Messi Walks Better Than Most Players Run

Expected goals0.603 And yet, in part because of the juvenile nature of soccer analysis, we have barely scratched the surface of understanding quite how Messi does it. This is most true when looking at his movement. Messi may get the ball more than most, but he, like all players, still spends the majority of his time without it — making runs, hiding in space, creating space for his teammates. It’s an integral part of his game that we know almost nothing about. The outcomes are there for all to see, but the process is obfuscated — we observe and quantify what Messi does on the ball, and are blind when he is off it.Throughout his career, Messi has been criticized for walking. After an El Clasico match between Barcelona and Real Madrid in December 2017, there was widespread coverage of the fact that Messi walked 83 percent of the roughly 5 miles he covered that game. Despite this, he scored and assisted in Barca’s 3-0 trouncing.This season in the Champions League (the only competition to release this basic running data), Messi ran comfortably less than any other elite attackers, averaging just less than 5 miles per 90 minutes. Naturally, a large portion of how much you run will be based on the team you play for and your role on that team. Teams that defend more will tend to cover larger distances, while certain tactical styles expect more of their forwards — Roberto Firmino of high-pressing Liverpool covered almost 7 miles per 90 minutes. But Cristiano Ronaldo of Real Madrid — which, like Barcelona, doesn’t press particularly stringently in its opponent’s half — averaged four-fifths of a mile more than Messi.We’ve known this trait of Messi’s for quite some time: In 2014 World Cup coverage, Ken Early remarked that “only Messi has figured out how to win matches by moving less than everyone else.” Benjamin Morris wrote about the phenomenon for FiveThirtyEight after Argentina lost to Germany in the final. The most popular explanation has been that Messi walks to conserve his energy for critical moments, like a perfectly efficient machine. But even when he’s walking, new research suggests, he’s far from idle.Luke Bornn, vice president of strategy and analytics for the Sacramento Kings, and Javier Fernandez, a data scientist at FC Barcelona, presented research at this year’s MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference in Boston that helps us shed some light on the phenomenon. Soccer is fundamentally a game of space and movement, so Bornn and Fernandez devised models using positional data that evaluate the occupation and generation of space by players.“We can see at every instant the location of each player and the ball, and from this deduce how players’ movements create space for themselves and others,” Bornn said. “We can also see whether they do that actively, by running into open spaces, or passively, by staying in high-value locations while the play shifts away.”The phrase “high-value locations” refers to another part of their research that quantified how much areas of the pitch are worth to either team. A rudimentary measure would simply be distance to goal, but after discussions with experts at Barcelona, Fernandez and Bornn realized that the value of space in soccer changes dynamically based on the positions of the players and the ball. Instead, they took the novel approach of extracting the value of space based on the behavior of the defending team. At the aggregate level, defenders will look to cut off the areas that are most dangerous relative to where the ball is.Watch how Messi passively gains space on the right wing for Barcelona during an attack, with a dual view showing how Bornn and Fernandez dynamically value space behind the Villarreal defenders:Video Playerhttps://fivethirtyeight.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/field_value_edit_1.mp400:0000:0000:32Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.Applying the models to data from that La Liga match between Barcelona and Villarreal in January 2017, Bornn and Fernandez found that Barcelona’s most important principle space gainers were Sergio Busquets, Andres Iniesta and Messi.They divide this space gain into two types: “active,” in which the player is moving at running speed, and “passive,” in which he is not. Iniesta and Busquets were passive just 43 percent and 52 percent of the time they held valuable positions. Remarkably, in about 66 percent of the moments Messi won control of valuable space, he was walking. Even while strolling, he is helping his team by holding ground in valuable areas, waiting for the ball to come to him.They also looked at space generation and reception, when a moving player creates space for his teammates by dragging an opposing defender with him. In the same match, Messi was one of Barcelona’s top three players in terms of gaining space, along with Luis Suarez and Neymar. The three of them, in Barcelona’s devastating 4-3-3, would spread out wide across the pitch, forcing defenders to follow them. Bornn and Fernandez found that Messi and Suarez had a “special connection,” generating considerable amounts of space for each other.Whether Messi consciously decides to go against the run of play with his movement is difficult to ascertain. “Can we say Messi gets a lot of his space by not chasing the play? Yes, that’s precisely what our research shows.” Bornn said. “Is he doing it deliberately? To answer that, you’d probably have to ask the man himself.”As he battles to cement his reputation this summer, Messi will be under more scrutiny than ever before. We’re used to seeing him provide dazzling passes, incisive shots and glamorous dribbles, but we shouldn’t be afraid to keep our eyes on him even when the ball is elsewhere, and especially if he is moving slowly. For Messi never really walks; he prowls.Check out our latest World Cup predictions. In the 12 years since he became the youngest Argentine to score a World Cup goal, Lionel Messi has won more Ballon d’Or trophies, awarded to the world’s best player, than anyone before him.1Cristiano Ronaldo has since tied him with five. He has scored more official goals in a calendar year than anyone in living memory. He is the top scorer of all time in Spain’s La Liga, and this season, his performances have been characteristically devastating: Assists0.366 Successful dribbles5.551 StatisticPer 90 min.League Rank* Lionel Messi’s performance in the 2017-18 La Liga season Expected assists0.431 * Among attackers with minimum 850 minutes playedSource: Football Whispers Goals1.021 read more

