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Players failing to make most of rise in penalties

20 Oct 2016
Man City 1-1 Everton

Stats project record number of penalties this season but misses from spot climbing too

Players are being given more chance than ever to show their prowess from the penalty spot in the Premier League this season but they seem reluctant to show it, as Matchweek 8's action showed.

This season there have been 31 penalties awarded from 80 matches in the Premier League, including six at the weekend.

This averages out at 0.39 penalties per match and if this rate continues until the end of the season, there will be 147 penalties in total, 35 more than the 112 in 2006/07, the previous highest total.

Most penalties awarded by season

Season Penalties awarded Penalties/match
2016/17* 31 0.39
2006/07 112 0.29
2009/10 111 0.29
2010/11 105 0.28
2011/12 100 0.26

*After 80 matches

And yet, of the 31 penalties awarded, eight have been saved and one missed, with three of the six last Matchweek not converted.

Kevin De Bruyne and Sergio Aguero both fluffed their lines from the spot for Manchester City at home to Everton, with Maarten Stekelenburg's double penalty-saving performance the eighth occasion a goalkeeper has thwarted an opponent from the spot twice in a match.

In Saturday evening's match, Christian Benteke was the first player to send a spot-kick off target as Crystal Palace hosted West Ham United (the previous eight had all been saved).

At that point, with nine penalties missed from 29 taken, the conversion rate of 69% of penalties this season was the third-lowest rate in Premier League history, beaten only by 66% in 1992/93 and in 2001/02.

2016/17 penalties from Opta

However, Charlie Austin, for Southampton, and Sam Vokes, for Burnley, each scored with a spot-kick in Sunday's match at St Mary's Stadium to improve the conversion rate to 71% although it remains in the bottom five in PL history.

Worst penalty conversion rates by season

Season Penalties taken   Penalties scored  Conversion rate
 2001/02   73   48  65.8%
 1992/93   92   61   66.3% 
 1994/95   97   67   69.1% 
 1998/99   73   51   69.9% 
 2016/17   31   22   71.0% 

This season's leading penalty taker in the Premier League is James Milner, of Liverpool, who has scored four out of four from the spot.

Aguero has converted three, while Arsenal's Santi Cazorla has dispatched two, but Man City and Arsenal have each missed two penalties this term, with Theo Walcott, against Liverpool, and Alexis Sanchez, against Hull, having their attempts saved.

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