A stat sheet pulled up by @CF_Comps9 comparing Ruben Dias’ numbers against Liverpool’s stand-in centre-half Nathaniel Phillips appears to suggest, on paper, that the 24-year-old has enjoyed a more successful season, individually, than his Manchester City counterpart.
The Bolton-born defender filled in at the back for the Reds for much of the second-half of the season following long-term injuries sustained by Virgil van Dijk, Joe Gomez and Joel Matip.
Dias vs. Nat Phillips
Premier League 20/21 … pic.twitter.com/frriZZKaBA
— CF Comps (@CF_Comps9) June 4, 2021
Joking aside, it goes without saying (we really can’t stress this enough), that we’re not claiming the Englishman is on the same level as the Citizens star.
Stats can, after all, be rather misleading and not take into account, for instance, when a defender stops an attack without forcing a change in possession or tracks back effectively to prevent a goalscoring opportunity.
Nonetheless, it’s highly amusing to be able to pull out such stats and wave them about after having so many neutrals point to the statsheet to illustrate how Frank Lampard was a better player than Steven Gerrard or that Liverpool benefitted more from VAR at one point…
The eye test ultimately matters too, to a certain extent, which is why it’s always worth taking statistical comparisons such as these with more than a pinch of salt.