Julian Draxler vs Philippe Coutinho – Will The German Be A Good Replacement For Coutinho?
Liverpool’s star playmaker Philippe Coutinho has been linked with an exit from the club since the summer but a move did not materialise. With the winter window coming up, Coutinho could be looking at an exit move yet again. Reports have been floating about, which have linked Julian Draxler to the Merseyside club, as Jurgen Klopp has been eyeing the Paris Saint-Germain man as a replacement for Coutinho.
At just 23, Draxler is of a perfect age to kick on and develop further to fulfill his potential, for which he hasn’t had the chance at PSG since joining them in January. In terms of where he’d fit, Draxler might not automatically be a regular part of Klopp’s starting XI, especially with every player fit and available. However, that has been far from reality at Anfield of late.
The ongoing situation surrounding Sadio Mane’s injury could have been all the more worrisome had Coutinho switched clubs in summer. There seems to be a dearth of creativity in the most advanced midfield role, with Liverpool lacking a suitable player to provide that link between midfield and attack – and that is exactly where Draxler could slot in perfectly.
Having said that, how do these two stars compare to each other in terms of numbers?
Julian Draxler vs Philippe Coutinho
In 8 appearances for PSG across all competitions so far, Julian Draxler has spent 473 minutes on the field. A talent like him needs to play regularly and Liverpool can certainly provide him with that. He has chipped in with 1 assist for PSG so far this season, while also picking up a yellow card. He averages 0.5 shots per game and has a pass accuracy of 93.7%. Also, the player wins about 0.4 aerial duels per game.
It is noteworthy that Draxler scored only 1 goal for the club whereas for his country, he has scored 8 goals in 11 appearances, according to stats from WhoScored.
Coutinho, on the other hand, has amassed 610 playing minutes on the field, having appeared 8 times for Liverpool across all competitions. He has scored 4 goals and has provided 3 assists for the club, while enjoying an average 3.6 shots per game. However, his pass success percentage is only 83.1%, which is quite low when compared to Draxler. Also, Coutinho has been quite weak in aerial challenges, having won 0 so far.
As far as pure talent goes, Draxler seems to trump Coutinho in terms of numbers. Imagine the kind of heights the German could reach at Liverpool where he wouldn’t face shortage of playing time. Thus, if Coutinho leaves, Draxler would certainly be a worthy replacement.