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The Numbers Game: Why Everything You Know About Soccer Is Wrong [Anglais] [Broché]

Chris Anderson , David Sally

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Descriptions du produit

Revue de presse

"The Numbers Game does the impossible of making the beautiful game even more beautiful." - Malcolm Gladwell, author of The Tipping Point and Blink

“Chris Anderson and David Sally have the ability to see football in a way few have before them. Be warned: The Numbers Game will change the way you think about your favorite team or player, and the way you watch the beautiful game.” – Billy Beane, Manager of the Oakland A’s and subject of Moneyball
 
"I learned a lot, and it's hard not to applaud a project that is bent on the disenchantment of football's internal conversations and archaic practices, while simultaneously acknowledging an ineradicable core of the unpredictable and random at its heart." - David Goldblatt, author of The Ball Is Round: A Global History of Soccer for the Times Literary Supplement

“…North American soccer fans would do very well to pick up this book.  It will not only help them understand the game better, but it will also stimulate new ways to analyze and think about the game.”  – Forbes
  
“[This] is the book that could change the game forever.” – The Times (London)
   
“By any standards, this is a landmark book, scrupulously researched and bound to be influential.” – Booklist (starred review)

“Witty and thoughtful…should appeal not just to soccer fans, but to readers of Malcolm Gladwell and Freakonomics.” – Kirkus Reviews

"Their rather innovative and revolutionary way of looking at the game makes for fascinating reading." - The Library Journal

“A highly original contribution to our understanding of what we are seeing at a match, their book is unbeatable” – The Independent on Sunday
 
“Pundits, armchair fans and professionals, will find that several of their long-cherished truisms are not true at all.” – The Guardian
 
“Superb” – GQ

Présentation de l'éditeur

Moneyball meets Freakonomics in this myth-busting guide to understanding—and winning—the most popular sport on the planet - now with a new afterword on the 2014 World Cup!

Innovation is coming to soccer, and at the center of it all are the numbers—a way of thinking about the game that ignores the obvious in favor of how things actually are. In The Numbers Game, Chris Anderson, a former professional goalkeeper turned soccer statistics guru, teams up with behavioral analyst David Sally to uncover the numbers that really matter when it comes to predicting a winner. Investigating basic but profound questions—How valuable are corners? Which goal matters most? Is possession really nine-tenths of the law? How should a player’s value be judged?—they deliver an incisive, revolutionary new way of watching and understanding soccer.

Détails sur le produit


Dans ce livre (En savoir plus)
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Couverture | Copyright | Table des matières | Extrait | Index
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Commentaires en ligne 

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Amazon.com: 4.0 étoiles sur 5  34 commentaires
55 internautes sur 74 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
2.0 étoiles sur 5 A sacrifice of objective conclusions for surprising revelations. 16 juin 2013
Par Miguel Gonzalez - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Format Kindle|Achat vérifié
As a statistician and soccer fan, I have always been a fan of books that attempt to sift through the data and come to objective conclusions about the reality of the game. Unfortunately, the book's positioning statement (Why Everything You Know About Football is Wrong) appears to have been implemented at the expense of objective conclusions based on that data.
Let me give you a brief example based on certain claims made in Chapter 1.

The authors make the conclusion that half of all games are decided by luck, unfortunately, this conclusion does not follow from its premises.

- The first problem (I admit, this might be a failure to clarify as opposed to making unwarranted conclusion) is that the authors fail to specify how draws work into their analysis. They claim that "a little over half" of all games are won by favorites and that "the likelihood of the underdog winning was 45.2%" while at the same time stating that 1-1 draws are the most common score line. It may just be that the percentages they offer simply do not include game that ended in a draw, however, if this is the case, they did a terrible job communicating this to the reader.

- The authors also failed to eliminate other possible explanations for their data and instead jumped to the one conclusion that might result in the more surprising revelation. Their claim that 50% of games are decided by luck stems primarily from the fact that only about 50% of the game is won by favorites, therefore if skill is not the determining factor in a specific game, it must have been a result of chance. One very possible reason is that even though team A is favored over team B, team A's quality is only slightly better than team B so that even if skill was the determining factor most of the time, in the long run the difference in quality is not enough to break the 50/50 paradigm. In other words, the nature of the game might require a more drastic difference in quality in order for one team to dominate another, but this does not help to establish that a slight favorite losing is simply a result of chance.

- Another problem in their analysis is that they set up a false dichotomy between skill and luck, as if these were the only two contributing factors to the result. This is surprising since they talk about the 48/26/26 rule (48% of game are home wins, 26% ties and 26% losses). Most of the data they collect comes from League games, where every team plays every other team at home and away. Therefore, since 50% of all games are won by the home team and 50% of all home teams are underdogs, it renders the fact that roughly 50% of all games are won by the underdog a lot less surprising.

Examples such are these are scattered throughout the book and it is difficult to know whether these are a result of lack of clarification or intellectual dishonesty.
7 internautes sur 8 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Unique, interesting, just read it. 7 août 2013
Par Sam Galindo - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché
Really interesting approach to analyzing the game from a very unique perspective. The authors do an excellent job of backing up their claims convincingly with large data sets and statistical analyses. Recommended for any fan of soccer who is eager to learn more about what makes the beautiful game so beautiful.
11 internautes sur 14 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 Could be better, not as good as Soccernomics 6 septembre 2013
Par I. Taylor - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
The authors clearly love the game, and love analytics, but they haven't written a great book. I found myself nitpicking their arguments more than agreeing with them, starting with the "Why everything you know about soccer is wrong" subtitle, which they quickly contradict in the introduction with the statement "We will, we expect, challenge some of your assumptions, but we will doubtless support others."

Among the many other contradictory elements are the discussions of the Castrol Player Index which they use to argue for a high correlation between the quality of players within any team: "Great players play with other great players." This is followed four pages later by the statement "...Messi's score arises from his inclusion in the Barcelona subsystem...", suggesting that the Castrol rankings are dependent on the quality of the team and not an independent measure of a player's performance. If team quality influences the ranking, how believable is the initial conclusion about correlation between? In fact, it's still believable, because it matches the many things we know about soccer that isn't wrong.

Finally, I found the Americanization of this edition for sale in the US to be inconsistent and distracting. The word "football" has been excised, even in quotations: "As Ronay write: 'In the early 1990s, [soccer] entered a new era.'" On the other hand they make frequent reference to the book "Why England Loses", which was sold in the US (probably everywhere outside the UK) under the title "Soccernomics".

There are certainly interesting analyses and new ideas here, but my recommendation is to read Soccernomics instead.
4 internautes sur 4 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Data & Soccer 26 janvier 2014
Par C. Paris - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Format Kindle|Achat vérifié
I liked both this book and Soccernomics, but I thought this one actually focused better on the game and the impact of data. Soccernomics spent more time than I would have like discusses fans of soccer.
1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Up there with soccernomics 25 octobre 2013
Par English Guy - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Format Kindle
This book is up there with soccernomics as a statistical analysis of the game. However, unlike Soccernomics, which delves a lot into the economic backdrop of the game (relation of GDP to world cup performance etc.), this one focuses on the game on the field. How many shots does it take to score one goal on average? How often are goals scored from corner kicks? What is the point value of a clean sheet (on average) or scoring two goals in a game? What is the value of share of possession and how did Stoke City manage to outperform their time of possession? I think some of the claims it makes about the value of statistics are a bit overstated but it is a first class read.
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