Head-To-Head Stats: Jarvis (Wolves) vs Young (Aston Villa)

In an earlier article I looked at a couple of defenders in Wolves and Villa and compared their stats (HERE). Now it is time to take a look at a couple of midfielders in our quest to try to dig deeper into the “differentia specifika” in skills between the players in Wolverhampton Wanderers and Aston Villa.

With the help of statistics available we make comparisons between players in teams Wolves meet and our players and the time now has come to the midfield. Let’s look at my choice of players.

Matt Jarvis,23, was born in Middlesbrough, but started his career at Millwall. But he soon moved to Gillingham and played in their successful 2003-4 youth team that reached the last sixteen in the FA Youth Cup. At the same time he played a couple of matches in their first team. Next season he was a regular and the season after that – 2005-6 – he scored seven goals for Gills.

In the season 2006-7 Jarvis played 35 matches in the league and many clubs had been interested in signing him for some time. Wolves won the race for an undisclosed fee and he arrived from Gillingham in the summer of 2007. However he suffered hip and groin injuries during pre-season training and could not play until October.

But then he became a regular for Wolves for the rest of the season. Last season he suffered an injury blow again and was out of play in October and November. But then he became a regular starter again and played 28 matches for Wolves.

He is a lightning fast natural winger and runs through to cross or sometimes to score himself. He mostly plays on the left wing but he can play on the right as well. Earlier this season he was the player with most frequent crosses in the Premier League. His old manager at Gills early on believed that he would one day play in the England National team. Matt Jarvis has played 27 matches for Wolves in the Premier League so far this season (2064 minutes).

Team mate David Jones on Jarvis from the Official Wolves site:

Jarvo was a vital player last season and he is again this season. With his pace, he’s a real threat and he’s staying fit which is important. He’s a good outlet for midfielders like myself to use and since I’ve been back in the team we’ve linked up well. He’s done really well and I’m really pleased for him because he works really hard.

Ashley Young,24, was born in Stevenage. He started to play in the Watford Youth programme, but was first turned down by the Watford Academy. But he hanged in and got himself a professional deal at the club.

He made his debut at 18 and – as so many other young starters – played some League Cup games and as substitute. The second season, the season of 2004-5, he made 34 appearances for Watford, but he didn’t score a single goal. He made several assists, though.

The next season he netted 15 times and was a big part in taking Watford to the Premier League. In the January window of 2007 the clubs were lined up to sign the talented winger. Young finally signed for Aston Villa for around £10 million. A record for the club.

He scored at his debut and in the 2007-8 season he played very well and scored nine goals and made fourteen assists and was voted Man Of The Match several times for his team and also made it to the Premier League Team of the Year.

Last season Young became the first ever player to win three FA Premiership Player of the Month awards in the same year. He scored seven goals and made seven assists in the Premier League. Young has played ten U21 matches for England and seven for the first team. Ashley Young has played 27 matches for Aston Villa in the Premier League so far this season (2404 minutes).

Ashley Young said in an interview recently about the match against Wolves in the Express & Star:

The game is big for different reasons for us and Wolves. We’re looking to try to get into that fourth spot and kick on and they’re trying to keep themselves away from the bottom three. We know it’s going to be tough. When we went to Molineux in October we didn’t have a great performance and we came out with a 1-1 draw. But I think we’re full of confidence now. It’s an early kick-off, we’re at home and everybody is looking forward to it. I’m convinced we are going to go and get the three points.”

Well. Let us have a look at the stats for these two players, who clearly are highly regarded at their respective clubs.

Season 2009-10
Jarvis Young
Fouls won and / conceded / % won
23 /8/74%
Tackles won and / lost / % won
15/4 /79%
36 /13 /73%
Accurate passes % / Attacks created
72% / 50
62% /41
Goals / Assists / Shots on goal
2 /2 / 11
4 / 4 /13

Let us dive into these figures and try to get a deeper understanding about Matt Jarvis and Ashley Young.

Fouls: As said before, conceiving fouls could be very costly, but for a midfielder gaining a free kick is also very good for the team. Jarvis wins about three out of four fouls. That is very impressive. Young only wins three out of five. Jarvis has played less time in minutes than Young, but he is not involved in as many foul situations as Young on the pitch. I believe that he runs away from his opponents and they does not possess the speed to catch him. Foul or no foul.

Tackles: This is an area that the Wolves as a team are best on in the Premier League according to statistics. And Jarvis has not lost a tackle in the last fifteen games (!) and his percentage has risen from 67 percent to 79%. Young tackles a lot and wins a lot of them, but he does not measure up to Jarvis percentage.

Passes and Attacks: As wingers passes often are crucial and could lead to goal chances it is very important that the passes are correct. 72% of Jarvis passes finds their man, while only 62% hits their target for Young. The percentage for Jarvis is in fact not so good compared with wingers such as Aaron Lennon in Tottenham (78%). Young is a lousy passer and gives too much away to the opposing team.

