Onana is second best goalkeeper ‘based on stats’ in the league, says Erik ten Hag

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Andre Onana
Andre Onana

Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag says goalkeeper Andre Onana is the Premier League’s second-best goalkeeper “based on stats”.

Onana, 27, was at fault for two Galatasaray goals in Wednesday’s 3-3 Champions League draw which left qualification hopes in the balance.

However, the Cameroonian is tied for most clean sheets in the Premier League this season with five.

And Onana has also prevented 3.67 goals – the second most in the league.

Only Luton Town’s Thomas Kaminski is ahead of him on 6.3 goals prevented.

Those numbers come from Opta calculations, with actual goals conceded being subtracted from the expected goals on target (xGOT) conceded figures, which reflect quality of chances for the opponent and shot execution.

Defending his keeper, Ten Hag said: “If you analyse it well then you see he is the second-best goalkeeper in the Premier League based on stats, so his expected defending goals is the second best in the Premier League.”

Onana was a £47.2m summer signing from Inter Milan in the summer, replacing David de Gea, who left at the end of his contract.

But in addition to the mistakes in Turkey, he also made errors in the 4-3 loss to Bayern Munich at the start of the group phase.

Ten Hag, whose team play Newcastle United in the Premier League on Saturday evening, said of Onana: “He’s doing well. Also he knows that in the Champions League he makes some mistakes, but all over you see the first five months he is doing particularly well.

“You have seen how he reacted to a bad performance like in Munich. At Burnley he was outstanding.

“He is a strong character, he is a personality and he will deal with it.”

According to Opta, Onana has made four errors leading to shots in this season’s Champions League, one more than any other goalkeeper. United are facing slightly more shots per game in this competition (15.4) compared to the Premier League (14.6).

His 34 line-breaking passes is the third most among all goalkeepers in the Champions League, indicating Ten Hag’s desire to bring in a ball-playing goalkeeper.

With 43.7 touches and 25.6 successful passes every 90 minutes in the Premier League, on average Onana has been involved in play more than any Manchester United goalkeeper in recent history, going as far back as such records are available (since 2006-07).

In terms of the most important element of his job, keeping the ball out of the net, the United goalkeeper has conceded 15 goals from 18.67 xGOT conceded in the Premier League, indicating he is exceeding expectations overall in this area. Own goals are not included in such calculations.

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