It’s now time to conclude my tour of Europe’s top five leagues as I look at who is the most efficient team in front of goal in all the division. England, France, Germany and Spain have already been covered and now we make our way over to Italy and Serie A.

The concept for those who have yet to read any of these articles is to work out how many shots on goal a team requires before they find the net, in doing so we can see who are the most and least efficient teams in a particular division.

Once again thanks to for all the necessary data.

Here is the Serie A table after 12 weeks while also working out the amount of total shots taken (Note all teams have played 12 matches)

R Team Shots pg Games Played Total Shots
1 Napoli 19.3 12 232
2 Juventus 16.5 12 198
3 Inter 15.7 12 188
4 Lazio 13.5 11 149
5 Roma 16.7 11 184
6 Sampdoria 12.5 11 138
7 AC Milan 16.6 12 199
8 Torino 11.8 12 142
9 Chievo 12.8 12 154
10 Atalanta 13.9 12 167
11 Fiorentina 16.3 12 196
12 Bologna 10.2 12 122
13 Cagliari 12.5 12 150
14 Crotone 9.8 12 118
15 Udinese 11.3 11 124
16 SPAL 9.9 12 119
17 Sassuolo 12.6 12 151
18 Genoa 11.7 12 140
19 Verona 11.4 12 137
20 Benevento 12.3 12 148

Now we have all that data, we can now rank the 20 Serie A teams in order of shot efficiency (smallest to largest)

Team GF Total Shots Shot Efficency
Lazio 27 149 5.5
Juventus 28 198 7.1
Inter 23 188 8.2
Chievo 18 154 8.5
Torino 16 142 8.9
Sampdoria 15 138 9.2
Roma 20 184 9.2
Bologna 13 122 9.4
Fiorentina 17 196 11.5
Crotone 10 118 11.8
Atalanta 14 167 11.9
Udinese 10 124 12.4
Cagliari 12 150 12.5
AC Milan 13 199 15.3
Napoli 14 232 16.5
SPAL 6 119 19.8
Benevento 6 148 24.6
Verona 5 137 27.4
Genoa 4 140 35.1
Sassuolo 4 151 37.8

What we can also do though is add a table in that shows the 20 teams ranked in order of the amount of shots they have had this season.

Team GF Total Shots
Napoli 14 232
AC Milan 13 199
Juventus 28 198
Fiorentina 17 196
Inter 23 188
Roma 20 184
Atalanta 14 167
Chievo 18 154
Sassuolo 4 151
Cagliari 12 150
Lazio 27 149
Benevento 6 148
Torino 16 142
Genoa 4 140
Sampdoria 15 138
Verona 5 137
Udinese 10 124
Bologna 13 122
SPAL 6 119
Crotone 10 118

But more importantly lets now take a look at what Serie A looks like in graph form

Serie A

As you can see it is Lazio who head the charts in Italy and they require just 5.5 shots on goal before breaching the opposition’s net. Juventus may not be the dominant team at present as they do not have their usual summit at the top and they find themselves second with a shot efficiency ranking of 7.1.

The Milan clubs have contrasting fortunes in this ranking with Inter currently third requiring just over 8 shots on goal to score while their cross city rivals A.C. need nearly twice as many with 15.3 chances required. When you look at the fact that A.C. have had 199 efforts this season this will go someway to explaining the story.

Not only that though but in comparison Inter have scored 10 more goals this season with 11 less chances hence why they are far more efficient. But if we drill down further we can see that Juventus have scored more than double the goals than that of A.C. Milan with just one less total shot (199 to 198)

But the real story here is Napoli, they sit top of Serie A at the moment but they are just the 15th most efficient team in the division, they require 16.5 chances before scoring a goal. On the flipside though you could say they creating an impressive amount though. 232 chances have been created by Napoli this season.

However we do also need to take into account that not all teams have played the same amount of games in Italy therefore the average is going to be a much fairer metric to rank the clubs, while we must spare a thought for Genoa and Sassoulo who have it must be said an abysmal efficiency ranking at 35.1 and 37.8 respectively.

So now we’ve ranked the clubs we should now take a look at how their positions compare in regards to their league placing

Serie A

As always positive numbers mean an over performance and the opposite for the negative numbers and it is pretty obvious what sticks out the most, the fact that Napoli may be top of Serie A but their shot efficiency is ranked at just 15th.

Not only is it the largest variance for a league leader it is also the largest variance of all the 98 clubs that have been analysed in this project. Again though we do have to add the strong caveat that they are creating a lot of chances this season.

What you also need to take into account is the fact that they are top of the table so they must be winning by very slim margins and more importantly conceding very little at the other end so just because they may not be efficient does not necessarily mean they are performing badly. In this case far from it.

The most efficient team Lazio find themselves with a variance of plus while both Juventus and Inter two metrics match each other and therefore they are on 0. Spare a though for big spending A.C. Milan who have not only stuttered this season but also have the second largest negative variance.

In terms of the split in the three variance categories it is as follows

Also there is a relatively even split in terms of the categories of variance in Serie A that being:

9 Positive
5 Neutral
6 Negative

So a lot more teams are performing better than their league position would suggest in this league then compared to both Ligue 1 and the Bundesliga where I also have started using this particular metric. We will see if that changes next week.

That concludes the round up of the Italian data but here comes the fun bit – well at least I hope you think it’s fun, that being the fact that I am now going to build a Europe wide top 20 in my next article to see who is the most efficient team in the five major leagues.


I hope this was of interest to you and if you have any football data work available then please contact me at as I am always looking to undertake additional projects to the ones I already have. Thanks, Dan.