Football Commentator & Columnist
Head of the class
Top headers, Emile Heskey, David Ngog and a World Cup of Premier League stars from Martin Tyler.
Last Updated: 18/11/09 2:28pm
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Tyler's starting stat - B-right on the money
I enjoyed a nostalgic trip to Southampton on Sunday. I did my first ever commentary at The Dell in 1974, so I took the opportunity to drive around the streets where the stadium used to be and where there are now some very well-appointed residential properties. It's the first time I've been there since the redevelopment and while it was a nostalgic trip for me, it was not such a good afternoon for Southampton who failed to climb out of the bottom four.Sunday's opponents Brighton were in fact the first and last team to play Southampton at The Dell, having closed the old stadium in a friendly match there in May 2001. Sunday's game was only their third competitive win at Southampton, having previously won at The Dell in December 1981 and February 1956. Brighton have lost 11 and drawn three of their 16 visits and their new manager Gus Poyet was celebrating his 42nd birthday. He was at pains to point out that he didn't want to upset his wife, but he said it was the best brithday present he could have received.
Hi Martin. I can't wait for your column every week. I have a simple question for you. Which football club has produced the most England internationals in history? I bet it's West Ham. Alistair.
MARTIN SAYS: We've been through the record books and 35 players have represented England whilst playing domestically for West Ham. That figure does not even put the Hammers in the top 10. In fact, top of the pile is Aston Villa, who have provided 68 England internationals in their long history (the most recent being James Milner of course). Next is Tottenham followed by Everton, Liverpool and Manchester United. Here is a list - and please note players are only included if they won at least one full England cap while contracted to the club in question.
Top 20 teams providing England internationals (all time):
1. Aston Villa - 68
2. Tottenham - 62
3. Everton - 59
4. Liverpool - 58
5. Man United - 57
6. Arsenal - 54
7. Blackburn - 48
8= Man City, West Brom - 42
10= Chelsea, Sheff Wed - 41
12. Nottingham Forest - 37
13. Derby - 36
14= Sheffield United, West Ham - 35
16= Newcastle, Wolves 33
18. Leeds - 30
19. Middlesbrough - 29
20= Bolton / Southampton - 26
MAKING EMILE OF IT
Martin, with Aston Villa losing to West Ham the other week, a friend suggested that Emile Heskey needs to go. Could you tell us (as a percentage) how many games Villa win with Heskey in the starting line-up and how many they win when he does not start the game? Thank you! Andrei
MARTIN SAYS: Since Heskey's arrival at Aston Villa last January the club have played 28 Premier League games. Heskey has started 14 - exactly half of them. Villa's record in those games is: P14 W2 D7 L5. Their win percentage when Heskey starts is 14.2% and they have picked up 13 points from a possible 42. The wins came in Heskey's debut game against Portsmouth (a game in which he scored and I commentated on) and his third match for the club away at Blackburn on February 7. That is the last time Villa have won a Premier League match in which Heskey has started.
In the 14 games where Heskey hasn't started (ie he has been on the bench or out of the squad entirely), Villa's record is: P14 W8 D3 L3. Their win percentage is 57% and they have taken 26 points from a possible 42. In fairness to Heskey, he did contribute to five of those victories as a substitute.
RAFA'S FORWARD THINKING
Dear Martin. I think David Ngog has been getting too much stick lately. Can you show me what his scoring stats are like compared to the other strikers Rafael Benitez has signed. I bet his goals per game ratio is strong. Ben.
MARTIN SAYS: I have detailed the scoring records of nine of the main strikers Benitez has signed during his time at Liverpool. The list includes Premier League goals only and unsurprisingly, Fernando Torres has far and away the best goals per game record - but it is interesting to see Robbie Fowler second in the table with a record of eight goals in 30 games in his second spell at Anfield.
The man you are asking about, David Ngog just comes third on the list with five goals in 19 games - exactly the same record as Robbie Keane. However, Ngog has only started three Premier League games whereas the Irishman started 16. You'll see that Craig Bellamy, Peter Crouch and Dirk Kuyt have almost identical records - althought the Dutchman has of course largely been used in wide midfield after being signed as a striker.
The Premier League goalscoring record of Liverpool strikers signed by Rafael Benitez is below:
|Player||Games (start)||Games (as sub)||Total games||Goals||Goals per game|
FOR WHOM THE BELL TOLLS
With Man City coming up for Liverpool on Saturday, I am worried we're going to be on the receiving end of one of our old boys, Craig Bellamy. I seem to remember he gets a lot of goals against his former clubs. Am I right? Tom.
MARTIN SAYS: Craig Bellamy has played for seven different clubs in the Premier League, but his Premier League goalscoring record against his former teams has declined as time has gone on...
Norwich: Bellamy's first top-flight club was Norwich City. He has only played against them once in a league game (for Newcastle in 2004/05) and scored.
Strike rate: 1/1 (100%)
Newcastle: He has never played a Premier League game against Coventry City since leaving the Sky Blues, but boasts a good record against his next club Newcastle. He has played against the Magpies five times since he left St James' Park and has netted three times.
