Comparing Diego Carlos’ 2019-20 stats to Liverpool’s current centre-backs

Quick Reads

Reports in Spain have linked Liverpool with a move for Sevilla centre-back Diego Carlos in January.

Real Madrid have also been linked with Carlos, 26, while Liverpool appear well-stocked in this area of the field.

We’ve compared Carlos’ stats from the 2019-20 La Liga season to date and compared them to the corresponding Premier League figures of the Reds’ current centre-back options: Virgil van Dijk, Joel Matip, Joe Gomez and Dejan Lovren.

Defensive actions

As we often say in these stats comparisons, a player making a high number of tackles is not always a positive. As Paolo Maldini once said: “If I have to make a tackle then I have already made a mistake.” Such figures can also be skewed depending on how much a team spends defending or on the front foot.

Carlos averages 1.3 successful tackles per 90 minutes in La Liga, the same number as Lovren and a similar figure to Gomez and Matip (both 1.7). Van Dijk makes notably fewer with 0.7.

Van Dijk’s lowest figure comes at the highest success rate, completing 87.5% of his attempted tackles. Carlos is the second most impressive in this respect, completing 81.25%, followed by Gomez (80.95%). Lovren’s is significantly lower at 68.4%, with Matip’s 62.96%.

In terms of interceptions, Gomez and Matip make the most with 1.7 per 90 minutes, followed by Lovren (1.1), Van Dijk (1.0) and then Carlos (0.7).

It is interesting to note that Carlos is involved in far fewer aerial duels per 90 minutes, perhaps due to the differences between La Liga and the Premier League. The Brazilian’s success rate (58.14%) is also the lowest of the five players in question. Matip (89.39%) leads the way, followed by Van Dijk (76.12%), Lovren (69.23%) and Gomez (62%).

Passing and attacking

While centre-backs are judged first and foremost on their defending, they increasingly need to be comfortable on the ball, especially in a team so dominant as Liverpool.

Carlos’ pass completion rate of 83.4% is almost identical to those of Lovren (83.9%) and Matip (83.1%) but falls below those of Van Dijk (87.9%) and Gomez (88.2%).

Likewise, Gomez leads the way in terms of dribbles, completing 0.6 per 90 minutes, whereas Matip (0.3) Carlos (0.2), Van Dijk (0.1) and Lovren (0.1) are more cautious when bringing the ball out from the back.

Goals and assists

Offering a threat in the opposition penalty area from set-pieces is always a useful bonus for a centre-back, and Carlos has scored twice in La Liga this season, with both goals coming in December.

Van Dijk is the only Liverpool centre-back to better that tally of league goals with three, while Matip has scored once in the Premier League this term.

Gomez and Lovren have failed to score to date, although Lovren is the only member of the quintet to have registered an assist in 2019-20.

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