FanPost

Piq Doesn't Suck


I have not been a fan of Frederic Piquionne. My primary gripes are he slows the game down and turns over the ball a lot. Knowing that the US Open Cup game would bring out the Piq supporters, I prepared to arm myself with stats on why he should not be a starter.

Only, the stats led me to a different conclusion. I might have been wrong. Maybe. Here is my general philosophy on forwards: "I don't care if they don't score a lot of goals, but they had better be helping the team score."

My going-in assumption was that Johnson helps the Timbers score goals at a higher rate than Piq. Here are their individual numbers:

Johnson's Line:

  • Shots per 90 minutes: 1.13
  • Assists per 90 minutes: .45
  • Goals per 90 minutes: .56
Piq's Line:
  • Shots per 90 minutes: 3.34
  • Assists per 90 minutes: .28
  • Goals per 90 minutes: 0
Here is where it gets interesting, though. Here are the Team Numbers while they are on the field:
Timbers with Johnson:
  • Shots per 90 minutes: 12.39
  • Goals per 90 minutes: 1.69
Timbers with Piq:
  • Shots per 90 minutes: 14.49
  • Goals per 90 minutes: 1.95
While Johnson's individual line is better, the Timbers are getting more shots and scoring more with Piq on the field. The difference is marginal, and we are looking at a pretty small sample set.
It seems pretty clear, more through observation than through statistics, that the two play a different style. Johnson is more of a combiner. Piq is pure finisher. They have played a few minutes together, and they are complementary in style.
I am still not sure that Piq has the legs to put in the work Johnson does. And I assume Porter likes having the differences in style as options he can use depending on the situation.
What I feel more confident in is that Piq is certainly not hurting our attack, and may be helping it. The calls to start him are not outlandish, even if I am not yet convinced he should. For now, I'm taking a wait and see approach.

Alright guys, I don't believe I have to say this but, just in case, please do not submit anything racist, homophobic, sexist or otherwise not appropriate for even the younger Timbers fans.

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