Between the Lines

"Of all unimportant subjects, football is the most important" – Pope John Paul II

Europe’s Top Midfielders and the Uses of a Lamp-post

Posted by hakanrylander on March 24, 2011

Most fans agree that United need a truly world-class attacking midfielder, who can consistently deliver the brilliant killer pass in the final third of the field. Someone like Sneijder, Ozil or (in our wildest dreams) Xavi or Iniesta.

Maybe we should start looking close to home. In our search for this missing piece in the jigsaw statistics might, as often, provide some surprising answers. When Opta lists the players who, on average, completed the highest number of successful passes in the final third of the pitch during the group stages of the Champions League this season the No 1 spot is held by Iniesta. No 2 is Xavi. No surprises so far. But in third place is – wait for it – Darron Gibson.

Un unsophisticated forecaster uses statistics as a drunken man uses lamp-posts – for support rather than illumination.

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5 Responses to “Europe’s Top Midfielders and the Uses of a Lamp-post”

  1. RedJack said

    After last night this is an excellent prediction

  2. RedJack said

    Hakan – great to hear from you

    not had many posts recently hope this finds you well

    • hakanrylander said

      Thanks, RedJack! The lack of posts is due to work commitments, but I hope to be a bit more active in the near future.

  3. RedJack said

    What are your thoughts on who replaces Ferguson.

    I’d like to see Ancelotti

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