Comparing players’ teammates

Tyson Wahl

Several months ago I wrote about a number of ways to visualize how often different players appear together. Since that writing I’ve continued to explore this question, and have revisited an older plot design that focuses on a single player and his or her teammates. This focus brings a measure of clarity that I would like to explore… Continue reading Comparing players’ teammates

Columbus – Dallas, and the question of lineup stability

  Columbus Crew SC will play host to FC Dallas this weekend in a game that will be nationally televised on Fox Sports 1. While the game is still several days away, and will feature two clubs in third place in their conferences and fighting for playoff seeding, much of the conversation ahead of the game has instead… Continue reading Columbus – Dallas, and the question of lineup stability

Experiments in plotting player performance

How do you evaluate soccer players? Is there a way to examine a given player, in the context of his or her team, regardless of their position on the field? This is an issue that I’ve been somewhat preoccupied with this season, and the question has led me to put together a plot style that… Continue reading Experiments in plotting player performance

About player combinations

The question of player combinations has fascinated me for some time. The topic is predicated on the belief that a team is, more than anything else, the aggregation of its players. Coaches have an impact, but it is the players on the field. More than individual players, even, I have been looking for ways to understand… Continue reading About player combinations

Plotting individual playing time against goal difference

Columbus player performance, plotted by comparing playing time against goal difference

I started working with a new type of impact plot tonight, looking specifically at playing time compared against team goal difference. Dots representing each player are plotted along two axes: the horizontal axis records how much of the season the player has seen, while the vertical axis indicates the team’s goal difference during the player’s time… Continue reading Plotting individual playing time against goal difference

Visualizing minutes played by player age

How do team rosters change over time? Do players of a certain age tend to play more or less often? These are some of the questions I’ve pondered over the years. And they are the subject of a brief experiment I’ve worked on the last few days.

Revisiting playing time: how important is a stable lineup in Major League Soccer?

Playing time distribution of Crew teams that earned 40 or more points, compared with teams that earned fewer than 40 points.

Two weeks ago, I published an article that analysed the distribution of playing time for Columbus Crew teams over the past 14 years. One of the apparent conclusions of that investigation was that, for a team to be successful, it is necessary to have a relatively stable core of players. The underlying charts identified that… Continue reading Revisiting playing time: how important is a stable lineup in Major League Soccer?

An analysis of playing time for the 2009 Columbus Crew

Taken as a whole, playing time for Crew teams tend to follow a similar pattern regardless of how successful a single team was. This image shows playing time distribution across the 14 seasons that the Crew has existed.

With the end of the year quickly approaching, and the 2009 season starting to recede into memories both good and bad, this seems to be a good time to look back and begin to consider how the Crew’s performance this season compares to previous years. One way to do this is to examine how playing time… Continue reading An analysis of playing time for the 2009 Columbus Crew