Point Breakdowns by Position (18/19)

8th of July UPDATE:

After receiving suggestions to add price breakdowns to make the analysis more detailed and relevant, I decided to do so and I updated the post. The new data can be found under the “Price Breakdowns” subheading.


Following on from my analysis of the effect of venue in FPL in 18/19, I have decided to analyze how players in each position (goalkeeper, defender, midfielder, forward) tend to get their points, and where they tend to lose points from as well.

I have also looked at how often each position scores double digits, nets an FPL return (>3 pts) and picks up negative scores.

For the first part of this analysis, I have only considered the appearances of players in which they played for at least 60 minutes, and I also removed appearance points since they were therefore always equal to 2 points for all the players in the sample.

Points gained & lost per appearance:

 Points gainedPoints lostNet points
Goalkeepers +2.11-0.521.59
Defenders+1.80-0.661.14
Midfielders+1.75-0.171.58
Forwards+2.38-0.112.27

 

Breakdown by position:

If a statistic is missing for a certain position, that either means that:

1) a player of that position is not rewarded/punished for that statistic (e.g. forwards and goals conceded)

2) last season there were no instances of a player being rewarded/punished for that statistic, despite the fact that it could have happened (e.g. a goalkeeper scoring an own goal)

3) the instances were so rare that they disappeared when rounding to two decimal places (e.g. there was only one instance of a forward scoring an own goal).

Goalkeepers (PPG: 1.59)

StatisticPoint gain/loss per game
Clean Sheets+1.09
Saves+0.65
Penalty Saves+0.11
Assists+0.01
Bonus Points+0.27
Goals Conceded-0.48
Yellow & Red Cards-0.02

Defenders (PPG: 1.14)

StatisticPoint gain/loss per game
Clean Sheets+1.08
Goals+0.25
Assists+0.21
Bonus Points+0.26
Goals Conceded-0.48
Yellow & Red Cards-0.16
Own Goals-0.02

Midfielders (PPG: 1.58)

StatisticPoint gain/loss per game
Clean Sheets+0.32
Goals+0.74
Assists+0.41
Bonus Points+0.27
Yellow & Red Cards-0.16
Penalty Misses-0.01

Forwards (PPG: 2.27)

StatisticPoint gain/loss per game
Goals+1.35
Assists+0.51
Bonus Points+0.52
Yellow & Red Cards-0.10

 

All in all, on average forwards gained the most points per game (2.38) while defenders lost the most points per game (-0.66), and goalkeepers came out on top for average points per game (1.59).

As you will see later on in this article, none of these trends hold for the 5 top scoring players in each position.

It is an interesting takeaway that midfielders gained an average of 0.32 points per app from clean sheets, which is more than what the average defender gained from assists per app (0.21) yet there is much more emphasis on the latter rather than the former while picking players – although of course the discrepancy changes when we are only considering the elite players of each position.

The same holds for what the average defender gained from goals per app (0.25).

Furthermore, this analysis shows how biased the Bonus Points System is towards forwards, who average 0.52 bonus points per app which is effectively two times as much when compared to other positions.

The top 5 players in each position

For the purpose of this analysis, I decided to take the top 5 players in each position based on total points, in order to see how their statistics compared to the average player classified as their position.

The top 5 players in each position were:

  • Goalkeepers: Alisson, Ederson, Pickford, Lloris, Fabianski
  • Defenders: Robertson, van Dijk, Alexander-Arnold, Laporte, David Luiz
  • Midfielders: Salah, Sterling, Mane, Sigurdsson, Fraser
  • Forwards: Aubameyang, Aguero, Jimenez, Vardy, Wilson

Goalkeepers (PPG: 2.29)

StatisticPoint gain/loss per game
Clean Sheets+1.60
Saves+0.54
Penalty Saves+0.16
Assists+0.02
Bonus Points+0.29
Goals Conceded-0.48
Yellow & Red Cards-0.02

Defenders (PPG: 3.53)

StatisticPoint gain/loss per game
Clean Sheets+2.14
Goals+0.39
Assists+0.58
Bonus Points+0.65
Goals Conceded-0.15
Yellow & Red Cards-0.08

Midfielders (PPG: 4.13)

StatisticPoint gain/loss per game
Clean Sheets+0.47
Goals+2.30
Assists+0.83
Bonus Points+0.63
Yellow & Red Cards-0.06
Penalty Misses-0.03

Forwards (PPG: 3.63)

StatisticPoint gain/loss per game
Goals+2.11
Assists+0.79
Bonus Points+0.86
Yellow & Red Cards-0.11
Penalty Misses-0.01

 

Starting from the most drastic differences, the top 5 defenders averaged 209% more PPG than the average defender. The top 5 defenders also gained significantly more points from clean sheets (2.14 v 1.08) whereas the difference was not as great for goalkeepers (1.60 v 1.09).

