Head-To-Head Stats: Ebanks-Blake (Wolves) vs Tévez (Manchester City)

It is not so hard to figure out which name to choose from Manchester City when I’m going to compare two strikers. But the choice from Wolves may come as a little surprise to you.

We have already compared two central defenders (HERE) and two midfielders (HERE) and it is due time to take on two strikers.

I use this statistical method because I believe it can reveal something little about the strengths and weaknesses of the players and of their teams. And we will perhaps learn something new that we didn’t know before and can dig a little deeper and perhaps be a little more balanced than the common pundit. Let’s first go to the presentation of the strikers.

Sylvan Ebanks-Blake, 23, is born in Cambridge, England. He started playing in a couple of small clubs in the area as a schoolboy. But joined the Manchester United Academy when they scouted him and grabbed him under the noses of Cambridge United.

He played for United in the League Cup in the 2004-5  season but broke a leg and was injured for most of the season.But he scored a hat-trick on his return for the reserves. In the 2005-6 season he played in the League Cup against Barnet and scored his first goal. He also spent some time on the bench in Uniteds Champions League games that season. In January he went on-loan to the club Royal Antwerp in Belgium who has a cooperation with United. He scored four goals in nine games there.

When he returned in the summer he left Manchester United and signed for Plymouth Argyle. The fee was about £300.000. He became a regular very soon and a regular goalscorer as well.  The first season he scored ten goals and the second he scored eleven until January, when he left for Wolves.

Wolves signed him for £1.5 million in that January window. The strikers in Wolves had a hard time getting the ball in the net and SEB really helped out. He scored twelve goals for Wolves that half season and 23 in total for the season, which earned him the Golden Boot of the Championships.

Last season he scored nine goals in the opening 13 matches and he carried on so that in the end of the season he had scored  25 goals and he became the Golden Boot winner for the second season in a row. He paired very well together with Chris Iwelumo, but seem to go well with whoever he plays together with. He also played a match for the England U21 during last season.

He started this season by getting injured, but he has now played a couple of matches from start together with Kevin Doyle and is starting to show some form. Sylvan Ebanks-Blake (SEB) has played 13 matches for Wolves so far this season

Carlos Tévez, 25, is born in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He started his career in the Youth Club All Boys, but was signed by the big club Boca Juniors after a conflict when he was sixteen. He made his senior debut already in October 2001 and helped the club winning three different cups in 2003.

Before the season 2005-6 he signed for Corinthians, Brazil in a record deal for South America. Corinthian did win the Brazilian league that first year and Tévez was named the best player of the league by the Brazilian football federation.  But after that first year he refused to play for Corinthians and signed for West Ham. It was a controversial signing as Tévez was owned by a company called Mei´dia Sports Investment.

He didn’t score a single goal the first half of the 2007-8 season and West Ham didn’t win for nine matches. But when Curbishley became the new manager things lightend up and Tévez begun to earn his paycheck. But West Ham were fined a record £5.5 million for breaching Premier League rules over the signings of Tévez and Mascherano. In the last game of the season he really earned those millions back to the club as well as he scored the only goal against a weak Manchester United team and West Ham could stay in the Premier League.

After much controversy Tévez was loaned out for two years to Manchester United the following season. He scored 14 goals the first season in United, but the second – last season – he scored some important goals but only five league goals, due to that he was on the bench a great deal. He didn’t like that and after the season he refused a contract for the club and joined their rivals Manchester City for a signing fee of £47 millions. A British record.

In September this year he suffered a knee injury while playing for Argentina. He was out for three weeks. Carlos Tévez has played 16 matches for Manchester City this season so far.

Let’s now move on to the statistics and compare these strikers results so far this season.

Season 2009-10 SEB Tévez
Fouls won and / conceded / % won 5 /15 / 25% 25 /25 /50%
Tackles won and / lost / % won 15/4 /79% 10/5 /66%
Accurate passes % / Attacks created 69% /6 81% / 24
Goals / Assists / Shots on goal 1/ 0 / 10 7 / 5 / 23

Paddytheflea will now try to analyse these figures and try to find a reasonable explanation to the differences between the two strikers statistics

Fouls: The first thing I think about is that Tévez is involved in much more situations than Ebanks-Blake (SEB). He is much more active on the pitch and gets the ball more often. He also wins and conceives fouls in the same amount, while SEB conceives three times more fouls than he wins. Not good at all!

Tackles: When it comes to tackles we now that most of Wolves player are very skilled in this. So is SEB. He wins almost four times as many tackles as he loses. Tévez wins two out of three. Not bad for a striker. He is a strong man. But SEB is better at this.

Passes and Attacks: Tévez has created 24 attacks this season already. He has played three more matches than SEB, but this shows that he is much better than the Wolves player at this. His correct passing percentage is also way better than SEB, but the Wolves player has a not so bad figure when compared to many other Wolves players.

Goals, Assists and Shots on goal: This is of course the most important of the categories for strikers. And this is where the really big difference shows. Téve< is not among the top scorers of the Premier League, but he has scored seven already and he has assisted to five. SEB has only scored that single goal on a penalty and no goals yet in play, despite 10 shots on goal. Some shots we remember as well taken by the keepers, some has been directed at the keeper. Tévez shoots more than SEB and has better precision.

Conclusions: This time there is no doubt at all which striker that is the better player. Tévez is the best in everything, but in tackles. Could we blame Ebanks-Blakes’s lack of goals on the Wolves team. Should he score more goals if he played in Manchester City? Maybe he would get more chances and score a couple more goals, but he would not – in my opinion – reach up to Tévez’s standard of play or goals scored.

Maybe if I should have compared Tévez with Kevin Doyle it would have been a closer call, but I’m afraid that the Argentinian and City striker would have won that stats match as well. But that doesn’t – of course – say who will win tonight. Only time can tell that.




~ by paddytheflea on December 28, 2009.

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