Stat review of 2023 Women’s Premier Division season – formations, passing stats and standout players

Left: Athlone Town's Madie Gibson (left) and Dana Scheriff at PFAI Awards, Shamrock Rovers' Lia O'Leary (top right) and Galway's Jenna Slattery

Left: Athlone Town's Madie Gibson (left) and Dana Scheriff at PFAI Awards, Shamrock Rovers' Lia O'Leary (top right) and Galway's Jenna Slattery Credit: Stephen Fitzpatrick/Sportsfile (left) and Peter Fitzpatrick (right top and bottom)

Over the Christmas period we are taking a look at the team trends, best players and yes reviwing the dreaded expected goals from the Premier Division – both the men’s and women’s – all thanks to the boys and girls over at Wyscout who did the data entry for the 2023 season.

Starting with the Women’s Premier Division, we look at the standout player stats, along with goals, passes and possession review for the women’s top flight.


Peamount United were crowned champions with 52 points, six clear of second placed Shelbourne who finished a further point ahead of Shamrock Rovers. Galway United finished fourth (38 points) with FAI Cup winners Athlone Town in fifth (35 points).

However, and here is another one to be possibly pinned to the Peas dressing room wall, the expected points based on the team stats for expected goals scored and conceded had Shels as the title winners on 43 expected points, ahead of the Hoops (40.5), FAI Cup winners Athlone Town (39.5) with the Peas in fourth on 36.7 and Galway United fifth (34.2).


Shels topped to shot count with 17.3 on average per 90 minutes, ahead of the Hoops (15.7) and Athlone Town (14.2) with James O’Callaghan’s Peas side in fourth just 0.2 shots per game behind the Midlanders.

Passes and possession

Shamrock Rovers average of 431 passes per 90 minutes (with an accuracy of 76%) put them top of both the overall passing table and pass completion table.

Bohs averaged 396 (70%) with Shels 391 but with a higher 74% accuracy result, the same accuracy Galway United had from their 385 passes per game. Athlone Town had 377 with 72% accuracy while champions Peamount having the sixth highest number of passes per 90 minutes with 350 and a 71% accuracy.

Top of the possession charts was also Collie O’Neill’s side with 58.2%, followed by Galway United (57.2%), Athlone (56.8%), Shels (53.8%) and the Peas (52.8%).

Athlone Town offensive stats were very impressive as they topped the passes into the final third ahead of Shels. The town topped on deep completions, crosses, dribbles and most touches in the penalty area ahead of second placed Rovers in each of those categories.

The Hoops had most progressive passes ahead of Athlone while Shels had to most through passes with Galway United in second.


Athlone Town were the only side not to line out with four at the back as their most favoured formation. They were set out 3-5-2 for 41% of their games.

Going for 4-2-3-1 as their most used formation were Treaty United (72%), Wexford Youths (49%), Peamount and Shels (both 47%), Shamrock Rovers and DLR Waves (both 40%); Galway United went with 4-3-1-2 (80%), Bohs 4-1-4-1 (64%) with Cork City 4-4-1-1 (22%).

Sligo Rovers were the only team who had a traditional 4-4-2 formation as their most used (35%).

Player performances

Looking across individual performances, Athlone Town Madie Gibson was the standout attacking player.

Her team mate Dana Scheriff topped the goalscoring charts, with her goal in the fourth minute of injury time earning a 4-4 draw against Shamrock Rovers in the last match of the season and making her Capocannoniere, moving her a goal clear of Rovers’ skipper Áine O’Gorman who scored 12.

Peas player Kate Mooney was third with the nine goals she scored before moving to Lewes in September.

Madie Gibson topped the assist table with 11 pushing O’Gorman into second in that table too.

The American also topped on key passes (3.3 per 90 minutes) ahead of O’Gorman (2.6), crosses 5.12 (with 45% conversion) ahead of Rovers’ Lia O’Leary’s 4.5 (26%) with the Hoops player making the most progressive runs (4.59 per 90) ahead of Peamount duo Tara O’Hanlon (3.9) and Becky Watkins (2.9).

Gibson also led the attacking contribution table ahead of O’Gorman yet again and she topped on offensive duels with Becky Watkins just behind her. Finally she also had the most dribbles on average per 90 minutes with 9.4 (65% conversion).

Jenna Slattery from Galway United had the most shots (72 per 90 mins) ahead of Shels Megan Smyth-Lynch (60).

Athlone defender Kayleigh Shine had the most passes to final third 10.8 on average per 90 minutes (55% conversion), while Shamrock Rovers centre half Jess Hennessy had the most progressive passes 14.75 (70% conversion) per 90 minutes.

Finally Scheriff had most touches in the penalty area, 7.5 per 90, ahead of Rianna Jarrett (5.68) with Gibson third on 4.91.