Isnin, 10 Disember 2012

Recapping the key stats from the weekend's biggest games

Here's a look at the key stats from five of this weekend's games played across Europe:

Manchester United 3, Manchester City 2

Robin Van Persie’s redirected free kick gave United all three points. Manchester City is struggling to defend free kicks this season, allowing shots on goal from six of the nine free kicks the club has faced. Last season, Manchester City allowed a total of five shots on goal from direct free kicks. City has blocked only two direct free kicks this season, after blocking 20 in the previous two years.

Van Persie’s goal is the second City has conceded off a direct free kick this season. The team didn’t allow a goal off a direct free kick in the previous two EPL seasons.

Wayne Rooney opened the scoring for Manchester United with a goal in the 16th minute, completely against the run of play. Rooney did not touch the ball for nearly 8 minutes after his opener, with City still controlling play, and only had six touches in a 15-minute span beginning with his first goal. Of the six touches, two were goals.

Everton 2, Tottenham 1

Tottenham continues to capitulate in the final moments, failing to hold a 1-0 lead when the game entered stoppage time. Opponents have been all over Spurs at the end of games, with 25 percent of all touches they have allowed in their own penalty area coming in the 80th minute or later (80 of 316). Tottenham has allowed nine goals in in the 80th minute or later this season, more than any team in the EPL.

Atletico Madrid 6, Deportivo La Coruña 0

Radamel Falcao became the second player to score five goals in a game in any of the five largest European leagues in the last three seasons (Dimitar Berbatov had five for Manchester United in November 2010). Falcao had only 20 touches in the attacking third and a quarter of them were goals. Falcao took only five shots in the entire game and scored on all of them.

Barcelona 2, Real Betis 1

Lionel Messi overcame injury concerns and scored twice, giving him 86 goals in the year 2012, a new single-year record. Messi showed no ill effects of the knee injury he suffered against Benfica on Wednesday night, finishing the game with 69 touches and 54 pass attempts, both right on his La Liga season averages.

Stuttgart 3, Schalke 1

Schalke entered the weekend with the second-best pass completion rate in the Bundesliga (78.7 percent), but Stuttgart successfully attacked the Schalke passing lanes. Stuttgart finished with 33 interceptions, tied for its most in a Bundesliga game this season.

Of Stuttgart’s 33 interceptions, 17 came in the middle third of the field, their most in that area in a league game this season. It’s also the second-most times that Schalke has been intercepted in the middle third in a Bundesliga game this season.


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