Head-to-head: Leicester City’s Riyad Mahrez v Manchester United’s Juan Mata in 2015/16

Juan Mata

Leicester City take on Manchester United at the King Power Stadium this weekend.

Riyad Mahrez v Juan Mata: Head to Head: Riyad Mahrez v Juan Mata - 2015/16: 20151126

Leicester take on Manchester United this weekend, in what is a surprising top of the table clash.

If the Foxes win they will remain top of the Premier League table until the next game day, whilst United can recover from their poor Champions League showing with a strong performance to move them onto 30 points - and top spot.

Two players in particular will play a key role in the fixture, with both teams needing their attacking stars to shine if a win is to be picked up.

Riyad Mahrez is the key force in the Leicester ranks. Although Jamie Vardy is the leading goalscorer, all his good work is thanks to Mahrez behind him, and the Algerian will need to put in a top performance.

Juan Mata is the key playmaker in the United team, and he will undoubtedly be restored to a starting role for the Premier League game after being named on the bench in the Champions League on Wednesday evening.

Comparing the two stars, Mahrez has been the far more effective attacking player this season.

He has played one game fewer than Mata, but has scored more goals, registered more assists and attempted more key passes. Mahrez does play in a system which benefits attacking players, whilst Mata is restricted by Louis van Gaal’s tactics, but the Algerian is truly excelling.

Most impressively, Mahrez has played over 100 fewer final third passes than Mata, but has still had more of a decisive impact with his passes as attacking threats.

The 24-year-old has also completed 44 dribbles in relation to Mata’s low tally of just seven.

Mahrez will face a tough task this weekend coming up against defence as strong as United’s but if he continues with the form he has shown this season, it would not be a surprise to see the Foxes retain their Premier League top spot with a victory over United this weekend.

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