The Manchester United central defensive midfield position has been a major talking point for many a year, and will continue to be the subject of debate for Old Trafford supporters for many more, it seems.
Until Louis van Gaal signs the world class player that the Red Devils desperately need, they'll have to make do with the two available to them now; Daley Blind and Michael Carrick. But who is the better of the two?
The modern day defensive midfielder is judged heavily on passing and distribution. Michael Carrick has played 13 games this season and has a pass completion of 90 per cent (723 successful passes).
Meanwhile, Daley Blind has played 11 games and has a pass completion of 89 per cent (657 successful passes).
Carrick also leads in terms of attempted forward passes with 590 (Blind 491) but loses out on backward passes having recorded 215 and Blind 240.
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Although Blind leads on more backward passes, he seems to be having more of an impact in the attacking sense. The Dutchman has recorded nine key passes (Carrick four) created 10 chances for his teammates (Carrick five) and both players have made an assist each.
Blind's attacking superiority is further shown in the comparison of their goal tally, with Blind on one goal and Carrick yet to find the back of the net.
Furthermore, Blind continues to dominate Carrick defensively also. The 24-year-old has made 38 interceptions, 37 clearances, won 23 tackles and made eight blocks in comparison to Carrick’s 20 interceptions, 31 clearances, 18 tackles and two blocks.
Following the common theme, Blind comes out on top again on all fronts bar blocks.
According to the stats, facts and figures above, Daley Blind seems like the player to go with instead of Michael Carrick.
With Carrick ruled out for a supposed four weeks with a muscle rupture, Blind will have the opportunity to show why he is the superior CDM. He’s made a great start to his Manchester United career and still needs to prove himself, whereas Carrick is an accomplished player and deputy captain.
February should prove to be an interesting month in the never ending Manchester United midfield struggle.