Stats that defined Nashville SC’s loss to Inter Miami

Nashville SC’s struggles continued on Saturday night in Fort Lauderdale. Their 3-1 loss to Inter Miami was their third loss of the young 2024 season, putting the Coyotes in 14th place in the Eastern Conference, ahead of only New England Revolution.

Things aren’t going well in the Music City. Here are the key things that went wrong on Saturday.

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Underperforming xG

Nashville SC produced a total of 2.25 expected goals (xG). However, their only goal was actually an own goal, which isn’t factored when calculating xG. So I’m not considering the own goal as a part of this finishing conversationg.

NSC had four big chances, but they missed all of them. Sam Surridge had an expected goal value of 1.68 but did not score.

According to FBRef, there have been 37 games since 2018 where a team has underperformed their xG by 2.3 or more. If it weren’t for that own goal, this would be the most NSC has ever underperformed their xG. Usually the issue is creating chances for the attackers to finish off, but that wasn’t the case on Saturday.

This was the sixth-highest xG Nashville has ever produced on the road. Gary Smith isn’t going to run out there and score a goal. Mike Jacobs and everyone in the Nashville front office doesn’t have an upper 90 screamer in them. The star players need to perform when it matters, and unfortunately, they didn’t against Miami.

Sean Davis’s expected passing threat

Understanding expected threat (xT) can be a bit challenging. Imagine a grid overlaying the pitch, with each area assigned a value based on the likelihood of a team scoring from that area. This is similar to xG, but a shot doesn’t need to be taken to build xT. Players can build Expected Threat by passing the ball to a more dangerous area on the pitch, thereby increasing the chances of scoring a goal. Hopefully you’re still with me…

Sean Davis had the lowest xT of any NSC player against Miami, even lower than Amar Sejdić who replaced Davis in the 74th minute.  He also had two progressive passes, bringing his total to jest seven on the year. Davis ranks 16th in progressive passes per 90 on the team, well below Brian Anunga. It’s simply not good enough from a player who was supposed to be the solution to many of Nashville’s midfield issues.

.19 xG per shot against

Opponent non-penalty xG per shot is a good way to measure the quality of chances conceded. Nashville is pretty average this season at .11 npxG/shot. However, that was not the case on Saturday. Miami produced .19 npxG/Shot against Nashville, the second-highest total ever against Coyotes. Limiting big chances has been one of NSC’s strengths in the past, but not this year. Hopefully, Walker Zimmerman returning to the lineup will help, but the team needs to be better as a whole

Gold Star of the match: Dru Yearwood

  • 29/34 passing
  • 8 progressive passes
  • 1 chance created
  • 1/1 crossing
  • 3/5 long balls
  • 2/2 tackles won

A solid, all around performance from Dru Yearwood. Alright defensively and one of our best midfield ball progressors. His game could use a bit more polish and he doesn’t really threaten with Goals or Assists but he is a nice player.

Author: Jeff RemlingerJeff Remlinger, a data nerd from Chicago, IL, fell in love with MLS by watching the Chicago Fire. Some would say he threw his Fire jersey in the trash a little too quickly when Nashville joined MLS. Jeff has a passion for the statistical side of sports, and when he’s not writing about soccer, he can be found watching his beloved Arsenal or Iowa State Cyclones. Jeff can be found @MusicCitySCStat on X, where he shares his statistical analysis of Nashville SC.

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