Having been away on business last week I was unable to publish last weeks predictability versus reality results; in catching up here’s how things went in Week 18 and Week 19 versus the Composite Possession with Purpose Predictability Index (CPWP PI); excluding the Chivas USA v DC United match later this evening.
To begin here’s the CPWP Predictability Index for teams at Home, followed by, the CPWP PI for teams playing Away for Week 18/19…
Before digging into the results versus predictability note the significant difference in team performance at Home versus Away.
Pretty compelling evidence to reinforce what most believe, the home team usually does better… but… some teams can and will perform very strong on the road.
In reviewing the results…
If you want the game by game comparison for Week 18 & Week 19 it can be found at the end of this article.
For now know that the CPWP PI accurately reflected five of the eight wins (draws excluded) for Week 18.
In addition, the CPWP PI accurately reflected seven out of seven wins (draws excluded) for Week 19.
If keeping track (after four weeks of leveraging the CPWP PI) it has been accurate in predicting 20 of 27 games (excluding draws); that’s a 74% success rate.
In general, the home team has won 74 games at home; while the away team has won 47 games on the road – the home team average percentage chance of winning based purely on results is 62%.
It would appear that the use of the CPWP, as a predictability model, gives someone a 12% better chance of predicting the outcome of a game then by purely picking the home team to beat the away team…
Perhaps others have a different view?
San Jose, at home, lost to DC United 1 – 2. San Jose, at home, has a .0368 CPWP PI while DC United, on the road, has a -.2174 – the CPWP PI was not accurate.
New York, at home, won against Columbus 4-1. New York, at home, has a .1184 while Columbus, on the road, has a .1047 – the CPWP PI was accurate.
Toronto, at home, won against Houston 4-2. Toronto, at home has a .0886 while Houston, on the road, is -.1706 – the CPWP PI was accurate.
Philadelphia, at home, drew with Colorado 3-3. CPWP PI does not measure for draws.
Montreal, at home, lost to Sporting KC 1-2. Montreal, at home, is -.0170 while Sporting KC, on the road, is .1112 – the CPWP PI was accurate.
New England, at home, lost to Chicago 0-1. New England, at home, is .2516 while Chicago, on the road, is -.2241 – the CPWP PI was not accurate.
Vancouver, at home, lost to Chivas 1-3. Vancouver, at home, is .1912 while Chivas, on the road, is -.1827 – the CPWP PI was not accurate.
LA Galaxy, at home, won against Real Salt Lake 1-0. LA, at home, is .0476 while RSL, on the road, is -.1278 – the CPWP PI was accurate.
Seattle, at home, won against Portland 2-0. Seattle, at home, is .2669 while Portland, on the road, is .0486 – the CPWP PI was accurate.
Week 19 (with the Chivas versus DC United game left to play):
Philadelphia, at home, defeated New York 3-1; Philadelphia, at home, is -.0107 while the New York, on the road, is -.0711 – the CPWP PI was accurate.
Columbus lost, at home, to Sporting KC 1-2; Columbus, at home, is.0797 while the Sporting KC, on the road, is .1112 – the CPWP PI was accurate.
Toronto, at home, drew with Vancouver 1-1. (not measured).
LA, at home, beat New England 5-1; LA, at home, is .0476 while the New England, on the road is -.0565 – the CPWP PI was accurate.
Portland, at home, beat Colorado 2-1.; Portland, at home, is .0271 while Colorado, on the road, is -.0452 – the CPWP PI was accurate.
Sporting KC, at home, beat LA 2-1. Sporting, at home, is .3362 while LA, on the road, is .1393 – the CPWP PI was accurate.
New York at home, drew with San Jose 1-1. (not measured).
Columbus, at home, beat Montreal 2-1; Columbus, at home, is .0797 while Montreal, on the road, is -.0950 – the CPWP was accurate.
Chicago, at home, drew with Philadelphia 1-1. (not measured).