Strike rate: 3/5 (60%)
Blackburn: Since leaving Ewood Park, Bellamy has faced Blackburn in four league games, scoring on two occasions.
Strike rate: 2/4 (50%)
Liverpool: He has faced the Reds twice in the league - for Man City and West Ham - since leaving Anfield. However, he is yet to score. He thought he had opened the scoring for Man City last season, but it was credited as a Alvaro Arbeloa own goal.Strike rate: 0/2 (0%)
West Ham: He has faced the Hammers twice for Man City since leaving Upton Park and is yet to open his account.
Strike rate: 0/2 (0%)
Hi Martin. This is Sriram from India. I am a huge Liverpool fan and its disheartening to see our season fall apart in recent weeks. One of the main reasons for that I feel is because of the goals that we've scored / let in from set pieces (Poor headers of the ball - Attack/Defence). I have a question on this. Is Liverpool the worst team in terms of headers this season? How many goals have we scored from headers (I'm assuming that we'd be rock bottom of the table) and how many goals have we let in from headers (I'm assuming we'd be top of the pile). It would be great if you can help with some stats from Opta. Best Regards, Sriram
MARTIN SAYS: We turned to Opta for you Siriam and they have confirmed that Liverpool have only scored two goals from headers this season (David Ngog at home to Stoke and Fernando Torres away at West Ham). That is a relatively small number when you consider they have scored 27 Premier League goals in total. The only side that has scored fewer is Burnley. David Nugent's header against Sunderland is the only one of their 15 Premier League goals to have come from the head.
Here are the header scored in the Premier League this season:
|Team||Headed Goals Scored|
Liverpool have conceded four goals from headers this season, but that is not the worst record in the Premier League. In fact, high-flying Arsenal have conceded more headers than anybody else (six already this campaign). The top side at defending set pieces so far this season are Aston Villa: no player has scored a Premier League header against them so far this season.
Here are headers conceded in the Premier League this season:
|Team||Headed Goals Conceded|
LEAGUE OF NATIONS
Dear Martin. With the Premier League being so international these days, is there a possibility that each of the 32 nations at this summer's World Cup will have a Premier League player in their squads?
MARTIN SAYS: Of the 26 nations qualified so far, 24 have at least one Premier League player who has a realistic chance of being called up into the squad. The two that currently don't have a Premier League player are Japan and North Korea.
There are 12 teams fighting over the remaining six spots and it is possible that the remaining six qualifers could all feature one Premier League player. With France playing Ireland and Ukraine playing Greece, a minimum of 26 nations could call on a current Premier League player - and that total could rise to 30 depending on Wednesday evening's results.
Egypt, Slovenia, Bosnia & Herzegovina and Costa Rica can still get through and none of those four have a Premier League player in their ranks. However, their opponents - Algeria, Russia, Portugal and Uruguay all have Premier League stars to call upon.
Here is a list of the qualified nations and an example of a Premier League player who could represent them in South Africa next summer.
Cameroon: Eg. Alex Song
Ivory Coast: Eg. Didier Drogba
Ghana: Eg. Mikael Essien
Nigeria: Eg. Yakubu
Australia: Eg. Mark Schwarzer
North Korea: None
South Korea: Eg. Park Ji-sung
Denmark: Eg. Dan Agger
England: Eg. Steven Gerrard
Germany: Eg. Michael Ballack
Italy: Eg. Alberto Aqualani
Holland: Eg. Dirk Kuyt
Serbia: Eg. Nemanja Vidic
Slovakia: Eg. Martin Skrtel
Spain: Eg. Fernando Torres
Switzerland: Eg. Valon Behrami
Honduras: Eg. Wilson Palacios
USA: Eg. Clint Dempsey
Mexico: Eg. Carlos Vela
New Zealand: Eg. Ryan Nelson
Argentina: Eg. Emiliano Insua
Brazil: Eg. Lucas Leiva
Chile: Eg Luis Jimenez
Paraguay: Eg. Roque Santa Cruz
South Africa: Eg. Aaron Mokoena
France: Nicolas Anelka
Republic of Ireland: Robbie Keane
Algeria: Eg. Nadir Belhadj
Russia: Eg. Andrey Arshavin
Portugal: Eg. Nani
Ukraine: Eg. Andriy Voronin
Greece: Eg. Sotirios Kyrgiakos
Uruguay: Eg. Diego Arismendi
Costa Rica: None
Last week we asked you to name the eight current Premier League players who have played for the winning team in a Champions League Final, but have never won the Premier League?
The answers are: Jamie Carragher, Steven Gerrard, Steve Finnan, Deco, Juliano Belletti, Sylvinho, Benni McCarthy and Michel Salgado.
Lots of you suggested Jose Bosingwa and Roque Santa Cruz - but they were unused substitutes in Champions League Final, while those of you who suggested Nicolas Anelka and Kanu were also wrong - they both won the Premier League with Arsenal.
Click on the video for this week's question and fill in your answer using the feedback form below. Plus don't forget to send in your own teasers!