At MicroStrategy, we’ve been looking back over the data from the Russia 2018 World Cup from the first two rounds. Here, we take a look ahead to England’s quarter-final match against Sweden.
It is notoriously hard to make match predictions as there are so many variables in play, but from the data* we can gain a few valuable insights.
Sweden has scored five goals from 47 shots (10.6% conversion), with most shots going to the opposing goalkeepers’ right-hand side, which will suit England stopper, Jordan Pickford.
None of the Swedish team rank particularly high and they will certainly rely heavily on captain Andreas Granqvist. The defender has scored twice in the tournament and contributed 142 passes. Midfielder Albin Ekdal will also be critical in the match, with 135 passes completed so far. England will also have to find a way past the reliable Robin Olsen in goal, who has saved 11 shots so far and kept three clean sheets.
England has scored nine goals in 59 attempts (15.25% conversion) but is heavily reliant on Harry Kane (six goals from nine attempts) and has not had to face the same quality of opposition. England’s shot variety is also wider, which could test Olsen. Check out our video on where England and Sweden shoot:
England centre-back John Stones will be critical playing the ball out of defense. He has completed 283 passes at 95% accuracy. Manchester United’s Jesse Lingard is particularly effective in the final third, with one goal from eight attempts and 105 passes.
Sweden is strongest through the middle and is one of the tallest teams at the tournament, so England cannot rely on the aerial threat as much as previous matches. Sweden is also organized and compact, so England may look to use pace and width.
We shall find out which team on Saturday will prevail!
*Methodology: We mined data provided by sports statistics group Opta and included players who have played more than 90 minutes during the tournament.
Can't get enough of the 2018 FIFA World Cup? Check out our earlier blog post Your Data-driven Guide to the World Cup.