The stats that show Rose may have a claim to being the PL's best LB

Danny Rose Tottenham warmup

We provide a comprehensive look on just how close Tottenham's Danny Rose is to being the Premier League's best left back - with surprising results.

Earlier in the season, Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino's claim that Danny Rose was the best English left back this year was met with debate.

Ever a player that has split Spurs fans, Rose's energy, tenaciousness and attacking ability are lauded, but his defensive qualities are often called into question.

Nevertheless, England boss Roy Hodgson called the fullback up for a second time this season for the games against Slovenia and Italy in March, with Rose pulling out with an injury, and then came newspaper reports in the Mail this week that Manchester City wanted to sign the player this summer.

We have looked at a generous handful of the Premier League's best left backs in two tables below, one concerned with attacking statistics, the other with defensive stats.

Highlighting the four best results in each category, hopefully we'll be able to see if Rose makes it into the top quartet of left backs in the division, to both justify Pochettino's continued faith in the 24-year-old, and also see if reports of City's interest are deserved.

(Where more than one player have the same statistical result, the one with the fewer minutes played will be highlighted.)

Attacking statistics 2014/15

  PositionTeamGoalsGoal AssistTotal Att AssistOntarget Scoring AttWon CornersTouchesSuccessful Take-OnsPassing AccuracyAppearancesMins Played
Jeffrey Schlupp DF Leicester 3 1 19 7 20 1239 56 73.97% 27 2089
Leighton Baines DF Everton 2 8 59 7 22 2147 24 84.12% 27 2430
Ryan Bertrand DF Southampton 2 2 23 3 26 1890 17 80.06% 28 2519
Aaron Cresswell DF West Ham 2 4 30 8 19 2028 16 71.76% 32 2880
Danny Rose DF Tottenham 2 4 25 6 21 1712 21 78.11% 25 2110
Gaël Clichy DF Man City 1 3 26 2 4 1975 24 81.51% 23 2058
César Azpilicueta DF Chelsea 0 3 12 3 4 1621 7 83.69% 24 2034
Nacho Monreal DF Arsenal 0 1 10 0 8 1530 6 85.24% 24 1951
Alberto Moreno DF Liverpool 2 0 31 5 12 1452 12 82.44% 26 2130
Neil Taylor DF Swansea 0 1 18 0 4 1912 7 83.56% 31 2730

Rose is noted as being more than capable of offering something going forward, having started his career as a winger. It is no surprise to see him figure in five out of eight of the categories listed above, being joint second when it comes to scoring goals and creating them and impressive when it comes to his dribbling skills. An area he could improve on, according to the above data, is his involvement on the ball and his passing success.

England left back Leighton Baines is present in all categories, suggesting that he is the country's best option from an attacking sense, but Rose is a close second from those above.

Defensive statistics 2014/15

  PositionTeamInterception WonEffective Blocked CrossWon TackleEffective ClearanceGround Duel WonAerial Duel WonPoss Won Def 3rdFoulsAppearancesMins Played
Gaël Clichy DF Man City 77 13 47 78 116 24 80 11 23 2058
Neil Taylor DF Swansea 72 41 56 99 127 25 89 29 31 2730
Nacho Monreal DF Arsenal 71 12 41 107 149 70 84 19 24 1951
Danny Rose DF Tottenham 55 24 64 65 167 26 84 43 25 2110
Ryan Bertrand DF Southampton 54 22 30 42 130 43 67 24 28 2519
Jeffrey Schlupp DF Leicester 50 13 52 53 200 37 68 26 27 2089
Patrick van Aanholt DF Sunderland 49 15 47 62 112 11 79 18 22 1766
Erik Pieters DF Stoke 44 18 46 113 145 52 47 35 25 2022
César Azpilicueta DF Chelsea 43 17 57 76 126 36 60 15 24 2034
Leighton Baines DF Everton 41 21 40 81 126 17 74 19 27 2430
Alberto Moreno DF Liverpool 31 13 40 43 108 12 55 36 26 2130
Aaron Cresswell DF West Ham 30 29 27 131 128 46 86 15 32 2880

As mentioned previously, much of the doubts about Rose's ability at left back comes from concerns about the defensive side of his game. But the information above shows that, statistically at least, he has in fact been one of the best in the division this year. Rose is among the top performers in five departments, and is the top tackling defender in the whole league with 64 tackles won. He is also second best when it comes to winning ground duels for possession and winning possession in the defensive third. One area he has to work on is his tendency to foul - no defender has conceded more free-kicks than the Spurs defender.

But despite that, Rose is again second best in the league here, alongside West Ham's Aaron Cresswell, despite the information being pulled from a defensive perspective, with Swansea's Neil Taylor appearing to be the best defender after featuring in six sets of defensive data.

Of the sixteen categories looked at for the investigation, eight attacking and eight defensive, Rose is among the top performing left backs in ten of them, more than any other player. Baines figured in no defensive categories, while there must be an honourable mention for West Ham's Cresswell, who figured nine times - including in five defensive areas.

Interestingly, Man City's Gael Clichy was involved in three attacking categories and just two defensive stats.

So maybe there is some basis for Rose to be held up as one of, if not the best left back in this season's Premier League.

We'll let you discuss in the comments section below.

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