Articles by Matt Rhein

Matt is a Celtic supporter born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio and is a graduate of the University of Dayton (Go Flyers!). A few years ago, Matt learned about the burgeoning field of analytics in football. Excited with this new knowledge, he could not wait to apply this newfound wisdom to his beloved Celtic and the rest of Scottish football. However, he soon found that there was very little available when it came to these advanced stats for Scottish football. Taking matter into his own hands, Matt decided to track these various stats for Celtic. However, he soon realised he wanted to know how Celtic and it's players compared to their title rivals in Scotland. Then he wanted to compare every club in the SPFL Premiership. This slippery slope led to Matt tracking the stats for every club and player in the SPFL Premiership and Championship, as well as in depth blogs on specific topics in Scottish Football on his blog, The Backpass Rule ( He can also be found on twitter under @thebackpassrule


The Good, The Bad, The Ugly: A Champions League Stat Check-In

Celtic have faced each one of their Champions League group opponents once, so it seems like a good time to check on the numbers behind Celtic’s latest foray onto Europe’s biggest stage. Celtic currently sit 3rd in Champions League Group B, ahead of Anderlecht who have no points, and behind Bayern Munich with 6 points…


#Pro/Rel: The Civil War that Divides Soccer in the United States

Soccer (you better prepare yourself for a lot of use of the “S”-word) in the United States has seen various booms and recessions throughout the years. The years of Pele and the New York Cosmos are well known, but it could be argued that we are currently in the years where ‘soccer has made it’…


O Captain, My Captain: Scott Brown Leading the Charge for History

In a regular column, Matt Rhein looks at the numbers beyond the results in the SPFL Premiership and, most of all, for Celtic. In this edition he looks at how Scott Brown is leading the way in a stat category there have been no previous public record of in the SPFL; expected secondary assists. One of…


The Manager is Fired, Long Live the Manager: Characteristics of Managers in the SPFL

Before we were unsure of whether or not Mark Warburton had actually resigned or not, the last controversy surrounding a Scottish football manager involved 30-year-old Ian Cathro and his MacBook. Pundits and players alike told the young Hearts manager that he did not have the experience required to lead an SPFL club. Kilmarnock striker Kris…


Expecting an Explanation on Expected Goals: Celtic’s Improved Shot Quality

In a regular column, Matt Rhein will look at the numbers beyond the results in the SPFL Premiership and, most of all, for Celtic. One of the very few (maybe only) analysts that track and share expected goals data publicly for Scottish football, in this first edition he looks at what the metric actually means and…

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