Dallas, at home, beat New England 2-0; Dallas, at home, is .0599 while New England, on the road, is -.0565 – the CPWP was accurate.
Houston, at home, drew with Toronto 2-2. (not measured).
Real Salt Lake, at home, drew with Vancouver 1-1. (not measured).
In my latest installment of Possession with Purpose in Europe I have a number of diagrams to offer to include the latest on the PWP Predictability Index.
You’ll note that in every case the PWP Correlation to the League Tables for all four competitions has stayed the same or gotten better.
Also of interest is that a number of youth soccer teams, and another writer, have joined the queue in leveraging the PWP approach in analyzing soccer games – what remains, after publishing my Academic Paper (real soon as things go) is my ability to get data quicker and to set up a software system – probably using MS Access – to better enable match reporting.
It’s slow going – but that’s okay… patience is a good thing…
Now for the grist in the English Premier League:
Last we spoke (after Week 26) here was the latest on CPWP Predictability;
- Eight of Ten
- Seven of Ten
- Eight of Ten
- Eight of Ten
In looking at Week 27 the CPWP Predictability Index was Six for Eight (hitting the 75% target).
For Week 28 the CPWP-PI had Man City earning at least a point vs. Leicester City, Chelsea earning at least a point vs West Ham, Man United earning at least a point vs Newcastle, Arsenal earning at least a point vs QPR, Everton earning at least a point vs Stoke, Spurs earning at least a point vs Swansea City, Liverpool earning at least a point vs Burnley, Aston Villa v West Brom dead even, Hull City earning at least a point vs Sunderland, and Southampton earning at least a point vs Crystal Palace. Last but not least there was an off-game played between Spurs and QPR – the CPWP-PI had Spurs earning at least one point – they did.
- In every case this week the CPWP-PI got it right with one exception – Stoke City took all three points against Everton! So that made it ten for eleven in identifying whether or not a team would earn at least one point based upon the CPWP-PI. In only two cases did the team expected to earn a point didn’t get three points – Aston Villa and Hull City.
For Week 29 the CPWP-PI had Chelsea earning at least a point vs Southampton, Everton earning at least a point vs Newcastle, Man United earning at least a point vs Spurs, QPR earning at least a point vs Crystal Palace, Arsenal earning at least a point vs West Ham, Hull City earning at least a point vs Leicester City, Aston Villa earning at least a point vs Sunderland, Stoke City earning at least a point vs West Brom, Man City earning at least a point vs Burnley, and Liverpool earning at least a point vs Swansea City.
- Burnley had the upset of the week while Crystal Palace and West Brom continued their good, recent, run of form. All told CPWP-PI correctly identified seven of ten teams earning points that week.
For Week 30 the CPWP-PI had Man United earning at least a point vs Liverpool, Chelsea earning at least a point vs Hull City, Everton earning at least a point vs QPR, Man City earning at least a point vs West Brom, Swansea City earning at least a point vs Aston Villa, Arsenal earning at least a point vs Newcastle, Southampton earning at least a point vs Burnley, Stoke City earning at least a point vs Crystal Palace, Spurs earning at least a point vs Leicester City, and West Ham earning at least a point vs Sunderland.
- In every case but one the CPWP-PI correctly predicted what team would earn at least one point except for the loss Stoke City had against Crystal Palace – again – a team in good form since the coaching change! That makes it nine of ten again this past week.
- Eight of Ten
- Seven of Ten
- Eight of Ten
- Eight of Ten
- Ten of Eleven
- Seven of Ten
- Nine of Ten
- Totaling 57 of 71 for an 80% accuracy rating
Here’s the CPWP Index after Week 30:
For this next week CPWP-PI has:
- Arsenal earning at least a point vs. Liverpool
- Southampton earning at least a point vs. Everton
- West Ham earning at least a point vs. Leicester City
- Man United earning at least a point vs. Aston Villa
- Swansea City earning at least a point vs. Hull City
- West Brom earning at least a point vs. QPR
- Chelsea earning at least a point vs. Stoke City
- Spurs earning at least a point vs. Burnley
- Newcastle earning at least a point vs. Sunderland, and
- Man City earning at least a point vs. Crystal Palace
- Another odd game has Aston Villa earning at least a point vs. QPR
Completion of my Academic Paper on Possession with Purpose nears… another writer has asked to begin leveraging PWP analysis to their own team writing efforts and there are now three youth soccer clubs using the concepts and philosophy of PWP in trying to help their teams improve – both collectively as well as for their individual players.
