League 2 timelines, 19-20 Jan 2018

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

There were few wins this week which look like they could easily have gone the other way: Chesterfield‘s precious win at Yeovil and Exeter‘s triumph in a six-pointer at the other end of the table were the two most significant examples, while Mansfield and Coventry also seemed fortunate. Elsewhere Forest Green‘s 5-2 thrashing of Cambridge looks to have owed more to a sharp finishing (or perhaps poor defending) than dominance.