Manchester City and Arsenal will be able to call upon two masters of their craft as they chase EFL Cup final glory at Wembley on Sunday.
Sergio Aguero is already City's all-time top goalscorer and two shy of bringing up 200 for the club, while Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang's prolific exploits at Borussia Dortmund meant there was tangible excitement when he arrived as Arsenal's £56million record signing last month.
Aguero's returns over the past five seasons are remarkably consistent and he is on course for his most prolific campaign yet, despite doubts persisting over how much faith City boss Pep Guardiola truly has in his star forward.
The Argentina international is on 29 this term, following on from hauls of 29, 33, 29, 32 and 28. Despite frequent struggles with muscular injuries until last season, when suspensions and Gabriel Jesus' arrival offered new complications, Aguero has not wavered.
Hitting the 40-goal mark is well within the 29-year-old's sights, something Aubameyang achieved in 2016-17 having hit 39 the year before. He outscored Bayern Munich's Robert Lewandowski to top the individual Bundesliga charts last season.
But, for all their insatiable appetite within the 18-yard box, Aguero and Aubameyang have a curious status within the elite of which they are undoubtedly a part.
As fees of €100m and more were splashed last close season, invariably on prime attacking talent, Aguero and Aubameyang were strangely absent from the conversation.
Indeed, discounting Aubameyang jarringly linking himself with Real Madrid on a number of occasions, neither have been at the centre of a big-time transfer saga while others, whose achievements are fewer in number, have.
At 28, the move to Arsenal is likely to be the major transfer of Aubameyang's career and Aguero, especially in light of his regularly stated ambitions to return to Independiente before calling time on his playing days, will probably never recoup more than the £38m City paid Atletico Madrid for his services in 2011.
There are, of course, a limited number of spaces for strikers at Europe's most exclusive clubs and Aguero plays for one with demonstrable ambitions to exist in that bracket.
But considering Real Madrid's squad stasis and Paris Saint-Germain remodelling their forward line recently – Aubameyang joining England's sixth best team at present feels odd in these circumstances, while speaking volumes for the money on offer in the Premier League and Arsene Wenger's persuasive powers.
Madrid are reportedly drawn towards one of Aguero's countrymen, Mauro Icardi, as Karim Benzema's toils continue. Aguero's status as a former Atletico star would have complicated any switch to the Santiago Bernabeu, while the prospect of him linking up with his great friend Lionel Messi on the other side of the Clasico divide has barely ever been deemed worthy of a mention.
Where Aubameyang and Aguero are ranked within the current era will be settled by what they do over the coming months and years at Arsenal and City. The Gunners' generally distant proximity from Premier League title races and Guardiola's desire to add more forward firepower represent significant bumps in the road. For now, Sunday at Wembley represents an enticing next step for two would-be greats.
116 - Only Friedhelm Konietzka has a better minutes per goal ratio in the #Bundesliga for @BVB than @Aubameyang7 (116 mins/goal, minimum 10 goals). Gunner. #DeadlineDay @Arsenal pic.twitter.com/6w7LgxViyH— OptaFranz (@OptaFranz) January 31, 2018
Most goals across Europe's 'big five' leagues since 2013-14 (all competitions)
Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid) 231
Lionel Messi (Barcelona) 222
Luis Suarez (Liverpool/Barcelona) 172
Robert Lewandowski (Borussia Dortmund/Bayern Munich) 167
Edinson Cavani (Paris Saint-Germain) 160
Sergio Aguero (Manchester City) 151
Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Paris Saint-Germain) 150
Gonzalo Higuain (Napoli/Juventus) 143
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Borussia Dortmund/Arsenal) 142
Neymar (Barcelona/PSG) 133
Harry Kane (Tottenham) 132
Aritz Aduriz (Athletic Bilbao) 122
Alexandre Lacazette (Lyon/Arsenal) 122
Antoine Griezmann (Real Sociedad/Atletico Madrid) 116
Romelu Lukaku (Everton/Manchester United) 108
Alexis Sanchez (Barcelona/Arsenal/Manchester United) 102
Karim Benzema (Real Madrid) 100
- Using data from the list above compiled by Opta, Aguero's return of a goal every 100.31 minutes is the fourth best in Europe over the period in question. Only Ronaldo and Messi dip below better than 100 minutes per goal.
- Aubameyang is one of only five players listed to score with more than 20 per cent of his goal attempts, out-performing the likes of Lewandowski, Messi, Kane, Higuain and Ronaldo.
- Evidence of Aguero's clinical tendencies can be found in Opta's expected goals (xG) data for this season. His 21 Premier League set against an xG of 15.4 is a bigger over-performance than any other player in the division.