Wingers are about creating attacks. That is what their speed is for. And it is in this area that Jarvis excels. He has created 50 attacks so far. But he had created 32 already after 12 games, so he was better at this in the beginning of the season. Or I actually believe that Wolves and Jarvis attacks are more controlled now. Wolves does not run forward aimlessly in the same amount. Young has created 41 attacks. That is also a good figure, but not compared to Jarvis.

Goals, Assists and Shots on goal: sadly enough, though. Jarvis efforts seldom has led to goals. Whether this is because of not good enough crosses or that the receivers are not good enough you can speculate about, but two goals and two assists, despite creating 50 attacks are not good enough.

If we look at Young he doubles both Jarvis goal and assist tally. Very good! How come that Young has better stats in this area than Jarvis? He has only two more shots on goal than Jarvis, so his shots must be better or maybe he is better placed when he launches them.

Another reason could be that Jarvis is still learning. He took advantage of an oppurtunity in a superb way in the last game and scored, so he may yet match Young’s goal and assist figures this season. And don’t forget that he – in minutes – has spent much less time on the pitch than Young.

Matt Jarvis has been one of Wolves best players this season. He is better than the highly regarded Ashley Young – a £10 million record signing for Villa and English International – in several skills that are important for a winger.

He is better at avoiding fouls and receiving free kicks, better at winning tackles and he is a better passer and better at creating chances for his team.

But his efforts has not resulted in goals and assists in the amount that could be expected. And he seems not to measure up to Ashley Young at the crucial skill of scoring goals. But he has been on the pitch four games less in minutes and hopefully he got the sent for goals when he scored against Burnley latest.

Maybe if Wolves had a Keane, a Crouch or a Defoe (or maybe an Agbonlahor or a Carew) –  to receive Jarvis crosses the result would be another?! I believe so.

I believe, though, that Jarvis must get better at shooting – as the Wolves team. But he is taking his first steps in the best League in the world and will get better with each match – as he has so far.

The conclusion? Matt Jarvis is better at everything than Ashley Young – except at what counts. Scoring goals. The story of Wolverhampton Wanderers of this season so far, I’m afraid.



~ by paddytheflea on March 19, 2010.

24 Responses to “Head-To-Head Stats: Jarvis (Wolves) vs Young (Aston Villa)”

  1. what a load of bollocks… Jarvis is better than young at everything apart from scoring goals? ye right. Young is the better player full stop.

  2. Wolves are better than Villa but are sitting 17th in the League! You can stick your stats up your ass mate and if you think Jarvis is better than your a very deluded man.

    • I only draw conclusions from the stats available, Villafan. I was comparing Aaron Lennon with Jarvis before Wolves played Tottenham and he had better stats than Jarvis. I was surprised myself over the weak stats for Young. I think that the next season it will be obvious to everybody that Jarvis is a better player than Young.

      Don’t forget that it’s his first season in the Premier League and that he playes in a struggling team. Next season both Wolves and Jarvis will be better. Young has played three seasons in the PL and play with a top 5 team. That is a crucial difference in advantage of Young.

      Why do you find it so hard to believe that Wolves can have players that are better than the Villa players in some positions, but not be better than you as a team? Don’t you have a couple of players that are better than the Manchester United players in the same position? Same thing!

  3. Mate your very deluded, You feel that Wolves players are not given credit so you come up with these stats, i even believe you validate them to your favour before you even post the crap. The MOST important stat is where you finish in the league, and Villa will be above Wolves. What you also have to remember is Jarvis is your main threat, whereas not only do we have Young, but we have Downing and Milner. Its the norm with BIG clubs we don’t try and rely on ONE player.

  4. Jarvis will never ever be better than Young no matter what team he plays for. What you also have to remember Young, is the Young PFA player of the year for 09, voted by his fellow professionals, also the only player to win 3 Player of the Month awards in a Year. Named in the Premier League team as the best left sided player for two consecutive seasons, I’d rather use that as evidence that he by far a more accomplished player than Jarvis. I’m not saying Jarvis is a bad player, from what i’ve seen he’s talented but he’s some distance behind Young.

  5. You can see the stats for yourself on the Telegraph website, Villafan.

    And again. I look at stats for individual players not the teams. I’m aware of that Aston Villa’s the better team this season.

    Yes. Downing and especially Milner are players that are better than anything we’ve got. I agree. But we have got two or three players that are better than yours at the same position. You can’t take that from us.

    And we are in our first year in the PL and many of our players are very young and will gain in experience and skills. In two seasons we can be in front of you – as a team.

  6. You are a wind up merchant, I have just read the article with Young, he did not say anything about being convinced about getting the 3 points, the actual word used was HOPED, big difference my friend.

  7. Mate, I think you’ve been smoking the happy stuff or eating it. You are on the fringes of relegation fight, by that sense you, Jarvis and Craddock may be visiting the Championship. Its my last post on here because your a waster, we will see tommorow, I think Jarvis will be adding to his stats of winning tackles rather than doing anything else to be honest. Because what your saying is if we had Jarvis and Craddock, our team will improve but in my opinion it would be far worse.

  8. Now you are beginning to annoy me!

    I clipped and pasted that interview from the Express & Star this morning and I have done no changes to it, VillaFan. I’m not trying to wind up anybody.

