Nico Schlotterbeck, Malick Thiaw and Sergio Ramos are the focus of our latest look at players' displays in the FedEx Performance Zone.
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Defences were on top in the opening week of the UEFA Champions League round of 16 with only five goals being scored across the four matches.
In our latest FedEx Performance Zone stats dive, we take a look at how Nico Schlotterbeck and Malick Thiaw shone for their respective teams and compare their numbers to Sergio Ramos, who was back to his best when Paris Saint-Germain took on Bayern München.
Dortmund have only conceded two goals in the five Champions League matches Schlotterbeck has started this term, compared to three in the two when he was on the bench, but his display in the 1-0 victory against Chelsea reached new heights. The centre-back hauled in 49.5 points for his performance, almost twice as many as any of his group stage displays, though it is worth noting points tallies are multiplied by 1.5 in each game at this stage of the competition.
Schlotterbeck's eight recovered balls (12 points), five clearances (7.5 points) and three successful tackles (nine points) were his highest tallies in each of those departments this season. Another clean sheet (13.5 points) was just reward for the ever-improving 23-year-old.
If his impact was impressive then what can you say about Milan's Thiaw in their 1-0 home win against Tottenham? The 21-year-old was playing his first ever match in the Champions League yet racked up 51 points – the joint-highest for any defender in the first week of knockout action.
Thiaw's seven recovered balls (10.5 points) and two clearances (three points) were lower than Schlotterbeck but his five tackles (15 points) and a blocked shot (1.5 points) bettered his fellow centre-back. As competition debuts go, they don't come much better.
The only defender to match Thiaw's total is far from a newcomer to the Champions League scene though. Ramos has seen and done it all in Europe's premier club competition and the 36-year-old rolled back the years despite his Paris side slipping to a 1-0 reverse at home to Bayern.
Ramos' numbers in that game were astonishing. His 13 recovered balls (19.5 points) and ten clearances (15 points) usurped both Schlotterbeck and Thiaw with his three tackles (nine points) only outdone by the latter, those figures nullifying his lack of a clean sheet. Proof that there is no substitute for experience, and that Schlotterbeck and Thiaw still have scope for improvement.