Performance in Numbers: Oxford proves he can cut in the big leagues as West Brom ponder move

If you cast your minds back to a summer afternoon in August 2015, you might well see a baby faced Reece Oxford containing the threat of a player who at the time was one of the best creative midfielders in the world.

The player was Mesut Ozil and he was busy being pocketed by the youngster who has since unfortunately not lived up to expectations.

However, like a certain Jadon Sancho, Oxford is a trailblazer for young English footballers.

The defender has gone away and refined some of his skills in the Bundesliga, first with Borussia Monchengladbach and then also with Augsburg. But he could now be on his way back to England.

The Telegraph have suggested that with a permanent move to Augsburg stalling, West Brom could swoop for the 20-year-old.

It’s a transfer that could see him reunited with former manager Slaven Bilic who of course has just taken charge at the Hawthorns.

Their initial time together may not have been particularly beneficial for either party but Oxford is now a more mature and disciplined player than he was under Bilic previously.

He’s still an incredibly raw individual but it’s a potential signing that could be game-changing for their promotion hopes.

Reflecting upon the numbers Oxford produced during the eight times he played in the Bundesliga last term, there is some huge promise to be seen, especially from someone who has still only played 28 senior matches.

The statistic that stands out most is the number of fouls he makes per game. At a rate of 0.5 per match, it shows he has a tremendous amount of discipline for someone so young.

If you compare that to the current members of Albion’s backline, it isn’t bettered by anyone, something that supplements the huge role he could have as the club look to achieve promotion next term.

Craig Dawson made 1.1 fouls per game in 2018/19 whilst Ahmed Hegazi made a further 0.8. Kyle Bartley also made 0.9.

As a result, it’s evident that Oxford would offer a more calming nature among the defence, an attribute that was lacking under Darren Moore.

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Two other areas that particularly catch the eye are the number of clearances and long passes he makes.

The two stats are near in tandem with each other and to put things into perspective, only Hegazi who made 6.1 clearances per match completed more than the West Ham man did in the Bundesliga.

Oxford did play far less, but it gives an insight into what he can bring to the Hawthorns.

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