E Ratings update: Championship, 5 Feb 2017

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.

ch-sparklines-2017-02-05You can see how the model assessed the latest round of matches here.

Newcastle and Brighton remain locked in a dance for supremacy, which the Magpies’ more convincing performance this weekend – a dominant win over Derby – giving them the edge at the moment.

The Rams’ poor showing saw them drop at Huddersfield‘s expense, with the Terriers recording a potentially pivotal win over Leeds.

A rare win for Birmingham and a respectable performance by Barnsley in their draw saw both rise significantly from the crowded lower section of the ratings table.

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:


The title race looks to be neck and neck, with Newcastle and Brighton maintaining a firm grip on the two automatic promotion spots. Despite surges from the likes of Huddersfield they’ll need either an insanely good run-in or a collapse from one of the top two to break the current duopoly.

The fight for the final play-off place continues, with Reading still expected to drop away slightly by the model and either Norwich or Derby considered most capable of taking advantage.

At the bottom it’s looking increasingly bleak for Rotherham with Wigan and Blackburn still the likeliest to join them in League 1 next season. Burton‘s win saw their survival prospects improve and limited the impact of Rovers’ own victory.