Stats: Emmanuel Adebayor v Luis Suarez - Who comes out on top?

Emmanuel Adebayor

Tottenham striker is the league's most in-form, how does he stack up against the Golden Boot race leader?

Luis Suarez had to wait five Premier League games before he could begin the season due to a suspension incurred last term, but Tottenham striker Emmanuel Adebayor had to wait even longer.

Ostracised by Andre Villas-Boas, it was only in December when Tim Sherwood was made Head Coach that the Togolese striker was handed his first start of the season.

Liverpool's Luis Suarez is the current Golden Boot leader with a staggering 23 goals in 21 games, but since Adebayor has returned, no player in the Premier League has scored more goals - he has eight in 10 games, while Suarez has just one goal from his last 24 shots in the division.

With Suarez starting 21 games to Adebayor's 10, the only fair way to compare the two is on an average-per-game basis. With that in mind, who comes out on top?

Shots and goalscoring

PlayerTeamPosGoals / appsTotal Scoring Att / apps% Shots on TargetAppsMins
Luis Suarez Liverpool FW 1.10 5.52 47.41 21 1,884
Emmanuel Adebayor Spurs FW 0.73 2.18 54.17 11 908

Suarez's scoring ratio of more than one goal per game is a rare sight in any of Europe's top leagues, and it was clear from the outset Adebayor would not top him here. It's clear to see why he is scoring too many too, with Suarez managing more than twice as many efforts on goal per game than the Spurs striker. Adebayor can claim to have a higher percentage of his efforts on target, but Suarez' mark of nearly half his efforts, tallied with his number of attempts, makes him the more dangerous for goalkeepers to come up against.

Dribbling and fouls won

PlayerTeamPosWon Contest / appsWas Fouled / appsPenalty WonAppsMins
Luis Suarez Liverpool FW 2.90 2.00 2 21 1,884
Emmanuel Adebayor Spurs FW 1.09 0.55 0 11 908

This is an area of his game where Suarez is certainly superior to Adebayor. The Uruguayan likes to run at opponents and get them on the back foot, while Adebayor is more of a target man, albeit a skilful one. Suarez' adeptness at winning his team fouls, love it or hate it, certainly is of benefit to his team.

Heading and hold-up play

PlayerTeamPosHeaded Goals / appsAerial Duels Won / appsAccurate Flick On / appsAccurate Layoffs / appsAppsMins
Emmanuel Adebayor Spurs FW 0.18 2.09 0.45 4.00 11 908
Luis Suarez Liverpool FW 0.14 0.76 0.76 4.05 21 1,884

An area where Adebayor strengths begin to shine, he is a far more physical threat in the air for defenders to deal with than Suarez. Both players have scored headed goals this season, while it's certainly interesting that the Liverpool man actually makes more accurate flick ons than the Togolese international; perhaps in part that he has the quick footed Daniel Sturridge to run onto them.


PlayerTeamPosKey Passes / appsPass completion %Pen Area Entries / appsGoal Assist / appsAppsMins
Luis Suarez Liverpool FW 2.90 75.12 3.29 0.38 21 1,884
Emmanuel Adebayor Spurs FW 1.36 79.22 1.45 0.18 11 908

While Adebayor's pass completion ratio is better than Suarez, the Liverpool striker is far more adventurous with it, and it pays off for his team. He makes more than double the number of key passes per game than Adebayor, and plays more balls into the penalty area. This pays off in terms of assists, averaging more than double the Spurs striker's numbers.


Adebayor's prolific form is a huge boost for Tottenham's season, and has steadied their ship when under Andre Villas-Boas it was rocking. While his current form compares well over the past few games to Suarez in terms of goals, their overall output in terms of the season certainly sees the Liverpool man come out on top. While Adebayor is integral to Tottenham, Suarez is on another level in terms of his performances, racking up goals-per-game statistics which would even compare with Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi this season.

With 12 games to go of this Premier League season, and just three points separating the two, the duo could yet have a huge impact in terms of deciding not only each other's fates, but the teams around them, and both may yet overhaul Arsenal if they begin to flag in light of their latest Champions League defeat.

image: © Roger Gorączniak

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