Over the last few days, particularly post-CL semi-final, I have had dozens and dozens of people tweet at me about Ruben Dias. In case you didn’t catch it: I was very critical of Ruben Dias as a player in Portugal and, consequently, of his move to City. It is now seen as a resounding success story. I wanted to address it and, while I didn’t want to write an entire piece because people have been annoying online, a simple tweet or thread couldn’t convey the nuance that the topic deserved. …


As I sat watching Everton this week, I started thinking about one particular player — Lucas Digne—and just how different this Everton team is with and without him on the field. I’d argue that, if we were to rank the current top players in Europe by how impactful and important they are to their teams — not just in quality, but on how key to the tactical set-up they are — he would, at the very least, make the top 10. …


With analytics guiding many of our modern football conversations, certain metrics have had incontrovertible effects on how we view aspects of the game. While gatekeepers of orthodox footballing practices will demand for players to shoot as often as possible, analytics, and its poster boy, expected goals (xG), has subverted that traditional wisdom for greater selectivity in shots. With a statistically tempered approach, shot locations have skewed from speculative to sensible.

This is all well and good, I work with data myself and am obviously a big believer in this approach — but I also think we’ve pushed ourselves too far…


Just over a year ago, I did a series of weekly Twitter threads in which I scouted a number of lesser-known youth players who I believed could provide interesting market opportunities for certain clubs.

Finding players who were putting up impressive numbers, I followed it up by looking at video footage to confirm the data before displaying it in a neat little thread if I deemed the player worth it.

The work was carried out over the course of ten weeks, leaving me with the following line-up of outfield players:

It’s been a year, so let’s check back in with…


A couple of days ago I tweeted a video about West Ham’s Arthur Masuaku alongside a mention of his impressive dribbling numbers. A lot of people engaged, often steering the conversation towards how these ended in nothing concrete and therefore had very little value — if any at all. While I disagree, I also understand where that argument is coming from and that is what prompted me to write this article. Why is dribbling useful in Football?

Let’s start off by defining a “dribble”, WhoScored considers a Successful Dribble “taking on an opponent and successfully making it past them…


Sarri’s Napoli were already arguably one of the most entertaining, if not the most entertaining, side in Europe. Now they’ve managed to evolve into one of the best teams in Europe as well. It’ll be one of those iconic teams we’ll all tell our kids and grandkids about. And when I say we, I mean pretty much everyone with a passion for football — the amount of content produced around this fascinating side means that even if you’re not a Serie A aficionado you will be aware of pretty much every characteristic of this team’s playstyle and personnel.

Reina acts…


A year after dropping down to the 2. Bundesliga, Stuttgart is back in the top German division — topping the second tier with 69 points. Their approach to the transfer market has been a major part of the process of bouncing back and I decided to take a deeper look at it.

(All radars provided by my friend @biffmila from @brasilradar on Twitter, give him a look if you’re interested in analytics and/or Brazilian football)

As with any other team that goes down, they had to sell — not necessarily due to financial reasons as much as due to certain…


With the transfer window officially kicking off for most European clubs and with a lot of business already done early, the transfer market is the trendy topic in football’s social media circle. In this article, I figured I’d tackle something I constantly see being misinterpreted: how to judge a transfer.

Let’s talk about why this is important. If you’re in any way part of a club’s staff, you obviously want to analyse your history to see where you went wrong and improve upon it for future transfers. …

Tiago Estêvão

Professional Football Performance Analyst | Uefa C Coach

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