Fantasy Premier League Underlying Stats – the 4 midfielders who shoot the most

Here’s an Fantasy Premier League underlying stats article where we outline the 4 midfielders who topped the shots per game statistic so far in the Premier League and why it’s important

Fantasy Premier League Underlying Stats – the 4 midfielders who shoot the most

I outline my  FPL strategy along with 10 other FFGeek contributors in our new EBook.


See also the article on the 4 forwards that shoot the most

If you are a regular reader of the site you will know that the primary underlying stats that I rely on are expected goals and expected assists which I get from the free site Understat.  However I always like to back it up with volume stats as well.  It’s all very well and good having great expected goals but if you don’t shoot regularly then good expected goals stats can be a bit of a mirage.

The shooting stats are from the free site

Mohamed Salah

No surprises here.  If anything he’s probably criticised for overshooting.  Certainly at least once by Sadio Mane v Burnley!

Not only is he top of shots per game among all players with 3.8,  on the Fantasy Premier League site he’s first overall in Total Points and first overall in Points Per Match for players with more than 1,000 minutes.  That’s despite being only 4th equal in bonus points principally due to his shooting volume I would say.  Although he does have partial responsibility for penalties he hasn’t been padded by these stats with only 3 of 16 goals related to penalties.

He’s top of xG90 for all midfielders with more than 1,000 minutes although behind Mane and Sterling in non penalty xG90.

He principally lines up as a wide right sided forward in Liverpools 4-3-3 formation although with the Fullbacks playing an advanced role he is able to go inside and pretty much play as an inside forward.

The main question I guess is how much he will play once Liverpool have wrapped up the title.

Heung-Min Son

Son has played a good proportion of games this season as Harry Kane’s strike partner or as a lone forward.  That has certainly helped his shooting stats although to be fair he’s been a consistently high volume shooting player irrespective of position.

In points per match on the FPL site only Salah, Mane and De Bruyne have better PPMs of those midfielders with 1,000 minutes or more under their belt.

In my midfield player rankings for the season where I convert underlying stats to FPL points Son ranked 5th behind the high priced 4 of Salah, Sterling, Mane and De Bruyne.

Son has finished his quarantine after returning from military duty in South Korea but will still need to be monitored for match fitness when the season restarts

Raheem Sterling

In 17/18 the Man City midfielder got as close to the 20 goals and 20 assists “double double double double” as anyone probably will ever with 18 goals and 17 assists.  When you go someway to repeating that in 18/19 with 17 goals and 15 assists then you go into 19/20 with huge expectations.

If you then start 19/20 off with a hat trick and then score in the next 2 games the expectation reaches sky high levels.

After those first 3 gameweeks he then went on to return in only 4 of 13 games with only 1 double figure point haul.  Since gameweek 20 he’s not got more than 3 points in a gameweek and has only started 4 games.

If you ignore all the detail above the major point is that when your last to PPM’s were 6.9 then to be on 4.9 as Sterling is now is a major disappointment.

Looking at his underlying stats though the picture isn’t quite as negative.  His current position is mainly down to underperforming what are excellent underlying stats. In our last midfield player rankings article he is 2nd in underlying stats over the season to Salah.  No mean feat.  There are negatives though.  In the 10 gameweeks prior to the rankings he was 10th in underlying stats and he has got a bit of a checkered history in meeting his underlying stats.

Personally I still think the quality is there and he will come back.  The problem is for £11.7m you don’t want to have to rely on hope for any aspect you want guaranteed results.

Kevin De Bruyne

Players who mainly rely on assisting others are a difficult proposition in FPL and to be honest the 1 dimensional midfielder in this regard is less and less. In terms of the traditional top 6 Eriksen has now left Spurs and Ozil appears to be shadow of the player who got 19 assists in 15/16.  De Bruyne however remains such a player but remains a highly effective by his ability to add goals to his armoury as well as an insane number of assists.  He adds goals through his ability to shoot from outside the box with ruthless efficiency.   Interestingly though,  this season only 3 of his 8 goals were from outside the box.  That’s impressive since he’s notionally a number 8 in Peps 4-1-2-3 formation.  That goalscoring ability and number of assists is helped by his insane volume of shots and key passes per 90 minutes.

In FPL he leads all players in assists and only Salah, of those players with over 100o minutes, has a better PPM.

The fixtures as an entire group are excellent to the end of the season and Man City have an extra game in hand on most of the league.  De Bruyne is also template status in my 10 top FPL  Managers article.

Comparing the player stats

Fantasy Premier League Underlying Stats

So what does this mean?

So the correlation between shot volume and Points Per Match is stronger (albeit on a sample of 4) than it was for forwards interestingly.  Sterling is easy to articulate as not only has he under performed his underlying shooting stats but his colleagues have been unable to finish off the chances he’s created. A perfect negative storm.

De Bruyne is also easy to reason as although he’s a volume shooter his penchant for shooting outside the box is why he’s got such a low xG90.  However De Bruyne has consistently shown his shooting ability from distance as he has consistently out performs his xG.  Hence his points per match.

So shooting volume in this example looks a good sign of points per match.

The Fixture Ease schedule

Here’s a representation of the fixture ease schedule which shows the ease of each teams remaining fixtures.  It is out of date in the sense that the order is likely to now be from GW30 onwards and the ranking assumes home and away advantage with supporters in the ground.  However it does still give an indication of the fixture strength and gives you a visual representation of the remaining fixtures

fantasy premier league underlying stats

I outline my  FPL strategy along with 10 other FFGeek contributors in our new EBook.

Other Posts

10 top FPL Managers teams post GW38 

Best fixtures until the end of the season attackers

Best fixtures to the end of the season defenders

Each teams top PPM player – Arsenal and Aston Villa

Each Teams top PPM player – Bournemouth and Brighton

Each teams top PPM player – Burnley and Chelsea

Each teams top PPM player – Palace and Everton

Each teams top PPM player – Leicester and Liverpool

Each teams top PPM player – Man Utd and Man City

Each teams top PPM player – Norwich and Newcastle

Each teams top PPM player – Southampton and Sheffield

Each teams top PPM player – Watford and Spurs

Latest news on the premier league restart

Disappointments – Part 10

Disappointments – part 9

Disappointments – part 8

Disappointments – part 7

Disappointments – part 6

Disappointments  – part 5

Disappointments – part 4

Disappointments – part 3

Disappointments – part 2

Disappointments – part 1

A deep dive on the 10 top FPL managers stats

Andrew Whitfield gradual wildcard

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