Modric vs Xaviesta

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Post by Pedram Mon Jul 25, 2022 2:35 pm

Hats off to @Vibe, single handedly reviving football discussion on GoalLegacy Laughing

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Post by farfan Mon Jul 25, 2022 2:53 pm

@Myesyats you're taking it too seriously, ES is just working heel at the moment Laughing

@tito I'm not sure if the debate should be Modric vs Iniesta or Modric vs Xavi. Prime Iniesta was more impactful than both IMO. There isn't an era or tactical setup where I wouldn't pick Iniesta over Modric. Can we really say the same about Xavi?
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Post by El Gunner Mon Jul 25, 2022 3:24 pm

the way i see it...

Modric - longevity
- technically great and definitely deserves to be mentioned as one of the best mids of all-time in that regard
- at his prime, workhorse that has a little bit of Xavi's attributes and more so those of Iniesta's but not on the same level as Iniesta

Xavi: - best midfield controller of all-time
- probably smartest midfielder of all-time because of that
- probably best midfield passer of all-time

Iniesta: - more of an attack initiator than the other two
- definitely more of a goal threat than the other two (goals + assists)
- more flexible and dynamic, can play either in a flat midfield 3, or as a 10 or second striker, or on the left or right side of the attack. You pretty much still get the same out of him
- better and smarter runner, and probably the most efficient player of all-time at his peak when it comes to exploiting the smallest spaces and channels on the field in order to make something happen

Overall, based on my preference for style of play and wow factor, i would rank them:
1. Iniesta
2. Xavi
3. Modric

but i can definitely understand why people would rank Xavi number 1


Last edited by El Gunner on Mon Jul 25, 2022 5:22 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Post by Vibe Mon Jul 25, 2022 3:31 pm

What you on about FFS

Iniesta couldn't kick a ball for his life, scored like 4 goals a season. How is he a bigger goal threat than Modric?

The Croat didn't score a shitload of goals either, but in his earlier days when he was more of an AM he sure scored some goals. Spent his career playing much deeper than Iniesta.
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Post by futbol_bill Mon Jul 25, 2022 3:48 pm

BarcaLearning wrote:Its ok Myesyats, …….
But we will still try to stay objective...


rofl
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Post by Chad31 Mon Jul 25, 2022 4:09 pm

Modric is getting underrated here, xaviniesta was a sick duo that won alot and dominated club and for country, but modric is their equal not just for longevity only he showed up for in big games and along with kroos is also very dominant just as much imo, you don't have to hog the ball to be dominate, winning makes you dominant as well, some names aren't as popular as some but that doesn't take away from what they have especially last season along from modric is as good as any xavi or Iniesta season.

Any order is fair but I would based on class put Xavi, modric then Iniesta for me.

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Post by El Gunner Mon Jul 25, 2022 5:21 pm

Vibe wrote:What you on about FFS

Iniesta couldn't kick a ball for his life, scored like 4 goals a season. How is he a bigger goal threat than Modric?

The Croat didn't score a shitload of goals either, but in his earlier days when he was more of an AM he sure scored some goals. Spent his career playing much deeper than Iniesta.

let me clarify, when i say goal threat i mean both goals and assists.

Modric stats:
https://i.servimg.com/u/f69/18/75/76/10/modric10.png

Iniesta's peak stats:
https://i.servimg.com/u/f69/18/75/76/10/iniest10.png
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Post by Lord Awesome Mon Jul 25, 2022 5:24 pm

He's in league with Iniesta and Xavi for sure but I still think both were above him at their primes. Just goes to show Messi...
doesn't deserve all his Ballon D'Ors as I've been saying all these years.
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Post by Casciavit Mon Jul 25, 2022 6:10 pm

It's not as clear cut as people think. It's actually very close.

Modric's pros:
- He has longevity on his side. He was pulling the strings in a CL winning midfield at 37 years while Xavi was in Qatar and Iniesta was in Japan.

- Modric was more combative than both of them. He has a better engine than them. Although Xavi and Iniesta both had good workrate.

- I think Modric could play in any system in the world. Xavi wouldn't have fared well in a system that required him to continually make long distance runs. He said it himself and that was one of the reasons Lucho benched him for Rakitic.

- Modric has more ingenuity than Xavi imo. I see him create plays that are way more outside of the box even though he isn't really a creator if you look at his numbers. For example, Modric can eliminate an entire press with an outside of the boot pass. Xavi didn't really pull those rabbits out of the hat as often. He was way more methodical.

