World Football

The Week in Numbers

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  • A goal per gaffer
  • Quadruples and quadruple-centuries
  • War Elephants stampede into history
400

goals in Europe’s top five leagues is what Lionel Messi became the second player to reach by making it 17 in 17 this season. It took the 31-year-old merely 435 appearances – 62 fewer than it took Cristiano Ronaldo. No club has scored more La Liga goals than the joint-total of Messi and Luis Suarez in 2018/19 (Sevilla and Celta Vigo also have 31).

327

days and 19 matches without victory in any competition was the run Central Coast Mariners extinguished with a last-gasp reverse of Melbourne City. Had the Mariners lost, they would have tied the A-League record for most consecutive defeats (11) set by New Zealand Knights in its inaugural season.

60

minutes from kick-off is all Almoez Ali required to score the fastest – and fifth overall – four-goal haul in the AFC Asian Cup’s 63-year history. The Qatar No19 finished the group stage with seven goals. The only player to score more in one edition of the Asian Cup was Ali Daei, who registered eight in six appearances for IR Iran in 1996.

47

years after they last reached the knockout phase of the Asian Cup, Thailand repeated the feat – despite losing 4-1 in their curtain-raiser and sacking coach Milovan Rajevac afterwards. The War Elephants became just the third team to lose their opener by more than a two-goal margin and still advance after Khmer Republic (now Cambodia) in 1972 and Saudi Arabia in 2000, who both lost 4-1 to Korea Republic and Japan respectively.

26

per cent possession is all UAE 2018 champions Real Madrid had in their 2-1 win at Real Betis – the lowest percentage they had in a La Liga victory this century. Los Merengues' last eight goals in all competitions have come from eight different players.

20

matches is what IR Iran have gone without defeat in the group stage of the Asian Cup following their goalless draw with Iraq. The Iranians’ last loss was 2-1 to the Iraqis in 1996. Team Melli have now gone 12 hours and 21 minutes without conceding a goal in the competition’s first phase.

19

hours and 43 minutes is how long Chelsea, aided by Sweden goalkeeper Hedvig Lindahl and England rock Millie Bright, had gone without conceding in all competitions until Vivianne Miedema hit her 22nd goal in 17 appearances for Arsenal this season. It was, however, insufficient to deny Emma Hayes’ Blues an 11th successive victory that intensified the Women’s Super League title race.

10

successive victories over teams from the British Isles is what Norway made it thanks to a 3-1 reverse of Scotland in a FIFA Women’s World Cup™ warm-up in La Manga. Since a 2-1 loss to England in the Round of 16 at Canada 2015, Norway have beaten England once, Northern Ireland, Republic of Ireland and Wales twice apiece, and Scotland thrice.

6

goals is what Lautaro Martinez-inspired Inter Milan scored in a Coppa Italia game for the first time since Giacinto Facchetti, Jair and Roberto Boninsegna inspired a 6-0 thrashing of Reggina in 1971. Benevento were their victims.

4

managers is, unbelievably, what Shane Long has scored his last four Southampton goals under: Claude Puel, Mauricio Pellegrino, Mark Hughes and Ralph Hasenhuttl. The 31-year-old striker’s effort at Leicester City ended his goal drought at 279 days, having ended a 325-day goal drought 13 months ago.

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