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Hot Shots of the Premier League

We’re coming up to a massive weekend of Premier League football so we thought we’d do some analysis on the Premier League’s Hot Shots! This article will look at which team is not only the most accurate side in the Premier League, when it comes to shooting, but which side makes their shots count or are wasteful infront of goal! All of the stats in this article are courtesy of Opta via our Stats Centre!

Most Shots

This Radar chart pretty much correlates to league position apart from Newcastle United who aren’t shooting as much as the traditional Top 6. Manchester City, Chelsea and Liverpool have the top 3 spots for shots on goal totals whilst Stoke City, Swansea and Bolton make up the rear.

Shot Accuracy: Most Accurate

I’m sure you all agree, the column chart below displays a pretty surprising result. Bolton having the highest shot accuracy obviously bears no resemblance on their league position which is precarious, to say the least. The next four teams are a part of the top five teams in the league and therefore they’re expected to be there.

Blackburn and Fulham also put in some decent shooting accuracy stats whilst it’s Liverpool that are pitted pretty low in the shot accuracy rankings. I’m sure Liverpool fans will say they knew this would be the result after their much publicised low chance conversion %. Only Stoke City, QPR, Aston Vila and neighbours Everton are worse than Liverpool when it comes to hitting the target.

These stats don’t tell us enough though, we need to break them down further and we need to add some context to these stats. The area chart below shows the most accurate shooters to the least and also shows the difference with shots on target plotted against total shots. (Please click on chart to enlarge it).

Minutes per Shot / On Target

The minutes per shot stat provides some context to a team’s shooting statistics. We can clearly see which teams are shooting more often than others and which ones are hitting the target more often too.

Chelsea are the team that are shooting most frequently at goal, followed by Manchester City and Liverpool whilst Stoke City, as shown in the graph below, are shooting with the least frequency at goal.

When it comes to shots on target the league leaders, Manchester City, are hitting the ball between the goal frame the most frequently with the average shot on target every 13.94 minutes. Remarkably Stoke City are almost trebling that figure and averaging a shot on target every 36.45 minutes. Stoke are currently sitting in 8th place in the league so they’re obviously converting a high percentage of their shots on target.

In fact Stoke City are converting 40% of their shots on target into goals. This statistic is 2nd only to Manchester City who are converting 40.14% of their shots on target. Wigan and Liverpool prop up the table for converting shots on target. Liverpool convert on 20.87% and Wigan closely behind on 20.69%.

Blackburn are third in converting their shots on target achieving 38.55%, another surprising stat really. The full list is here:

  1. Manchester City – 40.14%
  2. Stoke City – 40.00%
  3. Blackburn Rovers – 38.55%
  4. Manchester United – 38.24%
  5. Newcastle United – 36.14%
  6. Norwich City – 35.16%
  7. Aston Villa – 33.33%
  8. Swansea City – 32.39%
  9. Chelsea – 30.08%
  10. Sunderland – 29.35%
  11. Tottenham – 28.06%
  12. Arsenal – 27.74%
  13. Bolton Wanderers – 25.77%
  14. West Brom – 25.32%
  15. Wolverhampton Wanderers – 25.00%
  16. Everton – 25.00%
  17. QPR – 24.68%
  18. Fulham – 21.30%
  19. Liverpool – 20.87%
  20. Wigan Athletic – 20.69%


We’ve added the mins per goal graphic on the right above to add a little more context. The top five are as you were and then there are a few changes from the actual league table as Newcastle and Liverpool drop down the table whilst Norwich and Blackburn move further up. Blackburn being the highest movers up and Everton finding themselves fourth from bottom.

Shots / On Target per Goal

Let’s quickly start with the total goals scored so far (20/01/2012). The column chart below displays the total goals scored and the top five are as you were. It’s after the top five that it all changes. For example Newcastle & Liverpool (6th & 7th respectively) find themselves in mid-table. Especially Liverpool as this graph once again displays their poor form in front of goal. Liverpool’s neighbours Everton also show their struggles to put the ball in the onion sack as they find themselves in the bottom four scorers in the league.

The interesting analysis is the shots per goal or shots on target per goal line chart that is for you below. I expected it to show similar results to the column chart above as in the teams struggling to score should show spikes in their position. As expected teams like Liverpool, Everton, QPR, Fulham, West Brom& Wigan all show spikes which translate to a large amount of shots per goal (all average over 10 shots per goal). Interestingly it’s Liverpool, once again that the worst in this category. They are averaging, a tepid, 12.17 shots per goal – it’s scary to think where they would be had they converted more chances or had more shots on target.

Manchester City are edged out by the neighbours Manchester United for shots per goal as United average 5.12 shots to City’s 5.14. Newcastle, Blackburn and Norwich also average beneath 7 shots per goal, very impressive. Moving on to the shots on target per goal, it’s Manchester City on top averaging a goal every 2.49 shots on target.

Astonishingly Stoke average a goal every 2.5 shots on target, however the fact that they have the worst shot accuracy in the league points out why they’re not scoring as much despite having such an impressive shots on target per goal ratio. Blackburn, Manchester United, Newcastle and Norwich also average under 3 shots on target per goal! Once again it’s Liverpool and Wigan propping up the table averaging almost 5 shots on target per goal each. Had Liverpool’s defence not been the 2nd best in the league they’d most likely be in a very poor position in the Premier League right now.


I was hoping to find some direct correlation with the league table and there are cases where that does happen in terms of total shots on goal etc however for the majority of the statistics above there are some surprises as to who is doing well in front of goal. Teams like Stoke, Norwich, Bolton and Blackburn all sprung a few surprises. Bolton being most accurate and Stoke 2nd in converting their shots on target into goals. Then there were Blackburn and Norwich scoring an impressive amount of goals as Norwich try to secure their place in the top flight after a lengthy absence and Blackburn fighting to stay up.

The other surprises were from Liverpool and Everton. The stats proving that the bitter rivals are finding it hard to hit the back of the net. Not only that they are struggling to hit the target also.

The top of the table are strong, cementing their striking skills with Manchester City, Manchester United, Tottenham, Chelsea & Arsenal regularly finding themselves in the top five of the sections listed above.

We hope you’ve found some value from the article! It didn’t turn out the way we expected it to however there are some surprises in there.

Want to have a play yourself? Well now you can, check out the table below and click on the arrows to sort the table by each statistic. You can see all of the numbers for yourself and have a little play. Enjoy!

[table id=1 /]

All of the stats in this article are from the Opta Stats Centre (Subscribe Now!)

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