Norwich City midfielder Emiliano Buendia continued his impressive start to the Premier League this weekend, despite the Canaries’ defeat to Wolves.
The Argentinian joined Norwich from Getafe last year and was key to helping Daniel Farke’s side seal promotion from the Championship, but there were questions over whether he could carry that form into the top flight.
He wasted little time in silencing any doubters, recording four assists in his first five Premier League games including two in Norwich’s 3-2 win over Manchester City in mid-September.
Emiliano Buendia’s Premier League breakthrough: Five things to know…
- Buendia is enjoying his debut Premier League campaign.
- The 22-year-old has recorded five assists so far.
- He has also created 50 chances, behind only Kevin De Bruyne and Trent Alexander-Arnold.
- Against Wolves, he created nine chances and completed nine take-ons.
- He is the only player to record 8+ in each of these stats in a single Premier League game since 2003/04, joining Eden Hazard.
However, he went through a quiet patch alongside his Norwich teammates and even dropped out of the starting XI at the start of the December, managing just 21 minutes of action across three games.
Buendia has since returned to the starting side and got his five assist of the season in Norwich’s 1-1 draw with Leicester City last weekend. But the 22-year-old put in possibly the best performance of his Norwich career so far in their 2-1 defeat against Wolves.
Norwich created nine chances in that defeat, all of which came from Buendia, with no other player contributing. Buendia also completed nine take-ons, joining an exclusive group of Premier League players.
Since such data was collected in 2003/04, only two players have completed eight or more dribbles and created eight or more in a single Premier League game.
Eden Hazard was the first, doing so for Chelsea in their 3-1 win over Sunderland on the final day of the 2014/15 season as they celebrated winning the Premier League title under Jose Mourinho. Then, he completed 10 take-ons and created eight chances recording one assist.
Since the start of the 2003/04 season, nine players have created at least eight chances and attempted at least eight take-ons all coming from different teams. Although, seven of those have failed to completed at least eight of their take-ons.
The earliest to do so was Gaizka Mendieta for Middlesbrough against Leeds in August 2003, creating nine chances and attempted nine take-ons though the midfield legend was unable to complete eight.
Luis Suarez also finds himself on the list, creating eight chances and attempting eight take-ons in Liverpool‘s 5-0 win over Swansea City but, once again, failed to complete all of his take-ons.
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Completing the list alongside Hazard and Buendia are Jermaine Pennant, Nicolas Anelka, Riyad Mahrez and Gerard Deulofeu.
Buendia’s performances this season have seen him linked with a move away from Norwich, with Aston Villa among those reportedly interested in his signing.
However, with the January transfer window getting closer, more clubs could start to take a look at the 22-year-old as a potential addition to their squad if he continues to set such high standards.