While coverage of top flight, continental and international football competitions is becoming awash with statistics, fans of lower league football subsist on a relative paucity of freely-available information. The scant data we do receive is blandly or patchily presented and analysed, with nobody seeming willing to invest in squeezing insight from it.
This imbalance doesn’t sit well with me: while I’m not obsessed with numbers, I enjoy the added insights and depth that they bring. I’ve long harboured a fondness for data analytics and visualisations and I reasoned that this blog would serve as a suitable outlet for combining this with my love of football.
Since I started this blog I’ve been hired as the Press Association’s Head of Data Analysis which allows me to crunch football numbers for a living, but I suspect that a lot of Football League analysis won’t find its way into the day job straight away, hence the blog will continue to the extent I’m able to populate it.
What this is
This blog represents the final step in my attempts to realise my recently-acquired dream of analysing and visualising football for a living. First came the Torquay-specific Twitter account, then the accompanying blog, followed by the diversification of the blog to cover the whole of League 2. The blog now covers all three divisions of the Football League on a regular basis, drawing on whatever data I can lay my hands on. This is interspersed with more detailed regular and ad hoc analyses at league, divisional and team level throughout the season.
What this isn’t
This isn’t the place to come for professionally rigorous standards of statistical analysis – I simply don’t have the time or the data to match the admirably scientific level of detail that some of those I follow are capable of (see my recommended links page for a shortlist of these). Nor is this is intended as a betting guide or a source of news or match reports – more established entities than I already have that angle very much sewn up.
Have I seen your stuff somewhere else?
You may well have – I now produce regular content for the Press Association, which has appeared on BT Sport, Football Week and on our own website: MatchStory. However I’ve also collaborated significantly in an amateur capacity:
- Several leading club blogs, including Seat Pitch, No Nay Never and The Exiled Robin. Many others have taken my data and analysed or adapted it themselves.
- I’ve also appeared on the We Are Going Up podcast, which I can strongly recommend as it covers all 72 Football League clubs with an informed passion.
- I’ve written quite a few pieces on Torquay United for various publications as @GreenwichGull (see the list here).
This film, heavily skewed towards the @GreenwichGull aspect of my online presence, will hopefully explain my love of lower league football further: