Now that Robert Glatzel has made his long awaited debut for Cardiff City, we can start to understand just why Warnock sold Zohore to West Brom and replaced him with the big German striker.
Ken Zohore has long been an enigma to Cardiff fans. On his day, an unplayable striker adept at taking players on, bringing others into play, and finishing from anywhere inside the box. But, as many will point out, his day doesn’t come along too often. Last season, he scored one, albeit, vital goal away at Southampton but was often overlooked when he was fit in favour of others.
There’s an argument to say that despite being big, Zohore isn’t a true target man – something I do agree with to an extent – and he was better with the ball into his feet. But in any event, last weekend gave us the first opportunity to really see how Glatzel shaped up and how Zohore did for WBA. Using Stat Zone, we’ve taken a little look at how Ken Zohore and Glatzel shaped up last week. To make sense of our analysis, you’ll need this key:
Now, to Ken Zohore:
Twitter was alive with criticism of Ken Zohore’s performance for West Brom last week and you can see why. He won just one aerial duel all match, losing three more. He didn’t attempt a single tackle, making just one successful ball recovery. He had one shot on target in the whole game and made five successful passes – with just one going forward. He also didn’t seem to make any forays back into the defensive half – one short pass withstanding.
When you compare this with Glatzel’s:
Glatzel has a lot more going on for him. Starting in defence, he’s clearing out corners from the near post, making ball recoveries 30 years from his own goal and making successful tackles to break up play. He’s also making more passes overall, with more variety. His pass variation shows that his whole remit is bringing others into play. He’s passing balls out wide to bring wingers and fullbacks into play, he’s laying it out to the defensive midfielders to get forward. And he’s made four passes that led to shots. Granted, some of them are from far out, but he did bring Murphy into play where goals probably should have been scored.
There’s room for improvement in his aerial duels – he’s won two out of six against Luton and he’s only managed one shot in the game. But that will come in time and it looks as if he is more than willing to play the water carrier role up front. He’s making ball recoveries in the middle of the attacking half, he’s getting back to defend as well as getting into the penalty area with passes and his movement.
While Glatzel didn’t get a debut goal, the above dashboards show encouraging signs that Warnock has found a striker to play the game he wants. Away from the dashboards, Glatzel showed neat turns of pace and a willingness to chase defenders down and put them under pressure.
While Zohore had talent, the frustrations with him grew from a seeming unwillingness to run at times. With Glatzel, it already feels like there is no short of running in his legs. The acid test will be whether he can convert this into goals. Once he’s got a run of games under his belt, and Cardiff City’s new players really start to click, I’m sure this will come.