Football Commentator & Columnist
Martin has stats on goalscoring defenders and good omens for Man City
Last Updated: 04/12/13 8:46am
Every week, Martin will set you a question of his own to get your grey matter working. Click above for this week's Tyler's Teaser - which comes from Old Trafford.
Send your questions to Martin
1: Email your posers to firstname.lastname@example.org
2. Use the feedback form at the bottom of this page.
Martin's starting stat
I was at Stamford Bridge on Sunday where Southampton conceded three goals in a Premier League game for the first time this season. Gary Cahill scored his first goal of 2013 amd John Terry scored his 57th Chelsea goal in his 593rd game for the club - an appearance record that takes him into fourth on their all-time list ahead of John Hollins. It was also his 400th Premier League game and his 34th Premier League goal.
Demba Ba now has eight goals for Chelsea, four of them coming against Southampton. His first three goals for Chelsea were in January last year - two in a 5-1 away FA Cup win - and one in a 2-2 league draw at Stamford Bridge.
Jose Mourinho has won all five games he has played against Mauricio Pochettino. Jay Rodriguez - who scored after 14 seconds - came very close to emulating James Beattie who scored after 12 seconds against Chelsea in Mourinho's second home game of his first spell. That day Chelsea pulled it back to win 2-1 - this time they made it 3-1. That means Mourinho's home record at Chelsea is as follows: P67 W52 D15 L0 F140 A34
Back to front
Dear Martin. Two Chelsea defenders scored in the Chelsea v Southampton game. This got me wondering which defender has scored the most goals in the Premier League and what's the record for the most defenders scoring in one game? Charlie
MARTIN SAYS: According to Opta, John Terry is a clear second on the list of top-scoring defenders in Premier League history. His goal against Southampton was his 34th in the league, which is four short of the record held by former Wigan, Everton and Sheffield United defender David Unsworth. However, 22 of his 38 goals came from the penalty spot - so Terry is clearly the highest-scoring defender from open play.
Premier League goals by defenders:
David Unsworth (38)
John Terry (34)
Ian Harte (28)
William Gallas (25)
Julian Dicks (24)
Dan Petrescu (23)
Matt Elliott,* Sami Hyypia (22)
John Arne Riise**, Leighton Baines, Joleon Lescott (21)
*Played several games as a striker
**Also played in midfield
As for the most defenders scoring in a single Premier League game, we believe the record is four. Back on Good Friday (April 9) in 2004, Everton beat Tottenham 3-1 and all of the goals were scored by players lining up in defence on that day. David Unsworth, Gary Naysmith and Joseph Yobo all scored for Everton before Stephen Carr pulled one back for Tottenham (and indeed then got sent off). Opta say there has not been another Premier League game in which more than three defenders have scored.
It's interesting to hear of three Everton defenders scoring after this weekend when their two full-backs - Seamus Coleman and Bryan Oviedo - both scored. Apparently that's the first time that has happened in the Premier League, which is hardly surprising as Tony Hibbert - who still hasn't scored a Premier League goal - has played at full-back for so long.
Hi Martin. Love reading this column every week. A lot of people have been talking about Man City's amazing home record, but does this necessarily equate to success in the title race? Can you tell us how often the team with the best home record ends up winning the league? Marcus (Crewe fan)
MARTIN SAYS: Manchester City are the only side in the Premier League with a 100% home record this season and have scored 12 more goals than anybody else at home (29 in total). They have scored more goals at home than anybody else has scored home and away combined.
The good news for Manchester City fans is that in each of the last 11 Premier League seasons, the side that has finished with the best home record has gone on to win the league.
Indeed in 21 years of the Premier League there have only been five occasions where the side with the best home record did not win the title. The last side to do so was Liverpool in 2001/02, who picked up 41 points at home, but finished second behind Arsenal who only got 40 points at home - but got 47 points on the road.
As you can see from the table below, Newcastle have twice finished the season with the best home record in the Premier League, but have not won the competition.
Best home record in the Premier League:
Most valuable players
Martin. People keep going on about the number of goals Aaron Ramsey has scored this season, but he has also produced plenty of assists for others as well. If you combine goals and assists then is there any other player who has been more valuable than him this season?Barney Joelett
MARTIN SAYS: According to Opta's data, Aaron Ramsey has assisted four Premier League goals this season and scored eight, meaning that he has been directly involved in 12 Arsenal goals.
However, this is not the highest tally in the Premier League. Wayne Rooney has scored the same number of goals, but has produced one more assist - so has directly contributed to 13 Manchester United goals, while Sergio Aguero has scored 10 and assisted 4 - so has been directly involved in 14 Manchester City goals, the highest tally in the Premier League.
