Sheffield United made it four wins from four in the Championship on Saturday, beating QPR 1-0.
A first half David McGoldrick strike was enough to seal all three points for the Blades at Bramall Lane. Chris Wilder’s men are now second in the table, with only Leeds United ahead of them.
And it seems that starting games well and leading before half-time has been a common theme for United this season. In fact no other team in the second tier of English football has better first half results in 2018/19.
United’s brilliant first halves
When only taking the result at half-time into account, this term the Blades have been leading in 10 of their 27 matches. They have been drawing in a further 15 and only trailing going into the second half on two occasions.
It means that if only first half results counted, at this stage of the campaign they would have 45 points – compared to their actual 50.
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What that shows is they have managed to convert five of those half-time draws into victories. But a further five have also resulted in defeats.
Surprisingly, first-placed Leeds are 11th in the half-time results table with 35 points. The Whites greatly improve after the break, turning nine of their 14 draws into wins and a further loss into a draw.
Yet even more astonishingly is that Norwich City, who are tied with United on 50 points, are 22nd in the table. The Canaries have only lead at half-time in four games this season. They have turned 10 of their first half draws and four of their losses into wins or draws.
In contrast, Aston Villa sit second in the first half table but 12th in the actual table. The stats show that in four matches where they were at least drawing at half-time they went onto lose.
The biggest losers are Reading, who have 12 more points at the halfway stage than they do at full-time. In eight games from winning or drawing positions they have gone onto draw or lose.