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Top 25 aerial duelers of Ligue 1 forwards and midfielders 2019/20

A duel in football is an event where two players fight to gain control of the ball. An aerial duel takes place when two players compete for the ball in the air using their heads. Players who are taller generally have a chance of winning more aerial duels than the other players, but the height of the player is not the only factor contributing to the success of an aerial duel.

The visualisation below shows the success rate in aerial duels of Ligue 1 Forwards & Midfielders. The bars are arranged in the order of the success rate.

As you can see, Toma Bašić from Bordeaux has the best success rate among midfielders & forwards to have played at least 900 minutes, but he is not someone who competes in a lot of aerial duels like Sidy Sarr (Nîmes), who competes in 11.64 aerial duels per 90 minutes and also has a very good success rate(63.16%). Júlio Tavares, the 31-year-old Centre Forward from Dijon has been involved in the most aerial duels per 90 (among forwards & midfielders who have played at least 900 minutes) with 15.01 aerial duels per 90 minutes. The thing with him is he has a poor success rate compared to the others(49.01%) and hence does not feature in the top 25. Marco Verratti is another interesting name that must have caught the attention of everybody. He is the shortest player in the top 25. The defensive midfielder from Paris Saint-Germain has a success rate of 55% competing in 1.90 aerial duels per 90 minutes.

The majority of the players in the above group play in the central midfield positions. It is fair to say that players in those positions are involved in almost every event happening on the pitch and you cannot count them out for Aerial duels.