Michy Batshuayi is proving to be Borussia Dortmund's best version of Batman yet, outstripping his decorated predecessor Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, now of Arsenal.
Michael Keaton? Christian Bale? Ben Affleck? Debate has raged for many a year over who has best portrayed the Dark Knight on the silver screen, but after notching five goals and one assist in four games for Dortmund, Batshuayi looks set to be the far superior on-field version in front of the Yellow Wall…
Batshuayi struck again as Dortmund beat Hannover on Bundesliga Matchday 27, putting him on six goals in seven Bundesliga appearances – one more than Aubameyang had after as many games. What's more, with eight strikes and one assist in 12 outings in all competitions, he has had a direct hand in a BVB goal every 120 minutes.
Watch: Batshuayi scored one of the goals of the season against Hannover
The winter transfer merry-go-round saw Batshuayi replace the Arsenal-bound Aubameyang, who in turn took Oliver Giroud's place at Arsenal, with Giroud completing the the circle by joining Chelsea. BVB coach Peter Stöger is in no doubt about which club came out on top, though.
"Michy is a real goalscorer; it was a good move go bring him here," after Batshuayi's UEFA Europa League brace against Atalanta last month. "The question was: How well does he fit into the team, will he feel at home here? Things are looking good. He is well-liked, fully integrated and our goals as well as his personal goals align. Scoring goals is one thing, but working for the team and winning balls like he did for the opener makes him a great striker."
High praise, but in just 658 minutes of Bundesliga football the Belgium international's class has been as striking as the Black and Yellow shirt he now dons. Batshuayi bagged a brace and assist on his debut, against Stöger's former club Cologne on Matchday 21; opened the scoring in the subsequent 2-0 win over Hamburg; came off the bench to score twice against Eintracht Frankfurt and made all the difference at home to Hannover. Goals weren't forthcoming against Borussia Mönchengladbach, Augsburg or RB Leipzig, but with six Bundesliga strikes from 11 clear-cut chances his conversion rate already trumps that of his predecessor (55 per cent to 43.5 per cent).
Batshuayi is not just a goalscorer, either. He outdoes Aubameyang for passing accuracy (76 per cent to 65 per cent), challenges won (40.4 per cent to 40.1 per cent) and distance covered (roughly 6.5 miles per game to 5.7). Pace-wise - Auba's prized asset - he only falls marginally short, clocking a top speed of 20.38 miles per hour, compared to his forerunner's 24.5 mph.
Granted, the Chelsea loanee has only played seven times in the Bundesliga to Aubameyang's 144 appearances over the course of a three-and-a-half season stay with BVB that yielded 98 goals, but you get the picture: the Belgian powerhouse is the more complete striker and the better player.
Batshuayi is one Batman with no intention of lurking in the shadows.