Blog of Random Thoughts and Pictures

LOI Matchday 14 Predictions

May 27th, 2021

Matchday 14 and all to play for as I’m now really just looking for a clean sweep weekend somewhere in the prediction chain.

Can Sligo keep the momentum going.

Finn Harps (23%) vs Sligo Rovers (49%)
The Probability of a Draw between Finn Harps and Sligo Rovers is 28%

The number of sim home wins for Finn Harps is = 2
The number of sim away wins for Sligo Rovers is = 7
The number of sim draw is = 1

Finn Harps (1.2xG) vs Sligo Rovers (1.35xG)

A prediction of another Sligo Rovers win here, they’d be on a roll !!!

Drogheda (32%) vs Derry City (42%)
The Probability of a Draw between Drogheda and Derry City is 25%

The number of sim home wins for Drogheda is = 3
The number of sim away wins for Derry City is = 6
The number of sim draw is = 1

Drogheda (1.18xG) vs Derry City (0.68xG)

Okay data is two – one in favour of Derry, but I just don’t like the look of Derry’s xG. I’m going for a Drogs win again.

St. Patricks (30%) vs Dundalk (43%)
The Probability of a Draw between St. Patricks and Dundalk is 27%

The number of sim home wins for St. Patricks is = 2
The number of sim away wins for Dundalk is = 5
The number of sim draw is = 3

St. Patricks (1.44xG) vs Dundalk (1.4xG)

Will predict this as a draw.

Bohemians (45%) vs Waterford (27%)
The Probability of a Draw between Bohemians and Waterford is 27%

The number of sim home wins for Bohemians is = 2
The number of sim away wins for Waterford is = 5
The number of sim draw is = 3

Bohemians (1.59xG) vs Waterford (0.66xG)

So a Bohs win here ….. sorry Blues fans.

And finally

Longford (13%) vs Shamrock Rovers (65%)
The Probability of a Draw between Longford and Shamrock Rovers is 21%

The number of sim home wins for Longford is = 1
The number of sim away wins for Shamrock Rovers is = 7
The number of sim draw is = 2

Longford (0.70xG) vs Shamrock Rovers (1.42xG)

The Rovers will get back into this title race.

LOI Matchday 13 Non Predictions

May 27th, 2021

This is a painful post as I have to admit I missed the opportunity to make any predictions before the Matchday 13 games kicked off and so I’m left to compare what the prediction would have been … and side by side to the actual result.

Before I get into that from matchday 12 there were 2 correct out of the 5 making it a running total of 23 out of 59.

So to the rubber that is matchday 13, with predictions and results.

Bohemians (24%) vs Dundalk (49%)
The Probability of a Draw between Bohemians and Dundalk is 26%

So I would have gone for a Dundalk win and the score was ….. Bohemians 5 – 1 Dundalk. So way off there.

Next up

Derry City (36%) vs St. Patricks (36%)
The Probability of a Draw between Derry City and St. Patricks is 28%

System looks to be a draw and the result Derry City 2 – 2 St. Patricks. A draw so on the money here

Waterford (57%) vs Finn Harps (18%)
The Probability of a Draw between Waterford and Finn Harps is 24%

The Blues for a predicted win. The result was Waterford 1 – 2 Finn Harps. Waterford played very well in the 1st half but Finn Harps came on strong in the 2nd.

Drogheda (54%) vs Longford (22%)
The Probability of a Draw between Drogheda and Longford is 23%

So a Drogs win predicated and the result was Drogheda 4 – 1 Longford, so a good win all around.

Finally

Shamrock Rovers (55%) vs Sligo Rovers (19%)
The Probability of a Draw between Shamrock Rovers and Sligo Rovers is 26%

So a clear Rovers (SHA) win predicted and the final results Shamrock Rovers 0 – 1 Sligo Rovers. Well there’s a turn up for the books a whole load of ways around, although then again sounds like it was well deserved. Sligo for the league by the looks of things now !!!

LOI Matchday 12 Predictions

May 20th, 2021

Starting to bomb out on these predictions, 1 out of 4 last week, and could have been close on two of the match, but it is what it is.

Running total is 21 out of 54.

This weeks predictions, we will start again with Waterford, under new management.

