I’m crunched for time this morning because I just spent the last 30 minutes looking at the new CIES profile comparator. I don’t have time right now for a good breakdown of this tool but as this site is known for the comments section I thought you all would offer some thoughtful responses. I will post some thoughts at lunch.
In the meantime, I took a few screens of some player comparisons that I did:
Cazorla v. Thiago. I admit that Thiago is my favorite player at the moment and that if I was rebuilding Arsenal, he would be the player I would build around. Note though, how close Cazorla is to Thiago. It’s uncanny really.
Here is Ramsey compared to Thiago: Ramsey plays a more forward role than the Spaniard and thus has poor defensive numbers for a “CM”.
Here is Xhaka and as you can see, Xhaka plays in an almost similar role to Thiago but Granit’s defending is atrocious. He’s also not anywhere near as mobile and can’t take on opponents like Thiago.
Of course I had to do Ozil: Ozil has almost literally zero defense, less than 10. Looking at the Arsenal midfielders (Ramsey, Xhaka, and Ozil) it;s no wonder the back three get exposed so often at Arsenal. It’s almost as if Arsene Wenger doesn’t get his midfielders to play defense.
And because I get asked this all the time, here is Ozil v. Eriksen. Note that neither player is scoring very high on the two defensive stats.
And here’s Alexis. Just showing how many Arsenal players are almost purely attacking.
Taken together, this shows the imbalance in this Arsenal team. Thiago Alcantara beats all of the Arsenal midfielders in his defensive robustness.
I wonder what happens if you look at the midfields for Arsenal’s top four rivals – Man U, Man City, Chelsea, Tottenham, and Liverpool. My guess is that all but Liverpool show robust defending in midfield compared to Ramsey and Xhaka. Just a guess.
Oh and here’s Pogba, another player I like quite a bit.
Of course, I’m not allowed to say I like him because he was overpriced.. and plays for Man U.
Man, Pogba and Ozil are going to be some pair next season, eh?