Head to head: M'Vila v Kouyate

Yann M'Vila

How the Sunderland and West Ham midfielders compare ahead of this weekend's clash.

With West Ham United sitting third in the Premier League table and Sunderland bottom, there will be few areas Black Cats fans can claim to outperform the east London outfit.

But, in Yann M'Vila, Sunderland do have a big positive in midfield.

Indeed, the summer signing has added a rare energy and quality at the Stadium of Light and, compared to West Ham's Cheikhou Kouyate, actually comes off very well.

  GoalsAssistsChances CreatedDribblesPassing AccuracyFinal-Third PassesTacklesInterceptionsMinutes Played
Cheikhou Kouyate 3 1 6 4 72% 32 16 14 526
Yann M'Vila 1 0 12 3 86% 46 15 14 540

As Opta stats show, Kouyate has scored two more goals for West Ham in less minutes than M'Vila has for Sunderland this season, while also registering an assist.

But the Black Cats midfielder has created twice as many chances, completed far more of his passes, and made more passes in the final third. Defensively, he has also won as many interceptions and just one less tackle.

The Hammers man has won more dribbles, of course, but M'Vila is clearly equal to the West Ham midfielder - even if the respective league position of his Sunderland side doesn't show it.

It should be an intriguing midfield battle at the Stadium of Light on Saturday afternoon, although it may well be West Ham's pace on the break that once again wins the day.

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