Vainqueur-Verratti, the masters of the midfield22 feb 2017
They do not have the same style or the same attraction, but William Vainqueur and Marco Verratti play in the same area of play with the same influence on the performance of their team. On "guard" in front of the defense (although Rudi Garcia prefers to use the Italian term "regista"), the two players combine attack and defense brilliantly.
Recuperators, relayers and organizers, Vainqueur and Verratti "reek" of football. If the first one is rough towards the opposition and is difficult to cross in a counter attack, but delicate and precise with the pass, the second is just as skillful serving his teammates and punishing the ball with the foot but less virile and more sly in his battles.
On the other hand, statistics bring them closer together. When they are absent, more often because of suspension than for injury, the performance of their training is not the same. OM wins nearly 60% of its encounters with the former Roman in its ranks, compared to just over 15% without him. In the Parisian ranks, the choices are more numerous, but PSG also loses more matches without its Italian moth (14%, compared to 9% with him).
Among the first players to be listed on their coach's match sheets, Vainqueur and Verratti share the common story of having left their homeland at a very young age. If the former, after passing through Belgium, Russia, and Italy, has now returned to France to defend the colors of OM and expose his talent in his country, the second is lamented by his compatriots, in particular by the biggest clubs, such as Juventus or AC Milan, furious to have been bested by Ligue 1 and on the lookout to repatriate as soon as possible.
This Sunday, they will compete for the first time at the Orange Velodrome, since Vainqueur was suspended during the first leg. The encounter between the two masters of the midfield could well make sparks. Even if their paths intersect, especially if the Parisian is aligned a little higher on the field, in relay, their simultaneous presence in a match is a pledge of quality.
If the difference in goals decides the winner, the matches are usually played in the midfield, where these two reign supreme.