Football Injury Index - English Premier League 2018-19 Review - Kinesport

 
Football Injury Index - English Premier League 2018-19 Review - Kinesport
Football Injury Index
English Premier League 2018-19 Review
Football Injury Index - English Premier League 2018-19 Review - Kinesport
Contents

•• Introduction.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 1

•• Club Analysis .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 4

•• Injuries and Performance .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 8

•• Injuries by Month .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 12

•• Injuries by Type .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 14

•• Injuries by Position.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 18

•• Injuries by Age. .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 20

•• Looking Ahead. .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 22
Football Injury Index - English Premier League 2018-19 Review - Kinesport
Introduction

Welcome to the fourth annual Football Injury Index
from Marsh JLT Specialty, covering the 2018-19
season. Each year, the Index looks at how injuries
have affected the 20 football clubs in the English
Premier League (EPL) over the course of the
most recent season. This information helps clubs
understand the financial impact of players’ injuries,
and assess their injury risks.
                                                                                     £   221                   M
                                                                                     Total Cost of Injury 2018/19.

380 Games; 1 Point in It
The EPL season never fails to serve up thrilling drama — and 2018-19 was no
exception. Not since 2012 — when a last-minute goal sealed the top spot for
Manchester City — have we seen a closer title race. After 380 games, City
once again clinched glory on the last day of the season, finishing one point
ahead of Liverpool.

Pep Guardiola’s team completed an unprecedented domestic treble in the English
men’s game by also winning the FA Cup and the League Cup. Liverpool’s fans
had their own reason to celebrate a couple of weeks later, when the club beat EPL
rivals Tottenham Hotspur in the UEFA Champions League (UCL) final. Remarkably,
the EPL provided all four European finalists this season, with Chelsea beating
Arsenal in the Europa League showpiece. This was the first time any national
league had achieved this feat.

For their part, Arsenal had a mixed first campaign of the post-Arsene Wenger
era. Under new manager Unai Emery, the club failed to qualify for next season’s
UCL, while reaching (but losing) the Europa League final. Meanwhile, Manchester
United couldn’t sustain the impressive “bounce” when Ole Gunnar Solskjaer
replaced Jose Mourinho as manager mid-season. Their sixth-place finish means
no UCL spot next season.

At the other end of the table, two newly promoted clubs (Fulham and Cardiff City)
were immediately relegated back to the Championship — in contrast with the
previous season, when all three promotees survived.

Bucking the trend, Wolverhampton Wanderers put in a stellar performance in
their first season back in the big time. The club finished seventh, reached the FA
Cup semifinals, and drew praise for their attractive football.

                                                                                                          Marsh JLT Specialty • 1
                                                                                                                       Marsh • 1
Football Injury Index - English Premier League 2018-19 Review - Kinesport
Injuries on the Up
        For professional football clubs, paying out salaries to injured              By comparison, the cost of injuries rose by a relatively modest
        players is a cost of doing business. And the cost is on a relentless         3%, to around £221 million year-on-year. This followed a 21%
        upward curve. During the 2018-19 season, injuries increased                  jump in costs during the previous season.
        both in number and cost to EPL clubs (see Figure 1).
                                                                                     The 2017-18 figure may have been inflated by the effect on
        The total number of injuries (764) was the highest since we                  players’ wages of a bumper new Sky TV deal. Nonetheless, the
        began collecting data eight years ago — and up 15% from last                 long-term trend is clear: As TV money has poured into the game,
        season (663). This reversed the previous year’s trend, when total            inflating players’ salaries, the cost of injuries to EPL clubs has,
        injuries fell by around 10% year-on-year.                                    since the 2011-12 season, almost doubled.

