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Roberto Trashorras: the best passer in Spain (i.e. the world) - statistics in pictures (19th August, 2017)

All figures from Whoscored.com.

Roberto Trashorras made the most passes in La Liga in the 2013-14, 2014-15 and 2015-16 seasons. Here, in pictures,you can see that not only was he the best passer - he was surprisingly also the most accurate free kick taker!

Total passes

This one shouldn't be surprising. But what's striking is that he beat out Xavi, and then Toni Kroos twice. TWICE!

The top 10 players with the most passes in total in the 2013-14 season


The top 10 players with the most passes in total in the 2014-15 season

The top 10 players with the most passes in total in the 2015-16 season

Passes per 90 minutes

Now, obviously Trashorras doesn't come first here - simply because he keeps the ball for longer than a traditional regista as he is the only "passer" in the Rayo midfield. And even then he manages to come very, very close.

The top 10 players with the most passes per 90 minutes in the 2013-14 season


The top 10 players with the most passes per 90 minutes in the 2014-15 season


The top 10 players with the most passes per 90 minutes in the 2015-16 season

Accurate long balls

This was a statistic that took me by surprise. Not that Trashorras attempts a lot of long balls, but the fact that a surprising number are accurate.

As you'll see, he and Zé Castro are always near the top. Usually surrounded by goalkeepers - who tend to be much more inaccurate!

The top 10 players with the most accurate long balls per 90 minutes in the 2013-14 season

The top 10 players with the most accurate long balls per 90 minutes in the 2014-15 season

The top 10 players with the most accurate long balls per 90 minutes in the 2015-16 season

Accurate free kicks

Obviously, you could there is a bias towards the fact that Trashorras takes a lot of free-kicks, simply because Rayo players get fouled more based on their style of play. And that might be true - but what is indisputable is that he is miles ahead of everyone else.


The top 10 players with the most accurate free kicks per 90 minutes in the 2013-14 season



The top 10 players with the most accurate free kicks per 90 minutes in the 2014-15 season



The top 10 players with the most accurate free kicks per 90 minutes in the 2015-16 season

Some other observations

Something that I only thought to be true because increasingly apparent.

One of the many reasons that I thought that, even though we got relegated, our 2015-16 team under Paco Jémez was one of the best in terms of entertainment was that Rayo - and Trashorras - played amazingly beautiful football. Short passing, quick transitions and a lot of chances - just very little end product. And therefore even though Trashorras' passes per 90 minutes decreased (82.7-79.9-77.7), yet his short passes per 90 minutes increased (57.6-57.9-58.8).

Moreover, his increase in accurate free-kicks per 90 minutes (4.1-4.2-4.4) was quite symbolic of a widely-held criticism during the season - Rayo were too reliant on set-piece goals.

Obviously, since goals from open play seemed to elude us quite frequently!

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He was short. Very short. At 5'3", the left winger sometimes played in an over-sized shirt.

The ball never left his feet. His feet were tiny but they had magic. A dizzying array of body feints, close control, direction changes and sheer speed, often resembling a roller-coaster, left opposition defenders outwitted. And yes - sometimes, he frustrated. Sometimes, he was irregular.

But when he turned up, the world was at his feet.

If Juan Quero plays against Real Madrid he'll be playing against the club that let him go. The club that didn't think he had it in him to become a La Liga player.

The club that was wrong. Very, very wrong - he went fr…