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  • Expected Goals

  • The Story of How Data Conquered Football and Changed the Game Forever
  • By: Rory Smith
  • Narrated by: Simon Darwen
  • Length: 9 hrs and 46 mins
  • 4.3 out of 5 stars (10 ratings)

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Expected Goals cover art

Expected Goals

By: Rory Smith
Narrated by: Simon Darwen
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Publisher's Summary

Shortlisted for the William Hill Sports Book of the Year Award 2022

Football has always measured success by what you win, but only in the last twenty years have clubs started to think about how you win. Data has now suffused almost every aspect of how football is played, coached, scouted and consumed. But it’s not the algorithms or new metrics that have made this change, it’s the people behind them.

This is the story of modern football’s great data revolution and the group of curious, entrepreneurial personalities who zealously believed in its potential to transform the game. Central to this cast is Chris Anderson, an academic with no experience in football, who saw data as an opportunity to fundamentally change a sport that did not think it could be changed. His aim: to infiltrate the strange, insular world of professional football by establishing a club whose entire DNA could be built around data.

Expected Goals charts his remarkable journey into the heart of the modern game and reveals how clubs across the world, from Liverpool to Leipzig and Brentford to Bayern Munich, began to see how data could help them unearth new players, define radical tactics and plot their path to glory.

©2022 Rory Smith (P)2022 HarperCollins Publishers Limited

What listeners say about Expected Goals

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Excellent insights

Incredible insights of the historical and present use of data that is articulated with skill and grace!
Offers a new dimension to how our great game is being moulded and what is possible. Excellent listen for any footie fan

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Am Essential Football Lovers Book

Rory Smith has written an instant classic. Captivatingly telling the story of football analytics, introducing us to the unsung heroes, amateur enthusiasts and proper football football men. Absolutely essential reading for lovers of football. The narrator does a wonderful job also. 5 stars all round.

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Interesting and insightful

A great book to give insight into a growing part of the game that is becoming much more popular.
The story is about people and their enthusiasm for data. Well worth it if you want to know more about stats in football, where it’s come from and where it’s going.

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Awesome book

Some stats, lots of inflexion points, but mostly intriguing stories of outsiders that have danced with the beautiful game.

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Should be called "boring blokes life story"

boring, repetitive and a Liverpool love letter ignoring actual statistical data and its uses

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