Tottenham Hotspur face Liverpool on Saturday in an interesting encounter which could see attacking midfielders Adam Lallana and Erik Lamela go head-to-head.
Lamela has been one of Spurs’ outstanding players this season, a far cry from the reputation he picked up over past two years as a struggling, big-money import.
The Argentine has featured in seven Premier League matches so far, among his longest run of games while at the club, and that’s testament to his current form.
On Saturday, he will be up against a Liverpool side buoyed by the arrival of new boss Jurgen Klopp, and one player who will be looking to make an immediate impact is Adam Lallana.
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As per the table provided by Opta Stats, Lamela has comfortably been the better player of the two this season, though one can have sympathy for Lallana considering his situation.
The former Southampton man was practically frozen out by former boss Brendan Rodgers, while nursing niggling knocks, making more appearances in the Europa League and League Cup than the Premier League.
The England international has bags of ability, yet he was arguably played out of position under Rodgers and struggled when given rare opportunities to impress in the league.
After the opening eight Premier League fixtures, Lamela averages more goals, assists, touches, accurate passes, shots on goal and chances created via key passes per encounter.
While the Argentine will be hoping to outperform Lallana by such clear margins on Saturday, he and his Spurs teammates must be aware that Lallana and co. have so much more to offer than they’re currently showing.