Waterford (40%) vs Derry City (33%)
The Probability of a Draw between Waterford and Derry City is 27%

The number of sim home wins for Waterford is = 3
The number of sim away wins for Derry City is = 4
The number of sim draw is = 3

Waterford (0.62xG) vs Derry City (0.68xG)

All indications here are for a draw ….. I’ll go with the draw and maybe hope that new management spur the Blues towards a real win.

St. Patricks (48%) vs Bohemians (23%)
The Probability of a Draw between St. Patricks and Bohemians is 28%

The number of sim home wins for St. Patricks is = 4
The number of sim away wins for Bohemians is = 5
The number of sim draw is = 1

St. Patricks (1.51xG) vs Bohemians (1.45xG)

Now I went all gun hoo with St. Pats last week and they lost badly, and there will be goals in this match, and I’ll stick with the St. Pats win.

Dundalk (45%) vs Shamrock Rovers (27%)
The Probability of a Draw between Dundalk and Shamrock Rovers is 27%

The number of sim home wins for Dundalk is = 6
The number of sim away wins for Shamrock Rovers is = 2
The number of sim draw is = 2

Dundalk (1.66xG) vs Shamrock Rovers (1.36xG)

Ahhh the data is messing with me now, all pointers are to a Dundalk win …. it can’t be, I’m going against the grain here and will predict a draw (dare I say based on the xG).

Finn Harps (34%) vs Drogheda (38%)
The Probability of a Draw between Finn Harps and Drogheda is 28%

The number of sim home wins for Finn Harps is = 5
The number of sim away wins for Drogheda is = 2
The number of sim draw is = 3

Finn Harps (1.14xG) vs Drogheda (0.76xG)

Fair play to the Drogs they’ve really embedded themselves into the season well, and Finn Harps have tipped away nicely nothing much between these teams and so will plum for a draw.

Sligo Rovers (63%) vs Longford (14%)
The Probability of a Draw between Sligo Rovers and Longford is 21%

The number of sim home wins for Sligo Rovers is = 6
The number of sim away wins for Longford is = 2
The number of sim draw is = 2

Sligo Rovers (0.94xG) vs Longford (0.74xG)

Nice bit of news about the new stadium for Sligo and I’ll go for win for Sligo here too.

LOI Matchday 11 Predictions

May 14th, 2021

Oh for fffffff sake match day 10 was a wash out especially the Waterford vs Drogheda match where I could not have predicted the chaos there.

Running total is 20 out of 50.

For this weekend, there’s just the 4 matches.

Finn Harps (11%) vs Dundalk (67%)
The Probability of a Draw between Finn Harps and Dundalk is 20%

The number of sim home wins for Finn Harps is = 0
The number of sim away wins for Dundalk is = 9
The number of sim draw is = 1

Finn Harps (1.12xG) vs Dundalk (1.29xG)

All pointing towards a Dundalk win, and their not exactly in a great place and Finn Harps have been tipping along nicely ….. but will stick to the data guns and say Dundalk for the win.

Drogheda (25%) vs St. Patricks (49%)
The Probability of a Draw between Drogheda and St. Patricks is 25%

The number of sim home wins for Drogheda is = 3
The number of sim away wins for St. Patricks is = 4
The number of sim draw is = 3

Drogheda (1.07xG) vs St. Patricks (1.2xG)

Can Drogheda score goals their xG is going to be way off given the 7 goal win last week. Will go for a St. Pats win.

Shamrock Rovers (56%) vs Derry City (19%)
The Probability of a Draw between Shamrock Rovers and Derry City is 25%

The number of sim home wins for Shamrock Rovers is = 3
The number of sim away wins for Derry City is = 4
The number of sim draw is = 3

Shamrock Rovers (2.07xG) vs Derry City (0.66xG)

The sims seem to indicate a draw but over all al Rovers win here is predicted.

Longford (24%) vs Bohemians (50%)
The Probability of a Draw between Longford and Bohemians is 26%

The number of sim home wins for Longford is = 2
The number of sim away wins for Bohemians is = 6
The number of sim draw is = 2

Longford (0.7xG) vs Bohemians (1.43xG)

And finally a Bohs win here.

What could go wrong ?

Expected Goals (xG)

May 9th, 2021

As part of my LOI weekly predictions (don’t ask about match day 10 it was a wipe out) I’ve also included an indication of the teams expected goals (xG). Now it might be worth articulating an introduction to expected goals and there are four videos worth a review.

