E Ratings update: Championship, 23 Oct 2016

Here is the latest update of the season to the E Ratings and how they predict the rest of the season will pan out. The rating system is explained here, but in a nutshell it’s based on the combined quality of chances that clubs create and allow, rather than their results.

The attack rating broadly equates to how many goals’ worth of chances a team would create against an average opponent (so higher is better), with the defence rating equivalent to the chances they’d be expected to allow (so lower is better). The overall rating is the difference between the two – effectively the average expected goal difference per match – so a positive number is good and a negative one is bad.

The graphic below lists each club in descending order of their overall E Rating and shows how this – along with their individual attack and defence ratings – has changed over the past 30 league matches. The red and green arrows indicate how the overall rankings have moved in the past month and the numbers in brackets show the ranks for each team’s attack and defence ratings.


There was limited shuffling in the top half of the ratings table but chaos further down due to the narrow spread of ratings. Newcastle and Sheffield Wednesday each nudged themselves higher, although the Owls’ elevation had more to do with Derby‘s disappointing showing at Huddersfield.

There were three clubs who moved five places: a creditable performance in defeat for QPR and a convincing win for Burton saw each rise while Birmingham – vanquished by the Brewers – fell heavily.

Rotherham remain significantly adrift at the bottom of the ratings and their predicament isn’t yet improving, but it’ll be interesting to see what impact Kenny Jackett’s appointment will have over the coming weeks.

You can see how each match played out here.

Predicting the rest of the season

Below I’ve used each club’s current ratings and those of their remaining opponents to predict how the rest of the season could play out. Each of the remaining fixtures has been simulated thousands of times, using the current E Ratings to generate probabilities for where each club will finish.

This graphic shows the cumulative probability of where each club could end up, in descending order of average points won. You can think of the ordering of the teams down the left hand side as a “best guess” of the final league table, with the coloured bars showing the relative likelihood of each club ending up in a certain section of the table:


It looks like being a two-horse race for the title, with Newcastle currently having the edge over Brighton. Three of the play-off places have likely occupants, with Bristol City the likeliest to make up the numbers as things stand.

Derby‘s ratings haven’t yet tanked enough to write off their promotion challenge, but Steve McClaren is running out of time to rejuvenate their attack.

At the bottom Rotherham are overwhelming favourites for relegation thanks to their awful start and their ratings not suggesting that they’re capable of closing the gap, so Kenny Jackett has his work cut out for him. While Wigan and Blackburn look likeliest to join them in League 1 next season, their predicaments look far easier to reverse: both still have a better than 50% chance of surviving.