    But our players will wind up yours tomorrow. 😆

  9. A good first try with the stats there Paddy. Shame that you have skewed the results to support your conclusions.

    There are other factors to consider. If we use the stats you have provided we can see that while tackle success is similar in absolute terms Young does more of it, which suggests he is better tracking back. Further in terms of attacks created and what they lead to, as in assists Young converts almost 1 in 10 to assists while Jarvis only manages a paltry 1 in 25.

    As you say Jarivs compares less favorably to Young in terms of goals, Jarvis scores 1 in 5 while Young manages 1 in 3 nearly. If we extend the stats to all games this season Young has scored 1 in every 5 games while Jarvis only manages 1 in 10. Interestingly Youngs scoring holds up across his entire Villa career (1 in 5), but Jarvis is clearly having a good season he only manages 1 in 12 for Wolves in total!

    Young’s passing is not abysmal. I’d like to see the passing stats in absolute terms as I think a lot of his incomplete passes are actually crosses that are not finished. He often puts in a decent cross but no-one gets to them, difficult to pick up in these type of stats, but valid anyway. total number of crosses would be an interesting comparison.

    Overall nice try but full of errors

    • Yu¨ve got some valid points, Jon Law.

      But I have not skewed the results to support my conclusions. There are simply not enough stats available to draw better conclusions.

      One in ten to assists vs one in twentyfive. That is an interesting conclusion. But I’m not sure if it depends on the player or on his team mates. Wolves are playing with only one forward – Kevin Doyle. He is a good player but not especially tall and constantly guarded by two defenders. Not easy to connect to crosses from Jarvis under those circumstances. But we need an extra player on the midfield to be more stable in defending, so our attack becomes limited.

      I’ve made many head-to-heads involving Jarvis compared to wingers from other teams. Almost all of the wingers fromfrom teams at the upper half has a better percentage of accurate passes than Young. But of course every winger puts in descent crosses that are not picked up.

      But – as I said in the article – Jarvis has not played as many minutes as Young and he could very well pick up a couple of goals and assists in the upcoming matches. Why not tomorrow. 😆

      • Crosses that don’t connect are difficult to work out as Young puts the ball into dangerous area’s many times in a match but the unconnected ones will end up as incomplete passes, thereby skewing the findings.

        Obviously the ability of the rest of the team to get on the end of the crosses is another consideration.

        Stats can only give a partial insight, on the day, Jarvis looked good, causing Cuellar problems. Youngs delivery and overall performance was much better than Jarvis, imo. Although Jarvis looks good, hope you can hang onto him. I think you’ll have no problem staying up, so next season with the Baggies coming up too all 4 WMids teams will be in the PL, for the first time. That will be good news.

      • I agree that Young was had a better match than Jarvis yesterday, Jon. But as I understand it he did one of his best performances for the season (with the England manager sitting in the stand watching him) while Jarvis in my opinion have done much better this season and also was shifted from the left to the right wing after the first half – something that did him no good.

        All four West Midland teams in the Premier sounds good to me, Jon! But it is a risk that we take points from each other and that no team will gain in that respect from more derby’s. But the fans will of course gain a more exiting season. Welcome back to my blog to discuss next seasons matches. We will very probable have a better team by then.

      • The shifting from wing to wing is something that happens at the Villa a lot. It’s a modern ‘tactic’ that a lot of teams use, to confuse the opposition. It often confuses the player to be fair, but is worth a go.

        Young has had an up and down season, mainly because a lot of teams double up on him, but we need him doing well for the rest of the season. Two more good goals from Carew which continues his form. That’s what I take from the game, after the first 15 mins your lot made it difficult for us, we really missed Gabby’s pace.

        But fair play to Wolves you did well, Doyle is amazing, can’t see him scoring many but can we have his work-rate for Heskey please….

  10. paddy i love you!! your so great keep up the good work winding up the villa fans they always bite (but not as hard as wolves bite 😉 ) love your blogs

    Rock ON
    Up The Wolves

    • Thank you BriWolves!

      Rock On and Up the Wolves (Probable the best footballing team in the World!)

  11. There are lies, damned lies and statistics. Young on his day is a very good player indeed.

    As Wolves might find out come Saturday.

  12. http://www.premierleague.com/page/Top10Midfielders/0,,12306,00.html

    Can’t see Jarvis there can you?

  13. Ahhahaha, gotta love the angry Villa fans.
    Good job Paddy, hope our teams gets a good result tomorrow; and up the Wolves!

    • Yes. Cannot understand what they are so angry about, Erick. I’m just stating facts. Is it the air in Birmingham? Pollution?

      UP THE WOLVES!!!

  14. I’ve not seen enough of Jarvis to comment with any confidence on how good he is, but if he’s better than Ashley Young then I wouldn’t get too used to having him around.

    I hope you stay up and I think you’ve enough about you to manage it, but I’m optimistic of a Villa result tomorrow.

    • Much points to that I admit, but it’s a derby and Wolves have played very well lately – especially away from home. Statistically we are 11th team in the league when it comes to playing away so far. But it will be a very interesting game and we will give you a good game for the points withut doubt.

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