  • One by David Sumpter (Friends of Tracking)
  • One by Duncan Alexander at Opta.
  • One by Tifo football.
  • One with example goals with the xG overlaid on the screen.

First up David Sumpter on How to explain expected goals to a football player.

In this video David takes us through the probability of scoring a goal in the penalty area, with an overview of Barcelona statistics of expected Goals, indicating how a penalty is a 75% chance of scoring, and in comparison to a 7% chance of scoring, and an explanation of what this means.

True to the point there can and should be a reasoned discussion around goal scoring (and goal prevention) instead of always the emotional one, and xG gives some insights on this.

Opta’s Duncan Alexander takes us through the expected goals metric in the video Opta Expected Goals.

Of note (agt the time of the video), 4 variables are considered with Opta, Assist Type, Header / Foot, Big Chance and Angle/Distance.

The video by Tifo Football is a nice By The Numbers presentation on What is xG ?

They describe in nicer detail how good a shooting chance was, how likely a similar chances was, to result in a goal. They also highlight that people like StrataBet considers defenders in the way while other models like Opta do not and that sets of 5~10 games get best value for xG.

Expected goals (xG)

So expected goals (xG) is a probability of scoring a goal, with a look at how good a shooting chance was, how likely a similar chances was, to result in a goal.

Finally here’s a video demonstration of expected goals (xG)

LOI Matchday 10 Predictions

May 6th, 2021

First up news of the week in LOI has to be the dismissal of Kevin Sheedy from Waterford FC. I think the writing was on the wall from early on, dare I say before the season even started. Back to the drawing board for Waterford. Before making a prediction on their game, and the four others for matchday 10, a review of match day 9 shows a 3 out of 5 result, with two draws called correctly.

The running total is 20 correct results out of 45.

Now to the predictions for matchday 10

Derry City (64%) vs Longford (14%)
The Probability of a Draw between Derry City and Longford is 20%

The number of sim home wins for Derry City is = 8
The number of sim away wins for Longford is = 1
The number of sim draw is = 1

Derry City (1.0xG) vs Longford (0.78xG)

I went for a Derry win last week and it didn’t work out, but the predictions are aiming towards a Derry win again here, and so we stay with the Derry win (predicted)

Dundalk (61%) vs Sligo Rovers (16%)
The Probability of a Draw between Dundalk and Sligo Rovers is 22%

The number of sim home wins for Dundalk is = 5
The number of sim away wins for Sligo Rovers is = 2
The number of sim draw is = 3

Dundalk (1.41xG) vs Sligo Rovers (1.42xG)

Sligo are scoring away from home (xG) and these two teams had a draw on the opening day of the season. Data says Dundalk win, the heart says draw, but will go for the Dundalk win.

Waterford (55%) vs Drogheda (21%)
The Probability of a Draw between Waterford and Drogheda is 23%

The number of sim home wins for Waterford is = 6
The number of sim away wins for Drogheda is = 2
The number of sim draw is = 2

Waterford (0.62xG) vs Drogheda (0.76xG)

This will be a tight game again, well mainly a 0-0 type match, but the data is pointing towards a Waterford FC win, and we all need some cheering up, so a Waterford win in this one.

Bohemians (58%) vs Finn Harps (16%)
The Probability of a Draw between Bohemians and Finn Harps is 26%

The number of sim home wins for Bohemians is = 3
The number of sim away wins for Finn Harps is = 3
The number of sim draw is = 4

Bohemians (1.38xG) vs Finn Harps (1.26xG)

I’m going to call a draw in this one, the simmed matches and xG are indicating a draw and Finn Harps are tipping along nicely and I cannot push for the Bohs win, so a draw it will be.

St. Patricks (33%) vs Shamrock Rovers (38%)
The Probability of a Draw between St. Patricks and Shamrock Rovers is 29%

The number of sim home wins for St. Patricks is = 2
The number of sim away wins for Shamrock Rovers is = 4
The number of sim draw is = 4

St. Patricks (1.59xG) vs Shamrock Rovers (1.23xG)

And finally to the top of the table clash and this has a draw written all over it, and so another draw.

