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Sport Analysis: Explaining the EPL's record goal spree

13:15  22 september  2020
13:15  22 september  2020 Source:   ap.org

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The Premier League set a new record for the highest number of goals in a single round of matches on Monday as Manchester City' s Gabriel Jesus scored the milestone 44th against Wolves. After 39 goals were scored across Saturday and Sunday' s eight games, City, Wolves and Aston Villa all netted on

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A stoppage-time goal by Gabriel Jesus did more than just clinch a significant win for Manchester City at Wolverhampton.

Tottenham's Son Heung-min celebrates after scoring his side's second goal during the English Premier League soccer match between Southampton and Tottenham Hotspur at St. Mary's Stadium in Southampton, England, Sunday, Sept. 20, 2020. (Cath Ivill/Pool via AP) © Provided by Associated Press Tottenham's Son Heung-min celebrates after scoring his side's second goal during the English Premier League soccer match between Southampton and Tottenham Hotspur at St. Mary's Stadium in Southampton, England, Sunday, Sept. 20, 2020. (Cath Ivill/Pool via AP)

It capped a record-breaking round of scoring in the English Premier League, too.

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View in-depth stats for Premier League records , including most title wins, winners' medals and assists, on the official website of the Premier League . * A minimum of one Premier League season must have been completed for this record to stand.

St Mary’ s goal spree . 3 or more goals to be scored in the match @ 6/4 (2.5). Industry best is 21/20. That was the England striker’ s last goal before his lengthy injury troubles began, but the 25-year-old has now fully recovered and has been eased back into the Liverpool team via the substitutes’ bench.

A total of 44 were scored in a wild second round of games from Saturday to Monday, surpassing the record for a single round since the league was reduced to 20 teams in 1995.

At least seven goals were scored in three separate games, only the third time that has happened in the Premier League era (since 1992).

From Dominic Calvert-Lewin’s hat trick for Everton in the early kickoff on Saturday to Son Heung-min’s four-goal burst for Tottenham a day later to Man City’s commanding 3-1 win at Wolves on Monday, the goals flew in across the empty grounds of the world’s most-watched league at an average of 4.4 per game.

Maybe it was just one of those weekends.

Or maybe there are some logical reasons behind the high goal count.

NO FANS, LESS PRESSURE?

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English Premier League ( EPL ) using the largest. controlled sample published to date. The present study analysed the largest sample of player observa-. tions in EPL soccer published to date and builds on previous. rate may be explained partly by the increased proportion of. short to medium passes

Without fans in the stadiums, there's a different atmosphere for games that can sometimes resemble high-intensity training ground exercises. Players invariably are more relaxed without the crowd on their backs. Playmakers and forwards, especially, might feel more able to express themselves without being subjected to groans if an ambitious pass or speculative shot doesn't come off. Players might feel under less pressure when they are through on goal. Penalty-takers, for example, might not feel under so much strain without crowd noise during their run-up. There have been 11 spot kicks converted already this season — though two have been saved, too. In an English League Cup match last week, there was a score of 11-10 in a penalty shootout. However, there were no fans in Premier League grounds after play restarted post-lockdown near the end of last season and the 2.72 goals per game in that period was exactly the same ratio as pre-lockdown. There were two fewer shots per game post-lockdown, too, so other reasons also might be pertinent.

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This is a list of footballers who have scored the most goals in each season in the Premier League since its inception in 1992. The top goalscorer in the Premier League ' s inaugural season was Teddy Sheringham

SHORT OFFSEASON

Coaches typically use the preseason to get their players fit and nail down an approach or tactics ahead of the new campaign. Yet for 2020-21, there has barely been a preseason because of the late finish to last season. Teams have had very few friendlies to get sharp or organized, and trainings have been disjointed because of an international break and, in some cases, players testing positive for COVID-19. Look, for example, at Manchester United, whose players returned late to preseason training because of their involvement in the latter stages of the Europa League and had one hastily arranged friendly against Aston Villa. Paul Pogba contracted the coronavirus, while Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Mason Greenwood had to quarantine for various reasons. United lost at home to Crystal Palace 3-1 in its first game. “They were sharper than us in the challenges, tackles,” United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said. “We had a long season last season and we didn’t finish until Aug. 16, and we’ve not had enough preparation time to be sharper.” Because of the abnormally short offseason, players are unlikely to be as fit as they usually are for the start of a season. Tired bodies and tired minds can lead to more mistakes — and more goals.

