A-League 2016-17 – Bad-At-Predictions

We are now 3.70% of the way through the A-League season, and we don’t know very much about how the rest of the season will unfold. This is hardly surprising.

Anyway, I’m better than a one hit wonder, I’ve now got two blog posts about the A-League out on time. Now, time for the douzième round. (Very intelligent French here.)

Game of the Week – Adelaide United v Western Sydney Wanderers

Unlike a particular Melbourne newspaper where the lead AFL journalist has blocked me on Twitter, we here at Statscrunch are aware that sports exist outside of Melbourne.

And, while they focus on mostly the Melbourne derby (also good), we’re taking a look at the Grand Final rematch tonight.

The Wanderers are possibly one of the unluckiest teams in sport, having played four seasons and lost Grand Finals in three of them. They have a top lineup, including Nicolás Martínez and Jumpei Kusakami that has helped them do this, but there are serious doubts after losing 4-0 to Sydney FC last week.

Adelaide United, meanwhile, haven’t won many games since the Grand Final (in the FFA Cup and friendlies), but with ageless goalkeeping stalwart Eugene Galekovic and attacking gun Sergio Cirio, they have a decent chance of Getty back to good form.

Article – The Wellington Question

Should the Wellington Phoenix be competing in the A-League?

It’s a rather strange conundrum. A team playing in a different country’s league is mildly interesting, but not highly unusual (Swansea City in the English Premier League, Toronto in Major League Soccer).

What makes Wellington unique is that they play in a different continent. And, unfortunately for the Phoenix, if they qualify for the Asian Champions League, they will be unable to compete, as they are counted as an OFC team by the AFC. Even then, if that didn’t count, removing all non-AFC players doesn’t leave them with enough to form an eleven.

Wellington is possibly the only team that can’t compete in a continentil competition. The obvious solution here would be to boot out Wellington and leave them to play in New Zealand, but they would be the only professional team and be able to dominate.

I feel the solution is to either encourage the development of a professional league in New Zealand to put the Phoenix in, create a special rule allowing them to compete in the ACL, or create a joint ANZ league, along with New Zealand bidding for AFC membership. For now, though, Wellington are strangers in a strange land.

Chart II – First Week Good Form

The question that I wanted to answer with this chart was this: does a win in Week 1 signify that you’ll do well in the season?

To do that, I looked at all of the Week 1 results from 2012-13 onwards (the season the Wanderers joined the A-League, and the season that I will run a lot of charts from), and correlated how their net wins ([wins]-[losses]) after Round 1 correlated with their net wins after Round 27.

The average number of net wins was:

  • Win first week: -0.43
  • Draw first week: 4
  • Lose first week: -3

Based on this, it’s good news for Brisbane, Victory, Perth, Central Coast, Newcastle, and Adelaide.

However, another related test is seeing the correlation, how well individual results fit the pattern.

The answer is, not well.

Correlations.pngThe average R^21 value was 0.18465, which isn’t very good, meaning that there won’t be much corellation. You can’t predict the number of net wins very well from how they went after Round 1.


I only got one prediction right last week, the City v Wellington game. Hopefully I do better this week. (Changed the system!)


1The R^2 value is how well the individual data points correlate with the pattern. 1 means that they correlate perfectly, 0 means that there is none whatsoever.


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