The Premier League sparring match between Chelsea and Manchester City currently runs synonymous with a more trivial battle: the contest between Diego Costa and Sergio Aguero for the English top flight's 2014-15 Golden Boot Award.
Currently dominating the scoring charts with 17 and 16 goals, respectively, there seems very little to separate the impressive duo. Currently Costa, who is enjoying a remarkable debut season for Chelsea, marginally pips Aguero - arguably the division's most prolific striker in recent years - to top spot.
|Team||Mins per Goal||Shots per App||Shot Accuracy (%)||Shot Conversion (%)||Big Chance Conversion (%)||Conversion Shots in Box (%)||Conversion Shots Outside Box (%)||Goals % Headers||Apps||Mins Played|
|Sergio Agüero||Man City||88.31||4.4||45%||18%||50||26.32||8.33||0%||20||1,413|
Costa may be the Premier League's leading scorer to date, but this is not to say he is automatically more prolific than Aguero. In fact, in terms of minutes per goal, the Argentine actually emerges as the more valuable striker, having averaged just over one goal for every 90 minutes played for Manchester City this season.
Nonetheless, a seemingly simply comparison becomes somewhat more complicated when each player's individual chance conversion rate is analysed. Based on the statistics, it becomes abundantly clear that Costa is the more clinical of the duo. Having hit the target from 54% and scored from 28% of his total attempts, the Spaniard is far superior in this regard.
Costa's poaching instincts are second-to-none, and it perhaps comes as little surprise that all 17 of his goals this season have come from within the 18-yard-box. Similarly, 15 of Aguero's 16 strikes have come inside the penalty area, although he has scored the once from just outside. Costa has two successful headed attempts to his name, while Aguero is yet to score a goal of this kind.
The Argentine may manage more attempts in each appearance, but he is often significantly less effective. The Spaniard has converted just over 40% of his chances from inside the penalty area, whereas Aguero has buried approximately 25% of his total opportunities. Meanwhile, the City man has scored just half of his gilt-edged chances, compared to Costa's impressive 70% conversion rate.
Based on the statistics it comes as little surprise that Diego Costa is the division's leading goalscorer - based on the empirical evidence he has been the far more clinical than his closest competitor, Sergio Aguero. Having adjusted excellently to life in the Premier League, the Chelsea front man is rapidly establishing himself as the English top flight's most proliic goal scorer.