18 de marzo 2018
|McIlroy suggests limiting alcohol sales after Bay Hill abuse|
|Marotta dismisses Allegri-PSG links as Juve focus on Can|
|MLS Review: Champions Toronto still winless, Atlanta crush Whitecaps|
|Lukaku: A lot of players will join Manchester United next season|
|I feel like I just woke up – Indian Wells finalist Federer explains slow start|
|High-flying Reds win third straight in Buenos Aires|
|Salah and Liverpool don´t fear Man City: We´ve beaten them!|
|What can I lose? - Mourinho defends criticism of Man Utd players|
|Mourinho accuses Manchester United of being scared to play|
|Mourinho delivers stinging Shaw criticism after FA Cup win|
|Haskell: England not good enough during Six Nations|
|Allegri waits on Chiellini update after Juve´s SPAL stalemate|
|Stenson leads by one with DeChambeau and McIlroy lurking|
17 de marzo 2018
|Racing put pressure on leaders Montpellier as Toulon are toppled|
|Klopp eases concerns over Can´s back complaint|
|Six Nations defeats make no difference to England mindset – Hartley|
|Matic was an island of personality - Mourinho questions United mentality|
|Del Potro demolishes Raonic to set up Federer final|
|He´s getting quicker on the Zimmer frame – Schmidt jokes about Best future|
|SPAL 0 Juventus 0: Scudetto charge halted by Serie A strugglers|
|Manchester United 2 Brighton and Hove Albion 0: Lukaku & Matic book semi-final spot|
|Fresh rib fracture for Cavendish but ´no serious injury´ after crash|
|Unbeaten Federer fights back to reach Indian Wells final|
|Klopp: Salah could be among world´s best, but don´t compare him to Messi|
|Woods hopes to still be within reach at Arnold Palmer Invitational|
|Championship Review: Wolves on the charge as Monk lifts Birmingham´s spirits|
|Twickenham boos will ´put me to sleep at night´, Jones claims|
|Salah threatening Rush´s record for goals in single Liverpool season|
|Hodgson hopes Zaha avoided injury|
|Snow causes Wakefield-Widnes abandonment|
|Liverpool 5 Watford 0: Inspirational Salah nets four as Reds bounce back|
|Lambert rues Everton´s ´offside´ opener in costly Stoke City defeat|
|Scotland´s late rally leaves Townsend feeling positive for the future|
|Wales hold off France to claim second behind Ireland|
|Man Utd bench Pogba & Sanchez for FA Cup quarter-final|
|Pardew: Evans loss key to Bournemouth defeat|
|Zarco breaks track record to claim Qatar pole after Rossi crashes in practice|
|Ireland had to make every moment count against England – Best|
|Salah breaks Torres´ impressive Liverpool record|
|We are not heroes one day and villains the next – Mourinho continues defence of Sevilla exit|
|Lions bounce back against Sunwolves, Stormers end miserable streak|
|Jones: England losing streak only natural|
|They have many players who´d get in my team – The Sevilla stars Mourinho should buy|
|Mario Gomez will not beg for World Cup place|
|England´s form continues to run cold in Twickenham snow|
|Nibali holds on in Milan-San Remo as Cavendish crashes again|
|Bournemouth 2 West Brom 1: Stanislas piles misery on Pardew|
|Buffon to play on for Italy as Di Biagio calls up uncapped duo|
|Huddersfield Town 0 Crystal Palace 2: Tomkins and Milivojevic secure priceless win|
|Stockdale makes history as ruthless Ireland win Grand Slam|
|Stoke City 1 Everton 2: Tosun at the double after Adam´s early dismissal|
|Simeone insists Atletico can survive injury crisis|
|Ireland´s Stockdale breaks Six Nations single campaign try record against England|
|Leipzig out to halt Bayern celebrations at Red Bull Arena|
|NFL Draft 2018: Jets acquire number three overall pick from Colts|
|Board accepts responsibility for West Ham woes, Brady claims|
|In-form Eriksen hopes he hasn´t hit Tottenham ceiling|
|Roma boss Di Francesco happy with Messi, Barca challenge|
|Bangladesh warned over ´unacceptable´ Colombo behaviour|
|The directors know where to find me - Gattuso awaits Milan talks|
|Laidlaw breaks Italian hearts in Rome|
|UMBC´s March Madness win earns everyone in USA free pizza|
|Zidane focused on Real Madrid players, not Neymar|
|Mourinho´s United rant recalls unhappy Madrid demise|
|Swansea City 0 Tottenham 3: Eriksen leads Kane-less Spurs into FA Cup semis|
|Valverde not worried about Barcelona legacy|
|Markelle Fultz´s return remains a mystery to Brett Brown|
|Bale is happy at Real Madrid, says Zidane|
|Spalletti seeks consistency as Inter prepare for final push|
|Absence of ´best in the world´ Busquets makes Rakitic key for Barca|