Stoke City have climbed up to fourth spot in the EFL Championship, after their recent string of results. They are looking to cement their place for the play-off spot this season. So far, they have six wins, three draws and two losses from eleven games in the Championship. Just last weekend they ended West Brom’s undefeated start to the Championship season with a 1-0 win at home.
A lot of their recent form can be attributed to the in-form midfielder Nick Powell, who also scored the only goal in their victory over the Baggies. The victory was arguably their best performance of the season. Stoke City were the better side for most of the match but were unable to find the back of the net until the 79th minute. Nick Powell picked up a chipped pass from Tommy Smith and lobbed the ball over Sam Johnstone.
Over the years, Powell has developed into a fine midfielder who has a knack for scoring important goals. Last season he scored twelve goals and added three assists in the Championship, a feat which put him in the Championship team of the season 20-21. He missed a few fixtures due to a thigh concern but has been in fine form since making his return for Michael O’Neill’s side. In the seven appearances he has made this season, he has already scored five goals and added one assist.
Let’s compare his stats from the last season to this season in order to understand his attributes.
As indicated by the above visual, Powell’s stats in the attacking and creativity department were impressive last season with almost all of the metrics surpassing the league median value.
His pass receive location displays the areas of the pitch in which he received his passes. As indicated by the chart his work rate is brilliant as he drops deep into his own half to receive passes and contribute in the build-up phases of the game. In addition, he switches his position in the opponent half quite regularly.
His impressive work rate is again reinforced by his heat map. He covers almost every blade of grass on the pitch. He is most active in the half-spaces in the opponent half.
Despite the limited number of games that Powell has been part of, his stats have been top tier this season with almost all the attacking metrics surpassing the median league value.
So far this season Powell has received most of his passes on the right-wing and in the half-spaces in the opponent half. He has also dropped deep in his own half to received passes.
Powell’s heat map for this season indicates that so far, he has been most active on the right-wing and near the centre while he has also dropped deep to support his team during transitions.
Despite playing fewer games than other players, Powell is placed sixth in the top goal scorers’ chart while his average goals per 90 puts him in third spot in the Championship.
After making his return from injury, Powell has been in remarkable form for the Potters. The midfielder has already established a goal-scoring reputation in the Championship and looks set to continue his fine form this season as the Potters look to cement their position for the play-off spot or perhaps even better, push for direct promotion.