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How to Win Promotion With 22 Games Left... Statistically Speaking
Written by wkj on Wednesday, 31st Dec 2014 11:30

Inspired in part by Kropotkin123's fantastic If Statistics Won Games I decided to have a look at what we need to aim towards for the end of this season to remain in second place.

I looked at the last 10 seasons in the Championship and assessed where the teams who finished in the top three spots finished versus where they were with 24 games played.

[b]How many points are needed to keep in second place?[/b]

By the logic of the 2013/14 season we need to be aiming for at least 39 points to achieve promotion, that's 1.77 points per game.

In the last 10 seasons in the Championship, the third-placed team has not had more than 85 points come the end of the season, and that was last year's Derby County side, and Ipswich Town in 2004/05.

[b]2013/14 Top Three league table by the end[/b]

1Leicester CityPLD 46GD +40PTS 102
2BurnleyPLD 46GD +35PTS 93
3Derby CountyPLD 46GD +32PTS 85

[b]2013/14 Top three league Table with 24 played[/b]

1Leicester CityPLD 46GD +40PTS 51
2BurnleyPLD 46GD +35PTS 47
3QPRPLD 46GD +32PTS 46

As far as New Year's Day statistics (24 played) go we are currently tied with Burnley last year who had 47 points, Leicester who were first had 51 and QPR were third with 46; so early signs indicate the year end table may well look very close to last year's points-wise.

In the last 10 seasons the healthiest second-placed team at 24 played was 2005/06's Sheffield United with 53 points, Reading lead the pack with 59 points and Watford and Leeds were third and fourth respectively with 39 with Leeds having a game in hand. Both Reading and Sheffield United finished in first and second respectively.

[b]Under Mick McCarthy - how strong have Ipswich been finishing seasons?[/b]

Mick McCarthy took over from a damaged Town on the 1st November 2012 sat bottom of the league with just seven points from 13 games. By the time Ipswich had played 24 games, they were 20th with 27 points. Town finished the season with 60 points, a gain of 43 points in the last 22 fixtures

In the 2013/14 season Town were sixth with 36 points with 24 played, and finished the season ninth with 68 points, picking up 32 points

[b]Raw statistics[/b]

Finally, for the last 10 seasons, I have included a snapshot of the tables after 24 games have been played and at the end of those seasons, and how many points the teams accumulated in the second stage of the season. I saved this as a Google document which is this public link:


Please report offensive, libellous or inappropriate posts by using the links provided.

Kropotkin123 added 15:52 - Dec 31
Nice work, and thanks for the shout out!

mutters added 20:33 - Dec 31
Great work, really interesting. Sadly though i reminded me of that dreadful 04/05 season where we had it in hand and we blew it.... Thanks Joe Royle!!!

Hiltzkooler added 12:57 - Jan 1
Excellent though I would come back to the point regarding the depth of the squad....a significant injury to one of three key players and I'm not sure Town have the resource to cope with that loss...should the players stay fit, as the stats support Town have a very credible shot at automatic promotion....and the Derby game will be a solid indicator of that....looking forward to Kropotkins forecast!!!!

bugledog123 added 20:00 - Jan 1
For 6 of the last 10 years the second place team has got automatic promotion. So we've got a 60% chance of definitely going up if the stats continue. Or if you take the last 5 years (when the 2nd placed team had gone up 4 times) then we've got an 80% chance. COYB!

NoCanariesAllowed added 21:13 - Jan 1
Mutters - bit harsh, I'd still argue it was the Kuqi injury that messed up that season rather than Joe Royle!!

Interesting piece, and something I've been looking at myself. The temptation throughout this season has been to look back on the last time we were in this position and seeing how our pace compares. I'm hoping at some point we might overtake 2004/05...

yorkshirebluehd7 added 02:24 - Jan 2
Looking at our remaining fixtures I've guessed that we would of accumalated 34 points and win our last game to go up come on the blues!!

intercept12 added 13:44 - Jan 2
Good stuff, so based on those stats from the last 10 years, anyone down to Sheff Wed in 10th can still make the summit, though they will theoretically require at least 48 points (2ppg av) to do so

intercept12 added 13:45 - Jan 2
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