Attention turned to Ricardo Rodríguez, beats Shaw & Davies hands down

Tottenham are believed to have turned their attentions to Wolfsburg left-back Ricardo Rodríguez after failing to reach agreement with Swansea.

Ricardo Rodríguez


Another club offered £2 million more than we had already agreed with Swansea for Ben Davies so they demanded more money. We have therefore moved our attentions elsewhere to fill a problem position.

There are plenty of up and coming left-backs in world football so we don't need to be fixated by one or pay inflated fees, as you will see from the comparison in a minute.

Discussions are talking place regarding Ryan Bertrand but it's doubtful Daniel Levy would want to pay £8 million for a player Liverpool were only prepared to offer £6 million for.

Ricardo Rodríguez is a name that has been mentioned by a few astute Spurs supporters before. Currently at VfL Wolfsburg in the Bundesliga, the 21 year-old interests Manchester United, who are reported to have put a bid in, and Chelsea are also known to be watching him.

The German club want £15 million for the Swiss international who is under contract until 2016 and who of course has also been watched by Liverpool.

He won 90 tackles last season which topped the Bundesliga and placed him 8th in the top 5 leagues in Europe. So how does he fair against Luke Shaw and Ben Davies?

He won more tackles than Luke Shaw or Ben Davies (90 v 61 v 59), won more tackles per game (2.65 v 1.84 v 1.73), made more blocks (12 v 4 v 11) and more blocks per game (0.35 v 0.12 v 0.32).

He won more aerial duels (102 v 59 v 53), made more interceptions (64 v 37 v 63).

Now if you are wondering, they all played a similar number of league games, 34, 35, 34 so comparisons are not skewed by one player only playing a few.

Passing is where Ben Davies edges ahead, pass completion (80% v 79% v 84%), forward passes (805 v 799 v 1,033), however Rodríguez successfully beats his man a higher percentage of the time (76.58% v 57.14% v 51.72%) and creates more chances (78 v 33 v 31).

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Rodríguez plays longer passes (24.12m v 18.37m v 17m), suggesting he takes his man on more often and supplies more crosses, which is born out by his high number of assists.

He scored 5 goals placing him 3rd in the top 5 leagues for a left-back (5 v 0 v 2), and his 9 assists place him 2nd in Europe (9 v 1 v 1).

Rodríguez is the best defender in the top 5 league for providing key passes (69 v 32 v 30), topped Europe's left-backs for taking his man on ( 85 v 56 v 15) and he was 4th overall for all players taking their man on, only Arjen Robben, Neymar and Marco Reus taking an opponent on more often.

He fits the identikit of a modern full-back, an attacker who can defend. He only picked up 2 yellow cards (2 v 4 v 3) suggesting he doesn't make the infamous Danny Rose rash challenge.

Overall he wins a higher percentage of his challenges (60.74% v 58.16% v 43.06%).

Clearly he is a better defender than the Premier League pair yet he is half the price of Luke Shaw.

If Tottenham could add a player of his quality to the left side of defence and provide the sort of service Leighton Baines usually provides for Everton it will make a difference to us defensively and as an attacking force.

His stats though do rather demonstrate that if he is valued by his club at £15 million, the figure paid for Luke Shaw is daft and Ben Davies you wouldn't want to be paying more than £10 million for.




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