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We're Two-Thirds Through the Group Stages - Here Are The Unusual Stats Shaping Euro 2016

We're Two-Thirds Through the Group Stages - Here Are The Unusual Stats Shaping Euro 2016
By Paul McNulty
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The group stages of Euro 2016 are now two-thirds of the way through, and a pattern of very unusual stats has emerged.

Having had a look through the statistics that the first week of competition have produced, here is what we have learned.

1 - It's been a really cagey start

Exactly half of all the 20 games so far have been goalless at half-time. If you put €10 on every game being 0-0 at half-time, you'd be €142.50 richer by now! Of the 10 games that haven't been scoreless - every single one of them has finished at 1-0. No team has lead by more than one goal at half-time.

2 - The strikers aren't really hitting form

Strikers have only scored 13 of the 39 goals so far in the tournament - a paltry 33 percent. Midfielders, however have dominated - scoring 20, or 51 percent of all goals. Defenders have chipped in with five goals (13 percent). Unfortunately the only own goal in the tournament thus far has been scored by Ireland's Ciaran Clark.

Looking at the list of most likely top strikers before the tournament - no goals so far for Wayne Rooney, Robert Lewandowski, Zlatan Ibrahimovic or Mario Mandzucic. The only player to score more than one goal from play has been Dimitri Payet (Gareth Bale has two free-kicks and Romania's Bogdan Stancu has two penalties).

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3 - Blindly backing the favourites hasn't paid off

Only 11 of the 20 favourites have won so far - a measly strike rate of 55 percent. Ireland were beneficiaries of this against Sweden (who were slight favourites). In pure betting terms - the biggest upset was Portugal failing to beat Iceland.
There have only been six differing scorelines in the tournament so far. 1-0 and 2-0 are the two most common results - with each scoreline occurring five times so far. Four games have finished 2-1 or 1-1 and the 0-0 and 2-2 have happened once each.
Basically - the odds for scorelines should be;
4/1 - 1-0, 2-0
5/1 - 2-1, 1-1
20/1 - 0-0, 2-2

4 - More goals have been scored after the 85th minute than in the entire first half

Harking back to our first point, first-half goals have been extremely scarce with only 10 in total so far in the tournament (meaning an average of 0.5 goals in every first half). However, it's been gangbusters in the last five minutes (plus extra time... Tomas Necid's late penalty for the Czech Republic was the 12th goal scored after the 85th minute in the 20 games thus far.

5- Substitutes are proving crucial

Roy Hodgson would agree after sending on Jamie Vardy and Daniel Sturridge on Thursday to save his side's blushes. But substitutes have scored 9 of the 39 goals (23 percent).

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NB - All facts correct until the 20th game of the tournament - Czech Republic v Croatia

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