What pecentage of penalties is scored?

In association football, or soccer, a penalty kick is awarded against a team that commits an offence for which a direct free kick would be awarded elsewhere on the field, inside its own penalty area, while the ball is in play. Such offences include, but are not limted to, holding, kicking, pushing, tripping or otherwise impeding an opponent and handball. Nowadays, the defending goalkeeper must remain on the goal line, facing the penalty-taker, until the ball has been kicked, but is allowed to move laterally along the goal line.

Of course, the percentage of penalties scored varies from one competition to the next across the world, but the Premier League, in which 20 teams play 38 matches apiece, for a total of 380 matches, each season, probably provides as representative sample as any. The inaugural season of the Premier League was in 1992/93 so, notwithstanding the complication of changes to the Laws of the Game, implemented by the International Football Association Board (IFAB), in the interim, three decades’ worth of penalty data is available.

According to the Premier League, in the 2022/23 season, for example, a total of 99 penalties was awarded, home and away, of which 75 (76%) were scored, 17 (17%) were saved by the goalkeeper and 7 (7%) were missed altogether. Tellingly, perhaps, champions Manchester City were awarded 10 penalties, of which they scored nine, while the three relegated teams, Leicester City, Leeds United and Southampton, were collectively awarded 13 penalties, of which they converted just six. According to football data provider MyFootballFacts, in the entire 30-year history of the Premier League, the percentage of penalties scored is higher still, at 83%, with 13% saved and just 4% missed.

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