Kevin Davies | Serial Fouler

Kevin Davies | Serial Fouler


For eight Premier League campaigns now Kevin Davies has dominated the charts. But not in all the right ways. Since arriving from Southampton in the summer of 2003, Davies has made a name for himself as a Premier League serial fouler. In his opening season, Davies conceded 88 fouls (2nd, only behind Arsenal’s Patrick Viera) and obtained 9 yellow cards (13th in the table, 5 behind 1st placed Paul Ince) in the process.  In 04/05 Davies improved on his fouling tally by 7 and took top spot as Viera and he traded places. Although, he did keep the yellow cards to a minimum in that season, managing only 5 – down to a lowly 52nd in the rankings. The next season Davies took full advantage of Viera’s absense from the Premier League and once again increased his foul count to 108, a whopping 28 ahead of his closest challenger Shola Ameobi of Newcastle. His yellow card count of 10 was his highest tally in his short stint in the League so far and he only finished two behind Phil Neville in the rankings. The subsequent seasons saw Davies earn top spot in four out of the next five in the most fouls conceded, only losing out to John Carew of Aston Villa in 07/08. In those five seasons he notched up a total of 510 fouls, in the process hitting a new Premier League record by giving away 115 fouls in the season just ended.

 


This Guardian Chalkboard represents Davies aggresive approach to the game. In the penultimate game of the season against Blackpool, Davies gave away seven free-kicks and only managed to win one. From the chalkboard we can see that most of Davies’ fouls were in opposition territory, with three of the seven conceded just outside the Seasiders’ box. Davies is somewhat of a fouling machine, often setting out to disrupt the opponents game from the start. Reports suggested last year that when he was in with a chance of landing a spot in the England camp at South Africa, his stats ended up making the decision easier on England manager Fabio Capello.

Davies is also renowned for his successful tackles. Last season Davies tied the record for most successful tackles in a game (with Scott Parker) with 10 (vs Sunderland). He often tracks back tackling his opposition, and it shows as he even managed to make successful challenges inside his own half, as well as three around the centre-circle mark. This determination also saw him ten yellow cards last season.

Although he may outweigh his goals with his substancial foul count, he shouldn’t be overlooked for the work he does for Bolton, scoring and assisting wise. In the past three seasons, Davies has managed to score 10 or more goals, highlighting the fact that fouling isn’t the only part of his game. He’s also managed to assist teammates on over 15 occasions in his past three campaigns, managing six last term. Last season Davies was also Bolton’s 2nd biggest contributer, lending a helping hand in 14 goals for the Trotters.