Stats: Can Steven Caulker handle Brown Ideye?

The Queens Park Rangers defender fares surprisingly well with the West Brom striker statistically.

Ahead of today's Premier League clash between West Brom and QPR, it'd be fair to say defender Steven Caulker has struggled of late, while striker Brown Ideye has managed to find his feet at the Hawthorns.

The stats paint a different picture, however...

  TeamWon Tackle GAMEInterception Won GAMEAerial Won GAMETotal Clearance GAMEMins Played
Sébastien Pocognoli West Brom 1.67 1.53 2.07 4.07 1,214
Joleon Lescott West Brom 1.46 2.23 2.35 6.08 2,340
Craig Dawson West Brom 1.36 1.82 3.77 6.64 1,980
Chris Baird West Brom 1.08 1.08 1.08 2.77 680
Steven Caulker QPR 0.93 2.18 4.07 9.82 2,475

Indeed, as Opta data shows, Caulker has been a poor tackler this season, beaten by a number of West Brom defenders - but his interceptions per game have been solid.

Clearance-wise, the QPR centre-back is also leagues above the West Brom defenders (although he will have had far more to deal with). But it is in the air that Caulker also impresses - which will be key against the Nigerian.

  TeamHeaders Won (per game)Duels Won (per game)Chances CreatedShooting AccuracyMins Played
Charlie Austin QPR 2.89 5.07 18 39% 2,349
Bobby Zamora QPR 2.16 3.28 40 14% 1,395
Loïc Remy QPR 2 7.5 1 43% 180
Brown Ideye West Brom 1.16 2.74 8 48% 1,110

West Brom's Ideye, however, compares poorly in the air with the R's strikers (surprisingly for a target man) and doesn't create all that many chances. His shooting accuracy is high but the numbers suggest Caulker can limit him considerably if he beats him in the air.

Yet stats are one thing, of course, and turning up on the day quite another.

Will the struggling QPR man really be able to handle Ideye if he plays? And, even if so, West Brom will certainly have other outlets to choose from.

Tony Pulis probably won't be shaking in his trainers. If QPR are to finally deliver, though, the time is now.

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