Smith accuses QPR players of tag team

first_imgAston Villa manager Dean Smith has accused players of Queens Park Rangers of working as a tag team to foul Villa midfielder, Jack Grealish.Smith has demanded more protection from the officials for Grealish who was fouled on numerous occasions during Villa’s defeat against QPR.The struggling Villans were defeated 1-0 at Loftus Road, where Pawel Wszolek’s first-half strike gave in-form QPR their third win on the bounce and the fourth victory and clean sheet of a five-match unbeaten run.Wszolek’s shot cannoned off the underside of the bar after the Poland international raced on to Geoff Cameron’s ball over the top seven minutes before the interval.Despite being kept at bay for much of the game Villa boss Smith insists referee Darren England should have done more to clamp down on QPR’s treatment of Grealish.“They need to protect Jack Grealish more. QPR were like a tag team kicking him,” Smith said, according to Sports Mole.Aston Villa explains why they spent so much money on players Manuel R. Medina – September 6, 2019 According to Aston Villa’s chief executive, the team needed to spend £144.5 million on 12 players in order to stay competitive.“A player of that quality needs protection from referees and they should be brandishing yellow cards.”“They were a tag team tonight. (Massimo) Luongo’s had four or five kicks at him and other players have.”“He needs protection. If they brandish a yellow card very early then it stops it. He’s the most fouled player in the league, we all know that.”“Does he get the protection he deserves? I don’t believe he does at the moment. I suppose it’s the only way the opposition can stop him.”“There was a lot of tactical fouling but there weren’t many yellow cards. If you dish out yellow cards then you stop that.”last_img read more

DLF pares GIC debt by Rs 3100 crore plans to clear all

first_imgDLF logoWikimedia CommonsReal estate giant DLF has repaid Rs 3100 crore of debt to its venture partner GIC by transferring Noida shopping mall and some land parcels. DLF owed about Rs 8,700 crore to DLF Cyber City Developers LTD (DCCDL), which is a joint venture between DLF and Singapore sovereign wealth fund GIC. With the latest transaction, DLF’s debt has come down to about Rs 5600 crore as of July 2019.In an investor presentation, DLF clarified that it has transferred the Mall of India project in Noida, worth Rs 2950 crore, to DCCDL. The Economic Times also reported that the company also added that it has transferred 3.05 acres of land parcel in Gurugram to the Singapore-based firm. Representational ImageINDRANIL MUKHERJEE/AFP/Getty ImagesThe joint venture between GIC and DLF was signed in December 2017 when DLF promoters sold 40 percent of their stake in DCCDL to GIC for about Rs 1,200 crore. The deal included the sale of DCCDL’s 33.34 percent stake to GIC for about Rs 9,000 crore and the remaining Rs 3m000 crore was acquired by DCCDL through buyback.DLF holds about 66.66 percent in the joint venture firm and the remaining 33.34 percent is with GIC. The Gurgaon-based real estate giant has plans to sell prime commercial project Horizon Central in Gurugram for about Rs 850 crore, to settle the remaining debt of Rs 5,600 crore. The company also plans to transfer its mall in Saket for a valuation of Rs 1,050 crore, reported ET. Real estateThe report also stated that DLF will transfer its commercial land in Chennai for about Rs 1,000 crore. Some parts of the monetary settlement to GIC will be done by transferring SEZs at Hyderabad and Chennai as per the contract with group firm DLF Assets Ltd. The leftover debt of about Rs 7,00 will be paid in cash.DLF has reported a two-fold growth in its profit at Rs 414.72 crore for the June quarter against Rs 172.77 crore last year. DCCDL holds about 30 million sqft of commercial real estate in Gurugram that yields an annual revenue of about Rs 3,000 crore.last_img read more

