Millwall finished in 9th position on the points table of the 2021-22 EFL Championship. They were even challenging for a spot in the promotion playoffs going into the final matchday. However, a loss to Bournemouth meant that they missed out on that spot. Still, Millwall’s defence has been more watertight than what xGA estimated. One of the key men at the back for the South East London club was Shaun Hutchinson. His performances have been influential in the Lions’ overachievement in this campaign, and the club will be pleased that Hutchinson has signed a contract extension. With that in mind, let us have a look at Hutchinson’s season at the Den.
Shaun Hutchinson made 29 appearances for Millwall in the recently concluded 2021-22 EFL Championship season, playing for 2,493 minutes. The Englishman was mostly involved in the heart of defence on the right-hand side of the pitch. On several occasions, he even covered for the advancing right-back. Hutchinson’s average position was somewhere between the outside of his penalty box and the edge of his third and midfield. The 31-year-old defender was also involved in attacks, starting them from the back.
The above viz shows the locations of the duels won by Hutchinson. He won the majority of his duels in his third and some of them in midfield. The Englishman won a variety of duel types, but the two most common types of duels he won were aerial duels and ground-based defending duels. Hutchinson won fewer 50/50s than aerial and ground duels. The 31-year-old defender won several aerial duels in the opposition’s penalty area, mostly from set-piece situations.
The above viz shows the xT map, xT timeline and pass sonar of Hutchinson in the 2021-22 EFL Championship. The Englishman regularly generated an xT value of close to 0.5 throughout his time on the pitch, even touching and exceeding 1.0 on a few occasions. Most of his threat creation came from the right-hand side of the pitch as he made multiple progressive passes and balls into the attacking third from his third of the pitch.
Shaun Hutchinson’s contract extension with Millwall has been good news for the team from South East London. His defensive solidity ensured the Lions challenged for a spot in the promotion playoffs in the season just gone by, and the club will hope for the same next campaign.