A Breakdown Of Manchester City's Goals By Importance

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 25: Edin Dzeko (L) of Manchester City celebrates scoring his team's third goal with team mates Sergio Aguero and David Silva during the Barclays Premier League match between Manchester City and Blackburn Rovers at the Etihad Stadium on February 25, 2012 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)

In response to Danny's piece about game winners and a comment from real footballer about importance of goals in the final thirty minutes, I thought I'd take a very quick look at the breakdown of Manchester City's EPL goals this season.

The note -2 will mean a goal scored when we were 2 goals down, -1 when we were one goal down. 0 is for a tied game and 1, 2 and 3 etc are the leads held.

I have broken this down into a few different sections: at home, on the road and by time of the scored goal.

Goals by in-game position

Home Occurence
-2 None
-1 Aguero 1
0 Aguero 5, Balotelli 4, Dzeko 2, Silva, Nasri and OG 1
1 Aguero 3, Johnson 3
2 Aguero 3, Dzeko and Milner 2, Balotelli, Silva, Kompany and Yaya Toure 1
3 Aguero and Johnson 1
True game winning goals (ie when the game is won by only 1 goal) Nasri, Silva and Balotelli 1

We can see that Aguero with five goals and Balotelli with four goals have been the two players most likely to break the deadlock and score the important go ahead goal.

When City are a goal or more ahead we can see that Aguero is just a flat track bully, scoring seven goals when City already hold the lead in games. Interestingly Edin Dzeko has only scored once at home when we have the lead.

Away Occurence
-2 None
-1 Yaya Toure and Dzeko 1
0 Dzeko, Balotelli and Silva 2, Lescott, Aguero, Johnson, Yaya Toure and Kompany 1
1 Dzeko and Balotelli 2, Aguero and Barry 1
2 Dzeko 2, Nasri and Aguero 1
3 Aguero, Dzeko, Silva and Savic 1
True game winning goals (ie when the game is won by only 1 goal) Yaya Toure, Dzeko and Lescott 1

One interesting stat I discovered here was that City have only recovered four points from losing positions this season away from home. The win at QPR and the draw away at Stoke this past weekend.

Contrast this to City gaining 20 points from a possible 27 when in a winning position on the road.

(The missing point from our away total of 25 points came in the 0-0 draw at West Brom).

Goals by time on the clock

I picked arbitrary points on the game clock knowing full well that there are inconsistent lengths of injury time at the end of both the first half and second half. As there really is no other way to allow for that all injury time counts as the 45th and 90th minute respectively.

Home Occurence
Min: 1-30 Aguero 5, Balotelli and OG 2
Min: 31-60 Aguero, Nasri, Johnson and Dzeko 2, Balotelli, Lescott, Kompany, Toure, Richards and Silva 1
Min: 61-90 Aguero and Balotelli 5, Milner 3, Dzeko and Johnson 2, Nasri, Toure, Silva and Kolarov 1

We see a spike in Aguero's early goals in home games, but mostly we see City's dominance in the last half hour of play when we really begin to break teams down.

Of the goals in the 61-90 minutes range only Balotelli's winner against Spurs and Nasri's winner against Chelsea can be counted as game winning impact goals (which is the answer to this comment by realfootballer)

Away Occurence
Min: 1-30 Balotelli 2, Silva, Aguero and Dzeko 1
Min: 31-60 Dezko 5, Balotelli 2, Aguero, Silva, Kompany, Barry and Johnson 1
Min: 61-90 Dzeko 3, Aguero and Toure 2, Nasri, Savic, Silva and Lescott 1

Of the goals in the 61-90 minutes range Toure and Lescott have scored true game winning impact goals. Toure also of course had the game tying goal in the game at Stoke.

We can also see from the above numbers the lack of impact that Balotelli has on the final 30 minutes of the game away from home. Zero goals scored in the 61-90 minutes category is not a great return.

I'd also question how often he was on the field of play at this crucial time in the game. That may be an even more damning statistic that leads us to questions about how much the manager trusts him in those key situations.

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