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Passing in Final Third (Trends)

Updated: Mar 3, 2021

I looked at some trends in performance across the 90minutes of our games and the graph below would suggest a lack of intensity in 75-90mins with our passing.

Against Livingston at Home out of all our passes between 75mins and 90mins only 18% were in the final third at a time we should have been chasing a win. We had 20 passes in the final third in 75-90mins from a total of 113 passes made in 75-90mins. Just 18%!

In the home game we were actually worse in the period from 30mins to 45mins. Fitness levels at the end of each half ?

The game away to Livingston had a very similar pattern if not as volatile even though the team had been changed quite a bit, therefore not an indication of personnel and more of the team culture/structure.

Using a good performance versus Dundee Utd in December as a benchmark you can see how the pass% in the final third reaches it's peak in 75-90mins suggesting we finished strongly. Maybe this could be down to confidence and controlling the game versus Dundee Utd makes it ease to pass further up the pitch versus nervousness chasing the game in the games versus Livingston.

However I then decided to use Rangers as a benchmark and their performance versus Motherwell when they were chasing the win. You can see their % pass increases as the game flows in a controlled and structured manner and at a high point in 75-90mins when chasing the game.

To show how this compares to overall possession I have produced the chart below. Possession % generally flows the same as % share of passes in the final third but the last segment (75-90mins) has the biggest disparity and going in the opposite direction.

So when our possession increased to 67% in the final 15mins our passes in the final third dropped to 18% of total passes. This resulted in just 1 shot at goal in that period.

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