        FIGURE

          1         Cost and number of injuries continues to increase.

                                                                                                                                         764
                        800

                                                                                     718            714

                                                                                                                      663
                        700

                                    603
                                                  573               580
                        600                                                                                                                             121241
                                                                                                                          1214            11145449
                                                                                                                                                          1497
                                                                                                                              149                         19
                                                                                                                       111449              11111454497
                                                                                                                       111154497            111152448979
                                                                                                                                            1114449
                                                                                                                          11124489           1111112444499
                                                                                                                                                          18
                        500                                                                                            111114244498                       18
                                                                                                                          1111499              11111522447998
                                                                                                      11747                   15479             11145449897
                                                                                                                        1112448                 111124499
                                                                                                            149               19
                                                                                                      111449            11112444899              1114498
                                                                                                                        1 4                       1115244979
                                                                                                      111154497         111154997                 111124544897
                                                                                       11547                                11                            19
                                                                                                       11112444489         11112444489             111112444489
                        400                                            11540           111144499            19
                                                                                                        11111244489
                                                                                                                             19
                                                                                                                        11111244489
                                                                                                                                                         11 9
                                                                                                                                                     1111124489
                                                                       1149             1149              1149              1149                      1124489
                                                                                                            19                19                      111489
                                                                                        11248             111248         111248                       1112449
                                                    11249              11248            111124498           148               148                      11112498
                                                                                                          111249         111249                          1
                                                    1149               1149              1149              1149             1149                       1149
                                        1149
                        300

                        200

                        100

                            0

                                    2012-13       2013-14            2014-15          2015-16         2016-17          2017-18            2018-19

                                Total injuries     Total cost of injuries (in GBP)

2 • Football Injury Index
Football Injury Index - English Premier League 2018-19 Review - Kinesport
Methodology
Working with Sporting Intelligence, a specialist
sports news and data provider, Marsh JLT
Specialty has sourced, classified, and studied
data on EPL injuries since 2011. Using public
sources, our analysis covers official matches
played by EPL clubs in all competitions.

The analysis in this report is based on our        “There were 764 injuries to players
estimate of the financial cost for every injury
suffered by an EPL player during the 2018-19
                                                    during the 2018-19 season — that’s
season. Injury costs represent the fixed salary
paid by the club to the injured player during
                                                    the highest number in any season
their absence.                                      since we began collecting data.”
All injuries causing a player to miss at least
one official match are taken into account. All
salary and injury cost data cited is provided by
Sporting Intelligence.

                 764
            Total number of injuries
                   in 2018-19.

                  15       %

         Increase of number of injuries
                 from 2017-18.

                  86        %

      Increase in salaries paid by clubs to
         injured players since 2012-13.
Football Injury Index - English Premier League 2018-19 Review - Kinesport
Club Analysis

        On average, EPL clubs suffered just over 38 injuries
        each during the 2018-19 season — around one per
        game. On average, each club paid out a total of more
        than £11 million to injured players. The cost per injury
        averaged around £290,000.

        Looking at the cost of injuries by club throws the financial divide between the
        “big six” and the rest of the EPL into sharp relief. Between them, Arsenal, Chelsea,
        Liverpool, the two Manchester clubs, and Tottenham Hotspur accounted for 54%
        of injury costs. Together, they’ve experienced a 48% increase in salaries paid to
                                                                                                  £   290                        K
                                                                                                      Average injury cost 2018-19.
        injured players since 2016 (see Figures 2 and 3).

        With an all-star squad and wealthy owners, it is perhaps unsurprising that
        Man City tops the injury costs table, with a total outlay of £26.3 million (see
        Figure 4). This is despite having only the seventh highest injury total (44), and
                                                                                                 “On average,
        the lowest among the top six teams. However, City’s push for an unprecedented
        “quadruple” had an effect, with its injury total almost double that of last year (24).
                                                                                                   Premier League
                                                                                                   clubs paid some
        Manchester United — another big-salary payer — is second in the injury cost
        table, having spent £25.2 million. United had the highest injury cost spend in the         £11 million each
        league during 2017-18, despite a relatively modest number of injuries (37). Last
        season, however, the club suffered more injuries than any other (63) — which may           to injured players
        partly explain the team’s faltering league performance.
                                                                                                   over the course
                                                                                                   of the season.”
       FIGURE

        2         Top six clubs take more than half of injury costs.

                        £120M
                                                                   £101M

                      Top 6 Clubs                               Other Clubs

4 • Football Injury Index
For 2018-19, Tottenham Hotspur experienced the second                 Wolverhampton Wanderers’ excellent return to the top flight was
highest injury total (61), while lying sixth in the cost table        undoubtedly helped by a relatively injury-free season. The team
(£17.9 million). Spurs contested its first-ever UCL final last        had just 11 layoffs — the lowest number of any EPL club in the
season, and made the FA Cup semifinals, on the back of a long         last eight years. As a newly promoted team, Wolves presumably
World Cup campaign for several players last summer. This              had a modest wage bill by Premier League standards. This kept
arguably took its toll: The club’s injury total almost doubled        injury costs down to £1.1 million — just 4.3% of Manchester
last season (up from 33 in 2017-18). Over the last three seasons      City’s total.
(2016–19), its payouts to injured players more than doubled
(110%) — a far higher increase than other top six clubs.