Amazingly, the average top 5 defender gained 0.97 points per game from goals and assists, highlighting the fact that the top 5 defenders clearly did very well in terms of goals and assists.

Moving on, the top 5 midfielders averaged 161% more PPG than the average midfielder. They also scored more goals per game (2.30) than the top 5 forwards (2.11) while slightly beating them for assists (0.83 v 0.79).

Interestingly, the top 5 midfielders gained 0.47 points per game from clean sheets, which was more than what the averaged midfielder gained for assists (0.41).

Further down the scale, we find the top 5 forwards who averaged 60% more PPG than the average forward. However, they picked up an astonishing number of bonus points per game (0.86).

And finally, we get to the top 5 goalkeepers who averaged 44% more PPG than the average goalkeeper. In fact, they averaged 0.11 less points for saves, and only 0.02 more points for bonus points. This makes sense since the top 5 goalkeepers included Alisson and Ederson who did not concede that many shots on target compared to the rest of the goalkeepers.

Their greatest appeal was clearly the fact that they averaged 0.51 more points per game than their average counterparts when it came to clean sheets, and the fact that they only lost 0.29 points per game due to goals conceded while the average goalkeeper lost 0.48.

Propensity of returns by position

Finally, I also considered how often players of each position tended to pick up negative points, FPL returns (>3 pts) and double digit scores. In this case I also took into account players who played for less than 60 mins.

Negative scores

PositionNegative Scores% of all Negative ScoresNegative Score ChanceGames per Negative ScoreTotal Appearances
G32%0.4%255764
D9175%2.6%393542
M2117%0.5%2194589
F76%0.4%2261585

 

Negative scores are generally considerably rare occurrances in FPL, with only 122 out of 10480 appearances leading to negative scores (1.16%). Defenders tended to average more negative scores than anyone else due to a multitude of reasons.

For example, 30 out of 34 own goals last season were scored by defenders. Defenders are punished more than any other position for goals conceded, since goalkeepers can accumulate saves as a result of conceding a lot of shots.

Almost half (22) of the red cards picked up last season (47) were picked up by defenders. Additionally, 42% of the 1221 total yellow cards issued last season were issued to defenders.

Furthermore, 34% of negative returns were incurred by players who played for less than 60 minutes in those specific appearances.

FPL Returns

PositionReturns% of all ReturnsReturn ChanceGames per ReturnTotal Appearances
G24910%32.6%3764
D106241%30.0%33542
M87333%19.0%54589
F43517%27.4%41585

 

With reference to returns, it makes sense that goalkeepers had the highest return chance because they almost always play at least 60 minutes. It is very rare for a goalkeeper to be substituted on, whereas that is not the case for other positions and this leads to a lot of 1 point returns from substitutes in the other positions.

For this reason I also included the same table, but only taking into account games in which players played at least 60 minutes.

There were only 217 occassions of returns (8% of all returns) which came when a player played for less than 60 minutes.

This means that 9% of players who played between and including 1 and 59 minutes scored over 3 points, whereas 30% of players who played at least 60 minutes scored over 3 points.

PositionReturns% of all ReturnsReturn ChanceGames per ReturnTotal Appearances
GK24910%32.8%3758
DEF105044%33.8%33104
MID75231%23.5%43196
FWD35115%38.4%3913

 

After performing the aforementioned filtering for appearances of over 59 minutes, we can now see that forwards tend to return points more often than any other position – however we must keep in mind that the midfielder category also contains a lot of defensive midfielders.

Double Digits

PositionDouble Digit Scores% of all Double Digit ScoresDouble Digit ChanceGames per Double Digit ScoreTotal Apperances
GK317%4.1%25764
DEF12427%3.5%293542
MID21747%4.7%214589
FWD8819%5.6%181585

 

Here we can see part of the reason why FPL managers generally prefer captaining midfielders and forwards, since they are more likely to hit double digits when compared to goalkeepers and defenders.

Only 3% of the double digit scores registered last season were picked up by players who played for less than 60 minutes. In other words, players who played between 1 and 59 minutes only scored double digits 0.48% of the time (6 times by strikers, 6 times by midfielders).In comparison, players who played for at least 60 minutes scored double digits 5.6% of the time.

