Passes flow as records fall
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An extraordinary passing move in London, an unlikely source extinguishing a legend’s landmark in New York and a lightning goal in Dortmund feature in FIFA.com’s latest stats review, along with an upset in Amsterdam and a mega-star maintaining an admirable tradition in Madrid.

48

passes is the staggering total Tottenham Hotspur put together in the run-up to Nacer Chadli’s second goal in the 4-0 win over Queens Park Rangers – a Premier League record. All 11 Spurs players, including goalkeeper Hugo Lloris, were involved in the move. Chadli, who netted only one goal in 24 league appearances last season, thus surpassed that tally in his first outing in the 2014/15 competition. Eric Dier was also on target against QPR, making him only the fourth defender to score in his side’s opening two games of a Premier League campaign, after Neil Clement (2004), William Gallas (2009) and Branislav Ivanovic (2012). Tottenham scoring four times in a London derby for the first time since October 2008 was also indebted to the creativity of Erik Lamela, who made his first league start at White Hart Lane – 359 days after joining them for a club record fee.

28

teams have now faced Cristiano Ronaldo in La Liga, and all 28 have conceded a goal to the Portuguese superstar. Newly-promoted Cordoba almost broke the trend on Monday night, but the Real Madrid forward fizzed the ball into the bottom corner at the death to seal a 2-0 victory. It was the FIFA Ballon d’Or holder’s 30th goal from outside the box since the 2009/10 season – an unparalleled figure, two better than Lionel Messi’s.

20

goals is what Bradley Wright-Phillips raced on to set a New York Red Bulls record for goals in a Major League Soccer campaign. The 29-year-old former Manchester City man hit a brace in a 4-2 reverse of Montreal Impact on Saturday to outrank Juan Pablo Angel – and he did it, incredibly, with ten games of the regular season to spare. “Early this year – in the first two weeks, three weeks of pre-season – if you had told me that he’d be on 20 goals with ten games left, I would’ve laughed at you,” said Red Bulls coach Mike Petke. “We laugh about it now because even in pre-season in shooting practice, Bradley couldn’t score.” Thierry Henry also scored twice against Montrael, while setting one up for his strike partner took him joint-top of the assists chart alongside LA Galaxy’s Robbie Keane.

9

seconds is all Bayer Leverkusen’s Karim Bellarabi required to score the fastest goal in Bundesliga history away to Borussia Dortmund on Saturday. Receiving a Sebastian Boenisch pass on the edge of the box, the 24-year-old winger nutmegged Mattias Ginter before sliding in to stab the ball into the bottom corner and give Roger Schmidt a perfect start to his first league game in charge of the club. It surpassed the previous 11-second record jointly held by Bayern Munich’s Giovane Elber and Leverkusen’s Ulf Kirsten. Bellarabi then robbed Erik Durm of possession in stoppage time and crossed for Stefan Kiessling to seal a 2-0 victory that left Leverkusen level with Hoffenheim at the summit after Round 1. It was the towering 30-year-old’s seventh goal in three appearances in all competitions this season. Bernd Leno, meanwhile, kept his 30th clean sheet in what was his 100th Bundesliga appearance.

6

years after they last won at the Amsterdam ArenA, PSV repeated the feat on Saturday. Anwar El Ghazi’s cerebral header, on his first Eredivisie start, put Ajax ahead, but Memphis Depay tapped home an equaliser following fine work from Luciano Narsingh shortly after the break. It was the 20-year-old’s fifth goal in three games in the 2014/15 Eredivisie, Narsingh then made it 2-1, before Florian Jozefzoon put the result beyond doubt and ensured Ajax, chasing a fifth successive title, conceded three times in a home league game for the first time since 2007. PSV have scored nine of their 11 shots on target this term.