12 more killed in alleged gunfights toll crosses 100

first_imgProthom Alo IllustrationTwelve more suspected drug traders were killed in reported gunfights with members of law enforcement agencies early Monday as anti-narcotics crackdown continues across the country.Of them, two were killed in Cumilla and Pirojpur respectively and one each in Dhaka, Natore, Pabna and Chandpur.Besides, two drug traders in Satkhira and one each in Jhenaidah and Munshiganj were killed in reported gunfights between two groups of drug traders.According to reports reaching the UNB news desk, a total of 105 people were killed in ‘gunfights’ across the country since 12 May.Read more: ‘No innocent person killed in gunfights’In Cumilla, two suspected drug traders were killed in separate incidents of gunfights in Sadar Dakhshin and Debidwar upazilas early in the morning.Enamul Haque Dolon, 35, son of late Abdullah Bhuiyan aka Babul Miah of Bhinglabari area, and accused in 12 drug cases, was killed in a reported gunfight with police at Bhinglabari Beribadh area of Debidwar upazila.Police recovered 10kg hemp, 100 yaba tablets, one pipe gun and a cartridge from the spot.Besides, Nuru Miah, 55, son of late Abdul Ohab of Kalikapur area of Sadar Dakhshin upazila, and accused in 13 drug cases, was killed in another gunfight with police in Goliyarai area.Read more: ‘Crackdown on drug peddlers to continue’Police recovered 40kg hemp, one pistol and bullet from the spot.Three policemen were injured.In Pirojpur, a suspected drug trader, Wahiduzzaman Ohid, 50, from Nesarabad upazila, accused in eight drug cases, was killed in a reported gunfight with police at Kourikhara village of Sadar upazila around 2:00am.GM Abul Kalam Azad, additional superintendent of Pirojpur police, said that police recovered one pipe gun, 175 yaba tablets, 50gm hemp and four cartridges from the spot.Read more: NHRC worried at ‘gunfight’ killingsBesides, Mizanur Rahman, 35, an accused in six cases, was killed in a reported gunfight with police at Gotichara village of Mathbaria upazila around 1:30am.Police recovered 2kg hemp, 50 yaba tablets and four sharp weapons from the spot, said Mostafa Swapan, additional superintendent of Mathbaria.Three policemen were also injured in the incident.In Dhaka, an unidentified drug trader was killed in a reported gunfight with members of Detective Branch (DB) of police in Mirpur area of the capital.Read more: Fakhrul fears if anti-drug drive to be used to eliminate oppositionThe DB team recovered a pistol and five thousand yaba tablets from the spot, said SI Mizan of Rupnagar.In Natore, a suspected drug trader, Khalekuddin, was killed in a reported gunfight with members of Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) at Baghnagarkandi in Singra upazila around 2:00am.Police recovered several drugs, one pistol and some bullets from the spot.Read more: ‘Drug dealers in parliament itself’Two RAB men were injured in the incident.In Satkhira, police recovered bullet-ridden bodies of two suspected drug traders from Bankal-Agunpur area at Alipur union in Sadar upazila around 7:00am.One of the deceased was identified as Khalilur Rahman Puti, 35, son of Azgar Ali, of Bhomra village.Prabir Kumar Das, sub-inspector of Sadar police station, said that on information, a team of police recovered the bodies from the area.They also recovered a one shooter gun, one bullet, a bottle of liquor and 105 bottles of Phensidyl.Read more: Law enforcers use firearms in self-defence: Home ministerThe SI said the drug traders might have been killed in a gunfight between two groups of drug traders over sharing drug money.In Jhenaidah, Farid, 27, son of late Mohammad Aliof Paglakanai in the district town, and also an accused in nine drug cases, was killed in a reported gunfight between two groups of drug traders at Jar village around 1:00am.Emdadul Haque Sheikh, officer-in-charge of Sadar police station, said on information about a gunfight between the groups, a petrol team reached the spot.Sensing the presence of law enforcers, the drug traders fled the scene.Later, police recovered the bullet-hit body from the spot.Besides, police recovered a foreign pistol and 20 bottles of Phensidyl.In Pabna, Ejjat Ali Pramanik, 28, an accused in 14 cases, including that of murder, robbery, abduction and extortion, was killed in a reported gunfight with police at Teghori Mahalla in Bera municipal area around 1:30am.Zihadul Kabir, superintendent of Pabna police, said police recovered a local shutter gun, four bullets and some drugs from the spot.Five policemen were injured in the incident.In Chandpur, a suspected drug trader, Abu Sayeed Badsha aka Lal Badsha, 45, son of Absur Rashid, of Purba Gobindopur village in Faridganj upazila was killed in a reported gunfight with police at Boichatoli around 2:00am.Shah Alam, officer-in-charge of Faridganj police station, said police recovered 111 yaba tablets, a one-barrel pistol, three crude bombs and four bullets from the spot adding that Badsha was an accused in 10 cases with different police stations.Four policemen were injured in the gunfight.In Munshiganj, Sumon Biswas aka Kana Sumon, 36, son of Babul Biswas, an accused in 25 cases, was killed in a reported gunfight between two group of drug traders at Murma village in Sadar upazila around 2:30am, said Gazi Salauddin, officer-in-charge of Sadar police station.The law enforcement’s version of these events was, however, not verified independently as no version of the incident was available immediately either from any witnesses or from any members of the victim’s family.last_img read more

