Sunday’s all-important encounter between Aston Villa and Leeds United is poised to be a cracking one and arguably one of the biggest matches of the season for both teams.
But the battle at Villa Park could very well depend on which team’s striker fire the hottest when the two teams square off.
Both managers have been playing with a 4-1-4-1 formation in recent matches with Tammy Abraham and Kemar Roofe as the lone strikers respectively.
And both centre-forwards have been brilliant for their managers and have been lethal in front of goal.
Abraham, on loan at the Birmingham club from Chelsea, has especially improved his game since Dean Smith took charge of the Villans in October. Eight goals in his last six matches have seen his season tally rise to 12 with one assist.
Roofe, on the other hand, has had an equally important impact on Marcelo Bielsa’s reign as Leeds manager that has seen the Yorkshire team rise to the summit of the Championship following a 1-0 win at Bolton Wanderers this past weekend.
The striker has ten goals and two assists to his name this season and has started every match he was available to for selection.
The way both managers set up has given the strikers the freedom and responsibility of being their teams’ best chances of finding the back of the net.
Villa’s biggest problem, however, this season has been in defence where they have struggled to keep clean-sheets.
But as far as the goal-scoring ability of Abraham goes, Villa could’ve been higher up the table if they had a more solid defence like Leeds.
The Whites’ all-round play have made it easier for Roofe to find space in behind defenders, while he has also been quite effective in the air.
One-on-one the result of Sunday might come down to which teams’ play-makers find it easier to crack the defence to put either Abraham or Roofe in on goal.