What is the Catalyst PowerTable?
It may sound like one of those Black & Decker DIY gizmos your dad used to get at Christmas, but the PowerTable is the result of extensive number crunching by Catalyst (a Hertfordshire management consultancy), an index of stats from every English league game since 2000.
Presenting breakdowns of competitive analysis, the PowerTable throws up various hypotheses and trends; when a teamÃ¢ÂÂs most dangerous during a game, when theyÃ¢ÂÂre most vulnerable, whether a side is too reliant on one specific player when it comes to getting goals, etc.
The table is split into four colour-coded tiers, based on the number of points won this century, management quality, squad strength, financial turnover and the clubÃ¢ÂÂs Ã¢ÂÂpotentialÃ¢ÂÂ.
The PowerTable in all its glory
The first tier is home to the richest and most powerful clubs in the Premier League; the second the wannabes, those with a decent cash flow and plenty of ambition; the third a mixture of the newly-promoted and the stuck-in-their-ways mediocre; the final fourth tier housing the struggling relegation fodder.
Interestingly, and a little depressingly, it seems the biggest gap lies between those top two tiers. Breaking into the top four takes a huge leap in both performance and, crucially, finances.
Manchester City fans be warned: according to CatalystÃ¢ÂÂs Mark Reynolds, they need to add ÃÂ£100 million to their turnover, sell about 70,000 new shirts, increase their wage bill by about ÃÂ£80 million, buy back the stadium from the council and Ã¢ÂÂfind players who want to live in ManchesterÃ¢ÂÂ to edge their way into that top-four promised land.
ItÃ¢ÂÂs highly unlikely theyÃ¢ÂÂll be able to do all that in the tight squeeze of a January transfer window, but where theyÃ¢ÂÂll sit in the PowerTable at the beginning of next season should be interesting.
Catalyst declare an 89 percent success rate when it comes to predicting which one of these four tiers the various clubs will end up in come the end of the season. Ultimately, the PowerTableÃ¢ÂÂs USP is itÃ¢ÂÂs ability to accurately show whether a team in the Premier League are playing above, below or in line with their true capability.
THE EFFECTIVENESS TABLE
Within the PowerTable itself, an effectiveness table picks out the points achieved against clubs in each tier. ItÃ¢ÂÂs really the key to everything, an ever-evolving statistical snapshot providing an effectiveness percentage figure and summarising a clubÃ¢ÂÂs success rate.
So, to choose a team at random, Tottenham, in Tier Two, are playing Tier OneÃ¢ÂÂs Aston Villa. Spurs have a 17 percent success rate against teams in the highest band, while Villa have a 42 percent rate when playing second tier sides.
Ã¢ÂÂThis is objective data,Ã¢ÂÂ says Reynolds. Ã¢ÂÂThe man in the pub may disagree, but thatÃ¢ÂÂs all part of the debate. None of these are predictions, weÃ¢ÂÂre not saying theyÃ¢ÂÂre going to win, while this lot are going to lose; weÃ¢ÂÂre saying, these guys have a propensity to get it right, and these to get it wrong.Ã¢ÂÂ
Chelsea's effectiveness table for last season
For the in-depth subscribers edition of the PowerTable, go to www.powertable.co.uk