- He has better shooting technique than the both of them

- He's better dribbler than Xavi, but a worse dribbler than Iniesta.

- Played in a more tactically challenging era.
_______________________________________________________________________
Xavi's Pros:

- Arguably most intelligent footballer ever. I mean both are ridiculously press-resistant but Modric shows more risk-taking decisions under pressure. Usually he gets away with it, but I've seen him lose the ball a few times in dumb positions that Xavi wouldn't have because he would've released the ball quicker.

- Xavi is a better playmaker. He's better at controlling the tempo and moving the play side to side. Kroos would be a better comparison in this regard.

- Xavi's numbers were better. When Xavi was responsible for the final pass he was getting 20 assists a season lol. Pep giving more influence to Messi made Xavi more responsible for deeper areas of the pitch rather than higher up so his assist numbers dwindled down a bit after 2010.

- Xavi was better at switching the ball and is a better set piece taker (corners/crosses are debatable with Modric).
_______________________________________________________________________
Iniesta's Pros:

- Best midfield dribbler of all time.

- More positionally flexible. Like El Gunner said, he could play anywhere in midfield and on the wing.

- More clutch moments.

- I think he was technically the best out of Xavi and Modric. Zidane is probably the only other person who has an argument when it comes to being able to completely control shit passes. Iniesta's ball control was insane.  

- He had a better final pass than Modric. I know Iniesta's assist counts aren't high, but I've seen way more defense threading through passes from Iniesta than I did Modric.
________________________________________________________________________
Verdict:

I think prime Xavi and Iniesta had a higher technical level, so they were better players. However, if I was a coach I would find it way easier to plug Modric into my system because of his adaptability. I can see the arguments for both. It's definitely not a clear cut difference.


Last edited by Casciavit on Mon Jul 25, 2022 6:19 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Post by titosantill Mon Jul 25, 2022 6:12 pm

@farfan, I can never put Iniesta ahead of xavi (lol I seriously hate this debate, I'm making arguments for players I absolutely detest). Only thing I think Iniesta did better than xavi was dribble.

Even dribbling, xavi's might not be flashy but it gets the job done. Iniesta wasn't even a set piece threat, xavi was. I feel these types of midfielders shud be free kick aces as well. It's why I rate kroos higher than modric, even though modric is probably more fun to watch.
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Post by Casciavit Mon Jul 25, 2022 6:15 pm

Iniesta's job on the pitch was harder tbf.

There's nothing more difficult in football than to dribble and break lines centrally where there is so little space.
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Post by BarcaLearning Mon Jul 25, 2022 7:03 pm

Good points by many. I just also wanna add in terms on impact on games. Xavi were able to dominate n control games, as well as the final pass for goals which u need to win games obviously n his way of help defending was basically keeping the ball better than like everyone else? Iniesta was amazing but I think he had more flaws to his game also, but also thats becos he takes more risks. I would rate Xavi's final balls above Iniesta though. I just remember clearly that once Xavi left n Iniesta had to take over much more responsibility we were never the same, we lost something, Iniesta couldnt do everything Xavi did n vice versa I suppose.

Dont think anyone is downplaying Modrics, hes amazing n rightly the best MF in this era, just personal preference rather than bias who prefers who?

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Post by Valkyrja Tue Jul 26, 2022 2:53 am

There’re clearly at the same level, albeit having different playstyles. Modric is the best all rounder and the most versatile, capable of playing in any circumstances, while Xavi and Iniesta are more ‘specialized’ and also benefited from playing with each other (Kroos is good but more of a generational great than an all timer, clearly a level below those). Using Xaviesta’s domination over 08-12 period is meaningless, as the midfields they played against were kinda average. Also, kind reminder that the reason Mourinho bought Modric was his performance against Spain at Euro 2012, where he dominated against one of the best drilled teams of all time.

Same level, different application.

PS: I’d take either of them over Zidane in midfield tbh.
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Post by El Gunner Tue Jul 26, 2022 4:02 am

i don't buy the weaker midfields argument during 08 to 12. Sure the playing styles were different then compared to mid 2010s when Modric became the best midfielder in the world, but you play up to the level of competition that is out there... and Spain and Barcelona dominating football the way they did to the point where fans would start booing them will always be more impactful and impressive to me than most of anything else.

