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Scouting Report: Is Yacine Brahimi Liverpool's Adam Lallana Alternative?

Algeria's Yacine Brahimi, left, celebrates after scoring his side's fourth goal during the group H World Cup soccer match between South Korea and Algeria at the Estadio Beira-Rio in Porto Alegre, Brazil, Sunday, June 22, 2014. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)
Martin Meissner/Associated Press
Allan JiangTransfers CorrespondentJune 23, 2014

Could Granada's Algerian international Yacine Brahimi—a 24-year-old, 5'8", 150-pound left-forward—be Liverpool's alternative to Southampton midfielder Adam Lallana?

To cover that hypothetical, this article grades Brahimi's performance against South Korea at the 2014 FIFA World Cup and provides a scouting report on his season for Granada.

 

Brahimi vs. South Korea Grade: A

Starting as a deep-lying forward behind Algerian centre-forward Islam SlimaniBrahimi was outstanding.

FIFA.com

Brahimi persistently zipped in behind South Korean defensive midfielder Ki Sung-Yueng, who offered no protection to his back four.

It was a free-for-all for Algeria's attack in a 4-2 win over South Korea. 

Brahimi was afforded an inordinate amount of time to pick out a pass with South Korea's defence in disarray. 

Squawka.com

Brahimi scored after a neat one-two with Algerian right attacking midfielder Sofiane Feghouli.

Brahimi and Feghouli totalled 19 passing combinations between them, per FIFA.com

FIFA.com

The reason why Brahimi did not receive an A+ is he should have scored more given South Korea's paper-tiger defence. 

 

Brahimi Granada Positives 

Brahimi predominantly plays on the left wing, but can start on the right and has generally cut inside to operate centrally. 

Marca.com

Brahimi runs effortlessly, possesses world-class dribbling ability and plays with flair, as evident with a remarkable roulette turn to spin away from Real Valladolid centre-back Jesus Rueda and Real Valladolid substitute Manucho.

LigaBBVA.com
League OnlyTotal DribblesDribbles Per Game
Cristiano Ronaldo662.2
Gareth Bale572.1
Lionel Messi1434.6
Neymar783.0
Yacine Brahimi1644.7

Malaga's defence was ripped apart by Brahimi, who provided a through ball to Granada centre-forward Youssef El-Arabi.

LigaBBVA.com

Brahimi bolted across the field to reach Granada central midfielder Fran Rico's incisive pass, shrugged off Barcelona right-back Martin Montoya's challenge, and placed the ball past then-Barcelona (now free agent) goalkeeper Jose Pinto. 

LigaBBVA.com

 

Brahimi Granada Negatives

Brahimi forces his way into advantageous shooting positions, but his inability to convert chances is why he is not an elite footballer. 

He failed to score 92.1 percent of the time he shot, per Squawka.com.

Squawka.com

A red flag with Brahimi is his petulance.

He darted towards referee Estrada Fernandez and cussed him out resulting in a cheap yellow card against Real Madrid

LigaBBVA.com

Both Brahimi's yellow cards against Rayo Vallecano were "I wish I could take it back" moments.

LigaBBVA.com

LigaBBVA.com

 

Bottom Line

Brahimi is a freakishly gifted footballer with amazing take-on ability.

However, he scored three goals from 61 shots and registered four assists from 35 league games last season. 

You see a lot of similarities between him and Jefferson Montero.

Both players terrorised La Liga defenders, but lacked the end product. 

Montero gave up his Spanish dream and moved to Monarcas Morelia in Mexico.

Meanwhile, Brahimi's career is making gradual strides. 

League OnlyAdam LallanaYacine Brahimi
Games3835
Goals93
Shots Per Goal7.820.3
Assists64
Key Passes Per Game1.91.1
Dribbles Per Game1.84.7

Lallana is a better-rounded player, though Brahimi could be the cost-effective signing for Liverpool.

 

@allanjianga

Statistics via WhoScored.com

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