Statman Dave: Telles deliveries can add X-factor
Football analyst Statman Dave believes new Manchester United left-back Alex Telles can bring big quality in two particular areas for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s team.
The Brazilian joined from Porto on Monday and joins a squad already well represented by full-backs such as Luke Shaw, Brandon Williams and Aaron Wan-Bissaka.
But Statman Dave’s research has revealed that Telles could be poised to bring new levels of specialism to two dead-ball situations.
“Alex Telles has registered more assists from corners than any other player in Liga NOS [in Portugal] over the past three seasons, with 15,” explained Dave, in a new video that breaks down the player’s style and stats.
“He’s also got a long, flat throw, which gives an unusual dynamic to defend against, giving United and Telles another angle to create from.”
United, of course, added another player from the Portuguese league to their squad last season – Bruno Fernandes – who immediately added a new dimension to the Reds’ corner-taking.
Indeed, Fernandes’s first assist in a United shirt was from a corner: a booming, inswinging cross that perfectly picked out Harry Maguire, enabling the skipper to head us into a 2-0 lead against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.
But with the arrival of a left-footed set-piece wizard, United will now have the option for inswinging corners from either flank, thanks to Bruno and Telles.
And the Brazilian’s “unusual” throw could also add another string to United’s bow. Premier League audiences may remember the chaos caused by ex-Stoke City full-back Rory Delap’s arrowed deliveries from the touchline.
With Maguire a big presence in the opposition box at set-pieces, this is potentially another new element that Solskjaer could look to use as he and his coaching staff aim to add more variety to United’s attacking threat.
But, as you’d expect from a Brazil international, set-pieces are only a part of Telles’s game, as Dave explains.
“Telles is a playmaking left-back. He's got exceptional technique, highlighted by his passing range,” Dave claims. “He's comfortable playing those short passes into the feet of the forwards, but also long switches of play out wide to the other flank.
““He's also a danger from range,” continues the stats guru. “Not only from free-kicks, but also from open play. He's scored seven goals from outside the box in his four full seasons at FC Porto: an impressive record for a full-back.
“Ole has got his man, and we can't wait to see Alex Telles pull on the United shirt.”