Friday, 18 October 2013

West Ham United vs Manchester City

Saturday 19th October
Boleyn Ground

West Ham United vs Manchester City

Nothing beats a Saturday that West Ham are playing.

Despite the fact that this has been one of the most enjoyable international breaks in recent memory, I've still been pining for West Ham. Unlike the last international break, there has been a sense of optimism among West Ham fans. We've all been able to enjoy watching and re-watching the incredible 3-0 victory against Spurs a fortnight ago, but a new challenge now presents itself.

Manchester City are chockablock with quality. Pound for pound, they are arguably the best squad in the division. But there is hope. City haven't managed a victory on their travels this season.

We know we can upset the big boys, so why can't we beat them?

Well, if we want to beat them, we'll need to be on our guard all over the pitch. City are renowned for their firepower, with plenty chipping in with goals, and a massive array of striking potency.

The Citizens have already racked up a massive 17 goals in their opening seven Premier League fixtures - shared out among six of their attacking talents.

Although West Ham have managed to keep four clean sheets from our opening seven games, we have allowed the opposition shots on goal. So far, Jussi Jaaskelainen is having to deal with 3.14 shots on target per game, making 2.43 saves per game.

To date, 23% of shots on target conceded by West Ham have resulted in goals conceded. City have managed 43 shots on target so far - 6.14 per game - and have converted 40% of these into goals. The difference for West Ham in this game will be that, when we do concede chances, the City players are far more likely to take those opportunities than any of our opponents so far this season.

The image below shows City's goals this season. (Red = Own Goal)

The other way in which City represent something of a unique challenge, is the distribution of their goals. Despite possessing some of the best strikers in world football, they don't have any one 'main' striker - a man you'd back to scored 20 goals, or a certainty to be their main goalscorer.

Last season, their 66 league goals were shared out between 15 different goalscorers, and just three of their squad managed double figures. In fact, 41% of City's goals last season (27) were scored by defenders or midfielders (58% (33) by strikers, and one own goal).

This distribution shows that every player in the City side is capable of troubling the scoresheet if allowed. We will need to be on top of our game to stop them getting their shots away, and scoring goals.

Although City are strong all over the field, they still have some stand out players. For almost anyone watching City in the couple of years, the real heartbeat to their side is Yaya Touré.

The former Barcelona midfielder is as close to the complete midfielder as you will see in the game today. In 7 league appearances this season, he's already scored four goals, created nine chances, won eleven tackles, and has an amazing passing accuracy of 91% - he's misplaced just 46 passes out of his attempted 544.

And it his passing that is the key to Manchester City.

Below is an image of Touré's attempted passes against Aston Villa. Despite the fact that City lost the game, Touré managed an incredible 95% passing accuracy.

However, what you can see from that image, is that Villa managed to keep Touré at an arms length. They did this by defending deep, and keeping bodies back.

If you look at their average positioning (below) you can see that Villa kept three players very deep and central to combat City's narrow attacking style. That congestion is what stopped the likes of Touré from playing into the danger zone, and resulted in a Villa win.

If West Ham can keep City at bay, we will have a very good chance of winning this game. Despite his good performances for England in the last week, Joe Hart has been in shaky form for Manchester City for some time now.

Last season, Hart made six errors leading to shots on his goal, with five of those leading to goals conceded. Only Wigan's Ali Al-Habsi made more errors leading to goals than the England goalkeeper last season.

And this shaky form as continued this year. In seven Premier League games, Hart has already made two errors leading to goals - a joint high in the division. In his 2 Champions League appearances this season, he has made a further two mistakes leading to shots, with one of those ending in a goal.

In total, four of the eleven goals Hart has conceded (Premier League and Champions League) have been scored from long range - suggesting a weakness at dealing with strikes from distance - an encouraging sign for the likes of Ravel Morrison, Stewart Downing and Mohamed Diamé.

The image below shows errors made by Premier League players this season. As you can see, no player as made more errors leading to goals that Hart this season.

The truth is, City are a better side than West Ham. They have better players. They should win this game.

But the same could be said about Tottenham Hotspur. The same was said when City went down to Villa Park last month. Football has a funny way of surprising you.

Let's hope that tomorrow evening is one of those times.

 Head to Head 
37% Head to Head Win % 46%
35 Won 43
16 Drawn 16
43 Lost 35
139 Goals Scored 145
145 Goals Conceded 139

 Recent Form 
L D L W L W Last 6 W W W L L W
8 Goals Scored 18
7 Goals Conceded 8
W W W L L W Home/Away Form D W L D W L
13 Goals Scored 7
9 Goals Conceded 4
 Form Player (Last 6 League) 
Winston Reid - Yaya Toure
6 Appearances 6
540 Minutes Played 540
191 Sum Squawka Performance Score 234
32 Average Squawka Performance Rating 39
209 Passes Attempted 426
155 Completed 389
74% Success Rate 91%
0 Chances Created 9
0 Assists 1
5 Attempts on Goal 8
1 On Target 5
1 Goals 3
15 Tackles Made 13
12 Successful Tackles 10
80% Success Rate 77%
15 Interceptions 6
51 Clearances 6
2 Blocks 2
11 Defensive Actions Per Game 2
28 Aerial Duels 11
19 Won 6
68% Success Rate 55%

