Van Persie and Ibrahimovic: Two of Europe’s best

Castrol EDGE Performance data shows that Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Robin van Persie will be crucial in determining the outcome of the UEFA Champions League tie between AC Milan and Arsenal.

With 22 goals, van Persie is the Premier League’s top scorer this season, and his record compares favourably to Ibrahimovic’s 15 goals in Serie A.  Moreover, excluding penalties, the Dutchman has also been more prolific than Cristiano Ronaldo this season, scoring the same number of league goals as Lionel Messi (21).

However, Ibrahimovic is the only player who has managed to score in four consecutive Champions League appearances this season, and his average of a goal per 90 mins is superior to van Persie’s average of a goal per 104 mins. In spite of this, van Persie’s impressive shooting accuracy (80%) in the Champions League is far superior to Ibrahimovic’s (59%), resulting in the Dutchman having a better chance conversion rate as well (30%).

Ibrahimovic and van Persie in the Champions League 2011/12

Player Zlatan Ibrahimovic Robin van Persie
Team Milan Arsenal
Appearances 4 5
Minutes On Pitch 360 313
Goal Attempts
Goals 4 3
Mins per goal 90 104
Shots On Target 10 8
Shots Off Target 7 2
Shooting Accuracy 59% 80%
Chance Conversion 24% 30%
Goal Assists 1 0
Total Passes 160 91
Pass Completion % 77% 68%
Total Crosses 7 12
Cross Completion % 71% 8%
Dribbles & Runs 9 7
Dribble Completion % 33% 29%

Top goal scorers excluding penalties – Top 5 European Leagues 2011/12

Player Goals Excluding Penalties Conversion excl. pens
Messi, Lionel 21 24.7%
Van Persie, Robin 21 23.6%
Ronaldo, Cristiano 17 17.3%
Gomez, Mario 15 26.8%
Giroud, Olivier 15 20.8%

Champions League – best goal scoring runs in 2011/12

Player Club Consecutive apps. finding the net Dates
Ibrahimovic, Zlatan Milan 4 28/09/11–current
Hulk Porto 3 19/10/11–23/11/11
Jonas Valencia 3 19/10/11–23/11/11
Villa, David Barcelona 3 13/09/11–19/10/11
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