Scatter graphics: Ligue 1, 2015/16

With domestic seasons now ending all over Europe, I’ll be using my scatter graphics to take a final look at each of the main European leagues. Here’s how the attacking and defensive performances of each Ligue 1 club compared this season.

These graphics are explained here if you haven’t seen them before.

Shot dominance

First of all, here is how the number of shots taken by each club compares with those they face in return. The average number of shots taken per match is on the horizontal and the average number faced is on the vertical, so bottom right (take plenty, allow few in return) is good while top left (take few, allow plenty) is bad. The stripes are like contours: the greener the stripe, the better the performance (and vice versa for red).

F1 2015-16 scatter Att Def

The top two of PSG and Lyon were almost identically dominant despite finishing 31 points apart, although as we’ll see on the next two graphics the champions were far more effective.

We have two more unfortunate outliers: first Bastia, who took far fewer shots than anyone else yet managed to finish in mid-table. The second are bottom side Troyes, who allowed over five more shots at their goal per match than the average side.

Attacking effectiveness

Now let’s look at attacking alone. The horizontal axis stays the same as in the graphic above, but now the vertical shows the average number of shots needed to score each league goal. Therefore bottom right is good (taking lots of shots and needing fewer efforts to convert) and top left is bad:

F1 2015-16 scatter Att

Here we can see that PSG were far more efficient at converting their chances than Lyon. In fact Nice were the second most clinical finishers, which is just as well given that only Bastia took fewer shots.

Troyes are at the top of the graphic again – this time it shows that they were the division’s most wasteful finishers, taking almost seven more shots for each goal scored than the average.

Defensive effectiveness

Finally let’s look at the defensive situation – basically take the above chart and replace the word “taken” for “faced” on both axes. Now top left is good – facing fewer shots and able to soak up more per goal conceded – and bottom right is bad:

F1 2015-16 scatter DefAgain we have a vast difference between PSG and Lyon: while they allowed a similar number of shots at their goal per match, the title winners soaked up more than twice as many attempts for each time they conceded.

Lille‘s defence also deserves a mention, as they allowed the third fewest shots and absorbed over five more than the average team for each goal conceded.

Troyes are wedged in the unfortunate bottom right: in addition to allowing the most shots by far, they also withstood among the fewest per goal conceded.