The Numbers Game: Why Everything You Know About Soccer Is Wrong by Chris AndersonMoneyball meets Freakonomics in this myth-busting guide to understanding—and winning—the most popular sport on the planet - now with a new afterword on the 2014 World Cup!
Innovation is coming to soccer, and at the center of it all are the numbers—a way of thinking about the game that ignores the obvious in favor of how things actually are. In The Numbers Game, Chris Anderson, a former professional goalkeeper turned soccer statistics guru, teams up with behavioral analyst David Sally to uncover the numbers that really matter when it comes to predicting a winner. Investigating basic but profound questions—How valuable are corners? Which goal matters most? Is possession really nine-tenths of the law? How should a player’s value be judged?—they deliver an incisive, revolutionary new way of watching and understanding soccer.
Everything We Know About Soccer Is Wrong
You have to start with Moneyball. The Book of Genesis for analytics in sport; the tome which lifted the darkness on the face of the deep. Michael Lewis's book , published in , was a sports-business biography that became a movement. Each year the MIT Sloan Sports Analytics conference, founded in and affectionately dubbed Geekapalooza , gets bigger and more prestigious. In America, at least, almost everyone is a Moneyballist now.
The Numbers Game by Chris Anderson and David Sally reveals football's astonishing hidden rules Football has always been a numbers game: , the big number 9 and 3 points for a win. But what if up until now we've been focusing on the wrong numbers? What if the numbers that really matter, the ones that hold the key to winning matches, are actually 2. What if Chelsea should have bought Darren Bent? In this incisive, myth-busting book, Chris Anderson, former goalkeeper turned football statistics guru, and David Sally, former baseball pitcher turned behavioural economist, show that every shred of knowledge we can gather can help us to love football and understand it even more. You'll discover why stopping a goal is more valuable than scoring one, why corners should be taken short, and why it is better to improve your worst player than to buy a superstar. The Numbers Game is essential reading for football fans everywhere and will also appeal to readers who loved Moneyball and Freakonomics.
My boyfriend bought this book for him to read, but I decided that I would read it as well. I recently got into soccer less than a year and I am still learning so much about it. I dabble in Using data to better understand and improve a team's odds of winning the Beautiful Game. Analytics, the use of data and statistics, has grown exponentially in the world of sports in recent years
It has been nearly two months since The Numbers Game : Why Everything You Know About Soccer Is Wrong was published in the United Kingdom and the Netherlands, meaning that soccer quants in North America have had to pay for international shipping if they wanted to get their hands on the book. The way Anderson and Sally approach learning about the game is by asking repeated, intelligent questions, answering them with the best available data, and then asking the next logical question that comes from the answer to the previous question. One of the topical disagreements with the book has come from Soccernomics author and economics professor Stefan Szymanski whose book Soccernomics with Simon Kuper makes a strong case that the economic fundamentals of a club — how much it pays its players — determine how well it does in a season. The differences we see to such a simple question — Do managers matter? A quick calculation by this author indicates there may be some good comparisons that can be made between MLS and the other leagues highlighted in this book. Over the last nine years of MLS games a home win has occurred in 1. Perhaps MLS is just one of the many topics that a second edition of the book can expand upon as the sport grows within both the United States and Canada.