Analysis

Are we reaching the point where player stats will be removed from the record books?

If the season were to go unfinished, these players will be ruing their elite numbers being wiped from the record

 
10:00am on Wednesday 22nd April 2020
By
Paul Macdonald • PAULMACDFC

It remains totally unclear.

As the coronavirus continues to introduce utter confusion to the sporting calendar, we remain unsure whether the 19/20 will even come to an end.

With that in mind we will have a full season of data which, for all intents, doesn't actually exist. Some players and clubs will be happy to see their below-average numbers thrown in the bin, but there are some who are enjoying the seasons of their lives, and it could all be about to have been for nothing.

We should note at this point that FC finds it extremely unlikely that the season won't end, but what is the situation condemns the 19/20 season as the one that never ended?

Dean Henderson (Sheffield United)

The Sheffield United stopper, on loan from Manchester Utd, has a high stock position right now and could conceivably have been preparing a run at Jordan Pickford to be England's No.1 at Euro 2020. His brilliant league form too - second only to Alisson for Goals Conceded P90 in the Premier League - will be difficult to replicate again. And will he move permanently to Sheffield, or be stuck behind David De Gea in the pecking order?

Alisson (Liverpool)

27 yrs - GK - Liverpool
96
Defending
Creative
Passing
Attacking
Shooting
Decisive
Aerials
Physical
JavaScript chart by amChartsLDefendingCreativePassingAttackingShootingDecisiveAerialsPhysical10-10-5051015100%
1735
Played matches
20
1
SUCCESSFUL PASSING %
85%
Saves P90
2.34
Goals Conceded P90
0.57
Clearances P90
0.67
Error lead to goal
0.00

Had the season continued unabated Alisson would have been in serious contention for player of the year. His 0.6 goals conceded P90 is the best in Europe's top five leagues and Liverpool are unquestionably a more secure unit when he plays (and might still be in the Champions League). His numbers - he's also had 10 clean sheets in 10 appearances and conceded just 11 league goals - will be hugely difficult to match.

Jadon Sancho (Dortmund)

No matter what happens Sancho's reputation as one of the finest young talents around has been solidified, but his numbers in terms of goals and assists are some way ahead of his expected totals. He has 29 goals and assists in the Bundesliga, but his Expected totals are closer to 17, making him well ahead of the curve on both fronts.

These expected numbers always find their way back to normal eventually - Sancho would be sad to see those numbers disappear along with the season itself.

Thomas Muller (Bayern)

After believing that his career at the top of the game could be over, Muller turned things around in incredible fashion. The 30-year-old, surplus to requirements for the German national team, was out of the Bayern team but has become one of the best assisters in Europe, with 16 Bundesliga assists total - second only to Kevin De Bruyne - and the highest xA P90 of any player in the top 5 leagues (min 1,000 mins).

This season could conceivably have ended with another treble, with Bayern positioning themselves as the Champions League favourites. But all that could be gone for poor Thomas.

Josip Ilicic (Atalanta)

32 yrs - F, AM (C) - Atalanta
99
Defending
Creative
Passing
Attacking
Shooting
Decisive
Aerials
Physical
JavaScript chart by amChartsLDefendingCreativePassingAttackingShootingDecisiveAerialsPhysical10-10-5051015100%
1492
Played matches
21
15
5
Shots P90
4.53
Shots On target P90
2.05
Successful passing %
81%
Final third passes P90
28.79

Make no mistake - Ilicic has been one of the best players in the world in the past 12 months. Not only the best season of his career, but would be the best season of many player's careers, as part of a hugely watchable Atalanta team. His 1.21 Non-Penalty Goal Contributions P90 puts him alongside the likes of Sancho, Lionel Messi and Kylian Mbappe.

Like his team, for which a Champions League quarter-final was waiting, it would be such a shame if this dream run is not completed.

Timo Werner (RB Leipzig)

Werner's near-Lewandowski style numbers - 30.5 xG+xA for the Pole, 25.7 for Werner - are one thing that it would be horrible to lose - for both men - but for the RB Leipzig man this was probably going to be the summer where he moved on.

Liverpool were among the interested parties and it appeared as if a move to Anfield could become a reality. But with the coronavirus crippling clubs financially in the short term, it could prove to be a barren summer on the transfer front. Werner has time on his side but it feels like now is the time to grace one of the great clubs of Europe, and that might have to wait a little bit longer.

Kylian Mbappe (PSG)

There's been talk of his attitude, of his commitment to improving his game and to his application in training. But for all of that, when Mbappe has been on the pitch his numbers quite simply blow everyone else away.

Just have a look at some of the categories where he either comes out on top, or near the top:

KYLIAN MBAPPE: TOP FIVE LEAGUES

Kylian Mbappe 19/20 in Ligue 1

StatNoRank
Non-Pen Goals P901.071st
Non-Pen Contributions P901.372nd
Shots P905.22nd
Shots On Target P902.91st
Touches In Box P9012.21st
xG P900.993rd
xA P900.632nd
Total xG + xA27.22nd
FC Av Rating8.03rd

Whether or not you feel that Ligue 1 is of a similar standard of competition as Europe's other major leagues is largely irrelevant - Mbappe's numbers, with the exception of Neymar, are so far ahead of the division it almost isn't fair. It would be a shame if these numbers were never placed on record.

TEAMS

Bayern Munich

Bayern are probably favourites for the Champions League at this stage and have been simply thrilling since the winter break. With a few key players a year older, they may not be able to produce such a fine run next year.

Getafe

The Champions League challengers have confounded all expectations in Spain with a mixture of direct tactics and some significant injury innovation off the field. Whether this squad comprised rather largely of journeymen can continue this form throughout another long league campaign.

Liverpool

It goes without saying.

Leeds

Having been stuck in England's lower leagues since 2004, Leeds have never been in a better position to secure promotion back to the Premier League. With the season run-in remaining, a solid run of performances should be enough to see them automatically promoted. Will that chance be taken away from them?

Lazio

The Rome side are very much in with a shout of overcoming Juventus to win the Scudetto and end a 20-year wait, Ciro Immobile and Luis Alberto have been among the stars of Serie A - could they do it all over again?

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