Ahead of Friday afternoon's FA Cup showdown between Landon Donovan's Everton and Clint Dempsey's Fulham (3 pm ET, Fox Soccer), MLSsoccer.com continues to break down which of the two players is the undisputed No. 1 American soccer star. Opta crunches the stats to help us determine how they stack up in the last two major tournaments: the 2010 World Cup and 2011 Gold Cup.
|Donovan||World Cup '10||Dempsey|
|7/3||Shots / On Goal||15/8|
|42.9%||Chance Conversion %||6.7%|
|9/3||Chances Created / Run of Play||3/3|
|22.9% on 35 crosses||Cross Completion %||0% on 3 crosses|
|72% of 78 passes||Passing % in Final Third||51% of 49 passes|
|66.7% on 9 tackles||Tackles Won %||83.3% on 6 tackles|
|6||Clearances + Interceptions||11|
|Donovan||Gold Cup '11||Dempsey|
|5/3||Shots / On Goal||26/12|
|20%||Chance Conversion %||11.5%|
|13/9||Chances Created / Run of Play||5/5|
|34.1% on 44 crosses||Cross Completion %||0% on 0 crosses|
|73.5% of 87 passes||Passing % in Final Third||66.6% of 111 passes|
|77.8% on 9 tackles||Tackles Won %||87.5% on 8 tackles|
|4||Clearances + Interceptions||5|
DEMPSEY TAKES MORE SHOTS
LA Galaxy manager Bruce Arena wasn’t kidding on ExtraTime Radio when he highlighted that Dempsey tries (ahem) "stuff" on the field.
He has outshot Donovan in both the 2011 Gold Cup (26-5) and 2010 World Cup (15-7) although playing higher up the field in several of those matches.
DONOVAN IS MORE EFFICIENT
Of Donovan’s seven shots in South Africa 2010, three were on goal and all three finished in the back of the net (42.9 percent chance conversion).
Dempsey, on the other hand, saw seven of his 15 total shots result on target. However, only one ended up in the back of the net (6.7 percent chance conversion).
Although both created the same number of chances in open play at the World Cup (three), Donovan had plenty more touches (283-214) and was more efficient in connecting his passes in the final third (72 percent to 51 percent).
In the 2011 Gold Cup, Dempsey may have had more touches (355-295), but Donovan still created the most chances in open play (9-5) and was more successful with his passes in the final third (73.5 percent to 66 percent).
DEMPSEY CAN’T DELIVER A CROSS
For as much as Dempsey has played out wide in midfield, he was never one to get to the end line and deliver a cross. And the numbers prove it: He only delivered three total crosses between the 2010 World Cup and 2011 Gold Cup and failed to connect on all three.
DEFENSIVELY, IT’S NEARLY A WASH
Both players have a similar output in their defensive play. Donovan made a few more tackles in each competition (9-8 in the Gold Cup and 9-6 in the World Cup) but Dempsey comes away with possession for the US more frequently: 87.5 percent of tackles won to 77.8 percent for Donovan at the GC 2011 and 83.3 percent to Donovan’s 66.7 percent in South Africa 2010.
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