FIGURE

 3         Top six EPL teams see overall increase of 48% in salaries to injured players since 2016.

                                                       110%

                                                              73%

                                                                           49%
                                                                                             44%               41%

                                                                                                                        11%

   Tottenham Hotspur          Chelsea              Arsenal          Manchester City   Manchester United     Liverpool

                                                                                                                        Marsh JLT Specialty • 5
FIGURE

          4             Manchester City had the highest cost of injuries in 2018-19,
                        while Manchester United led in number of injuries.

                               44                                                       Manchester City                                                                       26.3

         63                                                                            Manchester United                                                                   25.2

                          49                                                                   Arsenal                                                                 24.2

                               45                                                      West Ham United                                                              22.8

           61                                                                         Tottenham Hotspur                                                      17.9

                         50                                                                Liverpool                                                  15.2

                                      39                                                 Crystal Palace                                        11.5

                          50                                                                   Chelsea                                         11.5

                                                   28                                          Everton                                   9.4

                                           35                                          AFC Bournemouth                             8.0

                                        37                                                     Watford                             7.7

                                      39                                               Newcastle United                       6.8

                                                   28                                          Burnley                       6.1

                                             34                                          Southampton                     6.0

                                                   28                                          Brighton                5.0

                                 43                                                      Huddersfield                  4.7

                                                         19                              Leicester City           4.4

                                                    27                                         Fulham             4.1

                                             34                                           Cardiff City           3.3

                                                                 11                     Wolverhampton      1.1
                                                                                         Wanderers

                Total injuries (in millions GBP)          Cost of injuries (in millions GBP)

6 • Football Injury Index
“Wolverhampton
  Wanderers’ excellent
  return to the top flight
  was undoubtedly
  helped by a relatively
  injury-free season.”

                   Marsh JLT Specialty • 7
Injuries and
        Performance

        Depth of squad is critical when competing for major
        honours. Tellingly, Manchester City pipped Liverpool
        to the title despite suffering more from injuries
        (see Figure 5).

        The champions had an average of 4.61 players missing per game, compared
        to 3.91 for Liverpool. And Manchester City players were out for 1,407 days
        in total — significantly more than Liverpool’s 1,136 days. (This is despite City
        suffering six fewer injuries in total.) It could also be argued that Pep Guardiola
        lost more influential players than Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool. Two of City’s long-
                                                                                             4.61                      Players

                                                                                             Average number of missing players
        term absentees were club Captain Vincent Kompany and star playmaker Kevin             per game for Man City, compared
        de Bruyne. By contrast, Liverpool’s longest layoffs affected Alex Oxlade-                    to Liverpool’s 3.91.
        Chamberlain, Joe Gomez, and Adam Lallana.

       FIGURE

         5         Despite higher injury totals, Manchester City takes top spot in 2018-19.

                                                                   BATTLE FOR TOP SPOT

                                 Manchester City                                                 Liverpool

                                       44                             TOTAL INJURIES               50

                                      1,407                              DAYS OUT                 1,136

                                     £26.3M                          COST OF INJURIES            £15.2M

                                       98                               EPL POINTS                 97

                                    £598.8K                        AVG. COST OF INJURY           £303.1K

                                      4.61                    AVG. NUMBER OF UNAVAILABLE          3.91
                                                                       PLAYERS

8 • Football Injury Index
“Manchester United finished bottom of the big six ‘mini-league’,
 and suffered the most layoffs during the season.”

The Big Six
Looking across the top six, Arsenal lost by far the most days             Spurs’ injury-hit campaign is reflected in a more than 200%
through injury (1,771), and finished second from the bottom               rise in days missed by their players — up from 791 in 2017-18,
of this elite group. Did injuries hold back the team’s progress           to 1,652 last season (see Figure 6). There was a clear impact on
in its first season under Emery? Manchester United finished at            their league performance: the team scored seven fewer points,
the bottom of the big six “mini-league”, and suffered the most            and finished a place lower, in fourth.
layoffs during the season.

