Downing & Young Contribution
Both players netted 7 league goals last season, although just one of Young’s efforts came in open play. The Manchester United signing did however weigh in with an impressive 10 assists and when combined with Downing’s 7, the two departing players contributed a goal or assist to 31 of Villa’s 48 strikes last term.
Young ranked top in term’s of shots per game at Villa with 2.1, while Downing came in 3rd behind Darren Bent with 1.6. The Anfield-bound winger’s pass success rate was superior to his team-mate and at 78% represents an impressive figure from an out-and-out wide man. Young’s total of 72% shows that this area of his game will need to improve if he is to hold down a place at Old Trafford.
The duo topped Villa’s charts once more in terms of key passes per game, with impressive figures of 2.3 (Young) and 2.2 (Downing) respectively. Having become renowned for his ability to attack full-backs early on his Villa career, Young’s figures of just 0.5 successful dribbles per game come as somewhat of a surprise, while Downing’s total of 0.7 is not much better.
Ashley Young was the most fouled player in the Premier League last season, winning a free-kick 2.8 times a match on average compared to Downing’s 0.7. This would lead some to suggest that he goes down too easily which could be argued but his highly advanced figure in this regard is indicative of how he is treated by his opponents due to the threat he creates.
Unsurprisingly the pair topped Villa’s crossing ranks from last season, with Young again edging Downing with 2.2 to 2.1 successful attempts per match. Those scores reverse when it comes to long balls completed per game, though Young far exceeded Downing’s through balls per game score of 0.1 in playing from a more central position and picking up 0.7 a match on average.
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