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Actually Loki you got to my curiosity so looked up the numbers, and actually defensively we don't look much different from the first half to the second half of the season.
Can't really compare directly as we're not to the end of the season, but having played 31 games I looked at the first 15 versus the second 15 games played (so did not count the Villa match so it’s an even comparison).
Based on that first half of the virtual season of 15 matches, we conceded 18 goals, while the second 15 matches we conceded 19 goals. However on the attacking side it’s a marked difference with a goal difference of just +1 over the first 15 matches, and a whopping +19 in the second 15.
Now I know some will say this is just playing with numbers and you can pull stats to tell whatever story you want. However end of the day if you want to measure something you've got to come up with some sort of scale, and so long as your consistent in your calibration it’s an even comparison. So whether we use total goals scored, goals conceded, goal difference, points on the board, league position, or even personal impressions on the quality of play (which is subjective, but still valid as long as we're honest in how you measure the before and after impressions), I can't see how many can say we've not made progress.
Thanks for that Dave, very interesting! The facts of progression cannot be contested and I would love to see someone try. Next season we will have a natural improvement on that I would imagine, it's looking quite good isn't it? This summer's transfer policy must be absolutely bang on for the progression to continue. We all have seen the defensive side of things has not been as good as it should be, and if we have to integrate 2 defenders that's going to have an impact. If only Carra would stay on for one more season!