They are all heralded as the new generation of young, Premier League supertalents but, statistically-speaking are any of Raheem Sterling, Ross Barkley and Adnan Januzaj a product of British-media hype or the real deal? If it is a case of the latter, who has been most impressive in the current season to date and who has the greatest upside? HITC: Sport look at he facts…
|Club||Touches||Dribbles||Cross Acc||Pass Acc||Chance||Assist||Goal||App||Mins|
|Adnan Januzaj||Man Utd||954||80||26.0%||81.0%||24||3||4||24||1,422|
Because of his strikes against Arsenal and Manchester City, no doubt proof that the 19-year-old is capable of becoming a big-game player, Liverpool's teenager Sterling is the man of the moment, yet is on the ball less frequently (one touch every 1.55 minutes on average) than his rival at Manchester United - Januzaj (1.5 mins) - and across the Mersey with Everton starlet Barkley (1.3 mins).
It is Barkley who is also the most exceptional when it comes to passing accuracy, however, while Sterling comes out worst on crossing accuracy (16% to Januzaj's one in four crossing accuracy ratio), the Reds attacker attempts far more dribbling runs (once every 15 mins) creates almost double the amount of chances as the second best in that category (every 45 mins) and is also responsible for more goals and assists combined (once every 187 mins).
Everton seem to rely more upon the attacking gusto of Barkley than United and Liverpool do on their prodigies but that may not be down to the individual talent of the player as it is more to do with a lack of quality outside of him. Liverpool are blessed with great depth in the final third, while Januzaj's introduction to senior-level football has been gradual.
There is not much to separate Barkley from Januzaj, yet one is more effective than the other when it comes to the bigger matches (versus top seven Premier League teams) in the season.
Barkley, for instance, featured for 28 minutes against Chelsea, 90 minutes against Manchester City, 170 minutes versus Arsenal, featured for 55 minutes against Spurs and 68 when facing Everton - a combined 411 minutes, yet has not effected the scoreline once.
Januzaj has played 75 minutes against Liverpool, 90 against Chelsea, 16 against Arsenal, 33 versus Everton and 90 minutes against Spurs - a combined 301 minutes and has provided one assist, at Old Trafford, when Tottenham visited.
Again, Sterling comes out on top.
For his 180 minutes at Chelsea and Anfield, 179 minutes for Liverpool at the Etihad Stadium and at home, 90 minutes against Arsenal and Everton, 172 minutes versus Tottenham and 102 minutes against United - a combined 813 minutes, he has returned five goals and assists (1 goal and assist v City, 2 goals v Arsenal and 1 goal v Spurs).