The xG Files: which EFL clubs have been ‘running hot’ and which EFL clubs have been ‘running cold’?

The xG Files: which EFL clubs have been ‘running hot’ and which EFL clubs have been ‘running cold’?

Football is a results business. It’s driven by outcomes. But, sometimes, the results (aka the outcomes) don’t offer a true reflection of the performances (aka the processes). What if your team have been playing really well but running cold in front of goal? What if your team have been creating lots of gilt-edged chances, but your strikers keep on leaving their shooting boots at home or the opposition ‘keepers are frequently channeling their inner Lev Yashin? That’s where xG comes in. 

Of course, some teams will run hot. They won’t have created lots of chances, but a combination of excellent finishing, poor ‘keeping and, dare I say it, a little bit of luck will have helped them find the back of the net more than they possibly should have done and get a few more points on the board than they otherwise might have done. 

Here are the EFL teams with the biggest discrepancies between the number of goals scored and the number of expected goals scored: 

As we speak, just under a month into the season, it would be easy to argue that things will even themselves out over the course of the season. The teams who are outperforming their xG will stop being quite so clinical, opposition ‘keepers will start putting in better performances against them and they might, dare I say it again, have a little less luck. Likewise, the teams who are underperforming their xG will start taking a few more of their chances, ‘keepers will be stop playing like Lev Yashin against them and they might, dare I say it again, have a little more luck. However, as well all know, that isn’t necessarily the case. After all, it’s all very well being able to create a host of chances, but you need players who can turn those chances into goals (and that profile of player can be incredibly hard to come by!) Also, who’s to say if a period of so called ‘bad luck’ will last for one month of nine months? 

One thing you can be sure of though is that the margins in football are incredibly fine – especially in the EFL. 

(Photo Creds – Scott Graham)