Where will Marcel Sabitzer fit in at Borussia Dortmund? A statistical analysis

Marcel Sabitzer. (Photo by Craig Mercer/MB Media/Getty Images)
Marcel Sabitzer. (Photo by Craig Mercer/MB Media/Getty Images) /
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Borussia Dortmund have signed Marcel Sabitzer to bolster their midfield ranks. Here we take a statistical look at the versatile midfielder’s attributes, and where he would fit into BVB’s formation next season.

Given Marcel Sabitzer’s ability to play in multiple roles, it can affect how his statistics look. From last year’s 4-1-4-1 formation deployed by Borussia Dortmund, Sabitzer can play in any central position as well on the right side of the attacking midfield. While playing deeper, it is easier to accumulate statistics like progressive passes and defensive actions compared to accumulating xG, xA and progressive passes received.

Sabizer’s best season came playing primarily as an attacking midfielder/right sided attacking player in RB Leipzig’s 4-2-2-2 in 2019/20, when he put up 16 goal contributions.

However, more recently he has been used in the hybrid creative 8/10 role. This versatility will help a team that tends to struggle with injuries, as Sabitzer can be successful as the first choice both off the bench and as a potential replacement for the likes of Karim Adeyemi, Jamie Bynoe-Gittens, Marco Reus, Gio Reyna, as well as a back-up to fellow new signing Felix Nmecha. Sabitzer will compare mostly with Brandt and Nmecha as these are the two roles he would play barring a formation change at Borussia Dortmund.