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Finding the best full-backs from the Allsvenskan – data analysis statistics

Finding the best full-backs from the Allsvenskan – data analysis

In our second data analysis piece on the Allsvenskan, we will be looking out for the best full-backs currently playing in the league using data. Full-backs have come a long way in redefining their traits in the modern game. Gone are the days when they had a very limited task to do only defending. Modern managers are hugely dependent on their full-backs and their roles have also evolved where some of them play as a midfielder by inverting inside during possession.

In our analysis, we will be considering both the attacking as well as defensive attributes. We will be looking at players who registered at least 700 minutes of football in the 2022 league season. Also, only proper full-backs are taken into consideration i.e. no makeshift options included.

We will shortlist the best options according to the statistics and data analysis. Let’s dive deep into the analysis.

Player profiling

The most important thing for any player or position in football is to identify their best-suited abilities. Different players playing in the same position will have differing abilities both offensively and defensively. Likewise, full-backs will show both defensive as well as offensive capabilities. In order to account for the profile of the FBs that we are looking into, we compare them with respect to how well they perform in their attacking and defensive actions. We can see the plot in the image below that compares the FBs in the Allsvenskan in this regard.

Finding the best full-backs from the Allsvenskan – data analysis statistics

Axel Lindahl – The 27-year-old right-back from Kalmar. He has recorded 5.57 successful attacking actions per game and 12.59 successful defensive actions per game. He also wins his duels at a very good rate 0f 57.46%.

Oliver Zandén – The 20-year-old left-back from Elfsborg. He has recorded 3.5 successful attacking actions per game and 14.94 successful defensive actions per game. He also wins his duels at an average rate 0f 50.59%.

Eric Otieno – The 25-year-old left-back from AIK. He has averaged 6.06 successful attacking actions per game and 8.94 successful defensive actions per game. He also wins his duels at a decent rate 0f 53.95%.

Kristoffer Lund Hansen – The 20-year-old left-back from Hacken. He has recorded 4.05 successful attacking actions per game and 9.59 successful defensive actions per game. He also wins his duels at an average rate 0f 48.17%.

Mohanad Jeahze – The 25-year-old left-back from Hammarby. He has recorded 4.37 successful attacking actions per game and 8.98 successful defensive actions per game. He also wins his duels at an excellent rate 0f 56.7%.

Defensive ability

The next thing we look at is how the players perform in the defensive aspect of the game. We compare the full-backs with respect to their defensive duels and interception stats that they have recorded per game over the course of this season. Despite the modern-day full-back being required to be very good on the ball, their share in contributing to the defence can never be undermined and is equally important for the position.

Finding the best full-backs from the Allsvenskan – data analysis statistics

Axel Lindahl – The Kalmar right-back has recorded 9.08 PAdj interceptions per game and 6.34 defensive duels won per game in the league this season.

Oliver Zandén – The Elfsborg left-back has averaged 12.34 PAdj interceptions per game and 4.55 defensive duels won per game in the league this season.

Robert Lundström – The 32-year-old right-back has recorded 6.86 PAdj interceptions per game and 5.86 defensive duels won per game in the league this season.

Victor Larsson – The 22-year-old full-back from Varnamo has averaged 6.73 PAdj interceptions per game and 6.03 defensive duels won per game in the league this season.

Mohanad Jeahze – The 25-year-old left-back has averaged 6.84 PAdj interceptions per game and 3.77 defensive duels won per game in the league this season also with a very good duel success rate as well.

Playmaking

FBs are also tasked with moving the ball to the final third and helping the team to ensure that they can go to the final phase of the play. Also, there are some teams that depend on their full-backs to play out from the back. The likes of Bayern MunichLiverpool and Manchester City use their full-backs to great effect to seamlessly build play out from the back.

Finding the best full-backs from the Allsvenskan – data analysis statistics

Mohanad Jeahze – The 25-year-old left-back has averaged 8.82 passes into the final third with an accuracy of almost 69.5%, which is among the league’s highest. He also averaged 0.42 smart passes per game in the league this season.

Jordan Larsson –  The 32-year-old right-back who played for Elfsborg, and is currently a free agent, has averaged 0.46 smart passes per game and 6.96 passes into the final third per game as well. He also completed his passes into the final third with an accuracy of 61.5%.

Martin Olsson – The 34-year-old left-back from Malmo has recorded 0.34 smart passes per game and 6.4 passes into the final third per game as well. He also completed his passes into the final third with excellent accuracy of 70.2%.

Davíð Ólafsson – The 27-year-old left-back from Kalmar has averaged 0.67 smart passes per game and 6.2 passes into the final third per game as well. He also completed his passes into the final third with a very good accuracy of 63%.

Oliver Zandén – The Elfsborg left-back has averaged 0.23 smart passes per game and 5.95 passes into the final third per game as well. He also completed his passes into the final third with excellent accuracy of 67%.

Ball progression

Full-backs these days are expected to be very expansive on the ball and also help the team to progress over the different thirds of the pitch. They are expected to be very direct and technically sound on the ball and be comfortable in providing value to the team with their carrying and passing.

