Lamplight looks at the statistical positives and negatives in a player’s performance to help dispell the myths of good or poor performances at ‘face value’.

Follow the writer on Twitter: @findfoy


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Lamplight returns to take a look at the statistical positives and negatives from each player’s performance in the latest game.

We’re going to trial something different this week, and write it all in one piece rather than segregating it player-by-player. Let us know which you prefer.


Despite the lack of points on the board, nobody can really blame Tom Heaton (6) for anything other than his penalty mistake against AFC Bournemouth in the first home game of the season. The Aston Villa goalkeeper managed to make four strong saves to keep the away side in the game, with 50% of his saves requiring some spectacular reflexes. The veteran goalkeeper did, however, lose the ball seven times by either clearing the ball up the pitch or with a goal kick – three times in the first half and four in the second – where possession was at a premium.

Frédéric Guilbert (7) had an impressive ninety-eight minute display against Arsenal in which the fullback managed three out of six accurate crosses, a 60% dribble success rate and won over half of his duels. The Frenchman doesn’t provide as much of a passing outlet as Ahmed Elmohamady does on the right-hand side though, as he made only 29 passes throughout his time on the pitch. Elmohamady is often one of the most passed to players, making his touch and pass statics usually sky-high.

Björn Engels (6) is often one of the more impressive players on the pitch for Aston Villa, but suffered a little against Arsenal, especially with his first major mistake at the club – a foul on Matteo Guendouzi in the box. The Belgian made 10 interceptions and four clearances against the Gunners, as well as winning 60% of his duels. Perhaps the biggest negative in Engels performance, bar the foul, was the fact that he lost the ball four times in his own half – increasing the pressure on himself and his team-mates.

His centre-back partner Tyrone Mings (6) wasn’t too shy with his mistakes either, trying to cushion a header towards Neil Taylor rather than clearing which allowed the Gunners to equalise for a second time – despite another impressive defensive display. He made 11 interceptions, blocked three shots and made six clearances, but like his partner, lost the ball too much in his own half – seven times in fact.

Left-back Neil Taylor (6) misplaced one pass the entire game, registering a 97% pass accuracy across the ninety-eight minutes – and 100% long pass accuracy. He also made six passes into the final third that were accurate. For a player some consider to be out of his depth, he performed valiantly against a Europa League outfit. Like Tyrone and Bjorn, however, he lost the ball too much and gave away possession eight times in his own half.

(Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images)

Zimbabwean International Marvelous Nakamba (7) did exactly what was required of him in his holding midfield role. He registered an 89% pass accuracy and won 70% of his duels, making six interceptions and three clearances. The only negative from Nakamba’s game is that he backed off one or two times where a challenge was necessary and that his passes forward could have used some work, with only 63% of these making their away to a man in claret and blue. Substituted for Conor Hourihane 13 minutes before full time.

John McGinn (8) grabbed the headlines once more with his second goal of the season and his second goal against a London bases side. The Scottish international took six shots on goal, four of which were on target. He also boasted an 84% passing accuracy and was involved in close to 30 duels, 52% of which he was successful in. The midfielder needs to look to make more passes, however – registering only 19 across the full game.

Captain Jack Grealish (7) gained his second Premier League assist of the season by playing in Wesley, but was impressive with his attacking output. The midfielder made three progressive runs, drew five fouls from the Gunners, and set up his team-mates for four chances. He also won nearly 80% of his duels in the final third, and only failed in two of his six attempted dribbles. Jack made two passes into the final third (not counting three successful passes into the box) that didn’t come off and allowed Arsenal to counter.

(Photo by Steve Bardens/Getty Images)

Trézéguet (6) impressed on his return to the starting eleven. He lost the ball less than he has in recent showings, was stronger in the duel – winning 72% of his duels, and completed 60% successful dribbles. The winger needs to improve his shooting technique though, as his two chances against Arsenal represent a low xG – showing the quality of his shots was pretty poor. Substituted for Ahmed Elmohamady 27 minutes before full time.

His wing compatriot, Anwar El Ghazi (7) also had a better performance against Arsenal than he did in his last game – picking up an assist with a sublime cross for John McGinn. Anwar put more crosses into the box than any other player, seven, but only two found their man (but one resulted in a goal!). His passing accuracy – relatively low at 64% at The Emirates Stadium – needs to improve, as do his duels in offensive areas. He won only 25% of his offensive duels. Substituted for Henri Lansbury 12 minutes before full time.

Wesley (7) seems to receive the same plaudits and negatives statistically for every game. He scored his second goal for Aston Villa and both of his two shots were on target. The Brazilian made better use of his passing, misplacing only three of 17 passes. He still needs to work on his strength though, winning only five of 20 possible duels.

(Photo by Steve Bardens/Getty Images)

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