Pitchside Europe

Toure v Ramsey: Who will win the City v Arsenal midfield battle?

Yaya Toure and Aaron Ramsey

Two of the stars of the season so far come face-to-face at the Etihad stadium at the weekend: Yaya Toure and Aaron Ramsey.

The days of box-to-box midfielders were rumoured to be over, but the two central midfielders have flown the flag for that role in the Premier League this season, and all eyes will be on the battle between the pair in Manchester on Saturday lunchtime.

Our friends at Squawka.com analyse the duo to see where the match will be won and lost.

- - -

The two midfield engines that are Toure and Ramsey have between them scored 15 Premier League goals and created 40 chances.

Both have been in sensational form so far this season and have been the main catalysts for Arsenal and Manchester City's good form.

Toure has always been an important player for City but has been their driving energy from midfield this season.

He's their main passer in the middle, too, completing more passes than any other player in the league. His passing accuracy is one of the best in the City squad, too, boasting a superb 91% completion.

His passing is not aimless, though, as it connects the midfield and attack superbly, shown by the fact that he has sent the majority of his passes forward.

Yaya Toure's pass accuracy

In comparison, Ramsey has only completed 85% of his passes this season and has attempted fewer passes forwards than Toure.

The Welshman has sent 62% of his passes forwards this season, which is marginally less than City's powerhouse.

However, Ramsey has scored one more goal and has a greater shot accuracy. The Welshman's eight goals are his best return for the club since his arrival from Cardiff several years ago and his shot accuracy of 73% is far better than the 61% Toure holds.

Aaron Ramsey's shot accuracy

But however good Ramsey's shooting accuracy is, Toure boasts the higher chance conversion rate. The Ivorian has converted 38.9% of his chances, while Ramsey has scored from 26.7% of his efforts.

But both are fantastic figures, however, especially for midfielders who aren't shy of shooting.

Not only has Ramsey (22) created four more chances than Toure (18) this season, he's assisted two more goals.

The Welshman has been absolutely fantastic in the final third for Arsenal this season. His higher chance creation figure will be down to the fact that he plays further forward than Toure, though, who likes to sit deep and charge forward.

Aaron Ramsey's stats fir assists and chances created through key passes

One would assume that as Toure has been dominating most midfield battles, he would be excellent in the tackle with his opponents.

This is not the case, however, as he has won just 28% (15/54) of his tackles in the Premier League this season. That's compared to Ramsey's 54% (52/96) rate.

Yaya Toure's stats for duels with other players

Ramsey is leading the way in Squawka's Performance Score chart, too. The Welshman has scored 642 points so far. That's more than Toure's 554.

Both players are placed quite high on the overall scoring chart with Ramsey second behind Liverpool's Steven Gerrard and Toure in fifth behind Luis Suarez and Phil Jagielka.

Ramsey is ahead mainly thanks to his 500 attacking points, but Toure closes the gap with his huge possession advantage. The Ivory Coast international has scored 232 points compared to Ramsey's 88 in that department.

Both players are vital to their respective teams and are the beating heart of the sides. The midfield battle at the Etihad will be huge and will see two of the players of the season come up against each other.

Who wins, though? It's a tough one, but it's certainly going to be fascinating watching one of the defining matches of the first half of the season play out.