Stats Stats Stats - Swansea (A)
Who doesn`t love a good old football statistic? 'Ah yes`, I hear you cry, 'but it`s all about how many goals you score`. Well yes, you`re right; but delving deeper into additional statistics from a game can provide numerous talking points and the basis of a discussion that could extend well into the night (maybe), not to mention the number of jobs it provides for performance analysts at football clubs across the country. This new section Vital QPR will provide (hopefully) will focus on any additional, interesting, key points from QPR games, with the intention of inspiring captivating and intellectual debate (possibly).
If you hadn`t noticed Swansea like to pass the ball. Pass the ball a hell of a lot. 494 times, compared to QPR`s 380, in fact - with them managing to complete 88% of their passes, compared to QPR`s 78. Against Blackburn Swansea managed to produce 694 passes, providing extra backing for QPR`s game-plan of pressing incredibly high up the pitch when necessary and quickly snuffing out any attacking danger in Swansea`s attacking third. It was always going to be a case of letting Swansea have the ball for the majority of the game and the 55.8 - 44.2% possession swing in The Swans favour clearly shows the Welsh sides` Barcelona-esque aspirations.
It has been noted by those insightful and intuitive TV pundits that Swansea are a small team. QPR only had to make three headed clearances, and won 9 out of the 14 aerial duals during the game, all 9 taking place outside of the box, bar one. It would have made sense for QPR to focus on the crossing aspect of the game, but such a skill has somewhat eluded any QPR player in recent weeks and a decent cross has been hard to come by. 8 successful crosses out of 31 attempts should be enough to write Neil Warnock`s training session plans for the upcoming few days.
Fitz Hall completed 90 minutes out of a possible 90, amassing a total of 0 injuries. He was largely dominant at the centre of defence, completing 100% of his tackles (admittedly, out of a possible 1) and managed to make 6 out 7 successful clearances. He even managed to not commit a foul throw. Armand Traore clearly detests defending, and his limited defensive statistics are upstaged by his attacking prominence. Whilst he failed to complete any of his 3 crosses or 2 'take-ons`, his attacking intent is a plus side to QPR`s limited goal tally.
Alejandro Faurlin had another very good game at the heart of the QPR midfield. Shooting practice is a must for the Argentinean, although, as another two goal attempts slotted nicely into the 'off target` column. Much has been made of the midfielder`s defensive attributes as well as his special attacking play, and 10 successful tackles out of 11, 2 interceptions and 1 block highlights his crucial role to the team. Much has been made of Joey Barton`s ridiculously poor past few games, and in the first half Cassius`s father couldn`t pass a GCSE exam in 'The Smiths` let alone a football five yards - a pass completion of 74% highlights a distinctly average game for the midfielder. Any other notable highlights were at a premium, and whilst all associated with QPR, except Neil Warnock, will tell you Barton is highly ineffective on the right, a sharp rise in form is a must for the captain.
An in depth discussion on Adel Taarabt is another article for another day, but a return to the starting line up saw the Moroccan central to everything good about QPR. Adel completed 51 out of 52 passes (oh wait, I thought he didn`t pass?), created three chances and received 65 passes from his teammates. Consistency is now a must for the trequartista, but his performance and statistics should place him high up in the pecking order for a start on Saturday. Helguson has performed admirably on his own up front in recent weeks and despite not having his best game on Tuesday, he topped the aerial duals section winning 50% of his 8 battles. The Icelandic international only mustered up one goal attempt, but created two chances for his team mates and was key to QPR`s attacking play.