In FIFA.com’s latest stats review, landmarks for Neymar and Jupp Heynckes feature alongside Côte d’Ivoire's defensive excellence and scoring feats from Messrs Ba, Cisse and Milito.
Bundesliga points have now been won by Jupp Heynckes, with the Bayern Munich coach only the second man to reach this milestone. The first, Otto Rehhagel, leads the all-time standings with an imposing tally of 1,370. Heynckes would have hoped to be another couple of points closer to his predecessor’s mark, but his Bayern side – who have yet to score from open play in 2012 – could only draw 1-1 at Hamburg. Leading the way are reigning champions Borussia Dortmund, who have won their first three games since the winter break for the first time in a decade and remain unbeaten in their last 14. Cologne also enjoyed a notable success, ending a 25-game winless streak against Kaiserslautern in the German top flight that dated back to 1989. Yet perhaps the most notable statistic to emerge from the weekend’s Bundesliga fixtures is that, for the first time since 1998, not a single home team emerged victorious.
career goals was the landmark reached by Neymar on Sunday as he celebrated his 20th birthday in style. The Santos star’s century, which is made up of 82 goals for his club, eight for the senior national team, nine for the U-20s and one for the U-17s, has been completed in just 186 appearances. Unusually, Neymar’s latest goal came from his head, just as his first Santos one did in 2009; of the rest, only five have come from headers, with 70 emanating from his right foot, 21 from his left and one each from his shoulder and chest. The youngster was not, however, able to inspire his team to victory as Palmeiras scored twice in the final two minutes to snatch a 2-1 win. Incidentally, Neymar is not the first Santos icon to score on his 20th birthday. Pele also managed the feat in a 4-1 victory over Ponte Preta on 23 October 1960, although by that age O Rei’s career tally already stood at a remarkable 343.
top-flight goals is the tally combined tally that Newcastle United duo Demba Ba (29) and Papiss Cisse (31) have accrued since the start of last season. The Senegalese strikers were both on target in the Magpies’ 2-1 win over Aston Villa on Saturday, with Cisse becoming the club’s first goalscoring debutant since Xisco in 2008, and Ba notching his 16th goal in as many league outings for Alan Pardew’s side. Elsewhere, grabbing a double in Arsenal’s 7-1 thrashing of Blackburn Rovers established Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain – at 18 years and 73 days – as Arsenal’s second-youngest Premier League goalscorer after Cesc Fabregas (17-113). He also became the youngest player to score twice in an English top-flight fixture since Wayne Rooney (18-120) in 2004.
goals were scored by Diego Milito in last Wednesday’s 4-4 draw with Palermo, the first time an Inter Milan player has managed this feat since Christian Vieri in December 2002. The same, remarkable match also included a hat-trick from Fabrizio Miccoli, making it the first Serie A fixture since May 2005 to witness trebles from two opposing players. Beaten 4-0 by Roma at the weekend in Claudio Ranieri’s 600th game as a coach in Italian football, Inter have now conceded four goals in consecutive Serie A matches for the first time in their history. Across the city, AC Milan have failed to score in consecutive league fixtures for the first time since September 2009, while Zlatan Ibrahimovic picked the third red card of his Rossoneri career. No-one in Serie A has been dismissed more often than the Swede since his return to Serie A in 2010.
goals conceded in four matches is the statistic that has underpinned Côte d’Ivoire’s run to the CAF Africa Cup of Nations semi-finals. Les Elephants are the only side in the competition still to have their goal breached, with their appearances thus far having produced an aggregate score of 8-0. At the other end, Didier Drogba’s tally of three goals has left him joint-first in the race to become top scorer, and the Chelsea star has also become only the third Ivorian to rack up ten goals or more at the Cup of Nations, following Laurent Pokou (14) and Joel Tiehi. Côte d’Ivoire now find their path to the final barred by a Mali side who have played four, scored four and conceded four thus far, and whose shooting accuracy of 25 per cent during the group stage was the lowest in the entire tournament.