Scouting Report: Is Joselu Real Madrid's Alvaro Morata Replacement?

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Scouting Report: Is Joselu Real Madrid's Alvaro Morata Replacement?
AP

Real Madrid will buy-back Hoffenheim's Joselu if Alvaro Morata is sold, per Hugo Cerezo at Marca.

Here is a scouting report updating you on former Real player Joselu, a 24-year-old Spaniard, who spent the past Bundesliga season on loan at Eintracht Frankfurt.

 

Positives

Source: Kicker.de.

Joselu is a 6'3", 176-pound centre-forward, who was an unwavering aerial presence for Eintracht Frankfurt.

League Only Headers Per Game Games Started %
     
Alvaro Morata 0.9 13
Joselu  6 75
Karim Benzema 0.7 97.1
     

Then-Eintracht Frankfurt (now Wolfsburg) right-back Sebastian Jung sent in an incisive cross, which was met by Joselu, who directed the ball over Schalke goalkeeper Timo Hildebrand.

Focus on Joselu's smart run which caught Schalke centre-back Joel Matip out of position.

Source: Bundesliga.com

Joselu powerfully headed Jung's cross at Mainz goalkeeper Loris Karius, who palmed the ball on to the post which deflected into the back of the net. 

Source: Bundesliga.com.

Jung was the provider again when Joselu's bullet header had too much velocity for Augsburg goalkeeper Marwin Hitz

Source: Bundesliga.com.

Joselu can be a route one option enhancing the crossing of Real central midfielder/right-forward Angel Di Maria and the deep-lying playmaking ability of central midfielder Luka Modric

It would also provide Real manager Carlo Ancelotti a plan B, which diverts attention away from Real right-forward Gareth Bale and Real left-forward Cristiano Ronaldo. 

Joselu is not a full-time back-to-goal centre-forward because he can mix it up.

He received the ball outside the box facing then-Schalke (now free agent) defensive midfielder Jermaine Jones.

Joselu promptly lashed a left-footed shot past Hildebrand after being afforded space by Jones. 

Source: Bundesliga.com.

Borussia Monchengladbach centre-back Martin Stranzl was outfought in a 50-50 challenge with Joselu, who raced on to a loose ball and placed it past then-Gladbach (now Barcelona) goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen

Source: Bundesliga.com.

Nuremberg utility player Javier Pinola received a red card for clipping Joselu from behind, who had run in behind Nuremberg's defence. 

Source: Bundesliga.com.

Joselu demonstrated on loan at Eintracht Frankfurt that he is solid in the air and handy with the ball at his feet. 

 

Negatives 

Joselu was not a week in, week out starter during his two Bundesliga seasons for Hoffenheim and Eintracht Frankfurt.

League Only Joselu Eintracht Frankfurt 2013-14 Joselu Hoffenheim 2012-13 Alvaro Morata Real Madrid 2013-14
       
Games 24 25 23
Games Started % 75 68 13
Goals 9 5 8
Shots Per Goal 7.4 10.4 4.9
       

Morata was a more economical finisher than Joselu

While Joselu averaged 5.1 more headers per game, that advantage is skewered in his favour as Morata was used as an impact sub in 87 percent of La Liga games last season.

Here is the kicker: Morata is 13 percent more likely to win a header (70), per Squawka.com, than Joselu (57), per Squawka.com

Source: Squawka.com.

What appeared to be Joselu's main advantage over Morata—heading the ball—is not the case. 

Not only is Morata a better finisher, he is more proficient in the air than Joselu.

 

Bottom Line

Optimistic Real supporters will bring up Real buying back Daniel Carvajal from Bayer Leverkusen for €6.5/£5.3 million in 2013 as an example to give Joselu another chance. 

Here is why that is not an accurate example to bring up.

Kicker Bundesliga Rankings Daniel Carvajal 2012-13 Joselu 2013-14
     
Overall Ranking 41/210 170/215
Position Ranking  6/78 21/28
     

Source: Kicker.de.
Source: Kicker.de.

Carvajal was a world-class defender for Leverkusen, whereas Joselu was a serviceable centre-forward for Eintracht Frankfurt.

Subjectively speaking, Joselu is not in the class of Morata, who generally answered the bell when thrown on as a last-option, like Athletic Bilbao super-sub Ibai Gomez.

Morata is technically gifted, has size, gets into advantageous goalscoring positions and is primed for a breakout season if a top-flight club is willing to make him their go-to guy. 

Joselu will fill Morata's void as Real centre-forward Benzema's backup. 

If Morata takes his game to the next level at his new club, Real management will follow the Carvajal precedent and activate a buy-back clause, to which Joselu's career will be in-limbo again. 

 

@allanjianga

Statistics via WhoScored.com

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