Manuel Pellegrini’s West Ham United made it three matches unbeaten in all competitions on Saturday afternoon, with a fantastic 3-1 Premier League victory over Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United at London Stadium. Two days after the Hammers’ first home win of the season, we crunch all the statistics from the pulsating encounter.
The first team statistic that we are going to analyse is the possession, the amount of the ball that each team saw on the day and the results were certainly surprising at London Stadium.
One would expect, regardless of the scoreline, a team like United dominate possession against a team like West Ham, but we just didn’t see this, they still had more of the ball, only by a hair, however, as they managed 51 per cent, to the hosts’ 49.
The story was very much the same when it came to number of shots attempted by each side, as we see a pattern start to develop already, in this statistical analysis.
The hosts managed to get eight shots off over the course of the 90 minutes, that was only bettered by a single effort from the visitors, as they signed for nine, this will be the first time in quite some time that the Hammers have almost matched the Red Devils in so many stats, in an individual matchup.
Shots On Target
It’s all well and good having shots, but unless you can get them on target, you aren’t going to score any goals, which Mourinho’s men would duly find out in Stratford.
Despite them having one more shot on target than Pellegrini’s boys (4 and 3 respectively), they scored two fewer goals and should have tested the goalkeeper more. Although it must be noted that one of West Ham’s goals, Victor Lindelof’s own-goal, wouldn’t have counted as a shot on target, as Andriy Yarmolenko’s original effort was going comfortably wide.
Our next team stat, pass completion, offers a clue as to the kind of game it was in East London and the answer is a free-flowing one, both the Irons and the Red Devils completing over 80 per cent of their passes, accurately.
82.2% was the figure for the home side in terms of how many of their passes reached their intended targets, it would be 85.8% for the visitors, though, there can be little doubting who won when it came to quality of passing, you just need to look at the scoreline.
Key passes are the flashes of brilliance that can unlock a defence in an instant and single-handedly create goals and there was no shortage of them two days ago.
In total, 15 were made at London Stadium, an extremely high number compared to the other games the Hammers have been involved in this term, and they produced eight of them, captain Mark Noble’s to Pablo Zabaleta and Marko Arnautovic being examples, Man United created one less.
The biggest threat that the visiting team and 20-time English Top-Flight winners carried was from corners and set-pieces, and they had plenty of opportunities from the former.
Mourinho’s men won nine corners, given their aerial advantage, this will bitterly disappoint the Portuguese manager, as his team only netted one from them, Marcus Rashford’s second-half consolation, the Irons were also dangerous in the air, but just didn’t have enough corners, only getting to take four.
Our final two crucial team stats are measures of how the two teams’ defences and goalkeepers performed and we start with the backline, by looking at the number of clearances made.
The defensive battle only saw one winner in the lunchtime kick-off, the East Londoners, who were able to clear the danger on 26 occasions, with both sides facing a similar amount of work to do at the back, the Red Devils only conjuring up 16 clearances left them second-best in an, at times, shocking defensive display.
And last, but not least, it’s time to look at the shot-stoppers at both ends and analyse their performances, in saves made, once again, home goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski stole the show.
The Polish International made three excellent saves, the pick of them to deny Marouane Fellaini’s header with the score at 2-0. meanwhile, David de Gea picked the ball out of his net more times than he made a save, able to save just one of the three shots that were directed at him, but the defence in front of him took more of the blame for their shockwave-making defeat.
So, now that all the pivotal stats from an afternoon that few members of the Claret & Blue Army will ever forget at London Stadium, have been well and truly crunched, will we have yet more positive stats to analyse come next Saturday, in the wake of West Ham’s PL clash away at Brighton & Hove Albion? Join us once again, then, to find out.