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Loans Signings

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I was trying to find a fresh angle on the ''value'' of the loan signings to the club - I had a nagging doubt that despite the unheralded praise heaped upon our new strike force we still werent scoring any more goals than when perming two from Abbey/Roberts/Neilsen/McVeigh etc so having a dull half hour I looked at our performance with and without the loan signings.

Goals scored

For the last 2 completed seasons we have scored 60 goals at at rate of 1.3 pg. Since the signing of Hucks et al this has been increased to 1.4 goals per game (gpg), the same as our first 5 league games of the season (7 goals, 1.4gpg) To balance this you need to consider the quality of the opposition (far greater inthe last 10 games than the first 5) however it is hardly matches the adulation these players have been getting. This seems to support my view that we are spending a fortune paying players to miss more chances than our old ''ineffective'' but cheap squad players - which players are more ineffective? Both sets of strikers are scoring at around the same rate but the better class ones are missing more chances!! And neither Huckerby nor Crouch will be the 20 goal a season player that Nige has oft been quoted as wanting. Should we simply stick with Roberts/Jarvis and McVeigh up front and save our cash?

But before I get denounced as a loony please read on...

Goals Conceeded

Like most of the city faithful I have been disappointed at the defensive frailties this season with Malky iin particular looking very vulnerable. In addition the clean sheet against Sunderland was the first since we beat Rotherham on 16th August - hardly a good sign. So as with the strikers I had a look at the stats.

For the last two full seasons we have conceeded at a rate of 1.1gpg (49 last year and 51 the year before) In the first 5 league games this had worsened considerable - up to 7 in 5 or 1.4 gpg. However since our loan signings have joined we have conceeded just 9 goals in 10 (more difficult) games and not conceeded more than 1 in any individual game.

Link this to the points gained per game - about 1.5 in last 2 seasons, 1.2 first 5 games and now 2.1 we get to see the value of the signings.


It does show that attack is the best form of defence - as long as we are pushing forward we have conceeded less goals (50% down since they joined this season) than for 3 seasons and that is why we are now gaining points even though we are not scoring any more goals than before. I hope that the goals for column will increase as we take advantage of the next run of 7 games when I hope we can maintain our current form and consolidate our position in the table.

The difference these players have had is not in scoring goals - they are just as inept as our permanent strikers! - however the signing of Harper, vision of McVeighand movement of the strikers is in a different class to what we had before and is why the team is transformed.
It seems that Worthy has pulled off the greatest defensive signings the club has seen in many years!

Agains it does highlight the need for the club to ensure that even though we are not likely to retain Huckerby we will need a similar style/quality replacement to ensure that our new improved defensive record is maintained.



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Good research and interesting assumptions. The overall point as you say is that the quality of the loan signings has raised everybodys game, not us suddenly scoring five every game. Now we are dangerous up front, opposition defenders and midfielders who would normally be charging forward to attack now stay back to cover and look after our new look front line. Hence we are letting in less goals as opposition have to be more defensive and it is a credit to our new boys that they are still scoring goals despite playing teams who are more defensively minded. I disagree about your statement that Hucks and Crouch aren''t our 20 goal a season strikers. One of them would hit that target in a season I am sure. However, losing six million quid and the loss of interest city may have to cough up before a new buyer is found has pretty much ended any chance of Hucks coming here. Jarvis is the boy! He would play off Crouchy perfectly

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