Messi, Neymar, and Mesa the kings of the LaLiga statistics
Numbers never tell the whole story in football, but LaLiga’s facts and figures throw up some interesting names from an action-packed season so far.
Barcelona have plenty of their star-studded squad featured, as do Zinedine Zidane’s table-topping Real Madrid, but there are plenty of other names that will draw the attention as we head towards the end of the season and the summer transfer window.
Lionel Messi, who hasn’t won the Pichichi since the 2012/2013 season, is close to topping the goalscoring charts for the fourth time, which would equal a historic record from Ferenc Puskas. At this stage, he has scored four more than Luis Suarez and six more than Cristiano Ronaldo.
A serious injury to Sergio Asenjo has opened up the window of opportunity for both Jan Oblak and Marc-Andre ter Stegen to win the Zamora clean-sheet award. At the moment, the Barcelona shot-stopper has conceded 21 goals in 26 games, working out at 0.81 per match, while Oblak boasts a worse rate of 0.89.
If Ter Stegen can lift the trophy, he will be the first German to do so after 44 Spaniards, four Argentines, one Frenchman, a Belgian, a Cameroonian, a Chilean and a Slovakian. Asenjo is unable to win the award, as he hasn’t played the minimum of 28 league games required.
Barcelona’s front three have offered 26 assists collectively this season, with Espanyol winger Pablo Piatti chipping in with an assist every 179.4 minutes in LaLiga. That is better than Toni Kroos’ 10 assists – one every 188.4 minutes.
Aside from Lionel Messi, Neymar and Luis Suarez having 297 shots as a front three for Barcelona, two surprising names follow up the Blaugrana trio. Cristiano Ronaldo has 125 shots for the season, with Pedro Leon and Yannick Carrasco chipping in with 66 and 64 respectively despite plying their trade out wide.
Sevilla could have counted both of the league’s highest pass completion experts within their ranks, had Monchi managed to close out the proposed deal for Las Palmas midfielder Roque Mesa to compliment Steven N’Zonzi in central midfield.
Roque Mesa has completed 1,763 passes for the campaign, with N’Zonzi contributing 1,662. Barcelona’s players are less prevalent, though Sergio Busquets has made 1,265, with Luis Enrique’s system having a profound effect on how his players post up in passing statistics. Kroos is involved too, having made 1,445 of his own.
When Real Madrid loaned out their young midfielder to Alaves at the start of the season, few would have thought that the defensive midfielder was going to make so much noise. He is the central midfielder who has won the ball back most in LaLiga, doing so every 9.6 minutes.
Second on the list is Roque Mesa, who was top of this particular table last season. Asier Illarramendi and Koke are also present, but Real Madrid and Barcelona are totally absent.
Neymar leads the charts for foul won, with the Brazilian racking up a whopping 102 for the campaign so far. Petros and Dani Ceballos are closest, with the Betis duo on the end of 76 and 72 fouls respectively.
The Barcelona forward wins a free-kick every 20.1 minutes, with Ceballos managing one every 22.1 minutes. Valencia’s Dani Parejo comes in at 70.
This rugged Athletic Club forward leads the ranking for the most fouls committed, unsurprisingly, managing to give away 77 free-kicks so far in LaLiga. Deportivo La Coruna striker Florin Andone is next (68) with Malaga midfielder Ignacio Camacho next on 65.
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