even than either of the shot metrics on the box score. A pretty dominant performance though, in every area.