Originally posted by FMF
Yesterday, I heard a statistician explain that, even though Robin Van Persie has scored 24 goals for Manchester United in the Premiership this season, which is 30% of the goals scored by the club, Manchester United would still have been top of the table even if Van Persie hadn't scored any of those goals.
I doubt that very much. I can't be bothered trawling through every fixture but I'm sure if you deducted all of his goals, the top of the league would look very different. Although it is very difficult to gauge of course, because someone else would have been in his place and may have scored themselves. It's a bit like saying 'If they played with only ten men on the pitch most games then they would be in a much worse position.
Here's an interesting page (which I think is the point your statistician was trying to make): -
Edit: He scored the winner against Fulham 3-2, all three against Southampton 3-2, the winner against Liverpool 2-1 and the winner against MCFC. That's just at a glance and amounts to 10 points difference already. I'm sure if you deducted the rest of the points his goals earned, then City would have won the league.
EDIT EDIT: Just read somewhere that if Suarez hadn't scored, Liverpool would be relegated and if Torres hadn't scored then Chelsea would be 4th 😛