Earlier this week, Peterborough United signed Jack Taylor from National League side Barnet for an initial fee of £500,000.
The signing came less than a week after Reece Brown joined the club on loan from Sky Bet Championship side Huddersfield Town.
Both have been brought in to improve the midfield, so as part of this in-depth series of articles looking at the middle of the park for Posh, why not have a look at what these two players can bring?
The image above was created by Blades_analytic, a fantastic Twitter account that produces all kinds of brilliant infographics.
Two standout statistics from Taylor’s map are his progressive passes and passes into penalty box stats. The ability to progress the ball through midfield and sustain attacks in the final third are two areas Posh were desperate to address, so his signing in this regard makes a lot of sense and addresses obvious limitations in the current squad. His successful long passing and variety of passing areas also hint towards an impressive passing range.
While Taylor will have primarily been signed with the hope of aiding Posh’s ball progression from deep and ability to break sides down/sustain attacks in the final third, Ferguson will also hope that his defensive contribution is ‘good enough’. His defensive duel record is good although he doesn’t contest a huge number of defensive duels. His interceptions per 90 are also better than any Posh midfielder to have played regularly this season. The biggest caution about reading too much into his stats is that they were achieved in the National League. Let’s hope he can transfer his performances to a league whereby players are technically better, better organised, fitter and press quicker.
In the case of Reece Brown, it appears the double league jump from League Two to the Championship may have been too much at once, although he looks perfectly suited to Posh and third-tier football. Much like Taylor he is a good progressive passer, comfortable on the ball in the final third and offers goals and assists. His defensive contribution is also good if not outstanding, and he is also a very adept ball carrier and dribbler. Posh have desperately lacked ball carriers from midfield and both Brown and Taylor have the potential to break lines by carrying the ball forwards.
Both players are also incredibly versatile which gives Ferguson options to experiment with shape. Taylor can play at ‘6’, ‘8’ or ‘10’. Brown can play as either an ‘8’, ‘10’, or wide attacking midfielder. So what might all this mean for how Posh set up?
Check out our final article in this series to find out what we think!