Despite the turbulent circumstances ongoing at their respective club teams, Juan Mata and Santi Cazorla have each had brilliant seasons. Both are exceptional talents who have adapted fantastically to the notorious nature of the Premier League. But as football fans, we are always prone to wondering, “who's better?”
These two have been the stand out “classic number 10” players in the league this season, but on phone-ins and social media platforms here in England, the arguments on who trumps the other is never far from the forefront of fan discussion.
Contrasting the attributes of two players who play for opposing sides can often be troublesome. Every team has subtle differences in its style even if the formations are similar. But in terms of Mata and Cazorla, it shouldn’t be too difficult to draw the comparison.
In this era dominated by the 4-2-3-1 formation, the role of the central player in the attacking midfield three has become pivotal. This is the position both Mata and Cazorla have primarily operated in, with the occasional stint in wide areas.
Both players are the key creators for their sides. Sides which like to play a passing style and find advanced midfielders between the lines. Styles that have enabled the two Spanish supremos to flourish.
So with this in mind, lets take a look at the stats on each player and see how they measure up in the battle of the Premier League’s best two attacking midfielders
All stats courtesy of EPL Index.