30-year-old Blues striker Fernando Torres has scored four goals and made four assists across a total of 24 appearances in the Premier League this season. He has made 15 starts and been a substitute on nine occasions.
His junior and fellow Spain international, Roberto Soldado has made 26 appearances in his debut Premier League season for Tottenham following his arrival last summer from Valencia.
The 28-year-old No.9 has scored six goals and made five assists in the league for Spurs but has come in for criticism, like Torres, for his lacklustre performances this term under both Andre Villas-Boas and Tim Sherwood who replaced him in December at White Hart Lane. Four of his goals have been penalties.
Soldado has averaged 2.1 shots per game slightly less than Torres’ 2.2 shots per game on average for Chelsea – compare that, for example, to Liverpool’s Luis Suarez this term who has averaged more than double that with 5.6 shots per game.
Torres has managed 15 shots on target representing 48% of his shots hitting the target or testing the goalkeeper.
Soldado is a fair way behind his compatriot in terms of accuracy with a very low 33% of his shots hitting the target. However, Soldado has actually had one more shot than Torres on target (16 in total this term).
Okay, so they’ve not been in the best form of their careers exactly but what else do they offer their teams?
Do they hold the ball up well, bring other into play, provide key passes or win aerial duels?
Torres’ pass completion rate is 48% compared to Soldado’s 76% which shows the Premier League debutant at least keeps hold of possession more often than not for Spurs but he wins just 34% of his aerial duels compared to Torres’ 47% of his for the Blues.
The Blues’ frontman makes on average 0.9 key passes per game (21 in total so far this term) compared to Soldado’s 1.1 per game on average (29 in total) which, again, suggests the ball is safer at the feet of Soldado at least as long as he’s not trying to score.
However, Torres appears to have a little more ambition when he has the ball – he averages 1.1 dribbles per game (26 in total) compared to Soldado’s 0.4 dribbles per game (10 in total).
Soldado has been fouled slightly more than Torres with but they both average 1.1 free kicks won for the team per game and Soldado has been flagged offside less than half the amount of times as Torres, averaging 0.3 times per game compared to Torres’ 0.8 times per game resulting in Spurs losing possession less often.
Overall, they have both been about as useful as a chocolate teapot this term but if I had to pick one, I’d probably have to go with Soldado for his all-round contribution ahead of Torres.
Soldado has scored more goals, even though most of them were from the penalty spot, and has provided more assists, key passes and you can trust him to keep the ball more than Torres but the main drawback with Soldado is the vast number of chances he misses, even compared to Torres who at least his hits the target nearly half the time.