We are currently in the midst of the 29th English Premier League season and while things may be different without fans in the stands, the tournament is still set to be a nail-biter. Liverpool, Manchester City and Manchester United are all among the favourites for the title in the betting, but Premier League predictions are proving to be harder than ever, with a whole host of shock results already. Underdogs Tottenham and Leicester City are being considered to be serious contenders by many.
The 2020 / 2021 season is the second in history in which VAR technology is being utilised to improve reporting accuracy and reduce human error. However, this is already proving to divide opinion as a series of referee decisions have been overturned.
This season the Premier League has been full of surprises right from the start. One example being Villa’s improvements to their defence, with them conceding far less than expected given their record last season. West Ham have also surprised fans by picking up 19 of 21 points from teams outside the big six.
Here are just a few other facts and statistics that you might not have expected:
Defender John Stones has most points per game this season
Manchester City defender John Stones has won more points per game than any other player this season. After appearing in the open day match, the centre back was side-lined for seven league games.
Without Stones in the fold, the team won just two of those games and drew in three. Since Guardiola bought the player back into the line up their results have improved greatly.
In the games that he did play, Manchester City conceded 0.29 goals per game on average, in comparison to the 1.38 per game average without him in the game.
Having got off to a disappointing start in the season, City has now climbed the tables up to their current spot in 6th place, however at this time they are two games in hand compared to contenders Liverpool and Manchester United.
Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa third-most dribbles and interceptions
Fulham are another team that have made their way up the league tables after being at risk of relegation this season. They may have centre midfielder Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa to thank for this.
The Cameroonian footballer has attempted 69 dribbles, putting him third for this statistic in the league. He is catching up to Marcus Rashford who has attempted 71 so far and Adama Traore who has attempted 86. He also has the third most interceptions and the eighth most tackles this season so far. The 25-year-old usually goes under the radar and spent last season with Villarreal in the Spanish La Liga. He has been with Fulham since August 2018 but was loaned out following Fulham’s previous relegation from the Premier League. Despite Zambo Angussa’s influence, Fulham are not out of the woods just yet. In 18th place the team are still at real risk of being relegated to the Championship.
Mason Mount has so far made the fourth most key passes in this Premier League season
22 year old Chelsea player Mason Mount first joined the club at the age of six and made appearances in both the 2013 / 2014 season and the 2016 / 2017 season, before being signed up to a new four year contract in 2017.
This season he has made 16 appearances in league games and scored once. However, what is really impressive is that with 37 passes so far, he has made the fourth most in the entire league. He is only beaten by Jack Grealish with 55, Bruno Fernandes with 50 and Kevin De Bruyne with 46 so far. This is not bad for a younger player who is yet to reach his full potential.
While Mount’s efforts will hopefully really help them to climb the league table this season, it isn’t all good news for Chelsea management. The club recently spent a quarter of a billion pounds on recruiting Hakim Ziyech and Kai Havertz. Ziyech and Havertz were meant to be the shining stars this season and were expected to perform a level above the other players. However, at the moment they do not seem to be doing much more than complementing Mount and the rest of the line-up.
At this time, Chelsea are sitting at 9th place in the league following a run of poor form where they saw only one win in their previous six matches. At the halfway point in the season, they are perhaps not where they hoped to be in the tables, but just a few more points could bring them up to fourth place.
The Premier League has clearly been full of surprises so far. While most of the usual favourites are doing well in this season’s league table, there is still no clear winner in sight.