This season has given us football fans a daily dose of memorable moments, marvellous matches and magnificent memes. In a season where hearts, nets, records and Loris Karius‘ thumbs have all been broken, here are a selection of the most underrated yet most incredible 2017-18 stats that you might not know about…
For the first time in almost a decade, the limelight of record-breaking stats has not been stolen entirely by the usual suspects.
Despite Ronaldo scoring his 50th career hat-trick, as well as him and Messi reaching 1000 goals for Real Madrid and Barcelona respectively this season, it makes a pleasant change to see the likes of Manchester City and Liverpool’s Mo Salah earning the lion’s share of the plaudits.
However, there are some of the most incredible 2017-18 stats that don’t receive the glorification they deserve:
Most Incredible 2017-18 Stats You (Probably) Don’t Know
Premier League Or Sunday League?
Pep Guardiola‘s Manchester City wasted no time in asserting their dominance during this season’s Premier League. They won their first 18 league games to set a Premier League record and essentially claiming the title before the turn of the year. City simply walked over the opposition and at times made Super Sunday look like Sunday league football.
This win streak was just one of many eye-opening stats in a record-breaking season from start to finish. The most credible of those being achieving the elusive 100 points in a single season. Not to mention 106 goals and 30 wins which are also Premier League records.
Amongst some of the most incredible 2017-18 stats achieved by the Sky Blues, there was one that stood out as utterly ludicrous. Pep’s boys trailed in matches for just 153 minutes throughout the entire season. That’s just over a game and a half that the supporters have had to sit there thinking: ‘we’ll score soon, it’s alright.’
While this stat may not look as aesthetic as some, it is perhaps the clearest depiction of City’s superiority. Both luck and skill are undoubtedly factors in typical title-winning seasons. However, it is difficult to see where luck was a heavily contributing factor, they just blew teams away all season long.
Controversial comebacks or dodgy decisions leading to one-goal wins were pretty much non-existent. They were losing for just 153 minutes! Most other teams will have surpassed that five games into the season.
Deft With The Left
Despite Manchester City’s unrivalled success in the league, there’s one man who comes straight to mind when it comes to the most incredible 2017-18 stats from this season’s Premier League. Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah.
The Egyptian scored a total of 32 league goals this season. A record for the Premier League era, surpassing former Liverpool striker Luis Suarez.
Of Salah’s 32 Premier League goals, he scored 25 of them with the left foot. That means that his left foot alone places third in the top scorer’s table. Four ahead of Sergio Aguero and nine ahead of Romelu Lukaku.
Liverpool have scored 84 goals in the league this season, Salah has 38% of them. Their front three combined have scored 67% of their goals (57) in the league as well as 90 in all competitions. Without a doubt the deadliest attacking trio in world football right now.
Reds Run Riot In Europe
As for the Champions League, Liverpool broke a long-standing record this season, scoring 47 goals in the competition, overtaking Barcelona’s tally of 45 goals in the 1999/2000 season.
Despite six of the goals coming in the playoffs against Hoffenheim, they earned an average of more than three goals per game in 15 matches. The record includes two 7-0 victories in the group stages as well as scoring five on two occasions in the knockouts, a quite astonishing feat in what is known to be the greatest tournament in club football. It’s just a shame they couldn’t finish the job in Kyiv when it mattered.
Brechin Records For All The Wrong Reasons
Scottish Championship side Brechin City achieved something quite miraculous during the 2017/18 season. Something that no football fan, or fan of any sports team for that matter, should have to go through. Brechin City became the first Scottish side in 126 years to not win a single game throughout an entire season.
In 2017, Brechin earned promotion to the Scottish second-tier for the first time in over a decade. A dramatic 5-4 penalty shoot-out victory over Alloa Athletic meant they gained promotion via the League One Play-Offs.
However, their fans had much less to cheer about this time around. They picked up just four points from 36 games and finished a mere 26 points behind second-bottom.
But, not all of their 2017-18 stats are so terrible.
On the bright side, at least the club offered a free drink to supporters over the age of 18 for the last home game of the season. Every cloud has a silver lining.
Lincolnshire non-league side Gainsborough Trinity suffered relegation from National League North this season. But it was no ordinary relegation.
Since being formed in 1873, Gainsborough were yet to experience a single relegation or promotion in their 145-year history. Surely that’s a good thing, right?
Although being relegated is never ideal, for a part-time club that were playing in a league largely made up of full-timers, a club who have rarely encountered any ups and downs of any real magnitude, especially on-field, there must be a real sense of relief and happiness around the club that the remarkable burden has finally been eradicated.
Some new opposition, new tin-roofed, terraced grounds to visit. What more could they ask for? If anything, it gives them a fantastic opportunity to bounce straight back and gain promotion at the first time of asking, or the 146th year of asking, if you will.
Surviving By The Skin Of Their Teeth
Evo-Stik Southern Premier League side Gosport Borough maintained their status in the seventh tier of English football in extraordinary fashion this season.
Heading into the final three matches of the 2017/18 season, the Hampshire-based club sat bottom of the table. They were four points adrift with just two wins all season and a goal difference of -114 to match.
But by some miracle, Gosport won their last three games, scoring 13 goals and conceding none to secure safety with a tally of just 19 points from 46 games. 19 is the same amount of times they conceded four or more goals in the league.
How on earth can a team this bad manage to survive relegation? They fielded a total of 80 players in the league. This is perhaps the clearest indication as to why they struggled so spectacularly. It’s hard to believe that there was a team that finished below them.
Unless they can solve their financial problems soon and find some stability both on and off the pitch, their fans will have to endure a season equally as painful as the last. Those poor, poor souls.
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