Who Is Better: Christian Benteke or Edin Dzeko?

Joe Tansey@JTansey90Featured ColumnistSeptember 26, 2013

LONDON, ENGLAND - AUGUST 21:  Christian Benteke of Aston Villa celebrates after scoring a goal to level the scores at 1-1 during the Barclays Premier League match between Chelsea and Aston Villa at Stamford Bridge on August 21, 2013 in London, England.  (Photo by Scott Heavey/Getty Images)
Scott Heavey/Getty Images

One player is an established forward that has been scoring goals at the highest levels of the game for years now. 

One player broke onto the world scene just last season and has been held in high regard for his performances for both club and country.

Trying to compare Manchester City forward Edin Dzeko and Christian Benteke of Aston Villa, and deciding who is the better player is quite the difficult task. 

Both players are trusted goalscorers, but they have played in different roles for both club and country. 

At age 27, Dzeko is a hero in his native Bosnia and Herzegovina, and rightfully so. He has been the key figure in the emergence of Bosnian soccer, and anywhere on the streets of the small European nation his name is mentioned in droves. 

The 6'3" striker has scored 31 goals in 57 national team appearances for Bosnia and Herzegovina; many of those goals have come in the recent batch of matches in UEFA World Cup qualifying. 

With eight goals in Group G play, Dzeko has helped the Bosnians earn a spot in the play-off round at worst as they look to qualify for their first World Cup. 

Dzeko's map to success at the club level has seen him start at home in Bosnia and Herzegovina and move up to the Bundesliga before reaching the English Premier League. 

After being brought to Wolfsburg in Germany by then-manager Felix Magath, Dzeko rose to stardom in his second season with the club as he scored 26 goals in 32 league matches. 

The towering Bosnian followed his 2008-09 campaign up by scoring 22 more goals during the 2009-10 season. 

It was after those two seasons that Dzeko began to gain more attention from higher profile clubs and he eventually moved to Manchester City during the January 2010 transfer window. 

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - MAY 19: Edin Dzeko (L) and Aleksander Kolarov of Manchester City in action with Russell Martin (R) of Norwich during the Barclays Premier League match between Manchester City and Norwich City at the Etihad Stadium on May 19, 2013 in
Paul Thomas/Getty Images

During the 2012-13 season, Dzeko rose to cult hero status at Eastlands thanks to his super-sub antics for the Citizens. 

There is no doubt that in whatever role he is placed in, Dzeko will find a way to score goals. 

So far in his short career, Benteke has been lucky enough to play the majority of his matches as a starter. 

The 22-year-old Belgian began scoring goals at will in the Belgian First Division with both Standard Liege and Racing Genk. 

On the final day of the 2012 summer transfer window, Benteke was handed a much-deserved move to EPL club Aston Villa. 

Benteke scored 19 goals in his first full season in the English top flight and his goal-scoring theatrics were one of the main reasons why Villa were able to survive the relegation struggle and hold on to their coveted position in the EPL. 

One of many young talented Belgian superstars in the making, Benteke got off to another hot start this season by scoring four goals in four league matches before going down with an injury. 

On the international stage, Benteke has not become the prolific goalscorer with Belgium that Dzeko has with Bosnia and Herzegovina, but that is because he has only played for his senior national team since 2010. 

Benteke has scored six goals in 15 appearances for Belgium; all six of those goals have come in the last 13 months, with two in World Cup qualifying and four in friendlies. 

While he may be five years younger than Dzeko, Benteke is on the path to stardom quicker than the Bosnian star was when he was 22. 

BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 14:  Christian Benteke of Aston Villa in action during the Barclays Premier League match between Aston Villa and Newcastle United at Villa Park on September 14, 2013 in Birmingham, England.  (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Im
Mark Thompson/Getty Images

It is very hard to choose who is the better forward in this pairing, but if you look closer at the minor attributes, a clear advantage is shown. 

Dzeko and Benteke are both threats in the air whenever a ball is crossed in toward them on the pitch, and both players also have a strong presence in the penalty area, but one of those players has a better presence outside of that spot on the pitch. 

Benteke is the more flexible of the duo because he is able to move back into the midfield to earn possession and steam forward toward the goal. 

Dzeko is a player that requires more service from teammates to score, especially because his possession skills on the ground are not as solid as the ones of his Belgian counterpart.

With that being said, the very slight edge in this competition goes to Benteke, who at 22 looks like a better prospect than Dzeko ever was at that age.

Benteke possesses a complete skill set that Dzeko lacks just a bit and for that reason, the Aston Villa star is a better player than Dzeko. 

Who do you think is the better player, Christian Benteke or Edin Dzeko?

Comment below or leave me a comment on Twitter, @JTansey90.


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