Championship

TT Battle: Steven Fletcher vs Benik Afobe

They aren’t bad options by any means, are they? Stoke City host Sheffield Wednesday this weekend and both of the sides top scorers will be looking to play a key part in the game.

Both Stoke and Wednesday have not exactly been on top form in front of goal this season. Only two sides have scored less than the Potters this season, and they are the bottom two sides in the table. Wednesday haven’t exactly set the league alight in terms of goals either, having scored 48 goals which is roughly an average tally for a side in the division.

In order for one to overcome the other, Steven Fletcher and Benik Afobe will need to be on top form to help influence that. With that being said, let’s discuss the importance of each player to their side…

Steven Fletcher

Fletcher, who is valued at £1.8 million (by Transfermarkt), is adept with either a striking partner or featuring up top on his own. He is able to play to his strengths by using his know-how to link-up play and go for goal at the right times.

The 32-year-old has scored five goals in his last six games so it would be of no surprise to see him continue such form at the bet365 stadium on Saturday.

TT Grade: B-

Benik Afobe

Afobe has netted nine times for Stoke this season, three more than the next in line, Joe Allen, so the scoring onus from the striker role is very much on him.

The 26-year-old has always been a threat in-and-around the 18-yard box and he will need to be once again to cause problems to Wednesday’s defence. In terms of importance, his performance will be crucial to Stoke getting a result.

TT Grade: B

TT VERDICT

Although Fletcher has been in the better form across the course of the season, when he is not scoring, Wednesday still have the likes of Adam Reach and Lucas Joao who can step up and find the net, like they both have done so nine times each this season.

Compare that to Afobe and despite not playing as well as Fletcher over the season, given the lack of attacking output bar himself, he is very much so expected to perform with a heavy reliance on him in terms of the goals.

In that sense, due to the responsibility with a lack of other natural goalscorers to ease that from him, Afobe is of higher value to Stoke that Fletcher is to Wednesday.

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