So Season 1 (All 9 games of it due to the start-date of the game) is done, and we were reasonably successful, achieving the main aim of the club to not finish bottom of the table. In today’s post we will look at all the stats for those 9 games, xG for teams, players and Expected Goals Conceded for Keepers, attribute changes since we took over and all the end of season goodies that you normally get in game.
So to start, Last Month & Season Attribute changes for the players (Note the Season changes will only include the players we’ve had since the very start of the save)
Another good month with lots of progress, Eoin Porter standing out from a first team perspective.
Daire Doherty & Adam Mylod have done very well, Daire having 16 different attributes increase by a point and only 1 drop by a point, Adam having 11 attribute increases.
From a stats point of view we can look at last month and all games since we took over.
An interesting month, Eoin Porter’s change to playmaker yielding a 5.25 key passes per game average, which is outstanding. Cross completions were good as well, Ian Turner going crazy with the attempts/90.
With regards to heading McSweeney had a difficult month with a sub-70% completion stat. Daire Doherty & Ian Turner were accurate with their shooting, and Evan Murphy & Charlie Lyons were intercepting well. Lastly Dara Mulgannon was a bit dirty in the tackle and Cian leonard offside just a bit too often.
Looking at last season Eoin Porter finished with over 2 key Passes p[er game, cross completion was a standout with lots of > 20% completion rates. James McSweeny and Ben O’Riordan ended up king of the headers, and there we a good few players with >50% Shot on Target stats, with Lyamine Mihoubi scoring at 0.7 goals per game. ben Hanrahan was a standout for the wrong reason, hitting the target with only 1 out of 17 shots…..he has 13 Finishing and 9 Composure…. Lastly there were a few lads with > 1 chance creation per game and 3 with > 2 dribbles per game (Though as a stat that doesn’t reallly mean anything if you don’t know whether they came to anything or not)
We had some good tackle completion rates, and 3 lads with > 4 interceptions a game which is good. Our Wingbacks make the most mistakes (Which is normal) and offsides overall weren’t too bad.
When you look at the Division as a whole we have these stats.
Standouts are our low headers won ratio (9th in the league) and difference between us and Shelbourne in Salary per Annum (£101k v £365k)
At a player level James McSweeney was by far the dirtiest player in the league – what the hell was happening before I turned up/the game started?? Ian Turner was 3rd overall for assists, Kevin Taylor made the most mistakes. Penalties & FK goals seem toi be a bit broken – Only 12 penalties conceded across the season??? This may just be down to them not being recorded pre-game-start so we will see in 2020.
We also have 45 games-worth of xG data to have a look at.
Fifth-placed Bray were the over-performers in the league – scoring 5.7 goals more than average, with promoted Galway bottom (scored 4 goals less than they should have by average). We, like our league position finished 7th, scoring just under 2 goals less than we should have.
Luca Gratzer for Drogheda was the best keeper by a way conceding almost 5 goals less than expected, with Adam Mylod 4th, conceding just over 2 goals less than expected. A mention for Darcy Lawless, who in 1 game only (Yes, against us in the last game of the season) let in 1 but should have let in 3.3…. Lee Steacy of Longford was the least ‘efficient’, letting over 7 goals more than he should have done in the last 9 games. They are in a playoff spot though.
On a player-level, acknowledging we only have 9 games-worth of data per team Marty Walters was king of the xG scoring 4.4 goals more than expected. Lyamine Mihoubi came in 9th, scoring 3 from 4 on target, 2 more than he should have. Donal Higgins for Galway was the most profligate, scoring 2.7 less than he should have done from his 21 shots. The aforementioned Ben Hanrahan finished 3rd, scoring 1.9 less than he should have done, with now goals and 1 on-target from 15.
Something to mention though – aggregate stats and xG Stats (Where we use the Analysis function of the match report) don’t match – the aggregate stats have Ben Hanrahan as having 17 shots for instance, analysis stats 15.
