A key difference between our 7-1 victory over Aston Villa last season and our 3-3 draw this season is in the passing.
- This season our passing completion rate was 79%.
- Last season our passing completion rate was 82%.
- Last season we completed 56 more passes, which works out at an extra 0.62 passes per minute.
Looking at one of our key passers of the ball, Frank Lampard, we could also see a marked decline.
- This season his passing completion rate was 72%.
- Last season his passing completion rate was 77%.
- Last season he completed 12 more passes, which works out at 0.51 passes per minute, compared to the 0.37 passes per minute this season.
Another interesting comparison is between John Obi Mikel’s passing from last season with Michael Essien’s passing this season.
- Essien had an impressive completion rate of 88% which is still not quite as impressive as Mikel’s 91%.
- Mikel completed 16 more passes than Essien, which works out at 0.79 passes per minute compared to Essien’s 0.61 passes per minute.
Another key area where we struggled in this season’s game compared to last is our ability to win the ball.
- This season our tackling completion rate was 53%.
- Last season our tackling completion rate was 61%.
Not only was our passing more accurate in the game last season, we passed the ball around more too. When you look at the key areas in midfield, Lampard’s game was better last season and when partnered with Mikel, the pair completed more passes than he did when with Essien. Also, our ability to win the ball was far superior last season, with us losing the ball less and winning the ball back more often. If we can’t dominate possession and hold on to possession in the midfield, then we are not in control of the game.
The Guardian chalkboards