The deadline day this summer produced a number of shocking deals that were not even on the cards. But one transfer was the cream and it did go down to the wire. Newcastle United’s French star Moussa Sissoko, who has officially signed for Mauricio Pochettino’s Tottenham Hotspur on a 5-year contract for £30m, was the center of a lot of attraction late on deadline day. He was reportedly set to move to Everton with the Merseyside outfit also readying a plane and a medical room only to be rejected. This has given rise to a fury on social media that the 27-year old is overrated for such a battle.
But here are 5 stats that show that Sissoko may actually be worth the hype:
Chances created: 56
The French international is not known for his goalscoring prowess but his skill and technique with the ball make him a dangerous player in the final third. He is adept at finding a team-mate in space and giving them a chance on goal and he created 56 chances in the Premier League last season. That is at an average just less than 2 chances per game, which is on the high side for a player playing in a team that got relegated. He will surely be more effective with better quality around him.
Take-ons completed: 84
Though it is not the most effective way, dribbling is a part of football and Moussa Sissoko is right up there with the best dribblers in the Premier League. He is right up there with the best dribblers in the league averaging more than 2 take-ons a game making a total of 84 successful ones, 1 more that Spurs’ best dribbler last season in Moussa Dembele. Sissoko adds that extra dimension in attack for Pochettino which might make a huge difference this season.
Passing accuracy at EUROs: 89%
The French international had a decent season at the St James Park in the Premier League but he was simply unplayable for his national team in the EUROs. He only started games from the knockout stage and was arguably one of the best players for France in those games including the final. He averaged a successful passing rate of 89%, more than any of his teammates and proved that he is adept at upping his game with quality players around him.
Assist in last two seasons: 15
Though the number is not astounding, Sissoko has played for Newcastle Untied in a season where nothing went right for them. He had an average season but was one of the best players for the club which shows that the Magpies were not the best teammates to showcase Sissoko’s ability. But still, he managed to register 15 assists in the last two domestic seasons which is more than some of the established playmakers in the league like Yaya Toure (14) and Adam Lallana (14).
Successful through balls: 18
Though not a stat that shows the quality of the player, Sissoko has shown time and again that he can adjust to the needs of his team. His Newcastle side were struggling to keep hold of the ball and were restricted to counter attacks, a game which is excelled by runners beyond the ball. Sissoko did not have too many of them at the club but yet managed numbers that are better than any Spurs’ player last season. In fact, his figures are better than Eden Hazard (16) and Wayne Rooney (13), making him an impact player in the league.