Monday, July 25, 2011

Marginal Goal Analysis - Philadelphia Union

Since I'm projecting them as an MLS Cup finalist, I thought it was time to do a marginal goal analysis for the Union.  Here are the results for their MLS matches through 7/17:

Keon Daniel7561351.5480.5950.9520.286-0.2490.535
Danny Califf162024151.3330.8330.5000.072-0.0110.083
Carlos Ruiz11441481.1010.6290.472-0.160-0.2150.055
Carlos Valdes162024161.3330.8890.4440.0720.0440.027
Sheanon Williams169324161.2760.8510.4250.0140.0060.008
Sebastien Le Toux171024161.2630.8420.4210.002-0.0020.004
Brian Carroll140121151.3490.9640.3850.0880.119-0.032
Danny Mwanga96816121.4881.1160.3720.2260.271-0.045
Kyle Nakazawa98814111.2751.0020.2730.0140.157-0.144
Justin Mapp104716131.3751.1170.2580.1140.273-0.159
Jordan Harvey124113130.9430.9430.000-0.3190.098-0.417

I'm only listing regular or semi-regular players.  The totals at the bottom are for the entire team.

This shows that midfielder Keon Daniel is their most effective player, by far.  His marginal goal differential is almost half a goal better than his closest teammate.  Daniel's stats are somewhat inflated by his low playing time, but when he is on the pitch, Philadelphia is most effective at both scoring and preventing goals.  I suspect that if he gets more playing time the team's performance will improve.

This table also shows why Philadelphia was right to trade Jordan Harvey.  When Harvey was on the pitch, the team was least effective at scoring goals and was not very effective at preventing them.  Harvey's stats include the Union's 6-goal outburst against Toronto where he played the entire match.  Take that away and his stats are even worse.  Harvey was traded to Vancouver for allocation money.

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