Chelsea might be top of the league, but the underlying data suggests Brentford played them off the pitch on Saturday.
Threat is a metric introduced by the FPL to measure the quality of the chances a player enjoys in front of goal, with a score of around 100 usually accounting for a goal’s worth of chances.
By looking at how much Threat a team scored and allowed during a game, one can better understand whether their result aligned with the strength of their performance.
And the Blues looked fortunate to avoid the Bees’ sting on Saturday.
Brentford managed their highest Threat score of the season as a team against Chelsea, scoring 295 – they conceded just 66.
That 66 score is the third occasion on which the newly-promoted side have kept their Threat conceded tally under 100 – the only teams to do this more often this term are Manchester City and Chelsea.
With just seven goals conceded, the Bees’ affordable defenders could make for useful additions to any squad looking to balance the books.
Chelsea sit top of the table, but look inconsistent – in their last four games they have two Threat scores of over 300 and two under 100.
Star striker Romelu Lukaku has failed to find the net in his last four games, while those who invested in Cesar Azpilicueta and Ben Chilwell will wonder which Chelsea side is going to turn up each week.
With a favourable upcoming fixture list however, including Norwich at home next, patience may prove to be a virtue.
Foxes savage United
While the Blues got away with an unconvincing performance, Manchester United had no such luck, losing 4-2 to Leicester and deservedly so.
United’s defence conceded 336 Threat against the Foxes, their worst score of the season, while Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side managed just 133 Threat in attack.
It has now been more than a month since the Old Trafford side won a game in the league – and their next three fixtures are against Liverpool, Tottenham and Manchester City.
A handful of United’s star players have big ownerships despite their recent form – including Cristiano Ronaldo (38.8 per cent) Luke Shaw (25.4 per cent) and Bruno Fernandes (23.8 per cent) – and managers might want to consider whether they are worth sticking with.
Leicester have registered two Threat scores of more than 300 in their last three games, while Jamie Vardy has scored seven goals in eight fixtures.
Mistakes cost Gunners
Arsenal’s 2-2 draw against Patrick Vieira’s Crystal Palace drew criticism in many quarters, but the performance was largely encouraging according to the stats.
The Gunners scored 238 Threat and conceded just 82, their best defensive effort of the season – the goals they did concede came directly from errors.
While mistakes are a cause for concern for any side, if Mikel Arteta’s side iron those out it looks as though the team is starting to function properly in most areas of the pitch.
With Aston Villa, Leicester and Watford up next, there may be more pressing FPL transfer matters to deal with than selling goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale (6.2 per cent ownership) or defender Ben White (12.8 per cent) right now.