More or Less on “How Much Does Luck Play Into Liverpool FC’s Amazing Season?”

More or Less is an excellent BBC Radio 4 program that explains – and sometimes debunks – the numbers and statistics used in political debate, the news and everyday life. The episode broadcast on January 17, 2020, had a segment (starting at the 22:22 mark) that tried to answer the question that currently vexes all spectators of England’s Premier League: How much does luck play into Liverpool FC’s amazing season?

Jake Osgathorpe, analyst at Infogol, explains that based on his simulations Liverpool is faring much better than one could reasonably expect and argues that – when looking at expected goals (xG) only – Manchester City would actually lead the table.

So, Osgathorpe’s answer to the question would be “quite a bit” (at least according to his advanced soccer metrics). But as always the whole episode of More or Less is worth a listen.