It’s understandable why he thinks this, Messi is undoubtedly one of the best in the world – ever!
But what if we compared Messi to Sergio Aguero? Would little Leo beat Sergio Agüero hands down? The way Mascherano is talking, you’d think so!
Opta-powered fantasy football game www.oulala.com took the opportunity to have a look at the two strikers ahead of Manchester City’s first leg home clash against Barcelona in the Champions League on Tuesday night.
Analysing their Premier League and La Liga form this season, the Manchester City man has notched up fewer appearances and minutes due to injuries, the comparison was made on a per 90 minutes basis.
Very few strikers get anywhere near Messi when it comes to goals, however Agüero’s strike-rate is not far off at 1.04 goals per 90 minutes to Messi’s 1.11. In fact, Agüero actually enjoys more shots per 90 minutes than his friend (5.5 to 4.85), although it is the Barcelona man that has the better shot accuracy with 62 per cent to Agüero’s 58 per cent.
Creatively, it is Messi that excels. With 2.64 chances created to Agüero’s 1.28 and 0.55 assists per 90 minutes against 0.31 from Agüero.
The two final criteria looked at were pass completion and successful dribbles made. It is in-fact Agüero that comes out on top for both.
With a pass completion of 85 per cent against Messi’s 82 per cent, and 56.7 per cent of his attempted dribbles completed to Messi’s 52.2 per cent.
It’s clear that this match-up isn’t as one-sided as some may have first thought.
With Agüero claiming a very respectable three of the four main performance criteria over Messi and extremely close for strike-rate, is Mascherano massively underestimating his opponent?
He’s almost as good as Messi… be careful Javier!
This infographic was supplied by Opta-powered fantasy football game www.oulala.com
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