23 May 2016

Liverpool Goals Scored and Conceded 2015-16

Here are similar versions from 2011-12, 2012-13, 2013-14, and 2014-15.

98 goals scored in all competitions isn't bad! 63 goals scored in the league isn't bad! Sure, it ain't great, but it's a hell of a lot better than last year's 52 in the league, 74 in all competitions.

Since Rafa Benitez took over in 2004-05, Liverpool scored more than 63 in the league in just four of 11 seasons: 2007-08, 2008-08, 2012-13, and 2013-14. Liverpool finished 4th, 2nd, 7th, and 2nd those seasons.

This was almost average in front of goal, at least for Liverpool. Average! Seeing as last season was pretty much historically bad in front of goal, and Liverpool switched managers mid-season, and Liverpool had all those injuries, and Liverpool competed on four fronts for most of the season, I'll take "almost average" as a first step.

Admittedly, it's a very, very small sample size for Rodgers this season – 11 matches, 1020 minutes – but those averages are both worse than last season's and didn't seem to be getting better anytime soon. Remember, Liverpool scored more than once in one of those first 11 matches: at home against Villa, an unnecessarily nervy 3-2 win thanks to Daniel Sturridge. Liverpool kept three clean sheets to start the season, but conceded two or more in three of the next eight matches.

To be slightly fairer to Rodgers, this season compares fairly poorly to Rodgers' first in 2012-13, where Liverpool scored more and conceded fewer.

Admittedly, Liverpool played a lot fewer matches that season, especially during the run-in (when Liverpool lost just once in the last 11 matches after the Europa League Round of 32 exit). Nine fewer matches in total, 1170 fewer minutes. And Liverpool still had Luis Suarez – not at the apex of his powers, but still Luis Suarez.

Liverpool did get better as this season went on, at both ends of the pitch, at least in the league. And that's including Liverpool pretty much giving up on the league in the last month with all focus rightfully on the Europa League.

Liverpool still don't score enough. Liverpool still concede too many – although not a disproportionate, unusual amount. Except on corners. 12 goals conceded from corners is a high since I started keeping track five years ago, with Liverpool averaging a goal conceded from a corner once every 483 minutes, once every five or so matches. At least goals from free kicks were down this season, making the set play goals conceded total pretty much in line with the previous four seasons.

With a full preseason, and more time between matches, it'd be surprising if Liverpool didn't continue to improve in every area. Buy a new attacker, a new center-back, and a new goalkeeper (this one seemingly almost done!). Maybe a few others. Score more, concede less.

It's a simple game, this.

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