The top two goalscorers in the world aren’t even strikers, but still, there are more than a few who carry on the torch for the real 9’s, and it’s hard to find anyone who does it better than Edinson Cavani and Radamel Falcao. The question is, who is the better man between them.
Hold up. What about Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Robin van Persie? Maybe even Luis Suarez deserves someone to mention him? At the moment, let us leave them outside of this discussion, although they do deserve to be in some sort of one. Maybe on our next edition of best strikers in the world.
Cavani will be turning 26 next month. Falcao is almost exactly a year older (4 days separating their birthdays). In terms of production overall, not just in league matches, the two are pretty even this season. Falcao has scored 22 goals in 21 matches for Atletico, not taking part in their Europa League matches. Cavani has played more, including 7 goals in the Europa League, bringing his total to 26 goals in 25 matches.
When it comes to dependency there’s no doubt that Cavani is much more important at the moment to Napoli. Without him, this team wouldn’t be battling for the Serie A title and a Champions League spot. It probably wouldn’t be looking at a European finish at all. Atletico might not be having the fantastic season they’re having without Falcao, but the Colombian wouldn’t mean a complete collapse on the striped side of Madrid if he was to move on.
The abilities are pretty much the same, although Cavani is probably the better free kick taker and with a longer range when it comes to shooting. He also plays sometimes less as a target man and more as someone who comes from outside the box, playing with his face towards the goal. Falcao is a more traditional striker in that sense; a classic pivot striker, with fantastic instincts inside the box and brilliant aerial ability.
Both are tracked by the big clubs, and it’s likely that they’ll be moving on sometime in the near future. For Falcao, it’s going to be either Chelsea or Real Madrid, while Cavani is targeted by Chelsea as well, although Manchester City are also very strong on his trail, maybe even closer than anyone to signing the Uruguayan once Napoli agree to sell him.
Hat tip: Whoscored