Toni Kroos: Successor of Xavi or Pirlo?
Two years after his arrival in the Spanish capital; it is not even a matter of doubt that Toni Kroos is one of the best midfielders in the world at present.
The past three years have been instrumental in his transition from a semi decent midfielder to one of the best central midfielders in the world. Originally starting his career as an attacking midfielder; Kroos was brought to the centre by Pep Guardiola, just after his arrival in the Bavarian Capital. And since then Kroos has been indispensable for innumerable triumphs for both his club and country.
His precise short passing and game dictating ability remind us of Xavi Hernandez, with the Barcelona legend himself hailing Kroos as his successor before the UEFA Champions League Final in an interview with Marca. Besides, the slinging long balls, deep lying playmaking, set piece efficiency and long range shooting ability of Kroos reminds us of Andrea Pirlo. So the basic question here is; Is he more like Pirlo or Xavi?
In the last two seasons, the pass completion rate of Kroos has been above 90 percent, a feat that no other midfielder has achieved in this world over this time, but before 2013; Xavi used to do that on a very regular basis. So, this statistic of his puts him parallel with a relatively young Xavi of 27-28 years of age. In the mean time, Kroos has also constantly taken effective corners and precise and efficient long shots which have taken him in parallel with a relatively young Pirlo. Furthermore, he also possesses a great vision which was mastered by both the Spanish and Italian maestros. Besides, he has gone through the same transition as Pirlo; from an offensive midfielder to a central Midfielder who operates plays from the deep.
So, the conclusion can be drawn that he is a player possessing the qualities of both Xavi and Pirlo. In short, he can be delineated as a hybrid deep lying playmaking holding midfielder, which would be the combined version of Xavi and Pirlo. If he manages to play at the current rate, in the near future, it will be possible for him to surpass both Xavi and Pirlo individually, in terms of both trophies and personal accolades.