0 Defensive Errors 0
0 Leading to a Goal 0
 Last Meeting 
27 April 2013
1-0 Sergio Aguero 28'
2-0 Yaya Toure 83'
2-1 Andy Carroll 94'

4-2-3-1 Starting Formation 4-2-3-1

Jussi Jääskeläinen - Joe Hart
Guy Demel - Pablo Zabaleta
James Collins - Vincent Kompany
Winston Reid - Joleon Lescott
Joey O'Brien (80') - Gael Clichy
Gary O'Neil - Gareth Barry
Mohamed Diamé - Yaya Toure
Ricardo Vâz Te (66') - (78') David Silva
Kevin Nolan (80') - (84') Carlos Tevez
Matt Jarvis - (87') Samir Nasri
Andy Carroll - Sergio Aguero

Stephen Henderson - Costel Pantilimon
Emanuel Pogatetz - Aleksandar Kolarov
Joe Cole - Maitja Nastasic
Jack Collison (66') - (87') Kolo Toure
Mark Noble - (84') Javi Garcia
Matthew Taylor (80') - (78') James Milner
Carlton Cole (80') - Edin Dzeko

West Ham United: James Collins, Alou Diarra, Andy Carroll
Manchester City: Martin Demichelis, Vincent Kompany, Jack Rodwell

West Ham United: n/a
Manchester City: n/a

  Opposition Last Time Out
vs Everton
 Goals Scored: 3
 Goals Conceded: 1
 Starting Formation: 4-2-3-1

  Joe Hart

  Pablo Zabaleta  Vincent Kompany (34')  Joleon Lescott  Aleksandar Kolarov (58')

  Yaya Toure  Fernandinho

  James Milner  Sergio Aguero (79')  David Silva

  Alvaro Negredo

  Costel Pantilimon
  Micah Richards
  Matija Nastasic (34')
  Gael Clichy (58')
  Samir Nasri (79')
  Jesus Navas
  Edin Dzeko

 Best Player: David Silva
 Squawka Rating: 41
 Worst Player: Fernandinho
 Squawka Rating: -15
 Top 5's (Min 3 Apps) 
 Goals Scored 
Ravel Morrison 2 - 4 Sergio Aguero
Joe Cole 1 - 4 Yaya Toure
Ricardo Vâz Te 1 - 3 Alvaro Negredo
Winston Reid 1 - 2 Edin Dzeko
Kevin Nolan 1 - 2 Samir Nasri

Matt Jarvis 2 - 2 David Silva
Mark Noble 1 - 2 Alvaro Negrego
Kevin Nolan 1 - 2 Pablo Zabaleta
Mohamed Diamé 1 - 1 Samir Nasri
  - 1 Edin Dzeko

 Passing Accuracy 
Stewart Downing 89% - 93.8% Vincent Kompany
Mark Noble 81.7% - 93.3% Javi Garcia
Ravel Morrison 80.8% - 91.5% Yaya Toure
Kevin Nolan 80.1% - 90.1% Samir Nasri
Joey O'Brien 79.1% - 89.9% Matija Nastasic

 Chances Created per game 
Mark Noble 2.4 - 3.5 David Silva
Stewart Downing 2 - 1.7 Jesus Navas
Matt Jarvis 1.3 - 1.7 Samir Nasri
Rǎzvan Raţ 1 - 1.3 Yaya Toure
Modibo Maïga 0.8 - 1.3 Sergio Aguero

 Successful Dribbles per game 
Mohamed Diamé 2.6 - 1 Vincent Kompany
Mark Noble 1.6 - 0.9 Samir Nasri
Ravel Morrison 1.5 - 0.8 David Silva
Guy Demel 1 - 0.8 Fernandinho
Joe Cole 1 - 0.8 Aleksandar Kolarav

 Tackles per game 
Mohamed Diamé 3.1 - 4.9 Pablo Zabaleta
Winston Reid 2.3 - 2.8 Fernandinho
James Collins 2.3 - 2.3 Gael Clichy
Mark Noble 2.3 - 2 Yaya Toure
Kevin Nolan 2.1 - 1.8 David Silva

 Aerial Duels Won per game 
Modibo Maïga 6.2 - 3.5 Javi Garcia
Winston Reid 3.3 - 2.2 Matija Nastasic
James Collins 3.3 - 2 Joleon Lescott
Joey O'Brien 1.6 - 1.8 Edin Dzeko
Guy Demel 1.2 - 1.7 Alvaro Negredo

Sam Allardyce - Manuel Pellegrini*
42.5% Current Club Win % 60.0%
43 Won 6
27 Drawn 1
31 Lost 3
40.0% Managerial Career Win % 49.8%
337 Won 274
226 Drawn 132
278 Lost 144

2 League Titles 3
0 Cup Wins 4
 *Stats 2001 to date only, record in Chile (1987-1998) and Ecuador (1998-2001) unavailable 

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