COPYRIGHT – ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. PWP – Trademark
Over a year has passed since my first broad strokes about Possession with Purpose were applied to Major League Soccer; since then we’ve had one full year to look at it and how things have played out.
So how do things stack up today versus Week 17 last year, and, is something going on with DC United (besides the new strikers) that is different this year?
To begin; here’s a look at the teams after 17 weeks in 2013:
The top five Western Conference teams were Portland, Real Salt Lake, LA Galaxy, Vancouver and Seattle; the only team not to make the Playoffs last year was Vancouver.
Upon reflection, it was their defense that let them down, and the most probable reason why Martin Rennie got sacked.
In looking at the top five Eastern Conference teams they were Sporting KC, New England, New York, Montreal, and Houston – the same top five teams that eventually made the Playoffs.
So how about this year?
In looking at the Eastern Conference teams, the top five are Sporting KC, Columbus Crew, DC United, New England and New York – the odd one out, at the moment, is Toronto vice Columbus.
It should be noted that Toronto also have at least two, and no less than four, games in hand – so it’s not exactly “apples to apples yet” but should be in about 3 weeks time. As for the Western Conference, the top five so far are LA Galaxy, Seattle, Colorado, Portland, and FC Dallas.
Again the games in hand vary somewhat.
The HUGE, if not inordinately large question here is… Can the Portland Timbers turn their defensive nightmare of a season around with a healthy Norberto Paparatto, Pa Madou Kah and newly signed Liam Ridgewell, for three solid center-backs? And, if so, does that fix the defensive issues?
Now an even tougher question…
Is the level of accuracy, last year, to be expected this year (nine for ten in teams last year making the Playoffs, based upon 17 games of data)?
I’m not so sure… And a good reason for that is the emerging clarity on how effective some teams have become (this year) in winning or drawing games with less possession…
In other words, playing to a counterattacking style, that sees some teams offering the opponent higher levels of possession, penetration, and shots taken.
So is there another way to try and answer the question about accuracy in the CPWP Index?
How about the CPWP Predictability Index – what does that offer after Week 17?
In looking at the CPWP PI, the numbers seem to indicate that Sporting KC, Columbus, New England, New York and Philadelphia have the best chances of winning, given historical team performances this year.
So the PI sees Philadelphia with an edge over Toronto… (reminder – TFC have four games in hand though)…
And does that Head Coach change, where Curtin is now in charge over Hackworth, reflect the Hackworth predictability of Philadelphia or the Curtin predictability of Philadelphia? More to follow on that in a later article for sure…
As for the Western Conference; LA leads with Colorado, Seattle, Vancouver, and Portland – that sees FC Dallas dropping out with a smaller chance of winning and Vancouver sliding in…
And yet, neither Index has Real Salt Lake in the top five – could that be? Has the loss of Saborio, Beckerman and Rimando impacted RSL that much in such a short time span; and what does that say for the second half of the season? Lots of questions with no answers yet…
Now… take a look how far down DC United are in the Predictability Index (5th worst predictability in winning) – might that indicate how fortunate they have been in scoring goals or is that a reflection of something else going on?
DC United have the second best Goals Scored versus Shots on Goal of all the teams in MLS (42.12%); FC Dallas lead MLS in that category with 44.26%. Clearly the addition of Espindola and Johnson (even if they don’t play together) has added extreme value to this team.