FIGURE

 6         Year-on-year injuries may have played a role in performance among the top six clubs.

                                                                                            AVG. UNAVAILABLE
                                         TOTAL INJURIES               DAYS OUT                                           EPL POINTS
                                                                                                 PLAYERS
               CLUBS
                                      2017-18      2018-19        2017-18      2018-19      2017-18     2018-19      2017-18     2018-19

             Manchester City             24           44            776          1,407        2.81         4.61        100          98

             Liverpool                   44           50           1,218         1,136        4.20         3.91         75          97

             Chelsea                     38           50            906          1,014        2.63         3.43         70          72

             Tottenham Hotspur           33           61            791          1,652        3.04         5.50         77          71

             Arsenal                     54           49           1,034         1,771        4.40         6.40         63          70

             Manchester United           37           63           1,071         1,238        4.38         4.30         81          66

                                                                                                                             Marsh JLT Specialty • 9
Across the League
                     West Ham finished comfortably in mid-table (10th), despite                                                      As we’ve seen, seventh-placed Wolverhampton Wanderers had
                     having the most players missing per game (7), and the most                                                      the fewest days missed and players unavailable on match days.
                     match days missed (2,003), (see Figures 7 and 8). Long layoffs
                     for Andy Carroll (twice), Jack Wilshere, and Andriy Yarmolenko
                     contributed to the club’s high absence rate.

                               FIGURE
                                                                  West Ham United averaged more than 7 players missing
                                                          7       per match, but was in the middle for points scored.

                                                                                                                        EPL Total Points

                                                              0                20               40                              60                     80                  100             120
                                                          8

                                                                                                            WHU
                                                          7
       Avg. Number of Unavailable Players Each Matchday

                                                                                                                                           ARS
                                                          6
                                                                                                                                             TOT
                                                          5
                                                                                                             WAT                                                      MNC
                                                                         HUD                          BOU                              MNU
                                                          4                                           NCW
                                                                                          CAR   BUR                                                                  LIV
                                                                                                            CRY     EVE
                                                                                                                                                 CHE
                                                          3                                BRI SOU
                                                                                    FUL
                                                                                                                  LEI

                                                          2

                                                          1
                                                                                                                          WOL

                                                          0

10 • Football Injury Index
FIGURE
             Manchester City led the EPL in points in 2018-19 and was
 8           slightly above average for injuries.

                                                                                 AVG. NUMBER OF UNAVAILABLE
                     CLUBS             2018/19 EPL POINTS    NUMBER OF MATCHES
                                                                                          PLAYERS

  1      Manchester City                       98                       61                  4.6

  2      Liverpool                             97                       53                  3.9

  3      Chelsea                               72                       63                  3.4

  4      Tottenham Hotspur                     71                       58                  5.5

  5      Arsenal                               70                       58                  6.4

  6      Manchester United                     66                       53                  4.3

  7      Wolverhampton Wanderers               57                       46                  0.7

  8      Everton                               54                       42                  3.7

  9      Leicester City                        52                       43                  2.5

 10      West Ham United                       52                       43                  7.0

 11      Watford                               50                       46                  4.5

 12      Crystal Palace                        49                       45                  3.7

 13      Newcastle United                      45                       42                  4.2

 14      AFC Bournemouth                       45                       43                  4.3

 15      Burnley                               40                       47                  3.8

 16      Southampton                           39                       43                  2.9

 17      Brighton                              36                       45                  3.0

 18      Cardiff City                          34                       40                  3.9

 19      Fulham                                26                       42                  2.8

 20      Huddersfield                          16                       40                  4.4

                                                                                                  Marsh JLT Specialty • 11
Injuries by Month

        On average, EPL teams spent a total of £20.2 million
        each month on players laid off through injury during
        2018-19.

        Like every season, December/January witnessed the most injuries, given the
        annual festive fixture congestion that EPL managers so frequently bemoan
        (see Figure 9).

        In 2017-18, this led to a spike in January; last season, it appears to have struck
        a month earlier. December 2018 saw the highest number of injuries (118), and
                                                                                               £   20.2
                                                                                                     Average monthly payout to
                                                                                                                                M
        the highest injury cost (£29.3 million) across the league (see Figure 10). In fact,        injured players across the EPL.
        the number of injuries that month was far higher than the eight-year average for
        December. As the heavy festive schedule continued to bite, injury levels remained
        high in January (88, costing £24.9 million), and February (78, costing £20 million).

