Comparing the top USMNT players of the Premier League
How do the top US players in the Premier League compare? Who has the best output?
It used to be an evergreen joke stored in the weapons arsenal of any Premier League fan, who would sit patiently for the right moment to pull the trigger and ensure both the appropriate laughter and the nodding reaction, all concurring the message: Americans can’t do it in the Premier League.
Now, however, the worm has turned. American players can do it in the Premier League, and more and more we are seeing that the gap across the Atlantic is being shortened: the tectonic plates have slid to allow an easier crossover to a division that seemed to once feast on the harvested souls of destroyed New Yorkers and Californians.
Who are the Premier League’s American players?
In the English top division there are currently 6 US nationals: Brenden Aarsonson and Tyler Adams of Leeds United, Christian Pulisic of Chelsea, Antonee Robinson and Tim Ream of Fulham and Chris Richards (Crystal Palace). In the SofaScore graphic below, we can see how the three midfielders compare.
How do the three players compare statistically with each other?
In terms of goals and assists, success depends massively on the starting position of each player, which will yield a higher or lower chance of them being in the correct position in the first place to have a goalscoring opportunity presented to them. Adams has neither a goal nor an assist for Leeds this season in all competitions as he sits too far back to have any real attacking output; it’s also not his job description whatsoever in Jesse Marsch’s side.
Aaronson and Pulisic have identical goals and assists numbers, both grabbing a goal and providing two so far. In terms of creation, Aaronson usurps Pulisic with double his key passes per game (1 versus 2). The Leeds winger’s creation statistics don’t stop there, as he currently has 5 big chance creations to his name, compared to Pulisic with 2 and Adams with 1.
And what about in defence?
Here’s where we head back to Tyler Adams and the world in which he is king. Adams has put up extraordinary numbers for both Leeds and the USMNT at the World Cup, and has 8 recoveries per game, blitzing the contributions of both Aaronson (4.9) and Pulisic (1.3).
These statistics don’t only highlight the skill Adams possesses, but also his positioning and general role within the team: the numbers that he is putting out in what many call the most difficult league in the world are not to be sniffed at. Adams also wins the most duels, with 5.8 compared to 5.5 from his Leeds teammate; Pulisic has just 2.1.
What can we learn from these numbers?
The big takeaway from the statistics, provided by Sofascore, is that the time for UK football fans to pre-judge American players is over; the USMNT’s solid experience at the World Cup - including a very respectable 0-0 draw against England - was proof that they are ready to compete on the biggest stage in the world and become one of football’s more significant nations.
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