Michy Batshuayi: A better Batman for Borussia Dortmund than Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang?
Michael Keaton? Christian Bale? Ben Affleck? Debate has raged for many a year over who has best portrayed the Dark Knight on the silver screen, but after notching five goals and one assist in four games for Dortmund, Batshuayi looks set to be the far superior on-field version in front of the Yellow Wall…
Batshuayi scored a brace against Atalanta as BVB beat the Italians 3-2 in the UEFA Europa League last Thursday, putting him on five goals in just three performances – four fewer than Aubameyang needed to reach the same tally. Although he fired a blank in the 1-0 win over Borussia Mönchengladbach at the weekend, he has still had a direct hand in a goal every 60 minutes.
Watch: Under the bonnet with Michy Batshuayi
The winter transfer merry-go-round saw Batshuayi replace the Arsenal-bound Aubameyang, who in turn took Oliver Giroud’s place at Arsenal, with Giroud completing the the circle by joining Chelsea. BVB coach Peter Stöger is in no doubt about which club came out on top, though.
“Michy is a real goalscorer; it was a good move go bring him here,” he beamed after the Atalanta first leg. “The question was: How well does he fit into the team, will he feel at home here? Things are looking good. He is well-liked, fully integrated and our goals as well as his personal goals align. Scoring goals is one thing, but working for the team and winning balls like he did for the opener makes him a great striker.”
High praise, but in just 360 minutes of football the Belgium international’s class been has been as striking as the Black and Yellow shirt he now dons. Batshuayi bagged a brace and assist on his debut, against Stöger’s former club Cologne on Matchday 21; opened the scoring in the subsequent 2-0 win over Hamburg; and added another pair of goals to his collection against Atalanta. A goal wasn’t forthcoming in Gladbach, but with four Bundesliga goals from six clear-cut chances his conversion rate far outdoes that of his predecessor (66.6 per cent to 43.5 per cent).
Batshuayi is not just a goalscorer, either. He trumps Aubameyang for passing accuracy (76 per cent to 65 per cent), challenges won (40.4 per cent to 40.1 per cent) and distance covered (roughly 6.5 miles per game to 5.7). Pace-wise – Auba’s prized asset – he only falls marginally short, clocking a top speed of 20.38 miles per hour, compared to his forerunner’s 24.5 mph.
Granted, the Chelsea loanee has only played four times in the Bundesliga to Aubameyang’s 144 appearances over the course of a three-and-a-half season stay with BVB that yielded 98 goals, but you get the picture: the Belgian powerhouse is the more complete striker and the better player.
Batshuayi is one Batman with no intention of lurking in the shadows.