Part I is all about our #1 goalkeeper.
Joe Hart is a fine goalkeeper. It would be fair to place Hart in the upper echelon of PL goalkeepers which includes Cech, Mignolet and De Gea. We could argue about the names, but I think you get my point. Joe is very good, but that doesn't mean he is immune to criticism.
Sensational at times, especially in the Champions League hidings that we were subjected to. But at other times, Joe was beaten from distance and those poor goals against cost City points. The Sunderland away game sticks in my head. These fluctuations in form from game to game are to be expected.
Fluctuations from season to season happen too, and I think it may be fair to say that last season was a slight down year.
This was a pretty detailed look at Joe's performance in the 2012/13 CL. I am not going to re-hash what I wrote back then. Joe was really good most of the time, but he let in a couple of soft goals he'd probably think he should of saved.
Let's now look at Hart's performance in the Premier League.
These are Hart's saves and goals against in 2012/13 and it really is a tiny sample. The other problem here is that we don't have the have the strikers shooting position or the goalkeepers start position. So any conclusions drawn from a single seasons worth of location data would be useless.
Again we need to be wary of drawing conclusions, but this small sample appears to show that Joe had an issue with his low left hand side. It'd need so much more data to conclude this though. This is merely a small snap shot of what happened last term. We just don't know the intricate details of why it happened.
Looking at Hart's full time career save%
|Shot on Target Count
I have only included full seasons here. I didn't want to include the seasons where Hart split the minutes with Given or Isaakson or Schmeichel.
The above chart lists raw, un-regressed save% and it shows Hart's 2012/13 league campaign was a big step below his career save% as a starter. Assuming that playing on a team who's talent level doesn't vary wildly (City's doesn't) and that the 'quality' of shots against is pretty stable from season to season (we assume it is) then we can see a couple of things about Hart's performance last season in the Premier League:
- It's below par when looking at his career as a starter.
- Joe really needs to improve his save % and move back toward his career average.
- If we were betting on predicting Hart's save% next term what would we say his save% would be? Would you say his level is a ~70% goalkeeper due to last years performance or would you bet that Hart's true level is at ~76%?