Many people generalise a players passing stats and say how good a player is just on the number of passes he has made and how many passes he has completed, but there are many other factors that people do not tend to take into consideration.
With that in mind this comparison not only looks at the general passing statistics but also compares where on the pitch the top 5 passers make their passes (own half of the pitch, attacking half of the pitch and the final third of the pitch), what type of passes the midfielders are making (long balls, through balls, short passes) and how often they make these passes this season.
To begin with we must first find out which 5 midfielders have made the most passes this season.
As you can see Mikel Arteta, Yaya Toure, Michael Carrick, Santi Cazorla and Joe Allen have made more passes than any other midfielders this season. Arteta has made a pass every 0.9 minutes this season, Toure has made a pass every 1 minute this season and Carrick, Cazorla and Allen have all made a pass every 1.2 minutes this season.
Arteta has also completed 93.39% of his passes this season, which is 1.31% more of his passes than Allen, 2.65% more than Cazorla, 3.2% more than Carrick and 3.73% more than Toure.
Knowing where on the pitch the midfielders make their passes is important as it is easier to complete a pass in your own half than it is in the final third of the pitch as there is generally less pressure on the players when making passes in their own half.
Mikel Arteta makes a pass in his own half every 2.2 minutes, which is more often than the other top midfield passers. This is compared to Allen who makes a pass in his own half every 2.5 minutes, Carrick (2.7), Toure (2.8) and Cazorla who makes a pass in his own half every 5 minutes.
Yaya Toure and Santi Cazorla are the most accurate passers in their own half as they have found a teammate with 97% of their own half passes this season. This was 1% more than Joe Allen, Mikel Arteta and Michael Carrick, who have all completed 96% of their passes in their own half this season.
Cazorla has made a pass in the attacking half of the pitch every 1.4 minutes this season, which is 0.1 minutes more often than Toure, 0.2 minutes more often than Arteta, 0.7 minutes more often than Carrick and 1 minute more often than Allen. Cazorla has the worst attacking half passing accuracy out the five players though as he has found a teammate with 82% of his passes in the attacking half. This is compared to Toure who has completed 84%, Carrick (85%), Allen (87%) and Arteta who has completed 90% of the passes that he has made in the attacking half.
Cazorla also made a pass in the final third of the pitch more often than the other players, as he made a pass every 2.7 minutes. This was compared to Toure, who made a pass in the final third every 3.2 minutes, Arteta (3.9), Carrick (5.2) and Allen who made a final third pass every 5.6 minutes. Cazorla was also the most accurate in the final third of the pitch, finding a teammate with 84% of his passes. This was 1% better than Allen and Arteta, 6% better than Carrick and 10% better than Toure.
Next Page: What types of passes are these midfielders playing? Direction? Long ball? Through balls?
BSc Sports Science Graduate, Head of the News Section on EPLIndex and all round football fanatic! Can also be found on Twitter - @jamesamey316
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