Interesting stats show Celtic second only to Barca and Giakoumakis is deadlier than you think

Part of the problem with stats is you can effectively twist them in any way that you like to prove a point or push an agenda, but they can sometimes give you an idea if certain things are working well.

Last summer saw plenty of talk about Angeball and how it would look, with a lot of the emphasis on what would happen when Celtic actually had the ball.

Talking about what happens when the other team has the ball isn’t overly exciting, but the best teams are the ones who can apply effective pressure and win the ball back as soon as possible, and this stat shows that out of the “top 5” leagues, only Barcelona had a better record than Celtic in making swift defensive actions:

There are plenty of reasons why this is important, the main one being that if you can win the ball back high up the pitch then you’ve got an immediate opportunity to create something dangerous, but if the opposition is constantly chasing the ball and struggling to create anything then they’re going to get tired quickly too.

The same account also made an interesting point about Giorgos Giakoumakis. The Greek striker scored 13 league goals and did struggle with injuries and getting a regular run of games, but this does make you wonder what he’s capable of if he can stay fit and play in most games next season:

Again, stats in isolation can be taken in many different ways, but effectively winning the ball back and having a deadly striker is always going to be welcome.

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Still trying to figure out exactly why Vidar Riseth hammered the ball across his own goal line that night in Perth....

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