Laurent Koscielny Vs Jan Vertonghen – Statistical Comparison
Tottenham Hotspur have finally come out of the shadows of their North London rivals Arsenal after managing to finish 2nd in the Premier League table. Both teams have some star players playing in similar positions and two players, who have had stellar seasons in the Premier League are centre-backs Laurent Koscielny and Jan Vertonghen.
The 31-year old French international was one of the best in the league for some time now but has some serious competition from the Belgian star at the Lane. Both players have played 33 games each this season and Vertonghen has been a slightly more creative force for the Spurs.
Though Koscielny has 2 goals to his name, compared to Vertonghen’s none, the Spurs man created 7 chances with 7 key passes to his name, compared to 3 each from Koscielny. Defensively, the duo split opinion.
Strong in the air, Vertonghen won 74.63% of his aerial duels compared to just 61.71% from Koscielny. Though he won 42 tackles all season, the Arsenal man won just 58.79% of his total duels, committing 20 fouls. The Belgian defender won 67.54% of his total duels, committing a foul more than his rival.
Doing the dirty work, Koscielny was impressive, making 92 interceptions and 22 blocks, compared to just 49 and 20 each from Vertonghen. However, the Belgian made 235 clearances from dangerous areas, 35 more than Koscielny.
His creativity surely had its effect on his defensive abilities and this is clear as he made 2 errors during the season, that directly led to a goal, with one of them costing Spurs a few points. Koscielny was one of the most dependable and made no errors leading to a goal.
The Frenchman picked up a red card on the final day of the season to add to his four yellow cards. Vertonghen was never sent off this season and only picked up 5 yellow cards all throughout the campaign.
While their teams had different seasons, both players are expected to be the first choice for their sides next season and there is hardly any doubt if they will resume their battle next season. They are experienced at the highest level and are the first choice for club and country, and both clubs will look to feed off them for at least another couple of years.
Who do you think was the better defender last season?
Our verdict: Laurent Koscielny
Stats credit: Squawka.com