The Daily Express suggested yesterday the idea that Liverpool could swap striker Fabio Borini for Sunderland midfielder Adam Johnson at the end of the season.
Liverpool’s failure to sign Dnipro’s Yevhen Konoplyanka at the end of last weeks’ transfer window means there is still space in the first team squad for a winger to come in but would it be an upgrade on the striker they paid £10 million for?
We’ve taken a look at five key attacking areas, comparing the stats of each player over the course of the season. Here are the results.
Johnson has a clear margin over Borini at the moment but he has played more games than the Italian striker. Both are clearly effective in the opponent’s attacking third, with Johnson offering an arguably greater goal threat.
Johnson is also ahead in terms of assists this season with three to Borini’s one. That shows that Johnson’s aim isn’t always to go for glory himself and he will setup a teammate in a better position.
When each player has found themselves squared up against an opponent, Johnson has come out on top more frequently. He’s won more dribble contests, with opponents possibly scared to try and tackle him, giving away a free kick in a dangerous area.
Johnson has been more accurate with his passes this season. He has a substantially higher number of passes than Borini, which can again be explained by his midfield position and Sunderland looking to get him involved in the play as quickly as possible.
That urgency to get Johnson on the ball is demonstrated by the fact he has nearly three hundred more touches than Borini this season. It’s also a tribute to Johnson’s ability to play down either flank, which provides him with more chances to influence a game.
image: © p_a_h