We’ve taken assists from Wayne Rooney and Willian among others but regognised the likes of Ashley Young instead in the Real Assists League.
Statistics in football can be useful…but they can also be extremely misleading. There is no better example of that than the assists, which are arbitrarily awarded by the Premier League every weekend for the simplest of passes – think Jon Walters claiming one for Charlie Adam’s wonder goal at Chelsea last season.
Well, this season we’ll be keeping a ‘Real Assists League’ which will not award assists so easily and will also differentiate between open-play and set-piece assists. Furthermore, if a player beats five opponents but does not make the final pass, there’s every chance we’ll award him the ‘key role in goal’ mark, which ensures the real architect is recognised…
Manchester United 1 Tottenham 0
– Wayne Rooney was awarded the official Premier League assist having had the final touch of the ball before Kyle Walker inadvertently bundled into his own net, but we’re taking that away from him and instead rewarding Ashley Young a ‘key role in goal’ mark having put in the cross which led to Walker’s mistake.
Bournemouth 0 Aston Villa 1
– This one was straightforward enough, Rudy Gestede heading in directly from an Ashley Westwood corner.
Everton 2 Watford 2
– Jurado got the official assist for Watford’s opener, scored by Miguel Layun, but we’re taking that away from him after his cross into the box was met and cleared, albeit badly, by Phil Jagielka.
– It may have been a simple pass by Arouna Kone to set up Ross Barkley for Everton’s first equaliser, but we’re more than happy with this awarding of the assist.
– Troy Deeney was credited with the assist for Watford’s second, but considering it was a header not much inside the Everton half, with Odion Ighalo needing to run a fair distance, beat John Stones and then shoot from outside the area to score. Sorry Troy, but you’re not getting the TEAMtalk assist.
– Everton’s second equaliser was scored by Arouna Kone after a Romelu Lukaku pass – no problems here.
Leicester 4 Sunderland 2
– Marc Albrighton‘s free-kick set up Jamie Vardy for Leicester’s opener. He gets the assist
– Albrighton claimed the second assist too for crossing for Riyad Mahrez.
– Mahrez scored Leicester’s third from the spot having won the penalty himself. No assist to award.
– Jermain Defoe pulled one back for Sunderland after an Adam Johnson through-ball.
– Jeffrey Schlupp got the official assist for Leicester’s fourth, but his poor cross should have been dealt with by Younes Kaboul, who cleared straight to Albrighton to score.
– Steven Fletcher scored following Jeremain Lens‘ clever lob across goal.
Norwich 1 Crystal Palace 3
– Jason Puncheon claimed the assist for Palace’s opener courtesy of a superb cross to set up Wilfried Zaha.
– Pape Souare headed towards the far post for Damien Delaney to tap in the visitors’ second – we’re happy the Palace defender was looking for his team-mate rather than going for goal.
– Wes Hoolahan got the assist for Norwich’s goal, but there’s no way he deserved it for a simple pass before Nathan Redmond’s strike.
– James McCarthur claimed an assist late on with a fine through-ball for Yohan Cabaye to score Palace’s third.
Chelsea 2 Swansea 2
– Oscar’s opener was scored directly from a free-kick won by Cesar Azpilicueta, but there’s no way we’re rewarding him with the assist as the Premier League have.
– Bafetimbi Gomis claimed the official assist for Swansea’s first equaliser after his header was saved by Thibaut Courtois before Andre Ayew scored the rebound, but he certainly wasn’t intending to set up his team-mate so doesn’t get the assist. Jefferson Montero, however, claims a ‘key role’ mark for his brilliant cross which set up the initial chance for Gomis and subsequent chance for Ayew.
– Willian bizarrely gets an assist for Chelsea’s second goal, which has provisionally been given as an own goal, but he’s certainly not getting one from us.
– The Premier League did not award anybody an assist for Swansea’s second equaliser, scored from the penalty spot by Gomis after he was brought down by Courtois, but we’re giving Jonjo Shelvey a ‘key role in goal’ mark for his superb through-ball to set the striker clear.
Arsenal 0 West Ham 2
– Dimitri Payet got the assist for whipping in the free-kick which Cheikhou Kouyate headed home for West Ham’s first.
– Mauro Zarate’s second, however, was all of his own doing.
Newcastle 2 Southampton 2
– Cedric Soares keeps his assist for Southampton’s first for the brilliant cross which set up Graziano Pelle.
– Massadio Haidara retains his too for the cross which allowed Papiss Cisse to equalise for Newcastle.
– Gabriel Obertan also keeps his for another cross, this time to Georginio Wijnaldum.
– Dusan Tadic claimed the fourth assist of the day with a cross to Shane Long.
Stoke 0 Liverpool 1
– Joe Gomez was credited with an assist for a pass to Philippe Coutinho, but the Brazilian had to turn Steve Sidwell and shoot from 25 yards to claim his goal. No assist on this occasion.
West Brom 0 Manchester City 3
– Jesus Navas keeps his assist for setting up Yaya Toure’s somewhat fortunate opener.
– As does Wilfried Bony for laying on the Ivorian’s second.
– David Silva set up the third for Vincent Kompany with a left-wing corner.
The Real Assists League
|The Real Assists League, 2015-16|
|Player||Official Assists||Open-Play Assists||Set-Piece Assists||Key Role In Goal|