League 2 previews, 18-19 Mar 2017

Below are the individual preview graphics for each game in the forthcoming round of fixtures. These smash together minimalist versions of two visualisations: each club’s E Ratings and their relative positions on the attack and defence scatter graphics.

I’ve explained them fully here, but in summary they’re intended as a simple pre-match comparison of two teams using high-level performance data. The graphic has three sections:

  1. The current ratings (with ranks) of the two teams and how these have changed over the past 30 league matches;
  2. A probability forecast for the match based on the ratings;
  3. Scatter graphics showing the teams’ attacking and defensive performance this season.

Before we launch into them, here’s each match is listed in descending order of how likely a home win is. It probably doesn’t need to be said, but this is NOT betting advice – there’s loads of relevant stuff that the model doesn’t factor in (e.g. injuries and suspensions) that will surely have an impact.

There could be a fair few away wins this weekend with the visiting side favoured in seven of the 12 matches. Plymouth and Grimsby are the only two home sides with a greater than 50% chance of victory while the most evenly-balanced match looks to be Cambridge‘s visit to Cheltenham.

Most pivotal match

I’m trialling the reintroduction of a graphic I used last season to pinpoint matches that have a lot riding on them according to the model. This week the most pivotal game looks to be Blackpool’s trip to Newport:

A home win for the Exiles could leave them looking around twice as likely to claw their way to safety than if they lost and would also put a massive dent in their visitors’ promotion hopes. However if the Tangerines can take all three points then they’d put themselves in a strong position to claim the final play-off spot.

Individual matches

Here are the graphics for each game in a gallery format.