Skip to main content

FPL tips: Man Utd and Spurs most reliant on star men in attack, says FPL data

Tottenham Hotspur v Real Madrid – UEFA Champions League – Group H – Wembley Stadium
(Image credit: Mike Egerton)

Cristiano Ronaldo and Harry Kane are the most dominant focal points among all clubs in the Premier League, according to FPL data.

Threat is a metric used by the FPL to measure the quality of chance a player enjoys in a game, with a score of around 100 historically accounting for a goal’s worth of chances.

Analysing Threat data rather than goals scored, then, offers insight into how a player is performing in attack beyond the number of balls they have put in the net.

With that in mind, we have analysed each Premier League club according to the proportion of team Threat their top Threat scorer is responsible for.

The result hints at a group of players who are crucial for their teams when it comes to the final third, although in some cases it also points to overreliance.

A graphic showing which players have the highest proportion of their team's Threat in the Premier League

Focal points

Tottenham Hotspur’s Harry Kane appears frustrated during the Emirates FA Cup fifth round match at the Riverside Stadium, Middlesbrough. Picture date: Tuesday March 1, 2022

Harry Kane has been key for Tottenham again (Mike Egerton/PA)

Yes, top of the tree is Harry Kane, who has a cumulative Threat total this season of 1,443, accounting for 23.8 per cent of Tottenham’s Threat total (6,059).

Kane’s 13 goals this season then are about par for the course according to his Threat performance – his position at the top of the Threat tree points to a potential problem for Spurs though.

Son Heung-min is the club’s top scorer in the league this term, with his 19 goals keeping Tottenham in the race for a Champions League place.

However, his performances appear to warrant a more realistic total of around 11 goals, with a season total so far of 1,113 Threat – can the South Korean sustain this level of overperformance for the rest of the campaign?

At Manchester United they have other problems – yes, Ronaldo’s performances this season have helped keep the Old Trafford side pushing for a place in Europe, but at what cost?

Manchester United’s Cristiano Ronaldo (left) and Bruno Fernandes looks dejected after West Ham United’s Said Benrahma scores their side’s first goal of the game during the Premier League match at the London Stadium, London. Picture date: Sunday September 19, 2021

Cristiano Ronaldo has scored 18 Premier League goals this season for United (Mike Egerton/PA)

The Portuguese leads the way at the club with 18 goals from 1,503 Threat, while the next best Threat scorer at the club is his countryman Bruno Fernandes, who has 10 goals and just 831 Threat.

That is quite a drop from first to second at Manchester United, while these are the only two players at the Red Devils with more than five league goals this term.

Incoming boss Erik ten Hag will have his work cut out to spread the Threat more evenly among his supporting cast of forwards – that is certainly what clubs at the other end of our chart have done.

Spreading the play

Chelsea’s Jorginho (centre) celebrates with team-mates Marcos Alonso (right) and Mason Mount after scoring their side’s second goal of the game from the penalty spot during the Carabao Cup quarter final match at the Brentford Community Stadium, London. Picture date: Wednesday December 22, 2021

Chelsea have shared the goals around (Nick Potts/PA)

At the other end of the chart are Chelsea’s Mason Mount, Manchester City’s Raheem Sterling and Burnley’s Maxwel Cornet – they are the top Threat scorers at their clubs, but by smaller margins.

Mount’s total of 864 Threat demonstrates what a club can achieve when it spreads the attack around, in direct contrast with Manchester United who sit a few places below the Blues in the Premier League table.

The England midfielder is Thomas Tuchel’s top goalscorer in the league with 10, while five other players at the club have five goals or more.

While Chelsea are a more difficult team to pin down from an FPL manager’s perspective then, their even spread of Threat has put them third in the division.

Table-topping City have had even greater success this term with this tactic, with Raheem Sterling top-scoring with 1,064 Threat, just 11.6 per cent of his club’s total.

Manchester City’s Raheem Sterling during the Premier League match at Carrow Road, Norwich. Picture date: Saturday February 12, 2022

Raheem Sterling is top-scoring with 1,064 Threat for Man City (Joe Giddens/PA)

Mount’s England colleague also has 10 league goals to his name, while two other City midfielders – Kevin De Bruyne and Riyad Mahrez – have 11.

An even distribution of Threat can be beneficial when you have a squad full of world-class talent, but Burnley have found it does not work for everyone.

Cornet has impressed for the Turf Moor side this season with seven goals, including a 15-point haul thanks to a gameweek nine brace against Southampton.

However, the fact he has been his team’s highest Threat scorer with a total of 495 speaks volumes of the difficulties Burnley have faced this term – they have scored 31 goals this season, second only to relegated Norwich.

Thank you for reading 5 articles this month* Join now for unlimited access

Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription

Join now for unlimited access

Try first month for just £1 / $1 / €1