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How will Robert Lewandowski fit into Xavi’s Barca?

How will Robert Lewandowski fit into Xavi's Barca

Player Threat and Analysis: How will Robert Lewandowski fit into Xavi’s Barca after completing his move away from Bayern Munich?

Robert Lewandowski, probably one of the top 5 strikers of this generation still in his prime at age 33years old and arguably one of the best in the history of football. A breakdown of how this goal-scoring Machine would fit into Xavi’s style of play will be a great way to start the thread I want to do right away.

Since joining Bayern back in 2014, Lewandowski has increased his expected goals (xG) total each season. In this campaign, he is averaging a staggering 1.0 xG every 90 minutes. Put simply, the chances Robert Lewandowski attempts are worth over one goal every game.

This figure is nearly double as many as in his first season at Bayern (0.5). His consistently high xG values show that his impressive goal tally is not just a product of overperforming, but rather the result of generating good goal scoring opportunities.

The timing of Robert Lewandowski’s movement creates space between him and oppositional opponents, enabling him to attack with the ball when it arrives in the threatening areas near the penalty box.

Whenever the ball is been finished to him, he expertly creates striking chances, adjusting his body to create finishing angles. And as well the below image (UCL) highlights the locations of the shots taken of XG, (Shots taken, Goals scores).One of Lewandowski’s best qualities is his run-in between defenders. He is often seen making quick runs on the defender’s blind side. His hold-up play is top-notch as he can receive the ball, inviting his teammates in joining the attack.

How will Robert Lewandowski fit into Xavi's Barca?

One of Lewandowski’s best qualities is his run-in between defenders. He is often seen making quick runs on the defender’s blind side. His hold-up play is top-notch as he can receive the ball, inviting his teammates in joining the attack.

The main takeaway from the heatmap below shows that Robert Lewandowski has a substantial existence in front of the rivals goal post and his activeness in the half spaces on the left-hand flank and also the right wing. Robert Lewandowski shows his brilliance in finding spaces and even against a low block defence.

One of Lewandowski’s best qualities is his run-in between defenders.

Robert Lewandowski is in the list of strikers who rarely make it to the top of lists because people believe he scored more tap-ins, but people don’t understand what it takes to be a brilliant reader of the game, getting into the post in scoring tap-ins.

People often criticize such which is awful. Reading spaces is what makes a striker deadly. He possesses a striker’s instinct which enables him to score his tap-ins and is one of the most crucial skills of a striker.

Robert Lewandowski is lean, strongly agile, blessed with two bewitchingly soft feet and capable of scoring from anywhere within 20 yards of the opposition goal. His first touch and finishing make a compelling case to be regarded a the outstanding No 9 of his generation.

At age 33, he still has plenty of goals left in the tanks and one of the reasons Xavi made his signing for a 3 years contract. He will continue to hone a scoring ability at Barcelona that only a handful of strikers in each generation possess.

Xavi’s play tends to be more possessive, but when playing a pretty good defensive opponent that’s a nut, you see few crosses from the wide areas to the boxes and corners. Robert Lewandowski has an excellent heading ability and one of the best headers of the ball in world football.

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Putting into his heading ability, his brilliant movement into the box gives him an edge to be available to make the finishing. He’s always in the box ready to pounce onto the cross provided from any position of the field.

Robert Lewandowski is a decent passer of the ball in the box and outside too, his short/long passing ability is elite and one he presents, and his ability to progressively ball in an opposing rival is top notch. Something that interests Xavi, based on his style of play.

Indeed, while Lewandowski has registered only three assists in his latest Bundesliga season, we can use expected assist (xA) to analyze how many assists Lewandowski should have based on the quality of his passes. His open play passes in the recent league season were worth six assists, so he was unfortunate not to have three more assists to add to his total of four.

MUST READ: The Football traditional no 9 or the bona fide no 9 role

In an era in which the game is played at an increasingly furious pace and with fixtures every three or four days, not to mention the strain of frequent travel, it is understandable that many players suffer muscular injuries due to fatigue, but not Robert Lewandowski.

To put that into perspective, Bayern legends Franz Beckenbauer (12 seasons) and Gerd Müller (10) eclipsed Lewandowski’s current haul, but in the 1970s, before arch professionalism was the norm in the game, the field comprised of 22 super-athletes. Today, only Hoffenheim’s Oliver Baumann has managed to match Lewandowski’s tally of nine consecutive seasons with 30 games played, and he’s a goalkeeper.

Note: Lewandowski has never gotten injured for more than a month, just crazy.

How will Robert Lewandowski fit into Xavi's Barca

Xavi signed a fashioned No. 9 who is always hungry for goals. His dominance in the air and the movement around the boxes are top-notch. Yet the one prospect that separated him from traditional strikers is his physical abilities on the pitch.

Robert Lewandowski’s  tactical awareness and ability to score aggressively and in a coldly way will make a difference in Xavi’s Barca, one of the key men Barca need is a forward who also has the numbers to back themselves as one of the greatest strikers in football.

MUST READ: How did Barca fair in their 1-1 draw vs Napoli in the Europa?

Lewandowski can be a ‘sure’ thing to succeed at Barca. Because, often times with elite players they get greedy and want touches of the ball so drift (Luis Suarez, Carlos Tevez at Manchester United, Kylian Mbappé at PSG, etc). They get impatient and don’t want to ‘wait’ up front. Lewandowski excels at that than anyone.

In a team as Barca that still has elite positional play and quality in attack to match now, Lewandowski will be patient and those around him will deliver the service he requires and he will score goal after goal after goal because he’s a predator. Even his link up play with Barca’s technique will be top class.


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