Melbourne City FC’s upcoming clash with the Central Coast Mariners at AAMI Park this Saturday has historic implications for the home side, with the team able to lift the Premiers Plate for the first time in its history if the boys can secure a win.
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City’s pressing machine Adrian Luna is likely to be the heartbeat of his side on Saturday, with his seemingly limitless energy reserves always of high value to the team’s performances.
Third goal of the season for Luna! 👏
— Melbourne City FC (@MelbourneCity) April 17, 2021
Luna is likely to spend much of the 90 minutes battling for control of the midfield with the Mariners’ Daniel De Silva who has been a prolific contributor for the Gosford-based side this campaign.
The pair have featured 18 and 19 times for their sides respectively, though Luna’s five substitute appearances mean that there’s a notable disparity between their minutes-played, with De Silva having accumulated over five hours more playing time.
This disparity also means that, despite the fact that each midfielder has scored three goals this season, Luna’s have come at a much faster rate, with the Urugayan netting every 420 minutes, as opposed to every 524.7 for De Silva.
Luna is also more accurate when shooting, though he has also had less attempts at goal, accurate with 56.5% of his 23 shots compared to De Silva’s 44.8% from 29.
𝑪𝒍𝒂𝒔𝒔 𝒘𝒊𝒕𝒉 𝒂 𝒄𝒂𝒑𝒊𝒕𝒂𝒍 '𝑪'.
Nooney and Luna combine for the opener away from home!
— Melbourne City FC (@MelbourneCity) February 3, 2021
Despite being the more productive creator in regards to key passes with 35 to 24, Luna is yet to match De Silva for actual assists, having recorded two this campaign compared to his Mariners counterpart’s three.
Luna’s creative capacity on the ball can in-part be explained by his higher volume of 48 passes per 90 minutes at 81.8% accuracy, whereas De Silva is less involved at 40.3 passes per 90 at 85.9%.
In regards to dribbling, De Silva’s proficiency when on the move with the ball at his feet shows through in his 29 successful dribbles, where Luna has recorded just nine of the same statistic.
These evasive skills are also demonstrated in De Silva’s 27 fouls won, though Luna has also managed to draw 19 himself.