Versus: Roy O’Donovan v Oriol Riera

A fair bit has happened over the course of the first three rounds of the 13th A-League season but there have been two constants across the first month. Newcastle Jet’s Roy O’Donovan and Western Sydney Wanderers’ Oriol Riera have scored in each of the three games they’ve played so far. O’Donovan has five, Riera has three, but with the two sides going head-to-head this week let’s get our industry super on and compare the pair.

Round 1 of course goes to the Irishman, Roy O’Donovan, he started the season with an impressive hat-trick against his former club Central Coast Mariners in Round 1, and has tapped in two crosses over the past two weeks, scoring Newcastle’s opening goal on three consecutive occasions.

Oriol Riera has been no slouch. Almost besting the likes of Dino Kresinger and Federico Piovaccari’s figures, the Spaniard has quickly became a force to be reckoned with this season. His header against Sydney FC being the highlight, placing his header where the spiders live following a pin-point cross from Josh Risdon.

O’Donovan has a 100 per cent conversion rate having five shots on target, while Riera has scored three of the four shots he’s had on target. Both men have converted a penalty, but it’s O’Donovan scoring more frequently having a goal every 54 minutes while Riera has only scored every 88 minutes.

Let’s see how they stack up in other areas:

O’Donovan

  • One assist
  • Three key passes
  • Four offsides
  • One tackle
  • One clearance
  • One interception
  • 35 passes
  • Seven fouls won
  • 10 fouls conceded
  • One yellow card

Riera

  • Four key passes
  • Two tackles
  • Seven clearances
  • One interception
  • 51 passes
  • Four fouls won
  • Five fouls conceded
  • One yellow card

You can see that aside from a few defensive stats that these two are pretty evenly matched, but strikers are judged by the goals they score and Roy O’Donovan has scored more and takes out this battle.

But will he be the difference on Sunday as Newcastle chase their first victory against the Wanderers at Hunter Stadium?

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