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Premier League records External Link. Iconic Moment: King scores fastest PL goal . Long: I didn't know I was the fastest scorer. Shane Long on Tuesday evening scored the quickest goal in Premier League history. The Southampton striker took only 7.69 seconds to open the scoring in a 1-1 draw at

For all the latest Premier League news, visit the official website of the Premier League .

LOW QUALITY

Everton's Dominic Calvert-Lewin celebrates after scoring his side's fifth goal during the English Premier League soccer match between Everton and West Bromwich Albion at Goodison Park in Liverpool, England Saturday, Sept. 19, 2020. (Alex Livesey/Pool via AP) © Provided by Associated Press Everton's Dominic Calvert-Lewin celebrates after scoring his side's fifth goal during the English Premier League soccer match between Everton and West Bromwich Albion at Goodison Park in Liverpool, England Saturday, Sept. 19, 2020. (Alex Livesey/Pool via AP)

Two rounds into the new season and it is already clear that the three promoted clubs have low-quality defences which are going to be conceding plenty of goals. Leeds, Fulham and West Bromwich Albion have allowed 22 between them — accounting for about a third of the total scored so far. Fulham conceded a league-high 81 goals when the team was relegated two seasons ago and its defense, which contains the same players who played in the Championship last season, looks just as porous this time. Similarly, West Brom hasn’t improved its back line in the offseason and has an attack-minded coach in Slaven Bilic who showed in a previous stint at West Ham that building a solid defense isn’t his forte. Then there’s Leeds manager Marcelo Bielsa and his gung-ho tactics, which were on display for all to see at Anfield on the opening weekend when they went man-to-man against the defending champions. It was entertaining, but Liverpool scored four goals and it could have been many more.

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ATTACKING DEPTH

There is an abundance of top-quality forward players in the Premier League at the moment, and more are arriving. Manchester City and Liverpool have long had the most devastating strikeforces but Tottenham’s will look just as exciting when Gareth Bale links up with Harry Kane and Son Heung-min, the pair who combined for four goals against Southampton on Sunday. The arrival of James Rodriguez has improved the scoring output of Everton, right winger Willian had three assists on his debut for Arsenal, while Chelsea has spent around $200 million to bring in attackers Timo Werner, Kai Havertz and Hakim Ziyech. Add Christian Pulisic to the mix, and imagine what that quartet could do this season? Also adding to the likelihood of more goals this season is the fact that the Premier League has been told by FIFA to be stricter with its application of handballs by defenders, therefore falling in line with other European leagues. “The directive now is that any outstretched arm from the body, any hard or arm below the shoulder, will be punished, irrespective if its deliberate or not,” former referee Dermot Gallagher told Sky Sports. Leeds’ Robin Koch and Man United’s Victor Lindelof have already fallen foul of that. There have been 13 penalties already.

Manchester City's Gabriel Jesus celebrates after scoring his team's third goal during the English Premier League soccer match between Wolverhampton Wanderers and Manchester City at Molineux Stadium in Wolverhampton, England, Monday, Sept. 21, 2020. (Marc Atkins/Pool via AP) © Provided by Associated Press Manchester City's Gabriel Jesus celebrates after scoring his team's third goal during the English Premier League soccer match between Wolverhampton Wanderers and Manchester City at Molineux Stadium in Wolverhampton, England, Monday, Sept. 21, 2020. (Marc Atkins/Pool via AP)

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Steve Douglas is at https://twitter.com/sdouglas80


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