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Surprising stats: 12 of the best facts from the Premier League's last 12 months

Manchester City
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The Premier League finally feels back to normal - as normal as this league can ever be. Last year was a really abnormal year for football - and the stats proved it.

With fans viewing their teams from their homes instead of at the grounds, some clubs have struggled while others thrived. The same can be said for the players, with some finding world-class form as others have folded under the microscope of Premier League football, in the midst of a season that has thrown up thrills and spills aplenty. 

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These stats might help explain a little better why last season, like so many others before, managed to throw up thrills and spills a-plenty. 

1. Teams weren't as good at home

St. Mary's Stadium

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The lack of fans was a real problem for home teams, with just 107 home wins compared to 112 away wins in the league this season. 

Away teams were arriving with more confidence of nicking a result without 40,000+ people abusing them, while home teams were missing that extra encouragement supporters are brilliant at offering. 

It's safe to say things have returned now.

2. Sam Allardyce became the first West Brom manager since Pulis to record consecutive home wins

Sam Allardyce

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Somewhat unbelievably, there was a point last season when West Brom's last five Premier League wins at the Hawthorns had all come under five different managers - Sam Allardyce, Slaven Bilic, Darren Moore, Alan Pardew, and Tony Pulis.

Luckily for the Baggies, Big Sam broke the spell with a second home win under his tenure. 

3. Don’t let John Stones hit the target… 

John Stones

(Image credit: PA)

...it’ll invariably end up in the net. The Manchester City centre-back had four shots on target in the league last season, duly scoring from all four of his strikes that fell within the width of the goalposts. If John’s lining up the target, best believe it’s going to hit the back of the net. 

4. Ilkay Gundogan is the league’s most clinical goalscorer  

Ilkay Gundogan

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Despite Stones holding the enviable record of scoring from all shots on target, his Manchester City teammate is actually more clinical. 

With a shot to goal ratio of 0.26, Gundogan was the most clinical player in the league. An impressive record of 12 goals in 23 games also propelled Manchester City back to the summit.  

5. Dominic Calvert-Lewin loves to improvise 

Dominic Calvert-Lewin

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Winning the award for the strangest stat is Everton striker Calvert-Lewin. With 40 attempted passes without using his feet or head, the marksman clearly loves a little chess pass - or dodgy knee - to his teammates. 

The most in the league for an outfield player, Calvert-Lewin has more passes not with his feet or head than some goalkeepers (who regularly use their hands).

6. Liverpool were their own worst enemies 

Liverpool defence

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Liverpool's defensive woes this season were well-documented, although this stat won't make them any prettier. 

With 10 defensive errors leading to goals, the Champions have shot themselves in the foot more than double any other team. Goalkeeper Alisson was the worst culprit, accounting for four errors leading to a goal. 

7. Rashford loves a nutmeg

Marcus Rashford

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Marcus Rashford loves feeding the country off the pitch, and humiliating his fellow professionals on it. Producing 15 nutmegs last season, Rashford was violating opponents while still providing goals and assists in the meantime. 

The Manchester United forward's skills are made even more impressive when considering that he had 7 more nutmegs than second-placed Ademola Lookman, who had 8 to his name. 

8. Tielemans keeps spotting someone in the 'crowd'

Youri Tielemans

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Youri Tielemans is proving instrumental in Leicester's fight for a Champions League place this season. However, he still managed to hit the ball out of play 55 times when trying to find his teammates - and that doesn't include shooting, either. 

9. Sheffield United didn't capitulate under Chris Wilder

Sheffield United

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Under Chris Wilder, Sheffield United weren't exactly the prettiest, but they certainly stayed defensively resolute right up until he was sacked. Although the Blades sat in 20th for the majority of the 2020/21 season, under Wilder's leadership Sheffield United didn't lose a match by more than 3 goals in any game. 

Predictably, they went onto concede 5 goals without reply in their first game without him back in the Premier League, as Leicester hammered them.

10. Traore isn't just quick, he can dribble too

Adama Traore

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Adama Traore's end product has left little to be desired during his time in England at Aston Villa, Middlesbrough and now Wolves. Despite that, he is the Premier League's best dribbler, as proven by the stats. 

Completing 122 dribbles from an attempted 160, he trumped second-placed Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa of Fulham, who has a measly 75 in comparison last season. 

11. Salah should have even more goals

Salah Mane Firmino

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So should Mane. Liverpool's highly feared front three didn't fire on all cylinders last season, as proven by the fact that they've all missed 11 big chances - each. 

The return of Diogo Jota is giving them the kick up the backside they so desperately need, this season at last.  

12. Fulham's defence isn't the problem

Fulham

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Fulham's backline proved itself as much better than their league position suggests, conceding the ninth-fewest goals last season. Scott Parker got the Londoners playing attractive football behind the backdrop of a tactically sound defensive unit. 

It's putting the ball in the back of the net at the other end that has proved the problem, though.

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