Hearts captain Christophe Berra has been named as the most dominant defender in Europe for winning aerial duels, according to a remarkable set of statistics.

The Scotland international has won 233 of 268 aerial duels this season, an incredible 86.9 per cent, according to the CIES Football Observatory.

20th January 2019, Tynecastle Park, Edinburgh, Scotland; Scottish Cup football fourth round, Heart of Midlothian versus Livingston; Gregg Wylde of Livingston takes on Christophe Berra of Hearts

(photo by Alan Rennie/Action Plus via Getty Images)

Remarkably, 11 of the top 50 players on the list of players not playing in one of Europes ‘Big 5’ ply their trade in the Scottish Premiership with Kristoffer Ajer, Darren McGregor, Filip Benkovic, Mikey Devlin, Nikola Katic, Connor Goldson,Darren O’Dea, Scott McKenna, Peter Hartley and Paul Hanlon all named.

Second overall was Porto’s Felipe Augusto with a success rate of 85.5%, alongside Millwall’s Jake Cooper with the same percentage.

It’s maybe not a ringing endorsement for the style of football played in Scotland but topping a list featuring the likes of Raphael Varane, Virgil Van Dijk and Mats Hummels is no easy task.

23rd January 2019, Tynecastle Park, Edinburgh, Scotland; Ladbrokes Premiership football, Heart of Midlothian versus Dundee; Christophe Berra of Heart of Midlothian during the warm up before the match

(photo by David Young/Action Plus via Getty Images)

Berra has been vital to Hearts this season and some of the Jambos worst results of the season came while the veteran was sidelined through injury.

Although securing a European place through the league looks unlikely for Hearts, the Jambos have a chance to end the season in glory when they face Celtic in the Scottish Cup final on May 25th.

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