You mention how "valuable" a player has been to each team and if you look at a contribution to the team's goals as a percentage then Ramsey has been more valuable than Aguero. He has scored or assisted 44.4% of Arsenal's goals this season, while Aguero has been involved in 42.4% of City's.
However, there are three players who've scored or assisted more than half of their teams goals this term. Loic Remy (8 goals, 2 assists) has contributed to more than half of Newcastle's 19 goals and Roberto Soldado (4 goals, 2 assists) has been involved in 54% of Tottenham's 11 goals. However, the most "valuable" player this season is arguably Wayne Rooney, who has scored or assisted 13 of Manchester United's goals this season, which is 59% of the goals they've scored.
Here is a run-down of the players with the most goals+assists combined for each Premier League club so far this term. Where two players have equal contributions we have selected the player with the most goals scored:
|Player||Team||Goals||Assists||% Team goals*|
|Christian Benteke||Aston Villa||4||0||30.8%|
|Dwight Gayle||Crystal Palace||2||0||28.6%|
|Sergio Agüero||Man City||10||4||42.4%|
|Wayne Rooney||Man Utd||8||5||59.1%|
|Fletcher / Gardner / Giaccherini||Sunderland||2||0||25.0%|
|Shane Long||West Brom||3||1||26.7%|
|Ravel Morrison||West Ham||3||2||41.7%|
* excludes own-goals
King of the comebacks
Dear Martin. I am a Manchester United fan and I've noticed we've gone behind in games more often than we used to under SAF, but yet the resolute Manchester United spirit always seems to come to the fore and we battle back for points like we did at White Hart Lane. My question is this: has any team won more points this season after going behind than we have under Moyes? Safaya (Manchester United fan)
MARTIN SAYS: I'm not sure it's true that they are going behind more often. If we compare it to last season, they went behind in nine of their first 13 games - including each of their first three games - as opposed to going behind in just six games so far this term.
Thanks to our friends at Opta I can tell you that Manchester United have picked up seven points from losing positions this season:
- They came from behind twice to pick up a 2-2 draw at Tottenham
- They came from behind twice to win 3-2 against Stoke
- They came from behind to win 2-1 at Sunderland.
However, there is one Premier League team who have done even better from losing positions this season. That side is Chelsea, who have now won eight points after going behind in a Premier League game this term, including their game on Sunday.
- They came from 1-0 down to win 3-1 against Southampton
- They came from 2-1 down to draw 2-2 with West Brom
- They came from 1-0 down to win 4-1 against Cardiff
- They came from 1-0 down to draw 1-1 with Tottenham
Interestingly there are five sides who are yet to pick up a single point after being behind in a Premier League game this season. Whenever Crystal Palace, Newcastle, Sunderland, Tottenham and West Ham have fallen behind they have ended up losing the match.
Also interesting is that league leaders Arsenal have only picked up one point from a losing position this season. They fell behind to Aston Villa and Manchester United and lost and the only other game in which they fell behind was the 1-1 draw at West Brom.
Points won from losing positions (2013/14):
SEVEN: Aston Villa, Man Utd
FIVE: Cardiff, Everton
FOUR: Norwich, Stoke
THREE: Fulham, Hull, Liverpool, Man City, Southampton
TWO: Swansea, West Brom
Crystal Palace, Newcastle, Sunderland, Tottenham, West Ham
Hi Martin. Your answer to one of the questions last week mentioned that Norwich finished 3rd in the Premier League's first season, which really surprised me and got me wondering - What is the highest spot that each of the Premier League clubs (current and all) have finished in? Thanks!! Regards, Adrian
MARTIN SAYS: This is a straightforward question to answer, but we thought it was interesting to look back at how each side has got on over the Premier League years.
Of course, five teams (Arsenal, Blackburn, Chelsea, Man City, Man Utd) have finished first, while three others (Aston Villa, Liverpool, Newcastle) have enjoyed a best finish of second. A further three have finished third (Leeds, Norwich, Nottingham Forest), while Everton's highest Premier League finish is fourth - even though they have appeared in every Premier League season.
Of the 45 teams to have played a full Premier League season, 32 have achieved a top-half finish. Look at the list below to learn the best finish for each team to have played in the Premier League.
|Arsenal||97/98, 01/02, 03/04||1|
|Chelsea||04/05, 05/06, 09/10||1|
|Man Utd||13 times||1|
|Sheffield Weds||92/93, 93/94, 96/97||7|