E Ratings update: League 2, 3 Apr 2018

Here is the latest update of 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.

Exeter could well be turning a corner in good time to preserve their play-off challenge, but Grimsby are still declining worryingly just as the relegation battle starts to heat up. Mansfield are also in something of a nosedive, which is particularly noticeable in their attack.

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:

Wycombe‘s dominant win over Grimsby edges them closed to securing automatic promotion while nudging the Mariners towards the relegation trapdoor, although Barnet‘s defeat at Stevenage makes it less likely that they’ll be leapfrogging anyone. Lincoln and Exeter both boosted their promotion chances thanks to well-timed victories, with their main rivals losing.

What’s still possible

I’ve also added in an updated version of my newest graphical template, where the probabilities above are superimposed onto bars showing what’s still mathematically possible for each club this season: