E Ratings update: Championship, 4 Mar 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.

2017-03-04-ch-sparklinesYou can see how the model assessed the latest round of matches here.

At the top, Newcastle continue to go from strength to strength while Brighton are stalling, but it’d be premature to over-react to the Seagulls’ recent defeats.

After an unimpressive start to Steve Bruce’s tenure, Aston Villa look to be clicking at last but as we’ll see below it’s surely too late to mount a play-off bid.

Reading‘s ratings remain among the lowest after yet another win in which they look to have been out-created.

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:

2017-03-04-ch-probabilities

Newcastle‘s win over Huddersfield, coupled with defeat for Brighton, leaves the Magpies in a very strong position, and they did the Seagulls a favour by turning over their nearest competition for second place.

Fulham‘s win looks to have locked them into a tussle with Reading for the final play-off place, with the model judging that the Cottagers’ superior ratings qualify them to close the gap. In fairness, they’d only be two points outside the top six if they were to win their game in hand.

Blackburn’s win over Wigan was massive: it shunted the Latics’ survival prospects south of 30% while closing the gap between Rovers and the teams immediately above them.