Michail Antonio ended the last Premier League campaign as West Ham‘s top scorer with 10 goals and was an extremely important figure behind Moyes’ men’s Europa League qualification. Cut back to this season, and Antonio started exactly where he left off.
In fact, it’s even better as he has already scored four times in the first three games becoming West Ham’ all-time top scorer in the Premier League. He also finds himself sitting at the top of the pile among the leading goal scorers in the league this season.
When looking at the above chart, the general rule is that the longer the bar the better the performance- you can see the league average in the middle and the % is the percentile rank the player is in.
As we can see, how the stats simplify that Antonio has been a huge threat in front of goal ranking in the 96th percentile when it comes to shots taken and in the 98th in terms of xG in the league.
Predominantly playing slightly to the left of centre, Antonio has taken most of his shots from this side. Scoring four of his goals from inside the box, he has taken quite a few shots from long range which shows the confidence he has and David Moyes would want his main man to keep roaring with this confidence throughout the season.
Like most number 9s, Antonio is not a great passer of the ball but his progressive runs per 90(87th percentile in the league) and xA per 90(98th percentile in the league) shows how well he links up with other players in the opposition half while racking up three assists already.
He has received passes all over the pitch but mostly near the penalty box on the left side where he has linked up with Said Benrahma especially well in the first three matches or has tried to run at defences alone and score – like his goal against Crystal Palace.
While the Hammers have tried to catch the opposition with a quick switch of play from right to left quite often as, seen in the match against Leicester City, Antonio has done his job really well trying to lead the attack during these quick transitions and his physicality makes it harder for defenders to dispossess him off the ball.
Michail Antonio has been one of the best players in the league so far and if David Moyes’s men dream of hosting a Champions League match at the London Stadium next season, he has to keep performing at the optimum level consistently. With the signature of Nikola Vlasic confirmed, West Ham will be a team to look forward to both in England and Europe throughout the season.