LOI Matchday 9 Predictions

May 2nd, 2021

It’s getting harder to keep up with all the matches happening in the LOI, but at least match day 8 (in review) was a good one as another 4 predictions out of 5 were on the button. Although I was way off the the one that was incorrect with Bohs getting beaten by Derry City, could anyone have seen that coming ?

The running total is 17 out of 40.

Now in to match day 9 predictions.

Drogheda (32%) vs Bohemians (41%)
The Probability of a Draw between Drogheda and Bohemians is 27%

The number of sim home wins for Drogheda is = 2
The number of sim away wins for Bohemians is = 6
The number of sim draw is = 2

Drogheda (1.12xG) vs Bohemians (1.45xG)

This is too close to call and so going for a draw.

Shamrock Rovers (58%) vs Waterford (18%)
The Probability of a Draw between Shamrock Rovers and Waterford is 24%

The number of sim home wins for Shamrock Rovers is = 3
The number of sim away wins for Waterford is = 6
The number of sim draw is = 1

Shamrock Rovers (2.09xG) vs Waterford (0.62xG)

The sim matches are playing tricks with me, but the call here has to be a Shamrock Rovers win

Longford (11%) vs Dundalk (69%)
The Probability of a Draw between Longford and Dundalk is 17%

The number of sim home wins for Longford is = 2
The number of sim away wins for Dundalk is = 7
The number of sim draw is = 1

Longford (0.77xG) vs Dundalk (1.2xG)

Dundalk are on a roll now and I’ll take them for a win in this one.

Sligo Rovers (36%) vs St. Patricks (35%)
The Probability of a Draw between Sligo Rovers and St. Patricks is 29%

The number of sim home wins for Sligo Rovers is = 4
The number of sim away wins for St. Patricks is = 4
The number of sim draw is = 2

Sligo Rovers (0.89xG) vs St. Patricks (0.90xG)

This is looking like a draw and will call it for a draw.

Derry City (61%) vs Finn Harps (15%)
The Probability of a Draw between Derry City and Finn Harps is 23%

The number of sim home wins for Derry City is = 6
The number of sim away wins for Finn Harps is = 2
The number of sim draw is = 2

Derry City (0.83xG) vs Finn Harps (1.08xG)

I wonder is Finn Harps early season bubble about to burst with Derry catching them ? All the pointers are towards a Derry City win so will go for a Derry win.

LOI Matchday 8 Predictions

April 30th, 2021

Match day 7 review and a 4 predictions out of 5 is pretty decent this time around, the league must be settling down now.

The running total is 13 out of 35.

Now in to match day 8 predictions.

St. Patricks (68%) vs Longford (11%)
The Probability of a Draw between St. Patricks and Longford is 18%

The number of sim home wins for St. Patricks is = 9
The number of sim away wins for Longford is = 0
The number of sim draw is = 1

St. Patricks (1.72xG) vs Longford (0.81xG)

Going for a St. Pats win here

Drogheda (30%) vs Sligo Rovers (43%)
The Probability of a Draw between Drogheda and Sligo Rovers is 26%

The number of sim home wins for Drogheda is = 0
The number of sim away wins for Sligo Rovers is = 5
The number of sim draw is = 5

Drogheda (1.11xG) vs Sligo Rovers (1.24xG)

Taking it as a draw for this one

Bohemians (40%) vs Derry City (31%)
The Probability of a Draw between Bohemians and Derry City is 28%

The number of sim home wins for Bohemians is = 6
The number of sim away wins for Derry City is = 2
The number of sim draw is = 2

Bohemians (0.97xG) vs Derry City (0.40xG)

Going for a narrow win for Bohs on this one.

Waterford (24%) vs Dundalk (51%)
The Probability of a Draw between Waterford and Dundalk is 24%

The number of sim home wins for Waterford is = 1
The number of sim away wins for Dundalk is = 8
The number of sim draw is = 1

Waterford (0.58xG) vs Dundalk (1.11xG)

Ahh hate saying this but looking like a Dundalk win

Finn Harps (14%) vs Shamrock Rovers (61%)
The Probability of a Draw between Finn Harps and Shamrock Rovers is 24%

The number of sim home wins for Finn Harps is = 0
The number of sim away wins for Shamrock Rovers is = 8
The number of sim draw is = 2

Finn Harps (1.16xG) vs Shamrock Rovers (1.17xG)

The xG is pointing at a draw, and Finn Harps have started well, but will go for the Rovers win in this one.

