Modric The Creator – A Breakdown Of His Impressive Season

by Sam Peoples

Luka Modric battles for possession against Darren Fletcher. Photo: Getty Images

Last season, Tottenham Hotspur managed to hold onto Luka Modric after turning down a whopping £40 million bid from Chelsea. The diminutive playmaker didn’t look like he wanted to be there anymore but he pulled his socks up and, like the previous season, became their lynch pin. Tottenham’s season may well have dwindled massively following Harry Redknapp’s court case and England manager saga, but it doesn’t take away from the fact that they played some wonderful football.

After some fine individual performances at Euro 2012 with Croatia, he is once again touted for a move away from White Hart Lane. Maybe Andre Villas-Boas has some excellent persuasive skills and will manage to keep him but I doubt it. Another season without Champions League football may prove too much. Last season, just how much of Tottenham’s impressive performances relied on how well Luka Modric played? He only scored four goals and got four assists, some might cry, but in reality, he ran the show.

The top six passers in the Premier League last season.

Luka Modric played the most matches, played the most minutes and attempted and completed the most passes out of any of the top six passers in the league. His passing talent is there for all to see but it is his all-round physical game that is one of his greatest assets. In a midfield where energy has been lacking in seasons by gone by, Manchester United could really do with a dynamo of a midfielder. It would allow Michael Carrick to drop deeper in the midfield and play to his strengths in ball retention, positional play and interceptions.

The top six passers in the opponents half.

“Sure, Modric might have the most completed passes but how many of them were in the opponents half?”

Over 50%. 1206/2200 to be precise. Luka Modric really brings the ball forward when he plays. He isn’t a sideways midfielder, he acts as the bridge between midfield and attack and often gets the attacks going in the first place.

United had to rely on Rooney dropping deeper to bring the ball up the centre of the pitch or use the power and pace of our wingers to start our attacks. We didn’t carry enough of a threat through the middle.

The top six chance creators from last season.

“OK, Modric played a lot of his passes in the opponents half but how many of them were where it really matters?”

He completed 533 passes in the final third, 85.3% of those that he attempted with only Silva and Nasri completing more. This is reflected in the fact that Modric created 95 chances across the season, second only to Silva and Mata on 102.

The fact that Modric only had four assists in comparison to Mata (13) and Silva (15) had more to do with poor finishing than a lack of ability. If he was feeding Rooney, Hernandez and Welbeck, those figures would no doubt improve.

These are but a few statistics I have used to show how important Luka Modric was to Tottenham last season. He had the most touches (3402) out of any midfielder, he received the most passes (2281) out of any midfielder. Everywhere you look, Modric’s name is there.

With Manchester United now applying to be floated on the New York Stock Exchange to raise funds due to our crippling debt, combined with a net transfer spend of over £20 million already this summer, the money may well not be there for a marquee signing like Modric. However, we were in for Hazard, so maybe it is. Either way, if United were to land the Croatian, a gaping hole in our midfield would disappear (pending injuries, of course, it is United after all).

All statistics provided by Fantasy Football Scout.

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Sam Peoples 07/05/2012 - 11:40

@Spurs fan £10 with me? 😉

@Michael Pogba was extremely disrespectful to United despite getting a plethora of opportunities. His move was an agent driven money move and any United fans who are “downgrading” him are merely venting their disappointment.

As for Modric, he is Carrick-esque in the fact that he doesn’t get enough praise for what he does. Fans talking down about him merely don’t know his importance to the team.

Michael 07/05/2012 - 04:31

Wow this stats are really good. And yet some United fans that I’ve read looked down on Modric. Probably because they realize that he isn’t going to sign for United and may sign for Madrid or Chelsea instead. Typical United fans. If they can’t have him, downgrade him. The same goes for Pogba. When word of confirmation of Pogba’s departure to Juventus spreads, they made comments downgrading Pogba and yet when he signed for United, after United successfully stole him from Le Havre, they made good comments about his talent. If you can’t have them good players, downgrade them.

spurs fan 07/05/2012 - 00:22

i going to put a bet on Modric will be playing for spurs next season

Peter 07/04/2012 - 22:16

I will love to see modric in old trafford,man u should go for him.

Indyfan 07/04/2012 - 20:05

Plainly Spurs will not sell Modric to a PL rival. Therefore the above analysis is a waste of time.

Sam Peoples 07/04/2012 - 17:31

If we had a midfielder creating near enough 100 chances a season with Javier Hernandez pulling off the last defender and Rooney playing alongside him? They would definitely increase.

Jonathan Alberto (@JonasRSDrake) 07/04/2012 - 17:24

keep united fans away from reality, United can not afford to sign any more World Class player, maybe in six years from here. Those statics are incredible but we failed too many occassions with our players, so I don’t think that Luka modric’s total assist would increase here.

blessings 07/04/2012 - 17:14

Somebody need explain where Money is going,I will die supporting ManU but not Glazers,we don’t like number2

Jonathan Alberto (@JonasRSDrake) 07/04/2012 - 17:24

Debts… nowhere else


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