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Is Cavani the most in-form striker nowadays?

What's the secret behind Cavani's form and Uruguay's WCQ resurgence?

October 5, 2016 By Oscar Rojas
After living under Zlatan's shadow at PSG, Cavani's resurgence with club and country has him dominating all goal scoring charts. Is he the best No.9 in the world right now?

Edinson Cavani is finally living up to the hype, both with his club and with his National Team. The talented Uruguayan striker hadn't enjoyed this kind of form since he left Napoli a couple of years ago, and it seems that, despite some off-the-pitch problems, he is finally coming to show why Les Parisiens paid a huge amount of cash to lure him away from the Partenopei.

But, what exactly are the keys to Cavani's resurgence with his club, which have reflected with Los Charrúas? Here are some thoughts about it.

1. Zlatan's departure

Needless to say, Ibrahimovic got all the attention from fans, experts, and even former PSG manager Laurent Blanc. Cavani repeatedly stated that he would be more influential if he could play at center forward, but that could have generated Zlatan's wrath. So, to keep things cool, Blanc kept Cavani playing on the left, forcing the Uruguayan to work harder to score goals. 

2. Emery's tactics

Spanish boss Unai Emery wasn't off to a good start with the French champions, offering some shaky performances during his first games with the club. When he decided to change his lineup from a 4-4-2 to 4-3-3, the team experienced a resurgence, which has reflected in Cavani's recent numbers. When the Uruguayan was left all alone up front, he wasn't having as much success as he is now, when Angel Di María and Jesé join him down the flanks.

3. Less is more for Cavani

The Uruguayan's desire to shine made him try harder, but that reflected poorly on his stats, comparing last year's numbers to those he's racked up during the course of this season. Last year, under Laurent Blanc, Cavani had played 768 minutes with the club in all competitions, scoring seven goals. This year, the South American striker has thrived under Emery, scoring eleven times in 687 minutes, averaging one goal every 62.4 minutes.

Cavani as Uruguay's main weapon

Needless to say, Cavani's had to experience the same problems with his National Team as with PSG last season, given that Luis Suárez steals the spotlight from him whenever they play for La Celeste. Nevertheless, Cavani has gone from zero to hero, taking advantage of Suárez lengthy absence from the National Team, and making a name for himself in the CONMEBOL World Cup Qualifiers.

Last year, Cavani had a disappointing performance in the 2015 Copa América, scoring no goals in 333 minutes for Oscar Tabarez's crew. His "shining" moment came during the Quarter finals, when he was sent off for attempting to headbutt Gonzalo Jara following their "middle finger incident".

What most people didn't know was that Cavani was living a complicated personal moment, as his father had been incarcerated for running over a kid in a bicycle back in Uruguay. After his red card, Cavani had to serve a couple of matches, forcing him to miss the start of the WC Qualifiers.

But Cavani's rise from the ashes has helped Uruguay to lead the South American Qualifiers, something they werent' able to do prior to the 2014 edition. Los Charrúas have led the pack after four of the eight matchdays, currently one point over Brazil and Argentina. During the 2014 WCQ, Uruguay struggled to make it to the top 5, jeopardizing their presence in the tournament until the last game was played. 

Regarding Cavani, he's managed to match his goal scoring tally in just six games, leading the goal scoring chart that includes names such as James Rodriguez, Arturo Vidal and Alexis Sánchez.

"Cavani is the top goal scorer in: Ligue 1 (8), UCL (3), South American Qualifiers (5)"

We're not sure where Uruguay will end up in the current WC Qualifying process, but if Cavani can keep up with the good work, he will surely become the driving force for Los Charrúas and his team, even if some of his haters criticize every move he makes.

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