Carvalho vs Flamini - How did the holding midfielders play in mid-week?

We compare the performances of Sporting's William Carvalho to Arsenal's Mathieu Flamini's in the Champions League.

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The Champions League provided a chance for Arsenal manager to scrutinise his long-term target William Carvalho's performance against Premier League opposition this week.

The Sporting Lisbon enforcer played 90 minutes during his side's 1-0 defeat to Chelsea in Europe's elite competition and it was a chance for Wenger to analyse exactly what he would be buying if he did bring the Portuguese international to the club.

Carvalho was linked with a move to the Emirates for the entirety of the summer, but no deal materialised when Wenger refused to pay the apparently exorbitant asking price that Sporting were asking for their prized possession.

Instead, he went with what he had and his reluctance to sign has once again threatened to dismantle his team's season.

Already Arsenal's midfield deficiencies have been highlighted when they have taken on top-level clubs and Carvalho may well still remain on the club's wishlist as they hope to rectify this problem.

If Wenger did watch his transfer target's performance, he would have been suitably impressed by his display too.

When compared to Mathieu Flamini, who played the defensive midfield during Arsenal's impressive 4-1 victory over Galatasaray last night, Carvalho's greater defensive qualities shone through.

  TacklesTackles AccuracyInterceptionsPassesPassing AccuracyTouchesDispossessedHeaders wonAppearancesMins Played
William Carvalho 2 66.666666666667% 0 56 89.285714285714% 74 2 2 1 90
Mathieu Flamini 0 0% 6 32 90.625% 49 0 0 1 90

Although Flamini made considerable more interceptions, Carvalho's tackling was on-point, whilst he also won a number of headers.

It shows that he would have the physicality to compete in the Premier League and offer the strength that the Gunners have lacked in this area for some time.

Carvalho also proved that he would be able to fit in technically at the North-London club. 

He made more passes with a similar accuracy rate of his current Arsenal counterpart and the stats certainly suggest that it could be money well spent if Wenger was looking for an upgrade in the defensive midfield area in the new year. 

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