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The ultimate footy fan’s guide to predicting goals

The ultimate footy fan’s guide to predicting goals

Have you ever wondered when is the best time to score in a footy match? Well, wonder no more. 

To celebrate the Premier League’s return this month, we have analysed 11,479 goals scored by 50 of the competition’s highest-scoring players of all time. So, we can reveal the luckiest minute to score a goal, the best foot to score a goal with, as well as the best position. We’ve even got the most common end result.

The 90th minute is when most goals happen

After studying the 11,479 goals from the Premier League’s top 50 scorers of all time, our data found that the most likely minute to score a goal is the final minute (90’) – with 2.4% of the goals coming at this stage. They do say that the game isn’t over until that final whistle is blown. 

The most common times to score

We also found that of the 50 most common times to score a goal, 80% were in the second half of the match.

The most common time to score in added time is a minute in

According to the data, the most common time to score in added time is just one minute in, likely because there are more opportunities to score in this minute if the games are only given that one extra minute of injury time. So, don’t panic when the 90 minutes has elapsed, it’s possible your team could still win.

Interestingly, only 4% of goals are scored in stoppage time at the end of each half – 90+1 is the most popular of these with 87 goals, before 90+2 (79 goals), and 45+1 (78 goals). 

The number of times goals were scored in added time

Right-footed goals are the most successful, accounting for over 40%

Not only can we reveal the best time to score, but which foot you should be scoring with. And, it turns out that right-footed shots are the most likely to convert into a goal.

The most common type of goal

Of the 11,479 goals in our research, 8,161 of them were also attributed to specific methods of scoring.

Almost half (42.2%) of these goals were scored with a right-footed kick which was more than double the number of left-footed (19.5%). Studies have found that 85-90% of people are right-handed, which could explain why the results are weighted towards right-footed shots.

2-1 is the most common football result 

Of the 9,030 football matches analysed (played by the 50 best goalscorers in the Premier League), we were able to uncover the most common end result.

The 10 most common final scores of a football match

Finishing the game on 2-1 is most likely according to the data examined, with almost one in ten (9%) of games ending with this result. Surprisingly, the least likely result was 1-0.

In addition, 16% of the games studied ended in a draw, with the most common of those being 1-1 – over half (51%) of the games that ended in a draw finished with just one goal apiece.

If you are keen to read up on even more of our football studies, check out our analysis of England’s most loved footballers of all time, and see if you agree.