Good Practice in Football Visualisation

April 25th, 2021

This is a review of a special guest lecture from Opta’s Peter McKeever were he gives some insights in to how to make better data visualisations.

In this video Peter covers:

  • Elements of Matplotlib
  • Under the Hood: rcParams
  • Layering objects with zorder in plots
  • Works through a real world example

The origin of the code is available on Github under the project “friends-of-tracking-viz-lecture” and worked through in this video.

Peter’s slides are available here in this PDF document. Peter also has an excellent blog with code and further examples.

Set up

Under the organisation on Github called mmoffoot I forked the “friends-of-tracking-viz-lecture” repo into the mmoffoot area.

Then I created a new branch called ‘tottenham’ in this area to cover the changes I made.

What was coded

This is another Jupyter Notebook, but this time I just could not get it to load up the highlight_text python library and so I had to create a bog standard Python programme to run through this code base.

Then I found that highlight_text has changed its interface slightly since Peter coded against it. For example in the Notebook there’s the line

htext.fig_htext(s.format(team,ssn_start,ssn_end),0.15,0.99,highlight_colors=[primary], highlight_weights=["bold"],string_weight="bold",fontsize=22, fontfamily=title_font,color=text_color)

I had to change it to

htext.fig_text(0.15,0.86,s.format(team,ssn_start,ssn_end),highlight_colors=[primary], highlight_weights=["bold"],fontweight="bold",fontsize=22, fontfamily=title_font,color=text_color)

Given that Peter McKeever has run through all the elements coded via the YouTube video and there’s an associated slide deck this is a really nice resource to get started on exact visual items and how to then code them up. Of course for devilment I’ve gone for a Tottenham theme for the final output.

Tottenham’s goal difference from 2010/2011 to 2019/2020

Peter also talks about the blog posts by Lisa Rost which are well worth a review on how to visualise data. He also gives a pointer towards Tim Bayer and his work doing some things for Fantasy premier league, all of which is excellent.

Finally there’s ThemePy which is being developed, it is a theme selector / creator and aesthetic manager for Matplotlib. This wrappers aim is to simplify the process of customising matplotlib plots and to enable users who are relatively new to python or matplotlib to move beyond the default plotting params we are given with matplotlib.

LOI Matchday 7 Predictions

April 22nd, 2021

Match day 6 review and got 3 predictions out of 5, and things are getting a bit better.

The running total is 9 out of 30.

Now in to match day 7 predictions

Finn Harps (20%) vs St. Patricks (54%)
The Probability of a Draw between Finn Harps and St. Patricks is 26%

The number of sim home wins for Finn Harps is = 1
The number of sim away wins for St. Patricks is = 8
The number of sim draw is = 1

Finn Harps (1.05xG) vs St. Patricks (0.72xG)

Predicting St. Pats win here

Shamrock Rovers (56%) vs Bohemians (18%)
The Probability of a Draw between Shamrock Rovers and Bohemians is 26%

The number of sim home wins for Shamrock Rovers is = 8
The number of sim away wins for Bohemians is = 0
The number of sim draw is = 2

Shamrock Rovers (1.78xG) vs Bohemians (1.32xG)

Everything pointing to a Rovers win, let’s see

Dundalk (73%) vs Drogheda (8%)
The Probability of a Draw between Dundalk and Drogheda is 14%

The number of sim home wins for Dundalk is = 6
The number of sim away wins for Drogheda is = 0
The number of sim draw is = 4

Dundalk (1.45xG) vs Drogheda (0.67xG)

A Dundalk win here.

Waterford (63%) vs Longford (15%)
The Probability of a Draw between Waterford and Longford is 20%

The number of sim home wins for Waterford is = 7
The number of sim away wins for Longford is = 1
The number of sim draw is = 2

Waterford (0.57xG) vs Longford (0.70xG)

This is looking like a Waterford win, they certainly need one.

Sligo Rovers (42%) vs Derry City (30%)
The Probability of a Draw between Sligo Rovers and Derry City is 28%

The number of sim home wins for Sligo Rovers is = 6
The number of sim away wins for Derry City is = 2
The number of sim draw is = 2

Sligo Rovers (0.94xG) vs Derry City (0.26xG)

Going to go for a draw here.