Friday 06 January 2017, 08:16

Streaks and switches centre stage

One former European champion losing a long streak and two others extending their invincibility feature in’slatest stats review, along with an indefatigable Englishman, an expensive Brazilian and a conquering Colombian.


years after Carlos Valderrama became the last Colombia-based player to win the South American Football of the Year award, Miguel Borja became the next. The 23-year-old forward scored 19 times in 21 games for Cortulua, breaking Jackson Martinez’s record for goals in a single campaign, before joining Atletico Nacional, whom he inspired to Copa Libertadores glory and converted the penalty that seized them bronze at the FIFA Club World Cup. Borja finished 2016 with 39 goals in 51 appearances and pipped Brazilian Gabriel Jesus to the award by just nine votes – the shortest margin since Juan Sebastian Veron edged Juan Roman Riquelme by three in 2008. Teofilo Gutierrez became the second Colombian to win the award two years ago, but he was with River Plate in Argentina. Borja’s triumph stopped the award going to a player based in Argentina or Brazil for the ninth straight year.


wins out of 20 home matches in Serie A: that is the Serie A record that Juventus established in 2016. The only other Italian top-flight teams to finish a calendar year with a 100 per cent record were Genoa in 1929 and Juve themselves in 1946, though they played just five and seven games, respectively. Torino had held the outright record for the most home wins in a calendar year, but a 1-1 draw against Triestina denied them triumphing in all 21 of their assignments.


consecutive Scottish Premiership victories is the run Celtic extended by beating their arch-rivals on Saturday. Rangers led early, but goals from Moussa Dembele – his fifth in three Old Firm outings – and Scott Sinclair secured Brendan Rodgers’ side a 2-1 win. It left the Bhoys having beaten the Gers in three straight league games for the first time since they managed seven victories in succession in 2004. Rodgers' side, who have taken 58 points out of a possible 60, also sit a whopping 19 points clear of their old rivals. Unbeaten in their last 24 domestic matches, Celtic need only to avoid defeat in their next two fixtures to match a post-war record set by Jock Stein's Lisbon Lions in the club's European Cup-winning season of 1966/67.


successive English Premier League victories was the streak that ended for Chelsea on Wednesday – just one shy of the record set by Patrick Vieira, Freddie Ljungberg, Robert Pires, Dennis Bergkamp, Thierry Henry and their Arsenal team-mates in 2002. As Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur became the first teams to tussle for the 50th time in the competition, a Dele Alli double earned the latter a 2-0 win, leaving him having scored twice in his last three appearances. It also made the 20-year-old the fifth-youngest player – and the youngest midfielder – to reach 20 Premier League goals, after Michael Owen, Wayne Rooney, Robbie Fowler and Alan Smith. The result extended Spurs’ undefeated streak in London derbies at White Hart Lane under Mauricio Pochettino to 11 matches.


times is how often the Asian transfer record has been broken in just 12 months following Oscar’s €70.4 million move from Chelsea to Shanghai SIPG. It was snapped three times in ten days from January 2016, by Ramires joining Jiangsu Suning from Chelsea, Jackson Martinez swapping Atletico Madrid for Guangzhou Evergrande, and Alex Teixeira leaving Shakhtar Donetsk for Jiangsu for €33, €42 and €50 million, respectively. Hulk then moved to Shanghai SIPG from Zenit for €55.8 million in June. Shanghai SIPG also broke the record fee paid for a Brazilian – it had been the €65 million Real Madrid gave AC Milan for Kaka in 2009 – by signing Oscar, who became only the tenth footballer in history to move for a fee in excess of €70 million.

Quick hits 14kilometres is what Bournemouth’s Dan Gosling ran against Arsenal on Tuesday – more than any player in a 2016/17 English Premier League game.

11 out of James Rodriguez’s last 15 goals for Real Madrid have come from outside the box.