After yet another transfer window without a clinical number nine, I thought it might be interesting to have a look at the goal to game ratios of our strikers compared to similar strikers in the Premier League.
Please bear in mind in this article I will only be looking at players who have played in the Premier League and will be counting only Premier League goals so as to make a fair comparison and I’m only going to compare our main two strikers who, in my opinion, are Leon Best and Demba Ba. My reasoning for this is because I feel they will be the main starters this year, either together or just one of them with a five man midfield behind.
Demba Ba – 7 in 14 – A goal every 2 games
Leon Best – 8 in 13 – A goal every 1.625 games
Not bad reading eh? I know they’ve not played tonnes of games in the league, but they’ve both played over 10 games, which means they haven’t had one lucky game which show a daft reading, like 0.5 games per goal. Also, these players have both played in average teams – Best in our side last year lacking creativity and Ba at relegated West Ham.
Firstly I thought I’d look at the £35 million superstar that is Andy Carroll – someone who we classed as a real number nine – and compare him to the “useless strikers” we have now.
Andy Carroll – 13 in 29 – A goal every 2.3 games
That’s a surprise isn’t it? Even though Carroll has played in better teams he has a worse goal per game ratio then both Leon Best and Demba Ba. Carroll has played more games which means it’s harder to maintain, but still he’s a £35 million player.
The next thing I thought I would look at is the teams around us that, in my opinion, we should be challenging with next season aiming for a top-10 spot. I’ve left out the likes of Aston Villa and the top six as I feel they will finish above us already.
Asamoah Gyan – 10 in 33 – A goal every 3.3 games
Stephane Sessengon – 3 in 15 – A goal every 5 games
Nicklas Bendtner – 22 in 98 – A goal every 4.5 games
Steven Fletcher – 19 in 65 – A goal every 3.42 games
Kevin Doyle – 33 in 128 – A goal every 3.87 games
Bobby Zamora – 27 in 121 – A goal every 4.48 games
Louis Saha – 80 in 240 – A goal every 4 games
Tim Cahill – 54 in 196 – A goal every 3.62 games
Peter Odemwingie – 15 in 32 – A goal every 2.13 games
Kevin Davies – 62 in 288 – A goal every 4.64 games
Ivan Klasnic – 15 in 52 – A goal every 3.46 games
Peter Crouch – 67 in 268 – A goal every 4 games
Cameron Jerome – 21 in 99 – A goal every 4.7 games
Kenwyne Jones – 36 in 131 – A goal every 3.63 games
This makes me think. Why are we worrying? The figures above show that no team around us has a 1 in 2 goal scorer. Peter Odemwingie is the only player who has a goal ratio in between 2 and 3 games a goal, and the rest are all above 3 and some even above 4.
We have two players who, granted, haven’t played a lot in the Premier League, but they have got goal to game ratios of a goal every other game or under. And we’re moaning. I know a lot of people hate the lies, as do I, but really there is no need to slag off a strike force which seems pretty good compared to the rest of the league.
Those figures really make me wonder though. Would you pay £10 million plus for a Peter Crouch who only scores once every four games? Shocking business. Also, would you buy Cameron Jerome who’s ratio is nearly at a goal every five games?
Sunderland’s Asamoah Gyan is somebody who a lot of NUFC fans are jealous of and would have at Newcastle in a flash. They paid £12 million plus for Gyan and he only scores a goal every 3.3 games. That’s hardly great value is it?
The figures just go to show that there isn’t many 1 in 2 goal scorers around anymore, and if they are they’re at the top clubs. None of the clubs that we’re directly challenging with have cracking strikers. And we worry about relegation due to not having a striker? That’s something that should not be entering our heads.
Seen as using stats I’ve proved our strikers are not bad, people will now choose to say that stats aren’t everything. Is that true? Well how much did you know about Bryan Ruiz, he’d scored 39 in 61 for FC Twente or something or other, and not many had seen him play but he was being welcomed through the door.
I also saw some fans – not all on here – welcoming a move for Bobby Zamora? He only scores around a goal every five games also, so would he have been an improvement on Leon Best or Demba Ba? I’m not so sure.
Foreign players obviously don’t count in this as I can’t judge whether they’ll score in the Premier League, so the likes of Bryan Ruiz and the long named kid Everton have signed may improve their strike force, but their goal scoring records couldn’t be compared.
Another question which will be asked is does their build up play not count? Well, what I saw every one asking for on deadline day was a striker that can put the ball in the net, a bit of pace was asked for too, but ball in the net was the most important thing, and the above stats show that Leon and Demba can put the ball in the net, so shall we give these boys a chance? Or just write them off?
Come on lads, get behind Besty and Ba and make a real go of this season!
PS; This is for NUFC and other football fans viewing only, Mike Ashley can jog on if he thinks this is an excuse not to buy a striker in January, because we still want one!