Price Breakdowns

In order to extract more relevant information from this analysis, I created some tables which show the relevant statistics of players in certain price ranges, still broken down by position.

I have taken the prices and the positions as of this season (19/20). As a result, I have only considered the performances of players that are currently in the game.

Furthermore, as a result of some players being reclassified, the players in question have been treated as if they were their current position last season. This means that, for example, Deulofeu’s 23 point haul against Cardiff turned into a 20 point haul.

Where do the different positions get their points from, based on price ranges?

For this part of the analysis I only took into account players in appearances in which they registered over 59 minutes.

Goalkeepers

Price RangeClean SheetsSavesPenalty SavesAssistsBonus PointsGoals ConcededYellow CardsPoint GainPoint LossPoints Per GamePPG increase over last category
4 – 4.50.900.700.090.000.28-0.61-0.051.97-0.661.31N/A
5 – 5.51.090.640.100.000.25-0.41-0.032.08-0.441.6425%
62.160.290.000.040.20-0.11-0.042.68-0.142.5455%

Defenders

Price Range Clean Sheets GoalsAssistsBonus Points Goals Conceded Yellow Cards Red CardsOwn Goals Point Gain Point Loss Points Per Game PPG increase over last category
4 – 4.50.830.170.110.14-0.54-0.15-0.02-0.021.25-0.720.53N/A
5 – 5.51.160.290.220.27-0.40-0.17-0.01-0.021.94-0.601.34151%
6 – 6.51.700.430.440.49-0.26-0.130.00-0.013.06-0.402.6698%
72.350.101.140.86-0.10-0.110.000.004.44-0.214.2460%

Midfielders

Price Range Clean Sheets Goals Assists Bonus Points Yellow Cards Red Cards Penalty Misses Point Gain Point Loss Points Per Game PPG increase over last category
4.5 – 5.50.310.330.270.16-0.18-0.010.001.07-0.190.88N/A
6 – 7.50.321.080.560.39-0.100.000.002.35-0.112.24155%
8 – 9.50.391.670.800.58-0.110.00-0.063.45-0.173.2846%
10 – 12.50.552.910.840.65-0.060.000.004.96-0.064.9049%

Forwards

Price Range GoalsAssistsBonus Points Yellow Cards Red Cards Penalty Misses Point Gain Point Loss Points Per Game PPG increase over last category
4.5 – 61.020.380.32-0.080.000.001.72-0.081.64N/A
6.5 – 7.51.400.550.57-0.160.00-0.012.52-0.172.3644%
8 – 9.51.750.750.73-0.08-0.02-0.013.22-0.113.1132%
10.0 – 12.02.560.660.86-0.100.000.004.08-0.103.9828%

How often does each position and price range get negative scores, FPL returns (>3 pts), and double digits?

For this part of the analysis I also included appearance points into the totals. Again, I only considered appearances in which a player played at least 59 minutes in.

Goalkeepers

Price RangeNegative Score ChanceFPL Return (>3 pts) ChanceDouble Digit ChanceApps
4 – 4.50%27%5%173
5 – 5.51%33%4%386
60%55%1%76

Defenders

Price Range Negative Score ChanceFPL Return (>3 pts) ChanceDouble Digit ChanceApps
4 – 4.52%26%2%777
5 – 5.52%37%4%1307
6 – 6.52%54%10%351
70%67%22%63

Midfielders

Price RangeNegative Score ChanceFPL Return ChanceDouble Digit ChanceApps
4.5 – 5.50%15%3%1422
6 – 7.50%33%10%826
8 – 9.50%45%17%239
10 – 12.50%56%25%103

Forwards

Price RangeNegative Score ChanceFPL Return (>3 pts) ChanceDouble Digit ChanceApps
4.5 – 60%34%4%181
6.5 – 7.50%38%12%225
8 – 9.51%48%14%169
10.0 – 12.00%62%15%86

Even more detailed breakdown

I also decided to include a breakdown of each position by each specific price, in case that could be of help to the reader. Again, I have only considered appearances in which a player played at least 59 minutes in.

In this case the appearance points are included in the points per game.

Click the subheadings to view the tables in higher quality.

Points per game

https://i.imgur.com/81gTUts.png

Value (PPG / Price)

https://i.imgur.com/OUm4ojN.png

Number of players in each position & price

https://i.imgur.com/b9aFENR.png

keep-calm-and-thanks-for-reading-7

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