Finding the best full-backs from the Allsvenskan – data analysis statistics

Eric Larsson – The 30-year-old full-back from Malmo has recorded 11.68 progressive passes in the league along with 3.17 progressive runs per game last season. He also averaged 2.13 progressive passes for every 10 passes he made in the league.

Kristoffer Lund Hansen – The Hacken left-back has recorded 12.14 progressive passes in the league along with 2.55 progressive runs per game last season. He also averaged 2.6 progressive passes for every 10 passes he made in the league, which is an impressive number and is amongst the league’s highest.

Mohanad Jeahze – The 25-year-old left-back has averaged 14.1 progressive passes in the league, which is the highest amongst the full-backs in the league, along with 1.76 progressive runs per game last season. He also averaged 2.34 progressive passes for every 10 passes he made in the league.

Felix Beijmo – The 24-year-old right-back from Malmo has averaged 8.67 progressive passes in the league along with 3.17 progressive runs per game last season. He also averaged 1.73 progressive passes for every 10 passes he made in the league.

Anton Kralj – The 24-year-old from Degerfors has averaged 12 progressive passes in the league along with 1.82 progressive runs per game last season. He also averaged 2.31 progressive passes for every 10 passes he made in the league.

Chance creation

The final phase of play and potentially the most crucial aspect from an attacking sense is the creation of chances for their team’s forwards. This is where a lot of FBs, especially the attacking ones, are judged based on their ability to consistently create chances. Full-backs are also expected to provide a width and be among the focal point of creation for their respective teams. Instead of comparing them with respect to their actual assist number that gets inflated due to great finishes we see their expected values and also their ability to make passes into the penalty area.

Finding the best full-backs from the Allsvenskan – data analysis statistics

Mohanad Jeahze – The 25-year-old left-back has averaged 0.67 key passes per game with his assists being worth an xA of 0.18 per game. He has also averaged 1.6 shot-assists per game in the league this season.

Axel Lindahl – The Kalmar right-back has recorded 0.67 key passes per game with his assists being worth an xA of 0.17 per game. He has also averaged 1.1 shot-assists per game in the league this season.

Valgeir Friðriksson – The 20-year-old right-back from Hacken has averaged 0.71 key passes per game with his assists being worth an xA of 0.16 per game. He has also averaged 1.06 shot-assists per game in the league this season.

Oliver Zandén – The Elfsborg left-back has recorded 0.47 key passes per game with his assists being worth an xA of 0.16 per game. He has also averaged 0.93 shot-assists per game in the league this season.

Josafat Mendes  – The 19-year-old right-back from AIK has averaged 0.64 key passes per game with his assists being worth an xA of 0.12 per game. He has also averaged 1.8 shot-assists per game in the league this season.

Aron Bjarnason – The 26-year-old right-back from Sirius has averaged 0.83 key passes per game, the highest among full-backs in the league, with his assists being worth an xA of 0.11 per game. He has also averaged 1.49 shot-assists per game in the league this season.

Jordan Larsson – The Elfsborg right-back has recorded 0.38 key passes per game with his assists being worth an xA of 0.26 per game, the highest among full-backs in the league. He has also averaged a league-high 2.37 shot-assists per game in the league this season.

Players to watch out for

Based on the data and the statistics we have shortlisted a few options to look out for in the forthcoming season where we expect these full-backs to make bigger strides.

Finding the best full-backs from the Allsvenskan – data analysis statistics

Oliver Zanden

The Elfsborg left-back is currently one of the best young performers in the league and is probably the best in his position for his age. He does really well defensively for his side and does his job well whenever called upon. His attacking strengths also lie in creating chances for his side and is one of their most important final-third creators.

To become more complete and ensure his development is met in the right way, he can develop his ability in the build-up phase for his side and contribute a lot more in that phase. This will also help him to secure a move to a bigger club in the future as well.

Mohanad Jeahze

The Hammarby full-back is amongst the most well-rounded full-backs presently in the Allsvenskan currently. He has shown a good ability to progress the ball for his side, create chances in the final third, help his side in terms of playmaking and move the ball into the final third and into the final phase of the attack.

The only attacking area in which he seems to be a bit behind is his ability to make progressive runs for his side which again is not really bad when considered in isolation but he can certainly improve on that. Also defensively, if he can show a good ability to read danger better, he can certainly be good at stopping attacks from the source.

Felix Beijmo

The Malmo full-back is currently playing as an understudy under many experienced full-backs in his team but has done well whenever he has been given minutes by his manager. He has contributed really well defensively and also in progressing the ball well to the final third as well. He can certainly improve on creating a lot more chances for his side and be a creative threat for the opposition from the flanks.

Conclusion

The Allsvenskan possesses some fine full-backs with most of them being young and with high potential. In this article, we have covered both the attacking as well as defensive traits to discuss and list a few of the best-performing players. A lot of players have been handpicked and have seen themselves playing in multiple top-tier clubs across the Scandinavian regions. We could see that the players we saw and discussed could also follow the same path and be successful at the top level and also amongst the biggest clubs in Europe.