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African All Stars

Revealed: Which Africans top each World Cup stats category?

10:17 PM MYT 09/12/2022
Kudus Hakimi Koulibaly
GOAL’s Ed Dove lifts the lid on the best and worst performing African players so far
  • Cameroon's forward #10 Vincent Aboubakar celebrates scoring

    Goals

    Only two African players have scored more than once in the World Cup—Vincent Aboubakar and Mohammed Kudus—however, both of them are some way off leading scorer Kylian Mbappe.

    Could any of the Morocco players still standing in the competition outgun the France superstar in the matches to come?

  • Abdelhamid Sabiri.

    Assists

    Bruno Fernandes leads the way for the tournament with three assists. No African player has set up two goals so far this tournament, although the likes of Achraf Hakimi and Abdelhamid Sabiri could climb up this list in the matches to come, having already registered one assist each.

  • FW_Youssef Msakni

    Shots per game

    Mbappe leads the way for the tournament here, having averaged a whopping 5.3 shots per match.

    Leading the way for Africa, and not too far behind, is Tunisia’s Youssef Msakni, who took nine shots across his two outings for the Carthage Eagles.

    Unlike Mbappe, Msakni didn’t find the net during his time in Qatar.

  • Gideon Mensah Ghana.

    Aerial battles won

    Perhaps surprising, for a full-back, Ghana’s Gideon Mensah is Africa’s most successful header of the ball so far this tournament.

    The left-sider, who played just once in the tournament, won four aerial battles across 88 minutes.

    Topping the charts in the tournament is Croatia’s Borna Barisic, who registered six aerial battles won during his sole outing.

  • Hakimi

    Tackles per game

    Of players who have featured in two matches or more, Achraf Hakimi leads the way for Africa in terms of average tackles per match.

    The right-sider has averaged 4.3 successful tackles across his four appearances, joint top of the whole tournament (tied with Liverpool’s Ibrahima Konate).

    Including all players to have featured even for a minute in the competition, top of the charts is Mohamed Ali Ben Romdhane of Tunisia, who registered five tackles across 74 minutes against France.

  • Jean-Charles Castelletto Cameroon.

    Interceptions

    Jean-Charles Castelletto was injured for Cameroon’s triumphant victory over Brazil, but he nonetheless tops the charts for interceptions per match across the whole tournament.

    In his two appearances to date, the FC Nantes man made six interceptions—demonstrating his sharp ability to read the play, while also acknowledging the pressure Cameroon found themselves under.

  • Senegal captain Kalidou Koulibaly.

    Clearances per match

    Similarly hinting at the way African teams have found themselves under the cosh at this World Cup, the three players to have averaged the highest number of clearances per match are all from the continent.

    Kalidou Koulibaly leads the way, with a whopping 7.5 clearances per match, with Romain Saiss (7.3) and Yassine Meriah (6.7) hot on his tails.

  • Youssouf Sabaly Senegal 2022.

    Chances created

    An indication, perhaps, of the struggles African teams have had to find genuine creativity at the World Cup, none of the top 20 chance creators in the tournament so far have come from the continent.

    Both Msakni and Senegal’s Youssouf Sabaly have averaged two chances created per match so far this tournament.

  • Mohammed Kudus Ghana.

    Best dribbler

    He’s some way behind Jamal Musiala, comfortably the outstanding dribbler in the tournament so far, but Ghana’s Kudus certainly demonstrated his ability with the ball at his feet.

    Across three matches, as well as scoring twice, he averaged 3.3 completed take-ons per match—behind only Musiala and Canada’s Alphonso Davies, who was also born in Ghana.