Odsonne Edouard of Celtic 'is ideal replacement for Man City ace Sergio Aguero', statistics claim

Celtic striker Odsonne Edouard is a ready-made successor to Manchester City striker Sergio Aguero, new data has suggested.

Celtic's Odsonne Edouard (left) has emerged as the best like-for-like replacement for Man City's Sergio Aguero, according to new data

The France Under-21 striker is enjoying a successful season at Celtic, with 19 goals and nine assists to his name so far in 22 Scottish Premiership appearances as the Hoops eye a ninth successive league title.

Edouard's form has seen him linked with numerous moves away from Celtic Park - although the former Paris Saint-Germain youngster has indicated a desire to remain with the club for the foreseeable future - while former Celtic figures Chris Sutton and Gordon Strachan have likened the 21-year-old to Henrik Larsson and Dennis Bergkamp respectively.

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Manchester City recruitment czar Txiki Begiristain is on the lookout for a potential successor to Aguero and while Brazilian forward Gabriel Jesus has already been brought in, reports suggest that the Etihad hierarchy are looking elsewhere for a "like-for-like" replacement for the talismanic Argentinian.

Enter Edouard.

Statistics collected by smarterscout, a database used by scouts and professional football teams, reveals that the Frenchman is effectively a ready-made replacement for the 31-year-old City striker.

A player focus article published by smarterscout comparing the two strikers notes that Edouard's "attacking output is extremely high by a Premier League standard... he contributes a fair amount as a defender, is an average dribbler and an excellent finisher".

The numbers show that Edouard is improving every season. He is becoming more involved in attacking moves, with 69 per cent of those moves resulting in a goal and 50 per cent in a shot.

The article continues: "We've been tracking Edouard for some time in the Scottish Premiership data that we keep for private clients. We wanted to see which Premier League strikers had a similar style to Edouard in the past several seasons, so we fired up the "Search by similar player" feature on the site – and then our jaws hit the floor."

Despite the difference in physique - Aguero is a stocky, 5ft 8in while Edouard is a rangy 6ft 2in - the two players are remarkably similar in terms of the metrics tracked by smarterscout. The five results for similar players threw up Aguero in seasons 2016/17, 2017/18 and 2018/19; Diego Costa during the 2016/17 season at Chelsea and Brighton and Hove Albion striker Neal Maupay for the 2019/20 season.

Aguero and Edouard have similar metrics for passes towards goal, link-up play, ball recovery, dribbling and shots.

The article points out that, prior to joining Leicester City, Brendan Rodgers installed a style of play at Celtic very similar to that in use at City.

Kieran Devlin of The Athletic has claimed on the 90 Minute Cynic podcast that Pep Guardiola's side have already sent scouts north to run the rule over Edouard. Smarterscout's article concludes: "In some ways, Edouard has already been groomed to play the style that Pep Guardiola and his bankrollers prefer.

"It shouldn't be a question of whether they sign Edouard – it should be when."