        August usually sees relatively few injuries. The season only starts midway through
        the month, and players return refreshed from the summer break and conditioned
        by pre-season training. Yet, 2018-19 saw a peak in the number of injuries during
        the first month back (113).

        This could well be a hangover from the World Cup last summer. Some 108 EPL
        players went to Russia — by far the most from any one league, and way ahead of
        Spain’s La Liga, in second place (78). In fact, the Premier League provided the
        whole of England’s squad, and around half of Belgium’s — both of which went all
        the way to the semifinals.

        April also registered a high number of injuries (81), as the long season reached
        its “sharp end”, and clubs found themselves fighting for the title, European
        qualification, and Premier League survival.

12 • Football Injury Index
FIGURE

               9                 Number of August injuries unusually high in 2018-19.

                     140                                                                                                                                                   Avg. 2011-2018

                     120

                     100                                                                                                                                                   2018-2019
                                                                                            p36
NUMBER OF INJURIES

                      80
                                               p66
                                                                                                                                        p23
                      60

                      40

                      20

                       0

                                  Jul              Aug         Sep        Oct      Nov       Dec      Jan        Feb        Mar         Apr              May

    FIGURE

  10                             Injury costs typically highest in December/January.

                     30M
                                                                                                                                                                          Others

                                                                                                                                                                          Arsenal
                     25M
                                                                                                                                                                          Chelsea

                     20M                                                                                                                                                  Liverpool
RUNNING COST

                                                                                                                                                                          Manchester City

                     15M                                                                                                                                                  Manchester United

                                                                                                                                                                          Tottenham Hotspur
                     10M

                     5M

                       0
                      Jul 2018          Aug 2018         Sep 2018    Oct 2018   Nov 2018   Dec 2018   Jan 2019   Feb 2019    Mar 2019         Apr 2019         May 2019

   “December 2018 saw the highest number of
    injuries (118), and the highest injury cost across
    the league (£29.3 million).”

                                                                                                                                                                    Marsh JLT Specialty • 13
Injuries by Type

        Not all injuries are equal. Some are harder to treat,
        take longer to heal, cause clubs more problems
        — and cost more (see Figure 11).

        In 2018-19, knee injuries were the most common cause of layoffs among EPL
        clubs, caused the longest absences, and were the costliest. That followed two
        seasons in which hamstring injuries had been the most common.

        There were 114 knee layoffs during the 2018-19 season, compared to 108
        hamstring pulls. Ankle injuries (70) were a distant third. Knee problems also
                                                                                                     114
                                                                                               Knee injuries — lasting on average
        caused by far the lengthiest absences (58 days per injury, on average). Ankle                       58 days.
        injuries, in second place, led to an average 40 days out.

        As a result, knee injuries accounted for more than a quarter (26%) of all injury
        costs to EPL clubs last season (a total of £58.8 million).

        In the 2017-18 season, sickness saw a 600% spike in frequency, rising to 62
        absences from just nine in 2016-17. It increased further last season (66), but the
        illnesses were short-lived, as we might expect for young athletes. With an average
        duration of just under 11 days, sickness layoffs were by far the shortest.

                          26       %                                 £58.8          M                     1   ST

                Of all injury costs were related                Total cost of knee injuries.    Knee injuries were the most
                         to knee injuries.                                                     common and costliest injuries.

14 • Football Injury Index
“Knee injuries are the most
 troublesome. They caused
 more than a quarter of all
 injury payouts this season,
 costing clubs £58.8 million.”

                      Marsh JLT Specialty • 15
FIGURE

        11         Knee injuries in 2018-19 were the most frequent and also the most expensive.

        Knee                                                     NUMBER OF
                                                                  INJURIES
                                                                             Hamstring                                     NUMBER OF
                                                                                                                            INJURIES

                                                                 114                                                       108
                        AVERAGE INJURY SEVERITY                                        AVERAGE INJURY SEVERITY

                                                            58 DAYS                                              32 DAYS
                        AVERAGE INJURY COST                                            AVERAGE INJURY COST

