Surprisingly we’ve already skipped through more than a third of the 2020/21 season having played 18 out of of the scheduled 46 league games.
And despite a legion of injuries Norwich City’s momentum has picked up and (at the time of writing) the Canaries occupy top spot. A brilliant achievement. But, how good is Daniel Farke’s record really in the Championship?
To find out let’s revisit the charts comparing his record against the other managers and head coaches who’ve managed NCFC in the second tier since Ron Saunders won it in 1971/72.
NB. The data covers City’s performance in the second tier only. League matches and play-offs are included but cup matches and friendlies are not. Managers with fewer than 20 games in charge have been excluded. For interest, I’ve shown both Daniel Farke’s overall second-tier record since he arrived in 2017 and for just this season up to and including the 2-1 win over Blackburn Rovers on 12 December 2020.
Overall win percentage
Let’s start at the top. This season Farke’s record is unsurpassed winning 61.1% of league games (better than three out of five). His overall record at 48.2% (one in two) is impressive too. Nice to see Ken Brown there in second, Alex Neil in third, and Paul Lambert perhaps surprisingly languishing in fourth. Gary Megson, Bryan Hamilton, and Bruce Rioch – all looking up – occupy the bottom three.
Overall loss percentage
Again Farke hits top spot. Both his records are in the top four and his 16.7% (losing only one in six) record this season is exceptional. Paul Lambert sits in second at 17.4% with John Bond sitting in third with 21.4%. Megson and Hamilton once again wallow in the bottom three but this time Rioch is displaced by dour Peter Grant.
Average goals scored per game
This chart continues to surprise. Farke has a reputation of producing teams filled with delirious goal-happy netbusters but unfortunately the stats don’t really back this up.
This season has been a bit light on the goal front admittedly (scoring 1.39 goals per game) – although they’ve scored six in the last three matches – but overall you’d think his teams would be higher up the chart.
The ‘goals for’ tally is a lot better than the poorest performer mind you (Bryan Hamilton at 0.88, not even one goal a game) but it’s still a way off the best (Neil Adams at 1.83 per game).
Goals are starting to be spread around the team though and that’s a good sign. We need goal threats all over the pitch, not just the Pukki spearhead. Everyone needs to be able to finish – and not just the Finnish. Ho-ho-ho.
Average goals conceded per game
Farke has responded to criticism of possible defensive frailties in the best way possible this season by tightening things up (by selling Godfrey? – ooh, controversial…) and conceding fewer than one goal per game (0.94).
Farke is second only to the sublime John Bond (0.88 per game) and slightly above Ken Brown (1.04 per game) both of whom benefited from superb solid central defensive partnerships in front of a top-class goalkeeper.
Farke’s overall concession rate is a bit higher at 1.22 goals per game but those stats are tightly-packed in that middle section so it’s still pretty good – and they are heading in the right direction too.
In summary, Farke is doing well. Really well. Even when compared with such historically illustrious figures from the past.
In fact, this season has a rather good feel about it.
In Farke we trust, eh?