Date:Thursday September 27 2012
Vital Swansea looks at the stats to back up the statement that Swansea City and Stoke City really are the chalk and cheese of the Premier League.
Before any Stoke fans breath out a long sigh at the thought of yet another obvious comparison of styles of football, it's more than just about the two teams' passing - and the height and length of them, but how and where they create chances too.
Firstly, the main comparison is how they create their chances. Swansea City have created all ten of their goals from open play, whilst Stoke City have only managed one, with the other two coming from set pieces.
Tony Pulis' side rely heavily on set pieces to score their goals, they're the best team for winning aerial battles (60% success). The likes of Peter Crouch is targeted to score from long throw-ins, corner and free kicks. The Swans could struggle against that height, and manager Michael Laudrup has already urged his side not to concede so many free-kicks as they did against Everton last Saturday - 23 in total.
Stoke's set piece stats also tie in with where they create their chances. 17% of their efforts on goal come from within the 6 yard area - the highest in the League, compared to Swansea's 6%. Swansea are the second highest team for creating opportunities within the penalty area with 63%, compared to Stoke's 43% - one of the lowest in the division.
Whilst the Swans attack through the three channels (left, right, middle) in almost equal measure, Stoke City do most of their attacking down the right wing (47%), so Ben Davies could be made to work on Saturday - more so than Angel Rangel.
You still can't avoid the passing stats for too long though, as in terms of accuracy, the two sides are at opposite ends of the table. The Swans sit second, just behind Manchester United with 87% success rate, while Stoke are rock bottom with 69%.
You may also be surprised to know that Stoke City average only four more long-range passes than the Swans. However, they average half as many short passes (the lowest in the League) in a game compared to their upcoming opponents.
Can the Swans win their first League game in four at Stoke City on Saturday? Or will they struggle to cope with their aerial ability?
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Date:Thursday September 27 2012
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