I watched a few games in Comprehensive, and in the Athlone v Longford game aggregate stats have Athlone players Paul Murphy & Nathan Benson having shots, and the Analysis stats don’t. I didn’t see Paul Murphy have a shot at all (I’m not watching Full match :)) but Nathan Benson had a shot that hit his own player, who was in an offside position, and as such was called as Offside. So with everything stat-wise in FM the above have a margin of error.
Hopefully with 2020 under our belt these error margins will decrease, and we should be able to get a better view of xG/xGC in FM20.
Now to the End of Season jolities.
Ian Turner with player of the season, closely followed by James McSweeney. Eoin Porter as signing of the season (Best player at the club by Current Ability) and James McSweeney with Young player of the Season, all standard.
Disappointing vision – Don’t finish bottom again. I’m going to strive for a little bit better than that!
Ian Turner & Eoin Porter made the final team of the week for the First Division this season.
3rd v 4th playoff done – Drogheda through to meet Shelbourne.
And they march on – Shelbourne fell apart at the end of the season under the pressure. The Final next v Finn Harps (IRL it was the same tie!!) of deepest darkest Donegal.
Unfortunately, as in real life Finn Harps were too much for Drogheda, so the only new team we will have to face next season is UCD (University College Dublin), who were relegated after finishing bottom in the Premier Division (IRL it was the same).
So we arrive at the 30th November – Contract Expiry Day for many – and we have let the following players go:
- Paul Hunt (GK, 29, £110/wk)
- Greg Henry (MC, 25, £85/wk)
- James O’Driscoll (AMRL, 20, £45/wk)
- Brian Murphy (ST, 27, £65/wk)
- Stephen O’Leary (AML, 20, £45/wk)
- Frank Kelleher (Head of Youth Development, Wouldn’t re-sign)
We also have a fair few players leaving on the 31st December as well.
Currently we have a committed spending of £1,564/wk v budgeted £2,474/wk, However we are £24k in the hole. We have a £13k sponsorship to come in plus approx £8k season tickets, but its pretty clear at our attendance levels (Av 333 last season) we aren’t going to be able to break-even, let alone get into the black without a cup run (No real money in cups in Ireland, winner of the FAI Cup gets £52k) – The highest average attendance in Ireland was Cork with 3,757 so we wont be getting a plum away tie that makes us many thousands in gate receipts. Its a tough one.
Prize Money in the Premier Division is a bit better (Just over £50k for 4th), plus the top 4 get into Europe, where even in the First Qualifying Round you get £207k appearance money. As such we need to be in Europe by 2022……………… Now, do we speculate to accumulate??
So what do we need. A good backup DC, backup DR, starting WBL, backup WBR, first team DM, first team ML, another good MC, backup AMR, first team ST. Formations will obviously make some positions more essential than others.
Matthew Lamb has re-signed on a non-contract – he is a good backup and may yet develop a bit more – I’m trying to convert some of these fringe guys to these non-contracts, it should help the bank balance.
New Signing – Geraint Hall – Head of Youth Development
About £70/wk cheaper than Frank Kelleher, This is Geraint’s first role (as per) but has 15 Working with Youngsters and is Fairly Professional. The best of a bad lot for the wages we can offer.
New Signing – Alex Byrne
- 24yo MC/DM BWM
- 5ft 11in
- Most of his career spent at Galway
- 3.5* Current, 4.5* Potential
- 6th best player at club currently, perfect for a midfield 3 with Porter & Hurley
An important signing, Alex Byrne comes in on a free after leaving Galway at the end of 2018. IRL he’s still with them. Looking forward to him in the central midfield 3, very solid.
New Signing – Jack Lynch
- 21 yo
- 5ft 10
- DR/DC Cover
- Started with Limerick, was at Galway last season
A solid backup for both Charlie Fleming at right back and the centre backs Jack played 2 games for Galway last season and is on a non-contract. I don’t expect him to get much game time but he is definitely useful to have about the place.
So that’s 2019 over and done with. Happy New Year!! Next time we will look at the Pre-season for Season 2, with our first league game v Longford on 14th February. Hopefully some more good signings to come. See you soon.