The Form Book- Wolves & Blues
I used to love watching Football Focus on F.A Cup day when I was growing up, seeing the 'minnows' given their fifteen minutes of fame, carefully choreographed footage of empty streets... Mr. Wilks will be closing up his Newspaper shop early on Saturday so he can rush home to iron his 'lucky scarf' before the game. Heartily chuckling, he has warned all those wishing to stock up on a pocket full of Bon Bons' that they should get their Royston Vasey Herald early in the morning. Paper Boy Tim has booked the day off. He has a ticket too. His grandfather is taking him.
Daisy the Avon lady couldn't find a babysitter so she is taking all her children with her- she is grateful that the club was offering a Buy 9- Get A 10th Ticket Free! promotion.
And so on.
So, what's that got to do with a Premiership derby. I was reading around the papers and inevitably the famous old line is being repeatedly rolled out, 'it's a derby, anything can happen.' much the same of course as what is always bandied around before these David & Goliath tussles that the F.A Cup is always able to deliver.
This may not be a David & Goliath encounter, as Mick points out, only 6 points separate ourselves from Birmingham but instead of throwing the form book out of the window, I decided to pick it up and read it, and a pretty read, inevitably it was not.
We can predict outcomes based on probability that we base on actualities, occurrences, results and facts.
Leaving our most recent derby form well alone, I browsed the official Barclay's Premiership site and studied.
So what do we want first, the good news or the bad. For the sake of hoping to end this article on a vaguely positive note, lets deal with the bad.
Based on the last 6 games, Wolves have the worst form in the league with one win and five defeats, earning (obviously) three points, from a possible 18.
Birmingham has taken seven points from 18, having won one, lost one, and drawn four.
On a points per game ratio, Birmingham have been clocking up almost double that of Wolves. They have lost one in six compared to our one win in six, although they have only won one also.
The bigger picture? The table tells it's own story. Wolves have taken 12 points from 16 games, Birmingham have taken 18. Wolves are earning .75 of a point per game, and Birmingham 1.125. If these ratio's continue for the remainder of the season Birmingham will be sitting pretty with 42/43 points, Wolves will be relegated with 28 points, ten below a minimum target.
Mightily depressing reading, but on further inspection, there are a few interesting stats worth throwing in.
Both sides have only won three games all season- and both have scored exactly the same amount of goals, 17. The big difference of course is that Wolves have shipped 30, compared to Birmingham's 19.
In the meantime, Blues have lost only 4 times this season, the same as Arsenal and Chelsea.
Birmingham are not scoring many- their strength as we all know is the fact they don't concede.
To round this up on a vaguely positive note as promised, Birmingham have yet to record an away win.
Further cheer and perspective? Everton have not won in six, and from the same amount of games, Chelsea have won just one.
I don't think either of those runs will continue for much longer, so let's hope we can follow suit and correct our season's ills.
Based on the above, I care not having to close with a dreaded cliche, but I would be happy to throw the form book from the window this weekend because it points, at best, to a goal less draw. We need three points. End of transmission.
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New York City Wolf.