                                                            £516K                                                £311K

                        TOTAL ESTIMATE OF COST                                         TOTAL ESTIMATE OF COST

                                                            £58.8M                                               £33.5M

        Ankle                                                    NUMBER OF
                                                                  INJURIES
                                                                             Illness                                       NUMBER OF
                                                                                                                            INJURIES

                                                                  70                                                        66
                        AVERAGE INJURY SEVERITY                                        AVERAGE INJURY SEVERITY

                                                       40 DAYS                                  11 DAYS
                        AVERAGE INJURY COST                                            AVERAGE INJURY COST

                                                        £392K                                     £124K

                        TOTAL ESTIMATE OF COST                                         TOTAL ESTIMATE OF COST

                                              £27.5M                                          £8.2M

        Knock                                                    NUMBER OF
                                                                  INJURIES
                                                                             Groin                                         NUMBER OF
                                                                                                                            INJURIES

                                                                  66                                                        54
                        AVERAGE INJURY SEVERITY                                        AVERAGE INJURY SEVERITY

                                       18 DAYS                                                               25 DAYS
                        AVERAGE INJURY COST                                            AVERAGE INJURY COST

                                       £167K                                                                 £239K

                        TOTAL ESTIMATE OF COST                                         TOTAL ESTIMATE OF COST

                                £11.0M                                                           £12.9M

16 • Football Injury Index
Hip/Thigh                                   NUMBER OF
                                             INJURIES
                                                        Foot                                       NUMBER OF
                                                                                                    INJURIES

                                             52                                                     40
        AVERAGE INJURY SEVERITY                                AVERAGE INJURY SEVERITY

                          22 DAYS                                                              51 DAYS
        AVERAGE INJURY COST                                    AVERAGE INJURY COST

                              £223K                                                             £573K

        TOTAL ESTIMATE OF COST                                 TOTAL ESTIMATE OF COST

                 £11.6M                                                         £22.9M

Calf/Shin                                   NUMBER OF
                                             INJURIES
                                                        Back                                       NUMBER OF
                                                                                                    INJURIES

                                             36                                                     32
        AVERAGE INJURY SEVERITY                                AVERAGE INJURY SEVERITY

                                  29 DAYS                                            24 DAYS
        AVERAGE INJURY COST                                    AVERAGE INJURY COST

                          £211K                                                      £233K

        TOTAL ESTIMATE OF COST                                 TOTAL ESTIMATE OF COST

              £7.6M                                                  £7.5M

“Over the past two seasons, hamstring injuries have
  been the most common cause of layoffs among
  EPL clubs.”

                                                                                               Marsh JLT Specialty • 17
Injuries by Position

        As was the case the season before, goalkeepers had
        very few injuries in 2018-19 — just 28 — but suffered
        the most severe cases (see Figure 12). Their average
        layoff was 41 days, due in part to long-term absences

                                                                                                        81
        for Burnley’s Nick Pope and Manchester City’s
        Claudio Bravo.

        Low numbers of goalkeeping injuries are down to two factors. First, there are
                                                                                                    £                  M
        fewer keepers in each squad (usually only three). Second, they stay out of the
                                                                                                   Midfielders cost their clubs
        action during much of a football match.
                                                                                                   the most in injury payouts.

        But when called into action, their unique role on the pitch exposes them to a high
        degree of physical danger: jumping, diving, scrambling for the ball at players’ feet,
        and colliding with others in crowded penalty areas. This explains the lengthier
        layoffs they typically experience — alongside the fact that they tend to be older.      “Midfielders
        Midfielders replaced forwards as the most expensive position for injuries this           replaced forwards
        season, costing their clubs £81 million in layoffs. This was more than a third (36%)
        of the total injury cost across the 2018-19 campaign. Defenders suffered the most        as the most
        injuries (285, compared to 249 for midfielders) — perhaps unsurprisingly, given
        the physical nature of their role.
                                                                                                 expensive position
                                                                                                 for injuries this
        As per the season before, forwards saw the shortest absences (27 days on
        average). As the best-paid position, with a crucial role in creating and scoring         season, accounting
        goals, are injured attackers being rushed back into first-team action?
                                                                                                 for 36% of the total
                                                                                                 injury cost.”

