Home → Elite → Football → Performance Analysis Football Wyscout Performance Analysis Top Performing Female Footballers in Europe According to Wyscout Data 17 Jul, 2023 9 Min Read By Tom Robinson Using Wyscout data, we look at some of the top performing female players from Europe’s top women’s leagues. Women’s football has taken enormous strides in recent years. Increased professionalism and quality across the board has seen a surge in popularity, with average spectator numbers and viewership improving year-on-year. The Champions League final between Barcelona and Wolfsburg was testament to the progress the game has made. In front of a sell-out 34,100 crowd at the Philips Stadion in Eindhoven, Barcelona came from two goals down to beat their German opponents 3-2 in a thriller befitting the occasion. Another sign of the increased professionalization of the women’s game is the growing adoption of video and data analysis, giving teams the edge when it comes to player development, opposition analysis and scouting processes. With that in mind, using various metrics available on Wyscout from the 2022/23 league season, we take a look at some of the best performing female players in Europe. Goal Scorers Despite the goal-scoring exploits of Barcelona and their domination of Spain’s Liga F, there was a surprise package in the top scorer standings. Levante’s Alba Redondo topped the charts with 28 goals, helping J.L. Sanchez Vera’s young side to an unexpected third place finish. The 26-year-old Spanish international has a deadly burst of pace, excellent movement and has formed a great strike partnership with Mayra Ramirez. Their importance is highlighted by the fact the Redondo-Ramirez duo accounted for 52.5% of Levante’s league goals this season. Racheal Kundananji also enjoyed a breakthrough campaign with 25 goals for Madrid CFF, while Barcelona’s Nigerian star Asisat Oshoala broke the twenty-goal barrier too. Rachel Daly's shot map using Wyscout's Player Reports. In the English WSL, Rachel Daly and Khadija ‘Bunny’ Shaw dominated the race for the golden boot. Despite turning out for England at full back, Daly has proven her quality up front and her 22 goals fired Aston Villa to an impressive 5th place finish. Daly’s outperformance of her xG of 15.07 hints at just how clinical she has been in front of goal. Physical, able to link play and a goal threat from various positions, Manchester City’s Shaw was back to her best too with 20 strikes and no player came close to her 110 shots on goal. A relentless menace in the box, no player in the WSL had more touches in the opposition box than Shaw’s 184. Kadidiatou Diani led the way in the French Division 1 Feminine with 17 league goals for PSG - as well as another 6 in the Champions League - while in the German Frauen-Bundesliga veteran Wolfsburg striker Alexandra Popp topped the charts with 16, two ahead of nearest challengers Lara Prasnikar and Lea Schuller. A potent aerial threat, no player in Europe’s top divisions scored more than Popp’s 9 headed goals.In Italy, Internazionale striker Tabitha Chawinga took the league by storm following her loan move from Wuhan Jianghan University FC. The Malawi international scored 23 goals in as many games and her pace in behind caused defenders all sorts of problems. However, given the variations in league sizes and minutes played, by digging deeper into the statistics we can get a more accurate representation of the deadliest strikers in Europe, rather than purely relying on the headline numbers. Using Wyscout data to analyze the goals per 90, we gain some interesting insights. Unsurprisingly the likes of Daly, Popp, Diani and Chawinga rank highly, with around a goal a game, but despite Redondo’s higher tally both Oshoala and Kundananji’s goals-to-minute ratios are better. What’s more, there are a number of players whose seasons were disrupted by injury. Chelsea duo Pernille Harder (1.1 p/90) and Fran Kirby (0.98 p/90) were missing for large parts of the title-winning campaign but showed how effective in front of goal they were in the reduced minutes they had on the field. The same can be said for Barcelona’s Caroline Graham Hansen, who tops the list with 1.24 p/90, and Lyon star Ada Hegerberg - too few minutes to be included - who averaged 2.01 goals per 90 in her end of season cameo. Had these players been available for longer, it’s likely they would have featured among the top overall goalscorers. With stars of the women’s game like Marie-Antoinette Katoto, Beth Mead, Vivianne Miedema and Ballon D’or winner Alexia Putellas all suffering significant spells on the sidelines, one area that data and technology could make a big difference in is human performance, ensuring that players reduce injury and boost recovery. Despite finishing as fourth top scorer in the Frauen-Bundesliga, the detailed stats highlight the qualities of Wolfsburg's Ewa Pajor. As well as her 12 league goals, she finished as Champions League top scorer with 9 goals, including a stunning strike in the final. Her 0.85 goals per 90 shows that she belongs among the elite and her average of 4.84 shots per 90 is one of the highest in Europe. Another standout when analyzing goals and shots per 90 is Barcelona’s teenage prospect Salma Paralluelo. Her 0.99 goals per 90 and incredible 6.94 shots per 90 mark her out as a player to watch and someone who will no doubt see more game time for the all-conquering Catalans. Assisters A comparison of some of Europe's top assisters using Wyscout's Player List tool. Turning our attention from the scorers to the providers, a notable trend is the number of top assisters coming from full back positions. Lyon’s rising star Selma Bacha topped the Division 1 Feminine with 9 assists - averaging an outstanding 0.73 per 90 - while Manchester United young