Why everyone’s talking about Ilicic

Category: News | Player Analysis

Before the coronavirus interrupted all competitions, Josip Ilicic led Atalanta to their first Champions League quarter-finals by scoring six goals in the two matches against Valencia. And these performances really popularized his surname throughout the continent. But in Italy everyone has been talking about Ilicic for a long time. And they had reasons to do […]

Published:26/03/2020

Before the coronavirus interrupted all competitions, Josip Ilicic led Atalanta to their first Champions League quarter-finals by scoring six goals in the two matches against Valencia. And these performances really popularized his surname throughout the continent. But in Italy everyone has been talking about Ilicic for a long time. And they had reasons to do it, because the Slovenian is having an outstanding season. His metrics prove that he have a huge incidence for his team in the offensive phase. In fact, there are only three players in Europe’s top 5 leagues with a better average than him in terms of xG chain: Mbappé, De Bruyne and Thomas Müller.

Ilicic left his country ten years ago, in 2010. And after three good campaigns at Palermo, Fiorentina made a strong bet on him. The truth is that he was always supposed to become a very good player, but really few people could have expected him to ever perform at the level he has shown this year. In the beeswarm below you can see that he is excelling in various offensive criteria. He complete more than three dribbles in 90 minutes, averages 7,3 touches in the rival box and is one of the attackers in the top 5 leagues who shots more times, staying close to Cristiano Ronaldo in this aspect.

In addition, if we go deeper into the shots he has made, we’ll see that he’s finishing at a top level. He has scored 18 goals in situations that only amounted to 10,5 expected goals. His performance last year was also good in terms of finishing (12,4%), but this year he’s shooting with a a completely savage success rate (20,7%). Anyway, when you talk about Ilicic you have to value the volume of shots he generates year after year since he plays for Atalanta. Last season he reached 100 shots in Serie A. And in this one, in spite of having played around 200 minutes less, he has already accumulated 87 attempts.

The Slovenian is an attacker who receives very often on the sidelines, but shows a tendency to look for the inner zones and is insistent in shaping for the hit. Moreover, in his first exercise in Atalanta (2017/18) he also finished above 100 shots. His teammate Papu Gomez shot more times, but with a lower average for 90′.

Finally we analyze to your map of expected assists in open play situations. In the previous beeswarm we already saw that Ilicic is one of the players of the big leagues of the continent that generates more xA. We are talking about a player who is very gifted in the technical field and who, since his arrival in Italy, has always had good metrics in this aspect. And this season we can even say that he has progressed in this respect. Or at least that he is being more dangerous when he sees the possibility of enabling a team-mate to shoot. In 2018/19, he had generated 6,2 xA with a total of 50 key passes, but this year the probability of those deliveries ending up in goal is higher (0,15), as he has added 7,4 xA with two less key passes.

Ilicic has not always had continuity and during his time at Fiorentina he had difficulties in earning a place in the starting line-up, but at the age of 32 he is his prime. And has the metrics to be among the best players in European football at the moment.

We are Driblab, a consultancy specialized in the statistical analysis of players and teams; our work is focused on advising and minimizing risk in professional football decision-making in areas related to talent detection and footballer evaluations. Our database has more than 130,000 players from more than 120 competitions, covering information from all over the world. Here you can learn more about how we work and what we offer.

Autor: Driblab
For News | Player Analysis we also recommend you:

Giving value to the pass, much more than being accurate

With the end of the regular seasons, we list the 22 players who generated the most added value with their passes in the top five European leagues.

‘Player Transfers’: Erling Haaland in Guardiola’s team

How will Erling Braut Haaland fit in at Manchester City? We expose possible pros and cons using data.

‘Driblab’ coverage: what if the next football genius was born in Ecuador?

The next football genius may not be Brazilian, Argentinian or German. He can be born anywhere in the world. And the most comprehensive coverage possible allows access to players in any league.

Driblab, present at the ‘Football Innovation Forum’ in Seville

Driblab will be present at the second edition of the Football Innovation Forum, held in Seville on 18 May.

Finding the differences: showing Nkunku’s progression

We show with event maps the evolution of Christopher Nkunku that has led him to more than 30 goals and 20 assists.

Championship 21/22: free players in june

The high level that the English Championship has reached allows the top leagues to find market opportunities. We highlight five of the most interesting options for players who finish their contracts in June.

Driblab & The Times: Thiago’s moment

Thiago Alcántara is going through a special moment at Liverpool, just when all the titles are at stake. The Times uses Driblab data to analyse his impact.

Football stats: the best set-piece specialist

Through the ‘Expected Assists’ metric, we take a closer look at Benjamin Bourigeaud, the best assist man in Europe’s top leagues.

Driblab analyzes the Champions League quarter-finals on Televisión Española (TVE)

We collaborate with TVE to analyse the preview of the second leg of the Champions League quarter-finals.

driblabPRO Release Notes March 2022

During March, we have added some new tools and updates in driblabPRO to expand the resources provided to our clients.

Driblab

Información corporativa

Somos una empresa con sede en Madrid fundada en 2017 por Salvador Carmona y Cristian Coré Ramiro. Desde nuestros inicios nuestro trabajo se ha centrado en el análisis estadístico de datos para ayudar a los clubes en la planificación deportiva. Somos una consultora big data que ofrece servicios personalizados para cada cliente y defiende un modelo de gestión mixto y una comunicación constante para acompañar el día a día de las instituciones. Nuestro punto fuerte es la más amplia cobertura disponible en número de torneos profesionales y juveniles. Para más detalles, póngase en contacto con nosotros.

Colaboramos con:

           

Hemos aparecido en:


Talk to our speciali