Bent the best in the Premiership, Bannan the best in Europe?!
Another quiet ol’ day with regards to the Villa, while we wait for numerous transfer deals to get completed (Sky are just reporting that Collins is having a medical at West Ham) so while checking twitter, I came across these two stats that made for pretty interesting reading. The first is regarding star striker Darren Bent, and appeared on the Who Scored feed.
‘Darren Bent: Hit the target with a higher proportion of his shots last season (60.5%) than any other Premier League striker.’
I’m a big big fan of Bent, and despite a tough season with injuries last campaign, the stat above shows that when fit, Bent can be an extremely valuable asset for us. Defence is well on it’s way to getting sorted out, and I hope that when chances present themselves, we’re able to take them. We didn’t score enough goals last season, but I think we have the talent in the team to improve in that area.
I still think we need another striker, but I think Bent is more than capable of scoring twenty plus goals in a season. With the additions this preseason, I hope we’re more solid in the middle and players like Ireland, Holman and others can present our strikers, and namely Bent with more opportunities in front of goal.
The next stat is regarding Barry Bannan, and was a bit of a surprise, albeit a pleasant one:
‘Of all players to attempt 50+ crosses when starting in wide positions last season, Barry Bannan had the best accuracy across Europe (41.2%)’
At the start of this preseason, I wasn’t at all sure on Bannan. Talented yes, but something didn’t seem quite right with the player, and I was struggling to see just where he’d fit in. He’s been a bit of a revelation in the games played so far though, and looks like he could play a very big part this season.
Granted you have to look at the standard of the opposition, but his range of passing and work ethic were pleasing, and he got forward well on a number of occasions. The stat above is pleasing to read, and if we can get the more physical ‘big’ striker I think we need, then Bannan’s accurate crosses might have more of an end result. Look at Norwich and how well Holt and Morison did last year, alongside more mobile players and I’d be more than happy recreating that.
Going back to Bannan and I hope he continues this form and what looks like a new attitude. As mentioned he has the talent, so it be nice to see him be the best in Europe in some other stats!