Sure you could say Iniesta and Xavi had each other and Messi too, but then again Modric had the most complete team, from goalie to striker, in the modern era during the CL 3-peat.
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Post by El Gunner Tue Jul 26, 2022 4:10 am

Casciavit wrote:Iniesta's job on the pitch was harder tbf.

There's nothing more difficult in football than to dribble and break lines centrally where there is so little space.

he was basically everything people hyped up Hazard to be... more graceful, intelligent but just with lesser shot power and technique.

good point on Modric being more combative than them, i missed out on that point. But i guess i kinda touched on that when i said he was more of a workhorse. I can appreciate me a nice workhorse don't get me wrong, Marchisio is also one of my favourite midfielders of the 2010s and Kovavic and Kante my two most recent ones, but there's just another level of class and efficiency at which Xavi and Iniesta operated at their peaks imo.
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Post by Valkyrja Tue Jul 26, 2022 6:06 am

The 2 CL finals won by them during the Pepcelona era were played against a midfield composed of Michael Carrick, 40yo Ryan Giggs, Andy Anderson and Park Ji Sung

Now that’s some competition …
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Post by El Gunner Tue Jul 26, 2022 6:31 am

nice try... but you know there's more than just the final...
on their way in 2009 they beat a Bayern midfield of Ribery, the experienced van Bommel and a prime Lahm. As well as a Chelsea with Lampard, Ballack and Essien all in their primes still.

and in 2011 Wilshere put on a show against them for one game with technically gifted Fabregas, Arshavin and Nasri.  A tie you could argue they were lucky to end up winning at the Camp Nou with that Refcelona job and fucking Djourou and Clichy in our defence. And then a Galacticos midfield of Kaka, Alonso, di Maria and Ronaldo, albeit a disjointed one, still the star quality was there.

so yea, put that bullshit argument to rest imo
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Post by Harmonica Tue Jul 26, 2022 7:44 am

Modric by far, proven player with best performances in both national team (World Cup Golden Ball) and club level (Ballon d'Or). Xaviesta was carried by Messi and tikkatakka.
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Post by Myesyats Tue Jul 26, 2022 9:47 am

Ronaldo won like 5 baloney d’ors yet you don’t rate him 🤔
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Post by Harmonica Tue Jul 26, 2022 4:06 pm

Ronaldo is the most overrated player of all time, I still rate him as a great player. There's a difference. 1 or 2 of those Baloneys are probably legit, 08 definitely and stretching it, one of the 16-17.
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Post by The Demon of Carthage Tue Jul 26, 2022 4:31 pm

El Gunner wrote:nice try... but you know there's more than just the final...
on their way in 2009 they beat a Bayern midfield of Ribery, the experienced van Bommel and a prime Lahm. As well as a Chelsea with Lampard, Ballack and Essien all in their primes still.

and in 2011 Wilshere put on a show against them for one game with technically gifted Fabregas, Arshavin and Nasri.  A tie you could argue they were lucky to end up winning at the Camp Nou with that Refcelona job and fucking Djourou and Clichy in our defence. And then a Galacticos midfield of Kaka, Alonso, di Maria and Ronaldo, albeit a disjointed one, still the star quality was there.

so yea, put that bullshit argument to rest imo

Did they really, EG? Or was it perhaps one of the most undeserved victories in recent memory Laughing
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Post by El Gunner Tue Jul 26, 2022 5:25 pm

we can get into the controversy of that match, sure, but see, you are just strengthening my point against the "weaker midfield era" argument
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Post by M99 Tue Jul 26, 2022 6:52 pm

farfan wrote:I'd like to hear Harmonica's take on this. I bet he rates Modric higher than both because that would mean CR7 got the better support for his CLs/BOs Laughing


Harmonica wrote:Modric by far, proven player with best performances in both national team (World Cup Golden Ball) and club level (Ballon d'Or). Xaviesta was carried by Messi and tikkatakka.


Proud
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Post by Vibe Wed Jul 27, 2022 5:38 am

Harmonica has spoken
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Post by Hapless_Hans Wed Jul 27, 2022 5:43 am

Can't believe @harmonica just granted Ronaldo a couple of Balon Dors as deserved Shocked Shocked
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Post by Myesyats Wed Jul 27, 2022 5:51 am

Hapless_Hans wrote:Can't believe @harmonica just granted Ronaldo a couple of Balon Dors as deserved Shocked Shocked

Man's just really confused, probably going through late puberty
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