How Liverpool dominated Stoke City, but lost

Yesterday Liverpool was pretty unlucky visiting Stoke City. Although Liverpool had better passing, tackling and much more shots, it was Stoke who won the game thanks to a penalty. Analysis shows the weakest side won this time, sending Liverpool-fans and players frustrated back home.

Jamie Carragher plays judo with Jonathan Walters and forces the ref to give a penalty


Both teams won approximately the same amount of duels in the air and on the ground, but Liverpool won way more possession of the ball on the opponent’s half. Stoke waited and let the Reds come, while Liverpool played high pressure, successfully disturbing most of Stoke’s attacks. The visualisation below illustrates this:


The Stoke City passing was, also thanks to the pressure by Liverpool, terrible. Stoke only managed to successfully pass the ball 141 times, only 59% of their total amount of passes. Liverpool excelled in passing, managing to succesfully pass 478 times, 76% of her total amount of passes. Stoke just had no chance, as we see in the visualisation of free play passes below.

As we know now, Liverpool didn’t score at all. Had they forgotten to shoot? Not really. If we take a look at the shot count, again the Reds dominate. Stoke, beside the penalty, only had two shots of which one was blocked and the other one wide while Liverpool attempted 24 shots. Over and over again the Liverpool-shots were blocked (9 times) or simply saved (six times).

It must have been a frustrating match for everybody. The Stoke fans probably were in stress all match, scared of conceding a goal, with the Liverpool supporters on the other side being frustrated that their players, worth millions of euros, couldn’t manage to get that ball in the back of the net. But that also is sport, where the best doesn’t always win. Too bad, maybe next time Liverpool…

Visualisations are created with Guardian Chalkboards. Click on images to interact.

About Thomas Boeschoten

Thomas is oprichter van Catenaccio. Hij heeft supporter zijn voor een club afgezworen en juicht nu alleen wanneer het hem uitkomt. Thomas schrijft graag over voetbal en is daarnaast zeer geïnteresseerd in Nieuwe Media, wat hij dan ook studeert. Volg Thomas op Twitter | Meer artikelen van Thomas