League 1 timelines, 12-13 Nov 2016

A quick explanation

You can skip this if you’ve seen these before.

As usual, here are timeline graphics for the latest round of matches. There’s a full explanation of these here, but in a nutshell they track how each club’s expected goals tally (the number of goals that the average team would have scored from the chances that they created) increased over the course of the match.

This allows us to get a better sense of how each game played out than from just watching the highlights. Every jump in a line is a shot, with bigger jumps corresponding to more promising chances (at least as far as I can tell from the limited data available at this level).

There are two numbers next to each club’s name: the first is how many goals they scored and the second (in brackets) is how many goals the average club would have scored from their shots. The latter number is what the lines track, with dots on the lines denoting the goals they actually scored.

Individual matches

You can check how the E Ratings model predicted each match would pan out here.


Bradford look to have been fortunate to take a two-goal lead into half time after a mostly sluggish start, with Rochdale’s dismissal shortly before the hour mark allowing them to finish the game far more dominantly. The visitors were struggling to trouble the tough Bantams defence before the red card so, even if the scoreline would have been less extreme without it, a home win would perhaps have resulted regardless.2016-11-12-bury-southend

Two early Southend goals made this an uphill struggle for Bury, who nonetheless threw the kitchen sink at their visitors. Unfortunately they were unable to make their pressure count and were picked off during the away side’s intermittent forays after half time.

Coventry look unfortunate to have lost this, having kept Scunthorpe mostly quiet until the game’s only goal early in the second half. A draw would have perhaps been fairer on the Sky Blues, given that they created slightly better chances overall, with their wayward finishing from earlier in the season coming back to haunt them.

Keeping clean sheets is still proving difficult for the Gills – this was their 23rd consecutive failed attempt in the league – but they look to have deserved their win here. A flurry of early, speculative efforts gave way to some less frequent but more promising ones after they surprisingly fell behind, although they left it late to secure a valuable home win.


An early red card allowed Millwall to dominate this match and secure a rare clean sheet against one of the division’s most dangerous attacks. To their credit, Bristol Rovers managed to nullify their hosts for a while after falling behind, but eventually saw their resistance broken in the final half an hour.

A score draw looks a pretty fair outcome here, with both MK Dons and Walsall creating sufficient opportunities to get onto the scoresheet and matching each other closely. The Saddlers netted with one of their first efforts in a quiet first half but were pegged back in a far more entertaining second.


Overall it looks like Oldham can be the more disappointed with a share of the points, but going into the last 10 minutes it was Wimbledon who had put in the better display here. A late surge from the hosts saw them rack up a season-best nine shots on target to no avail, but perhaps a late home winner would have been harsh on the visitors.

Fleetwood can feel a bit hard done by here, having found the net (yet again) first and kept their hosts mostly quiet for nearly 75 minutes, yet somehow still losing. Port Vale’s late double will have been gratefully received by the home fans but does little to assuage doubts around their ability to sustain a play-off challenge.

This was a massive win for the Shrews, ending depressingly long sequences without a win and a clean sheet, but on another day this balance of chances could have seen both extended. Oxford paid for a slow start but could have been level shortly before the hour mark in a much-improved second half display, only to see the game killed off late on.

This was an off-colour performance from an apparently depleted Charlton, who never really got going here. Swindon put in a confident display consistent with their margin of victory, keeping their visitors contained for long spells in each half while racking up an impressive array of chances. That’ll definitely take the sting out of the awful news about Tim Sherwood joining.


Bolton were almost completely mute for the first hour of this match, with a belated flurry of activity thereafter not enough to claw their way back into contention. Peterborough’s own efforts were mostly from poor locations but they were nonetheless able to trouble their visitors far more regularly and look to have narrowly deserved the win overall.


After taking an early lead, Chesterfield did well to contain Sheffield United for the remainder of the first half but it looks like the visitors’ class eventually told in the second. While the final scoreline looks to have been harsh on the Spireites, an away win looks to have been a fair result overall.