18 • Football Injury Index
FIGURE

12            Injuries to goalkeepers had the highest average expense.

     GOALKEEPERS                               DEFENDERS
         28   Total injuries               285      Total injuries

     41.2     Average Severity (days)      31.7     Average Severity (days)

     COST OF INJURIES                      COST OF INJURIES

     £10.0M                                 £73.2M
     AVG. COST OF INJURIES                 AVG. COST OF INJURIES

     £355.4K                                £256.8K

         MIDFIELDERS                              FORWARDS

     249      Total injuries                202     Total injuries

     33.8     Average Severity (days)       27.1    Average Severity (days)

    COST OF INJURIES                       COST OF INJURIES

    £80.9M                                  £62.2M
    AVG. COST OF INJURIES                  AVG. COST OF INJURIES

    £325.1K                                 £308.1K

                                                                              Marsh JLT Specialty • 19
Injuries by Age

        Footballers generally hit their prime in their mid-to-
        late 20s. So we’d expect their wages to be highest
        during this period, and the physical demands on
        them to be the most strenuous. This may partly

                                                                                                 118.6
        explain why almost half (49%, or 374 injuries) of last
        season’s injuries struck players between 26 and 30
        years old (see Figure 13).                                                              £                                  M
        In turn, more than half (52%) of the total cost of injuries to EPL clubs was incurred          Players between 26 and
        for players of that age group (£118.6 million). This is more than twice the amount            30 years old accounted for
        for those between 21 and 25 years old (£54.4 million), the next costliest group.            52% of the season's injury costs.

        Conversely, players between 26 and 30 years old are the quickest to recover from
        injury (30 days on average), as they’re generally in peak physical condition.
                                                                                                “26-30 year olds
        The oldest age group sits at the opposite end of both scales. Over-35s suffered
        the fewest injuries — just nine last season. This may be because fewer of them
                                                                                                 accounted for
        play at the very highest level. Also, a higher proportion of them are goalkeepers,
        who suffer fewer injuries. However, they require the longest recovery times —
                                                                                                 52% of the season’s
        more than twice that of players from 26 to 30 years old (65 days). As a result, their
        injuries are twice as expensive, costing just over £785,000 each, compared to
                                                                                                 injury costs.”
        £317,000 for their younger teammates.

20 • Football Injury Index
FIGURE

13           Injuries to players between 26 and 30 years old cost clubs the most money.

             Less than 21                       NUMBER OF
                                                                           21-25                          NUMBER OF
                                                 INJURIES                                                  INJURIES

AVERAGE INJURY SEVERITY                          20           AVERAGE INJURY SEVERITY                     217
                            32.7 DAYS                                                   32.1 DAYS
TOTAL COST                                                    TOTAL COST
     £1.7M                                                                                 £54.4M

             26-30                              NUMBER OF                  31-35                         NUMBER OF
                                                 INJURIES                                                 INJURIES

AVERAGE INJURY SEVERITY
                                                374           AVERAGE INJURY SEVERITY
                                                                                                         144
                           30.3 DAYS                                                    31.5 DAYS
TOTAL COST                                                    TOTAL COST
                               £118.6M                                                  £44.5M

             Over 35                           NUMBER OF
                                                INJURIES

AVERAGE INJURY SEVERITY
                                                  9
                               65.2 DAYS
TOTAL COST
   £7.1M

                                                                                                    Marsh JLT Specialty • 21
Looking Ahead

        During the summer, Liverpool manager Jürgen
        Klopp publicly ruled out spending “crazy money”
        — setting the tone for his transfer strategy ahead
        of the 2019-20 season.

        That could be a worry for Liverpool fans, hungry for a first league title since
        1990. Renewing their battle for top spot with Manchester City won’t be easy
        — especially given the depth and quality of City’s squad.

        Manchester City held Liverpool off despite having more players missing in the
                                                                                                     £  55             M
                                                                                                       Amount Spurs paid for
        2018-19 season; if the gap between the two squads grows, there could be more            French midfielder Tanguy Ndombele.
        than a point in it come May next year.

        In Solskjaer’s first full term in charge, Manchester United are looking to recapture
        their glory years, by challenging for the title and qualifying for the UCL. It’s an
        ambition reflected in their willingness to pay Leicester City £80 million for England
        centre-back Harry McGuire — a world-record transfer fee for a defender.

        Spurs were out of the blocks early. After two seasons with very little transfer
        activity, the club broke its record in July, paying Lyon £55 million for French
        midfielder Tanguy Ndombele, and following up with Giovani Lo Celso on the
        transfer day deadline.

