So one of the worst kept secrets in football this season is that on the pitch Bolton Wanderers look a lot better than they did 12 months ago. But how do the base stats look compared to the last campaign? I have taken the league season up to now being the 25 games before the turn of the year and compared it to the games we played before the turn of the year last season (one less at 24 not that it makes any difference).
Starting with the most important stat Bolton Wanderers’ 50 points in 25 games is exactly 2 points per game. At this time last season in 24 games Bolton had amassed 0.67 points per game with only 16 points. In case anyone was ever wondering that is the statistical difference between being bottom of a division after Christmas and only a few points off the top. To put that into perspective that would leave us three points behind Oldham Athletic at the bottom of League One right now while we obviously are in third with a game in hand on our rivals.
The next big stat is goals for. This has been Bolton’s weakness this season, not that it has held them back all that much. This season Bolton have averaged 1.36 goals per game with 34 in total. In comparison at this stage of last season Bolton had scored just 17 goals at 0.7 per game. To give that some perspective that is exactly half the number of goals we have so far this season so statistically speaking it would have taken us double the number of games last season to score the same number we have so far this term. That would also mean that we would have had to score 17 goals in the 25th game to reach the same total, 4 more than we scored in the clubs biggest ever win against the world’s biggest club Sheffield United in the FA Cup in 1890.
Now is the biggest stat for Bolton so far this season. The club have conceded a measly 0.68 goals per game this season shipping only 17 goals, which is of course exactly half the number we have scored which is not a bad ratio. Last season we had conceded 1.45 goals per game with a massive 35 goals shipped. That is over double the number we had scored at that point last season.
The team has come a long way since the dark days of last season and these stats set that out for all to see. Now all they need to do is keep going at the same level for the rest of the year.