Especially when their percentage for this same statistic, last year, was just 16.66% I wonder what the Expected Goals look like for DC United and how their shot locations may have changed this year compared to last year? Perhaps one or two folks who specialize in Expected Goals can help answer that one?
I did check to see if they have been awarded more PK’s than other teams – no – only 2 PK’s awarded so far this year.
As for Opponent Red Cards?
Perhaps that has created a positive influence in Goals Scored? Their opponents have had 5 Red Cards this year (two by FC Dallas in one game) – that is tied for 3rd highest (best/most advantageous) in MLS.
Has that helped? I think so…
DC United have 10 points in the four games where their opponent has been red-carded and nine of their 24 Goals Scored have come from those games.
So, in retrospect – if the opponent’s for DC United “play-fair” it is (likely?) that will negatively impact DC United in the League Table.
That’s one advantage of the CPWP PI – it is not ‘doubly’ influenced by opponents being Red or Yellow Carded – it’s strictly five of the six primary data points of PWP.
Still plenty to play for and any team, and I mean any team, can get on a winning streak – just look at Chivas USA their last three games.
How all the ‘defensive bunkering’ folds into the PWP Indices and Predictability outcomes has yet to play out. When every team reaches 17 games I’ll regenerate this article with updated information.
Before looking at the overall results here’s a reminder on where all the teams stand after 17 weeks:
Not every team has played 18 games yet so the Index is not equal – just like the MLS Table; Toronto have four games in hand over some teams in the Eastern Conference and the LA Galaxy have as many as five games in hand over some teams in the Western Conference.
When looking at the Western Conference CPWP (where all teams have played 14 games) the Index has LA atop (.2380); with Seattle 2nd (.2008); Colorado 3rd (.1578); Portland 4th (.0616) and Vancouver 5th (.0470).
All told that’s 3 of the top five teams in the Western Conference – not ideal but pretty close.
When looking at the Eastern Conference CPWP (where all teams have played 14 games) the Index has Sporting FC atop (.2219); with Columbus 2nd (.1578); DC United 3rd (.0807); New England 4th (.0347) and New York 5th (-.0416).
All told that’s four of the top five teams in the Eastern Conference – again not ideal but pretty close.
How does last year compare to this year after Week 17? I’ll cover that in my next article… For now since most teams have eclipsed the 17 game barrier I use the separate Home and Away CPWP Predictability Indices…
A reminder, of sorts, the CPWP PI is not intended to predict draws; it’s strictly an attempt to “test” how well it can/could predict wins.
The diagrams (along with individual Team Index numbers) are provided at the end of this article.
Before kick-off; a reminder that last weekend’s games saw the CPWP PI had relevance in five out of six games where a team won/lost versus drew.
So for teams that won on the road this week we have:
Chivas USA defeating San Jose and DC United defeating Toronto FC.
The away CPWP PI for Chivas USA is -0.19; the home CPWP PI for San Jose is -0.04; the PI indicates Chivas should have lost – they won (inaccurate).
The away CPWP PI for DC United is -0.16; the home CPWP PI for Toronto FC is +0.09; the PI indicates DC United should have lost – they won (inaccurate).
So for teams that won at home this week we have:
FC Dallas defeating Philadelphia Union; Real Salt Lake defeating New England Revolution, Vancouver Whitecaps defeating Seattle Sounders and Chivas USA defeating Montreal.
The home CPWP PI for Dallas is +0.07; the Away CPWP PI for Philadelphia is -0.02; the PI indicates Dallas should have won – they won (accurate).
The home CPWP PI for Real Salt Lake is +0.04; the Away CPWP PI for New England is 0.00; the PI indicates Real Salt Lake should have won – they won (accurate).
The home CPWP PI for Vancouver is +0.18; the away CPWP PI for Seattle is -0.06; the PI indicates Vancouver should have won – they won (accurate).
The home CPWP PI for Chivas USA is -0.28; the away CPWP PI for Montreal is -0.11; the PI indicates Montreal should have won – they lost (inaccurate).
In closing… and that promised look at Chivas USA.
