An excellent case study of Premier League managers making substitutions this season so far highlights what an excellent job Jose Mourinho does when replacing players during matches, being the only one from the top 7 clubs to still not lose potential points due to one of his subs coming on, while as expected, David Moyes has done worse than anyone.
Credit goes to thejanitorch4 who made the study, including 7 clubs and managers: Arsene Wenger from Arsenal, Jose Mourinho from Chelsea, Brendan Rodgers from Liverpool, Manuel Pellegrini from Manchester City, Andre Villas-Boas from Tottenham, Roberto Martinez from Everton and David Moyes from Manchester United, even though his team is only 8th, leaving Southampton out of the way.
|Team||Manager||Matchweek 1||Matchweek 2||Matchweek 3||Matchweek 4||Matchweek 5||Matchweek 6||Matchweek 7|
|Arsenal||Arsene Wenger||1-1 to 1-3||3-0 to 3-1||1-0 to 1-0||3-1 to 3-1||3-0 to 3-1||2-0 to 2-1||0-1 to 1-1|
|Chelsea||José Mourinho||2-0 to 2-0||0-0 to 0-0||1-1 to 2-1||0-1 to 0-1||1-0 to 2-0||0-1 to 1-1||1-1 to 3-1|
|Everton||Roberto Martinez||2-1 to 2-2||0-0 to 0-0||0-0 to 0-0||1-0 to 1-0||0-1 to 3-2||3-1 to 3-2||1-2 to 1-3|
|Liverpool||Brendan Rodgers||1-0 to 1-0||1-0 to 1-0||1-0 to 1-0||2-1 to 2-2||0-0 to 0-1||2-1 to 3-1||3-0 to 3-1|
|Manchester City||Manuel Pellegrini||3-0 to 4-0||1-0 to 2-3||0-0 to 2-0||0-0 to 0-0||4-0 to 4-1||2-1 to 2-3||1-1 to 3-1|
|Manchester United||David Moyes||2-0 to 4-1||0-0 to 0-0||0-1 to 0-1||1-0 to 2-0||0-4 to 1-4||0-0 to 1-2||2-1 to 2-1|
|Tottenham Hotspur||André Villas-Boas||1-0 to 1-0||1-0 to 1-0||0-1 to 0-1||2-0 to 2-0||0-0 to 1-0||1-0 to 1-1||0-0 to 0-3|
|Matchweek 8||Goal Difference||Points won/lost|
|1-0 to 4-1||4:6 (-2)||-1|
|1-1 to 4-1||8:0 (+8)||+7|
|1-1 to 2-1||4:4 (0)||+3|
|1-2 to 2-2||2:3 (-1)||-3|
|2-1 to 3-1||7:6 (+1)||-2|
|1-0 to 1-1||5:4 (+1)||-4|
|1-0 to 2-0||2:3 (-1)||-1|
It stands out quite clearly that Mourinho, not once, has made things worse for his team with his subs, and four times out of eight matches he’s been able to get a win out of a tough spots, although it might also suggest that he’s using the wrong lineup too often. Not all substitutions are actually the direct influence: In the 2-1 win over Aston Villa, with players coming on after 65 minutes to sway the result, it was Branislav Ivanovic who scored the winning goal, while Romelu Lukaku and Andre Schurrle didn’t do much to change the match.
However, over the last couple of weeks, Mourinho got goals from substitutes Eden Hazard and Willian when they beat Norwich 3-1 and from Oscar in the 4-1 win over Cardiff, two matches that had Chelsea drawing the match until making the changes.
The only other manager on this list to have a positive effect on the matches so far this season is Roberto Martinez with a +3 in his matches for Everton. A much as it says something about Martinez, it might be saying more about Moyes, who has been known during his Everton days to make defensive substitutions that frustrated fans. He’s doing the same at Manchester United, with the 1-1 draw against Southampton being a strong example.
He put on Ryan Giggs, who has looked very bad this season and almost every time he has played over the last couple of years, instead of using someone with a bit more of an attacking flair like Shinji Kagawa, while his dropping of Wayne Rooney and inserting Chris Smalling was the most baffling of all.
Therse stats don’t tell the whole story, because they don’t account for the minutes and exact change each replacement made, but taking a relatively broad look at the current picture, it just might be that the advantage we spoke about in the past Chelsea have thanks to their manager is showing itself through their decisions on which bench players to use.