Spaniard Ona Batlle’s 10 assists were second highest in the WSL. Particularly impressive was Batlle’s increased attacking output this season, going from 4 G+A last season to 11 this year, as well as being second highest in the WSL for progressive runs (84), third highest for crosses (107) and fourth highest for progressive passes (216). Departing for Barcelona next season, she will be sorely missed in Manchester. The Frauen-Bundesliga assist charts were also topped by a full back in the form of Bayern’s Carolin Simon, whose 12 assists placed her one higher than exciting teammate Klara Buhl. Elsewhere, Guro Reiten stepped up and assumed creative responsibility for Chelsea with 11 assists, the highest in the WSL. Pushed further forward from her usual left wing back role, the Norwegian helped Chelsea to a fourth-consecutive league title under Emma Hayes and her accurate crossing ability - averaging 4.72 per 90 - intelligence and creativity were key to the Blues' success. Real Madrid’s Caroline Weir showed that she was an all-round contributor with 12 assists, joint highest in Liga F alongside Real Sociedad’s Nerea Eizaguirre. Meanwhile in Italy, Juventus’ Arianna Caruso topped the charts with 10, while AC Milan’s Marta Mascarello posted an impressive 0.58 assists per 90. Goal Involvements So which players have contributed the most all round in the 2022/23? Looking at the combined goals and assists totals we see that Alba Redondo’s fantastic campaign places her atop the chart, ahead of Caroline Weir and Tabitha Chawinga. It’s interesting to see a number of players, like Weir, ranking highly who were equal parts goalscorers and providers, as shown by the presence of Ramirez, Prasnikar and Reiten. Dribblers Capable of getting fans off their seats and making things happen, dribblers always capture the imagination with their technique, bursts of pace and close control. But who were the most effective? According to Wyscout data, Atletico Madrid’s Brazilian diminutive midfielder Ludmila averaged the most dribbles per 90 minutes across the top European leagues last season with 10.31. Given that she played just 1232 minutes, her sample size is smaller than some of the other players but she still managed to finish the season as Atleti’s joint top scorer with 9 goals. A noticeable trend is that the vast majority of the top dribblers around Europe tend to be under the age of 25, perhaps due to more explosiveness in fresher legs or the fearlessness of youth. Lauren Hemp provides a good example, with her devastating acceleration and two-footedness contributing to her average of 9.32 dribbles per 90 and success rate of 69.89%. Emphasizing the point further is Como duo Chiara Beccari and Mathilde Pavan. Both 18 years old and both averaging 7.49 dribbles per 90, they rank in the top seven in Serie A and look like interesting players for the future. Pressers Moving away from the attacking side of the game, we look at which players were effective without the ball. Pressing is an essential part of the modern game and turnovers in possession are where games are won and lost. When we use Wyscout data to have a look at the players averaging the most recoveries and counterpresses, what jumps out straight away is the performance of Damaris Egurrola. Born in Spain but representing the Netherlands, her 19.11 recoveries and 11.87 counter presses per 90 are head and shoulders above everyone else in Europe. Egurrola is also one of the best in the air in France, averaging 6.65 aerial duels per 90 and boasting a 74.68% success rate. Far from a defensive destroyer, the 23-year-old has a good range of passing and averaged 12.04 progressive passes per 90 last season. Considering she made just 16 league appearances for Lyon, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see her feature more in the future. Damaris Egurrola's recoveries map using Wyscout's Player Reports. Goalkeepers Best practices in goalkeeping coaching - with the help of video and data - have seen a jump in improvement in this previously neglected area. We look at some of the key metrics to see which are some of the best performing goalkeepers in Europe this season. Looking at the graphic below we see that Sandra Paños, Maria Luisa Grohs and Christiane Endler average the least goals conceded per 90, with Grohs leading the way for clean sheets too. However, is this the best metric to analyze these goalkeepers? For example, for all of Paños’ qualities, she is playing for a side that dominates possession and has an excellent defence in front of her that conceded just 9 times in 30 matches in the Liga F. Similarly, it would be unfair to judge the same players on average saves per 90, as they tend to face far fewer shots than teams at the bottom of the table. The measure of prevented goals per 90 can therefore be a useful method in appraising goalkeepers performances. We can see that some of the standout performers in this metric are Levante’s Andrea Tarazona Brisa, with 0.77 prevented goals per 90, and Leicester City’s Janina Leitzig, who managed 0.7 prevented goals per 90 despite facing 4.61 shots per 90 - the second highest in the WSL. The German stopper, on loan from Bayern Munich, was key in the run-in as the Foxes secured survival on the final day of the season, becoming the first WSL side to overcome a seven-point deficit and stay up. Janina Leitzig's shots received map from Wyscout's Player Reports. Women’s football has some way to go in terms of funding, broadcasting rights and injury prevention, but the improvement on the pitch is clear to see. With the continued adoption and integration of video and statistics, there will no doubt be further improvement across the board. If you want to learn more about Wyscout Data & API, get in touch! Start your 15-day Wyscout free trial now.