13 November 2012
League Goals via Top Scorer [Infographic]
That Liverpool have become heavily reliant on Luis Suarez is no secret, the only Liverpool player to have scored more than once in the league, and now joint-top scorer in the Premiership with eight goals through 11 games.
It turns out that Liverpool aren't the most reliant on a single player, at least.
Sunderland are, by far, the worst offenders. Fletcher has 71% of Sunderland's seven goals; Adam Johnson has one, while they scored an own goal against Newcastle three weeks ago. Newcastle are slightly more dependent on Demba Ba than Liverpool are on Suarez; he's got 58% of Newcastle's goals, Suarez has 57% of Liverpool's. These are the only three clubs with one player responsible for more than 50% of their strikes.
I doubt it's coincidence that the top half of this chart is populated by teams in the bottom half of the table. West Ham's reliance on Nolan is the anomaly, but eight other players have at least one strike for Sam Allardyce's over-performing side. No, Andy Carroll is not one of them; Noble has two, while Diame, Jarvis, Maiga, Reid, Taylor, Tomkins, and Vaz Te all have one.
It's obviously still quite early in the season, but spreading the wealth seems crucial to a club's league place. No side in the current top nine has fewer than seven goal-scorers. From sides placed 10th through 20th, only Southampton (10) and Reading (9) have more than seven goal-scorers. Reading may not have a consistent scorer – Pogrebnyak, Hunt, and Robson-Kanu lead the way with two each – but both clubs' problems mainly lie at the other end of the pitch.
The clubs with the most goal-scorers are United (13) and Chelsea (11), currently 1st and 3rd in the table. Comparatively, second-place City have "just" nine, but Dzeko, Tevez, Aguero, and Yaya Toure all have at least two strikes.
The worst offenders for spreading the wealth? The top four clubs in this chart. Sunderland have just two scorers, Newcastle and Stoke have four, and Liverpool have five: Gerrard, Şahin, Skrtel, and Sterling with one apiece (and two own goals) to go with Suarez's eight. Bottom of the table QPR is the only other side with just five scorers.
So, is it January yet?