Why Player Ratings Are Pointless


Credit where its due, at least the Daily Mail’s Neil Ashton knows that his player ratings are a complete waste of time. So when you look at his 7.5 out of ten mark for Santi Cazorla after the Spaniard’s sensational performance against Champions Manchester City on Sunday, you should remember that the author isn’t enthused by his task.

Yet people still overreact to every newspaper journo who disagrees with the reader when randomly judging a players performance.

The fact is, that every score is based on one persons instant perspective. The writer might be biased or just might not appreciate the same aspects of football you do.

They are not sent to games just to do these marks or have a set way of marking a player either. They also have the more important task of getting a match report off to their editors and then get reactions from the managers and players.

Now Cazorla was fantastic against City. He was wonderful with the ball at his feet and more often than not would keep it or pass it on to a teammate in a better position. He also showed fantastic vision even when he didn’t have the ball, looking around for dangerous opponents or for space to run into or eyeing up his next pass to a forward. Santi worked extremely hard all game and surprised many of us with his dogged tackling and winning possession back for his team. Then you add in his goal and his assist for Oliver Giroud, that surely deserves more than a 7 out of 10.

In fairness to Ashton, that’s me summing up Cazorla’s performance twenty-four hours after the event and with the benefit of TV highlights and analysis. I was also allowed to used more that two short sentences.

I think Ashton loses his argument slightly when stating Santi was up against a City’s ‘most mediocre midfield’ in recent times. The Spanish maestro can only play against the players that are in front of him, if they are hopeless then mark them down not the Arsenal man.

Any journalist I’ve asked about doing the ratings, usually respond by saying that they simply ‘hate it’. It’s a distraction and always seems to cause them issues with readers or abuse on Twitter. So even the thought of doing match ratings puts the writers in a negative mood.

The best paper or site for player ratings is France’s L’Equipe. They are extremely stingy with their marks and rarely go beyond seven and will hammer anyone who under performs with ones or twos. Its great to have a look at and just laugh at them.

The point is this, no one should take all these player ratings seriously. The writers often don’t want to do it and it’s all based on skewed opinions. The whole exercise is ‘blatant click-baiting’ from media websites desperate for more views and if that means the odd dodgy rating then all the better!

One Response to “Why Player Ratings Are Pointless”

  1. I give this piece 7/10

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