Care for your nails

first_imgTaking care of ones nails is very important when it comes to maintaining hygiene. Keep your hands moisturised, coat the nails properly and choose proper lacquer, suggest experts. Beauty experts list down some ways to take care of nails:- Practice good nail hygiene: Without proper care, the nails become brittle and thin and so, it is essential to have a regular maintenance routine. Manicure and pedicure help in keeping healthy and shiny looking nails. Ensure that you stick to salons that have technicians who have undergone proper training. Wear gloves for better nail care when working with your hands, such as when you are gardening or housecleaning, to protect the polish and keep dirt out of your nails. Also Read – Add new books to your shelf-Choose correct nail lacquer and nail care collection: Wearing nail polish does not harm your healthy nails, but many of your favourite nail polishes and acrylics, are full of harsh chemicals that cause nail brittleness, dryness, and thinning. Ensure that you use products that are paraben-free, sulfate-free, formaldehyde-free, toxin-free, gluten-free, cruelty-free and vegan.-Pick a nail colour remover that treats conditions that adversely affect nails and cuticles, preferable something that has the unique goodness of Vitamins A, C, and E. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsive-Hydrate your hands: It is advised to wash the hands with lukewarm water to help keep the hands and nails soft and smooth. Also, apply a hand cream frequently which is enriched with fruit extracts. It will help in restoring and make the hands look hydrated and moisturised.-Coat it up: Bottom and top coat may seem unimportant, but they help to keep our nails from chipping, splitting, cracking and strengthen and protect the nail from being stained. The coats also do an awesome job smoothing imperfections. Try and pick up a top coat which has an external barrier harder than traditional top coats, so it’s more durable against wear and damage. Also look for UV protection in the formula to combat environmental damage to include fading and yellowing. -Nail extension: The nails are one of the parts of the body that can say more of a person. In fact, many people look at the hands because they say a lot about each other’s personality, the way of life. Presentable nails are equally important and if the nails do not grow and are short, it’s beneficial to get nail extension done.-Take care of your nail extensions. Make sure that you fix the damaged nails as soon as possible and keep an eye out for dryness, redness and peeling of skin or cuticles.-Moisturise cuticles: Taking care of the cuticles is a critical part for a healthy growing nail. Dry, cracking cuticles not only make nails look messy, they can also cause hangnails and just plain hurt. Cuticles are part of your skin and serve the important purpose of acting as your nail’s protective barrier. Moisturise and massage with oils which have healing properties such as Argan Oil to restore moisture and repair damages.last_img read more