Opta Evaluation

Tuesday 22 January 2013 10:30

Fulham left Manchester empty-handed on Saturday for the second time this season as two David Silva strikes ensured a routine win for the Barclays Premier League champions.

It was no less than the hosts deserved as Fulham failed to create any real clear-cut opportunities. Steve Sidwell was our most potent threat with two efforts on goal, although he did go very close with one in the first half which hit the post. City, by contrast, had 20 attempts with seven on target.

Perhaps surprisingly, though, Fulham enjoyed an impressive amount of possession at the Etihad, with the Whites seeing 54.5 per cent of the ball. Our passing statistics were also decent as our players attempted to find a teammate on 549 occasions, compared to the Blues’ 468.

Fulham also played more attacking balls (260 to City’s 202), while our pass accuracy was also slightly better as 86.3 per cent of our attempted passes found a man in black, compared to the Blues’ 84.6 per cent.

It comes as no surprise that the Opta stats paint Silva as the most influential player on the pitch, with the World Cup winner scoring twice, putting in six crosses and winning possession of the ball on six occasions.

Sascha Riether, though, was actually the busiest player on the pitch – the German right-back was involved in 87 ball events, with Silva involved in 79. Riether also managed six crosses and won the ball five times.