Eredivisie 2013/2014 predictions: how did they fare?

This time last year, Scoreboard Journalism embarked on an exercise to collect Eredivisie predictions from various sources to be assessed to discover how these predictions actually fared. A similar exercise has already begun in time for Friday’s big kick-off for 2014/2015 which you can take part in by contacting me via Twitter or here but what about last season?

 As a reminder, the 13 participants last season were:

1: Euro Club Index (@euroclubindex). Based on results of last four years, weighted for recency.
2: Steve Lawrence (@SteveLawrence_): Based on transfer values of current squad members.
3: Terry Tipster (@terrytipster): Based on team/player strengths.
4: Soccermetrics (@soccermetrics): Based on projected statistical outcomes of current squad combined with Pythagorean.
5: Niels van de Ven (@nielsvandeven): Based on goal difference from last 3 years, weighted for recency and transfers (subjective component).
6: A mystery guest from the Dutch sports media who preferred to remain anonymous.
7: Michiel Jongsma (@jongsmajongsma) of
8: Nikos Overheul (@noverheul) of
9: Arjan Blom (@arjan_blom)
10: DJ Van Zoen (@fcgodenzoon, twitter handle now defunct)
11: Will Burns (@willburns6) of
12: Babette van Haaren (@babettevhaaren)
13: Martijn Staal (@m_staal)

An overview of the original forecasts from a year ago can be found at To assess their accuracy the standard deviation of the differences in the predicted points per team and actual points per team have been plotted by @jameswgrayson:


  •  Soccermetrics is the winner on this measure followed by Steve Lawrence and the Euro Club Index.
  • All of the top three were based on statistical models and the median of the five models outperformed the median of the subjective picks.
  • Nikos Overheul of produced the best of the subjective forecasts and was also better than two of the statistical models.
  • Babette van Haaren was the only other subjective forecaster to perform better than a simple baseline of just picking the 18 clubs to get the same points as in 2012/2013.
  • All five of the statistical models were better than picking the clubs to get the same points as a season earlier.
  • The median of the subjective forecasters outperformed them all but was not as good as three of the models. This was perhaps an illustration of “the wisdom of the crowd”.
  • Two of the statistical models outperformed the median of the objective forecasters.
  • Everyone thankfully did better than the dumbest baseline of all which was that all 18 clubs would finish on 47 points.

However, as I suggested last season, one season is not enough to be certain that forecasters are good or bad which is why I am hoping to have as many of last year’s participants enter again this time around. One of the 13 (@fcgodenzoon) has disappeared but I hope to have the rest back again in an expanded group predicting the final table for the 2014/2015 season. If you’d like to join them, please get in touch before Friday’s big kick-off. In the meantime, congratulations to Soccermetrics, last season’s best predictors of the Eredivisie.

I’d also like to thank Steve Lawrence (@stevelawrence_) for his sterling work throughout the season, tweeting overviews to show how the competition was progressing. Updates will be much more frequent this season I hope and I plan to integrate Steve’s work in this in addition to James’ plot.

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2 Responses to Eredivisie 2013/2014 predictions: how did they fare?

  1. Pingback: Predicting the Eredivisie: A guest post by Steve Lawrence | Scoreboard Journalism

  2. Pingback: Who were the best Eredivisie predictors of 2014/2015? | Scoreboard Journalism

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