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Home Football ISL 2020-21: Wellington Phoenix star Ulises Davila could be the answer to Bengaluru...

ISL 2020-21: Wellington Phoenix star Ulises Davila could be the answer to Bengaluru FC’s woes

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Raphael Augusto’s form in the Indian Super League (ISL) has been on a downward curve for quite some time now. His lack of goals and assists is starting to become a concern for the Bengaluru FC faithful.

Perhaps, Bengaluru’s goalscoring woes this season was exacerbated by Augusto’s awful league form and an untimely injury. The Brazilian played just nine games for Bengaluru FC this season and registered just one assist. Even FC Goa centre back Mourtada Fall provided more assists than the Bengaluru attacking midfielder this term.

Numbers define potent attacking midfielders. Augusto’s game is seriously lacking the end product and at the moment that is exactly what his team needs.

When compared to the other attacking midfielders in the league, Augusto’s statistics are frighteningly inferior.

Augusto has just 6 goals and 7 assists from his 5683 minutes in the ISL. As an average, that’s a goal every 947 minutes, an assist every 811 minutes, and a direct contribution (goal or assist) every 437 minutes.

That is some way short of Marcelinho, who during his four seasons in the Indian Super League has scored 31 goals and registered 18 assists. As an average, that’s a goal every 172 minutes, an assist every 297 minutes, and a direct contribution (goal or assist) every 109 minutes.

Augusto also falls short of Hugo Boumous, another standout attacking midfielder, who has provided a goal or assist every 84 minutes (16 goals and 17 assists) from his 2789 minutes in the ISL.

At the very least, statistics suggest Augusto simply should be contributing more to goals when his playing as a number ten.

No one is insinuating that Augusto is in any way a bad player but it is clear Augusto is not the best of scorers in front of the goal compared to other attacking midfielders in the league.

Six goals from 110 shots is a poor return and it’s a statistic that has long frustrated fans. Maybe, Carles Cuadrat should have looked at the stats before recruiting the attacking midfielder or maybe, he did. He thought he could get more out of the Brazilian.

The Blues are among the favorites for the title next year but they can truly transform themselves into sure title contenders if they can sign a top playmaker, a number 10 that is proven at this level – and free-scoring Wellington Phoenix star Ulises Davila could address that.

The Mexican has been a revelation for the Phoenix this season, seamlessly filling the void left by departing Roy Krishna by scoring 13 goals and registering five assists in his first 20 games.

A former Mexico under-20 international, Davila appeared destined for stardom when he signed a five-year deal with Premier League giants Chelsea in 2011.​

However, he was unable to play in England due to visa complications and was loaned out to various clubs across Europe every season before being released without ever making an appearance for Chelsea.

But opportunity to play a key role for the Phoenix saw him rise up to the occasion. The 28-year-old attacking midfielder is now fourth on the A-League’s Golden Boot standings, trailing recognised strikers Adam Le Fondre (14 goals), Jamie Maclaren (13) and Besart Berisha (11).

His previous best haul was seven goals, which he scored for Spanish second-tier club Cordoba during the 2013-14 campaign.

Bengaluru’s biggest problem this season is- it lacked creativity, imagination, goals and that where Ulises Davila’s natural flair,  vision, and goalscoring ability will come in handy in tight games. 

It will be interesting to see whether Bengaluru FC can entice another A-League star to India in the summer with a big money offer. They already have former A-League stars Eric Paartalu and Dimas Delagado in their ranks.

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