At the start of the season you could have got better odds on Aston Villa being relegated than troubling the Champions League places, but they started with four straight wins including a rout of Liverpool.
Everton also kicked off the season with four successive victories and, while they were more fancied than the Villains, this still came as a surprise to most.
Both clubs have now suffered two straight defeats, but don’t worry about their prize FPL assets just yet – the underlying numbers show that there is not too much cause for concern.
One of those days
Aston Villa may have found themselves on the wrong side of a 4-3 scoreline against Southampton last weekend but they created more Threat than any other team in the league.
According to the Premier League website, Threat produces “a value that examines a player’s threat on goal… giving greater weight to actions that are regarded as the best chances to score” – historical analysis suggests a score of around 100 equates to a goal’s worth of chances.
This weekend, not only did Villa exceed the 300 Threat that would be good value for their three goals, Southampton only managed 75, a score from which you could count yourself slightly lucky to score one goal, let alone four!
Everton’s dominance over Newcastle was not quite so clear cut, but the Threat totals still suggest that Everton had the better of the chances, with only Chelsea, Manchester City and Villa producing more in front of goal this weekend.
Dominic Calvert-Lewin still popped up with a goal, but when he is rejoined by Richarlison and James Rodriguez you can expect Everton to be firing on all cylinders once again.
Manchester City have only managed nine goals from their first six matches, which is well below the levels they have achieved in recent years, having scored at well over two goals per match in each of the last four seasons.
While they have not been scoring two goals a match, Pep Guardiola’s side still have the Threat levels of a team who does, averaging over 200 per match so far and posting the second highest total in gameweek 7.
With their two main strikers currently sidelined, new signing Ferran Torres has taken his chance to play through the middle and was City’s highest threat earner this week. At £6.9m, he could be a cheap way into an attack which surely promises more goals in the weeks to come.
Having notched in the Champions League this week, might now be his chance to make a dash for a starting berth?
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