Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Winning The Big One

Watching all the MLS Rivalry Week games this past weekend got me to wondering: Which of the guys that played in Europe won the most derby matches?

For this tally, I only counted top flight games and domestic cup clashes. Each club was limited to two arch rivals at most, which was based on the prioritization of animosity held by our guy's team toward the foes in question. For instance, an Ajax player would be weighed on his participation in victories over both F-Word and PSV, but not against AZ Alkmaar. However, as AZ's biggest annoyance is Ajax, they were counted as a derby opponent for Jozy Altidore during his time with the Cheese Farmers (not that he made the list below).

Some clubs only were credited with one true derby foe, as I did not allow any cheapies - properly heated or historical grudge matches only. Players listed with an asterisk enjoyed a perfect record against the rivals listed.

9 Howard, Everton v Manchester City
6 Cherundolo, Hannover 96 v Wolfsburg
6 Edu, Rangers v Celtic
6 Edu, Rangers v Aberdeen
6 Onyewu, Standard Liège v Anderlecht
5* Califf, Aalborg v AGF
5 Kljestan, Anderlecht v Club Brugge
5 Stewart, Willem II v RKC Waalwijk
4 Friedel, Blackburn v Bolton
4* Gatt, Molde v Aalesunds FK
3 Beasley, PSV Eindhoven v Ajax
3* Borchers, Odd v Sandefjord
3 Bradley, Heerenveen v Groningen
3 Dempsey, Fulham v QPR
3 Friedel, Aston Villa v West Brom
3* Horvath, Molde v Aalesunds FK
3 Howard, Everton v Liverpool
3 Kljestan, Anderlecht v Standard Liège 
3 Morales, Ingolstadt v Augsburg
3 O'Brien, Ajax v PSV Eindhoven
3 Perkins, Vålerenga v Lilleström
3 Parkhurst, FC Nordsjælland v Copenhagen
3 Parkhurst, FC Nordsjælland v Lyngby
3 Stewart, Willem II v NAC Breda

I will be back Thursday with a few more categories for Americans playing in the Old World before I turn the ol' abacus toward some all-time USMNT stat counts starting on Friday.

- Greg Seltzer

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