All told where there weren’t draws the CPWP PI was three out of six games.
Excluding draws that’s two weeks of (5 for 6) and (3 for 6); (8 for 12) = 66% accurate.
Clearly betting against Chivas USA at this time is not a worthy endeavor.
Here’s the differences in their Possession with Purpose indicators in the first 14 weeks compared to the last three weeks:
- First 14 Weeks (APWP = 2.1425 / 2nd worst in MLS)
- First 14 Weeks (DPWP = 2.5341 / 2nd worst in MLS)
- First 14 Weeks (CPWP = -0.3915 / worst in MLS)
- Last three Weeks (APWP = 2.2217 / 5th worst in MLS)
- Last three Weeks (DPWP = 1.9502 / BEST in MLS)
- Last three Weeks (CPWP = 0.2715 / BEST in MLS)
With that significant change in Defending PWP it’s worth a quick look to see what’s what in the first 14 Weeks versus the last three weeks…
- First 14 Weeks Opponent (Possession 57.14%, Passing Accuracy 79.73%; Penetration 15.84%; Shots Taken per Penetration 19.34%; Shots on Goal versus Shots Taken 38.15%; Goals Scored versus Shots on Goal 43.21%)
- Last three Weeks Opponent (Possession 57.96%; Passing Accuracy 79.67%; Penetration 19.21%; Shots Taken per Penetration 15.27%; Shots on Goal versus Shots Taken 22.92%; Goals Scored versus Shots on Goal 0.00%)
- The differences? Opponent penetration has increased while the number of opponent shots taken and shots on goal and goals scored have decreased.
- Without having seen any of their games I would offer that Chivas has decided to open up the opponent opportunities in penetrating in order to tighten the screws a bit deeper inside the 18 yard box…
- In other words they are not running two banks of four players atop and outside the final third – they have dropped a bit deeper and are now running their banks of four more within and around the 18 yard box.
- Perhaps others who follow Chivas USA more closely could offer visual information to determine if that is an accurate assessment?
As promised the CPWP PI Home Index:
As promised the CPWP PI Away Index:
Next up Week 17 PWP in review…
While I didn’t venture any predictions for this past weekend in Major League Soccer I thought it would be fun to see how the overall Composite Possession with Purpose (CPWP) Index fared compared to the results in Week 16.
As a reminder here is the CPWP Predictability Index from Week 15:
Vancouver at home to Montreal; result (draw) – CPWP PI predicted a win to Vancouver.
New York at home to Toronto; result (draw) – CPWP PI predicted a win to New York.
Portland at home to Sporting KC; result (Sporting KC win) – CPWP PI predicted a win to Sporting.
DC United at home to Seattle; result (Seattle win) – CPWP PI predicted a win to Seattle.
New England at home to Philadelphia; result (Philadelphia win) – CPWP PI predicted a win to New England.
Colorado at home to Vancouver; result (Colorado win) – CPWP PI predicted a win to Colorado.
Chivas at home to Real Salt Lake; result (Chivas win) – CPWP PI predicted a win to Real Salt Lake.
San Jose at home to LA Galaxy; result (Galaxy win) – CPWP PI predicted a win to LA Galaxy.
Columbus at home to FC Dallas; result (draw) – CPWP PI predicted a win to Columbus.
Montreal at home to Houston; result (Montreal win) – CPWP PI predicted a win to Montreal.
Excluding draws – which the CPWP PI does not predict – where there were winners and losers the CPWP PI was five out of six in indicating who might win versus lose.
So where New England lost to Philadelphia – what, if anything, did Philadelphia Union do that was different from their historical averages so far this year?
Here’s my article freshly pressed to try and offer some answers to that question…
I’m not sure how well the CPWP PI will play out this year – I won’t offer predictions prior to games using it – I still think and feel more games (data) is needed.
But I will look back each week and see how the CPWP PI plays out and look to see what was different, in a team performance way, that led to a result that didn’t fit the picture.