Ahead of the Wear-Tyne derby, you can read the first of two “Who are You?” interviews, with our regular Toon mischief maker “geordiedoonsooth” at http://salutsunderland.com/2013/10/the-sunderland-v-newcaste-united-who-are-you-geordiedoonsooth-unmasked-and-smarting/.
Sample (in case an earlier technical hitch meant you missed it when posted):
Salut! Sunderland: Right, let’s cut to the chase. Is the Wear-Tyne rivalry mostly harmless banter, has poisonous malice become more prevalent in recent years or has it always been a mix of the two? And should we all just grow up?
Geordiedoonsooth (alias Ray Mossom): Though there has always been bad feelings between the two sets of fans fortunately most is just banter (I have some good friends who are Mackems). I do think that the TV has made things a lot worse over the last few years. Should we grow up? Nah. What we should do is realise that it is banter and have a drink afterwards, not try and punch each others heads in.
And over at the Ordinary Jon blog, a Sunderland supporter, Jon Adamson, has been doing a spot of John McCormick-style research, juggling with and studying the stats in an effort to establish whether the old assertions about the form book going out of the window is founded on reality.
Like all good clichés, he concludes, “there is an element of truth in it but it doesn’t tell the full story”.
Among his findings:
* Most likely result in a derby game since the war is a draw, with around two-fifths (42%) of games ending that way. Newcastle have won around a third of derbies (34%) and Sunderland around a quarter (25%).
* Newcastle slightly more likely to be ahead in the league before the derby game is played. Sunderland slightly more likely to win the derby game when they go into it in a higher league position than their rivals (not much help this time, Jon – ed).
* Home advantage? A big difference: “in games played in Sunderland, where Newcastle are ahead in the league (as is the case now) the most common result was a draw (in over half of all games, 58%) with both sides equally likely to get the win. In comparison, the opposite does not hold true; when Sunderland have been ahead in the league and the game has been played in Newcastle, then there has been a draw has been much less likely, with only 38% of games ending this way. Newcastle tend to win (44% of games ended that way).
* Sunderland have won more derby games at St James’ Park than they have on home soil (29% compared to 21%) when NUFC are ahead in the league. In fact, Sunderland’s win percentage on home soil even when they have been ahead in the league before going into the game is only fractionally better at 30%.
Jon’s own summary is that while we cannot be certain about how accurately the past can determine the future, it may suggest – if any kind of guide at all as opposed to a bit of anorakish amusement with stats – that a draw is the likeliest outcome on Sunday. Therefore, Jon adds, “Sunderland should ask if they can switch the match to Newcastle”.
See the graph and read the full story at http://www.ordinaryjon.com/1/post/2013/10/does-league-position-matter-before-a-derby1.html
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