Union Berlin is second in the Bundesliga with 36 points from 18 matches. They have managed to score goals when required and defend well too. According to reports, Union Berlin wanted to sign former Real Madrid player Isco Alarcon before the transfer window ended. The Spaniard, who was a key figure of the Champions League-winning Los Blancos side, is a free agent after Sevilla terminated his contract some days ago. Isco, an experienced player and a great passer of the ball, could bring balance and calmness to the Union Berlin midfield. But according to the latest reports, the efforts to bring Isco back have broken off because the parties couldn’t reach a mutual agreement. Therefore, we look at his stats to understand how Isco would have improved Union Berlin’s chances to finish in the top four.
Season so far
The visual above shows Isco Alarcon’s percentile rank compared to other attacking midfielders in La Liga. The 30-year-old’s move to Sevilla did not work well, and he has not had a great season. However, he is ranked in the top 72.7 percentile for accurate passes and touches in the opposition’s penalty area. Apart from these, he has done well in aerial duels and is ranked highly for aerial duels per game.
The visual above shows Isco’s touch map from this season. As we can observe from the visual, he has enjoyed most of his possessions in the middle of the park. He plays as an attacking midfielder and would have added creativity to the Union Berlin midfield. He also gets forward well and is ranked relatively high for touches in the opponent’s penalty area. Isco has taken an average of 2.17 touches in the penalty area and has scored a goal for Sevilla in the Champions League as well. But he couldn’t register a goal or an assist in La Liga.
The visual above shows Isco’s penetrating carries from this season. He has made 22 penetrating carries with an average of 2.79 dribbles per game. The 30-year-old has 70.4% success in those dribbles as well. He has excellent ball control and would have control and some composure in their midfield. Apart from the dribbles, Isco also made an average of 1.55 progressive runs as well.
The visual above shows Isco Alarcon’s pass map from the current season. Passing is undoubtedly Isco’s best quality, and he has made around 38 passes per game with an 87.4% accuracy rate. Isco can switch the play, combine with other players, and provide the final pass as well. He has played around 5.78 passes into the final third and around 2.06 passes into the penalty area as well. He had an accuracy of 78.6% and 40% for those, respectively.
Last season, Isco was at Real Madrid and was finding it hard to get regular game time. He played around 58 passes per game last season, with 91.3% accuracy. Isco also played around 7.83 passes into the final third per game with 88.2% accuracy and around 2.99 passes per game into the penalty area with 61.5% accuracy. These numbers have come down this season in his woeful stint with Sevilla.
The visual above compares the radars of Isco Alarcon and Union Berlin midfielder Andras Schafer. The latter plays as a central midfielder for them and has better stats in some metrics, while Isco has done better in some others. Isco has better stats than Schafer in passing accuracy, dangerous passes per game, touches in the opponent’s penalty area, aerial duels, and goal contributions. Meanwhile, Schafer has done better in progressive passes, defensive duels, dribbles, and shots per game.
Union Berlin’s current form is reflected in the betting markets as well. But the inclusion of Isco would have brought their odds further down in the 1×2 markets. But significant changes are not expected in the over/under line market considering his current form.
Isco Alarcon was one of the best midfielders in the world some years ago. While it is true that things have not gone well for him this season, there is no denying the fact that he still can deliver the goods on his day. And his move to Union Berlin would have benefited both parties equally, but unfortunately, the deal broke off in the final minutes.
Visuals via TFA data viz engine