Do you recognize this man?
Height: 170 cm. (5′ 7″) Weight: 68 kg (150lbs.)
a) A waiter
b) a taxi driver
c) That guy at the corner market
d) the best football player in the world
Improbably the answer is (d). What Xavi’s doing in this Cup is a statistical aberration. Check the NYT times stats, in almost every game the highest number of touches by a player is around 75, number of passes around 60:
This is the rough equivalent of a spindly kid, ranked fifth in depth at Notre Dame becoming the best quarterback ever to play in the NFL. Like Joe Montana, Xavi plays in a system that he fits into perfectly, one where his mind and touch allow him to excel, instead of brute force and muscle. He will never do an underwear ad for Armani, but on Sunday he might be hoisting the World Cup.
And which would you rather?
for more insight into Xavi (thanks Fran!), go here.