Championship match timelines: 7-9 Aug 2015

A bit later than planned, here is the first of a (hopefully) weekly round-up where I canter through a simple visualisation of each Football League match, starting here with the Championship. What I’ve done is to plot the cumulative quality of both clubs’ shots, expressed in Expected Goals, over the course of each match, to illustrate how it unfolded and whether the result reflected the chances created.

There’s a fuller explanation here, but in a nutshell there’s a graphic for each match showing how the goalscoring potential of their shots adds up over 90 minutes. The number in brackets after each club’s score at the top is the total Expected Goals value of all their shots in the match, and the blobs on the lines represent goals scored.

2015-08-07 Brighton 1 Nottm Forest 0

The season’s curtain-raiser saw two sides create a pretty similar level of chances, with both potentially worthy of a goal. Brighton had the better of the first half while Forest didn’t really get going until after they fell behind early in the second.
2015-08-08 Birmingham 2 Reading 1

Birmingham look to have taken their chances very well indeed – neither of their goals (a direct free kick and a header from a man being marked by two players) originated from particularly promising positions, and Reading’s late failure from the penalty spot denied them a point that they could argue was the least they deserved.2015-08-08 Blackburn 1 Wolves 2

A flurry of goals late in the first half settled this one, with Blackburn’s late barrage unable to rescue a point. Wolves’ attack didn’t trouble the home defence until almost half an hour into the match, but they made their chances count.
2015-08-08 Bolton 0 Derby 0

A frustrating match resulted in neither side racking up even a goal’s worth of attempts, with a draw seemingly a fair result. The away side enjoyed the better of the first period and their visitors the second, but very few efforts found the target.2015-08-08 Brentford 2 Ipswich 2

Brentford certainly left it late: both of their goals show up as a single blob here, coming as they did in second half stoppage time. On balance their comeback seems fair, as they had created chances of similar quality to their visitors just before their late double strike.
2015-08-08 Cardiff 1 Fulham 1

After taking the lead shortly after half time, Fulham failed to trouble the Cardiff defence for the final half hour and ultimately surrendered their lead. The home side look to have earned their goal, having created almost two goals’ worth of shots.2015-08-08 Charlton 2 QPR 0

These two sides look to have matched each other in chance creation, with their lines tracking fairly closely, but only one was able to make their efforts count. Interestingly it was two of Charlton’s less promising efforts that found the net, rather than the two most significant they fashioned.
2015-08-08 Hull 2 Huddersfield 0

Hull look to have dominated this encounter, although fully half of their goalscoring potential was unleashed in the flurry of activity that led to their opener late in the first period. Prior to that, neither side had managed a shot for over 20 minutes, with Huddersfield enduring a 40-minute period between the 8th and 48th minute without troubling the home defence.
2015-08-08 Leeds 1 Burnley 1

Leeds will be encouraged to have out-created a side which has just returned from the Premier League, even if they had to settle for a share of the points. United’s accumulated efforts looked sufficient to have earned their late goal before Burnley’s equaliser.2015-08-08 Rotherham 1 MK Dons 4

The scoreline makes this match appear more one-sided than it actually was, with the two sides matching each other’s creativity as the game progressed. Ultimately it was the final touch that was the difference between them.2015-08-08 Sheff Wed 2 Bristol C 0

It was a relatively meek reintroduction to the second tier for Bristol City, who were out-created by their hosts in terms of both quantity and quality. Neither side fashioned much of note in the first 25 minutes, when the game suddenly sprang into life at both ends, but only the home side seemed able to carry that momentum into the second half.2015-08-09 Preston 0 Middlesbrough 0With almost two goals’ worth of chances being created we were unfortunate not to see at least one scored here. Preston had the better of the first half and Boro edged the second, but few shots found the target and both sides endured long spells without getting a shot away.