        Meanwhile, Arsenal must build on a moderate first campaign of the post-Wenger
        era; and Chelsea could have a problem. With an untested new manager at the
        helm (club legend Frank Lampard), Chelsea have faced a transfer ban. What this
        will mean for their wage bill and injury costs in the coming season remains to
        be seen.

        At the other end of the scale, how will the league’s three newly promoted clubs
        — Aston Villa, Norwich City and Sheffield United — go about trying to ensure
        an extended stay in the top flight? Villa have shown their determination to stick
        around, spending over £130 million during the transfer window.

        Finally, how will Euro 2020 affect the coming season?

        Players know that their form in the EPL will affect whether they’re selected to
        represent their countries next summer. But equally, they’ll be wary of picking
        up injuries that could rule them out of a major international tournament.

        Whatever the season brings, we can be sure the Premier League’s 20 clubs will
        pay out hundreds of millions of pounds to players as they sit on the sidelines
        through injury.

22 • Football Injury Index
Insurance Analytics
Specialists

The dedicated Data and Analytics team at Marsh
JLT Specialty provides injury analysis, insight, and
predictions to clubs from a range of sports.

Our advanced actuarial and analytics laboratory produces valuable insight into
risk factors typically leading to sporting injuries.

We also carry out tailored analyses for clubs seeking other types of financial
risk protection — for example, against missing promotions or crashing out of
European competitions, resulting in considerable financial losses.

Using advanced modelling techniques, the team helps clubs and insurers to
assess risk exposure and the fair price of coverage.

Our Model
Marsh JLT Specialty’s proprietary predictive injury model helps clients in the
sporting world to identify and prepare for injury risks.

By analysing complex variables, our model makes player-by-player injury
predictions. It takes into account individual and team risk factors, including age,
position, injury history, number of matches, and salaries. It then benchmarks
these against our comprehensive database of injury patterns and trends.

We use this information to calculate the probability of each player being injured,
and the likely severity. This allows us to estimate the potential injury cost a club
is exposed to. With top athletes commanding unprecedented financial rewards
across the sporting world, this insight can make all the difference.

Whilst this has worked in the sports industry, we are not just limited to one
sector. These models can be extended and easily modified to suit a wide
array of industries. With these models, we aim to aid our clients in better
managing their risk exposure and understand the key nuances in the industries
they operate.

                                                                                       Marsh JLT Specialty • 23
About Marsh

        Marsh is the world’s leading insurance broker and
        risk adviser. With over 35,000 colleagues operating
        in more than 130 countries, Marsh serves commercial
        and individual clients with data-driven risk solutions

                                                                                                35,000+
        and advisory services.

        Marsh is a wholly owned subsidiary of Marsh & McLennan Companies
        (NYSE: MMC), the leading global professional services firm in the areas of risk,
        strategy, and people. With annual revenue over US$15 billion and 75,000                  Over 35,000 colleagues serving
        colleagues worldwide, MMC helps clients navigate an increasingly dynamic              businesses, public entities, and private
        and complex environment through four market-leading firms.                              clients in more than 130 countries.

                                                                                                !
        About Marsh
        JLT Specialty

        We are specialists who are committed to delivering
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        consulting, placement, account management, and
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        With unparalleled breadth, our Marsh JLT Specialty global team is united by a
        determination to bring the most experienced and relevant specialist resources

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        to our clients, regardless of where they are located. This approach means our local
        specialists work seamlessly with global experts, together creating and delivering
        tailor-made risk and insurance solutions to address each client’s
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        Our service offering is enhanced with insight-driven advice supported by tailored           Over 500 offices worldwide.
        data, analytic, and consultancy capabilities to support clients in making important
        decisions about their complex risks.

        Exceptional service combined with transparency, integrity, and accessibility
        underpins our partnerships with clients.

24 • Football Injury Index
Services provided by Marsh JLT Specialty, a trading name of JLT Specialty Limited, which is a Lloyd’s Broker, authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct
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Copyright © 2019 All rights reserved. • August 2019 280647
For more information, please contact your local Marsh office or visit our website at marsh.com.

LENNOX BATTEN
Managing Director, Special Risks
Marsh JLT Specialty
+44 (0)20 7357 3054
lennox.batten@marsh.com
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