Best Premier League right-backs in 2021

Thu 13 January 2022 | 11:30

How did fullbacks in the English top-flight fare throughout the past year? Who were the best Premier League right-backs of 2021? Read on as we take a closer look at the careers of the top Premier League right-backs in 2021 and get to see their full stats in the new season so far.

The modern game of football is tougher, more athletic and faster than what it used to be a couple of decades ago. Just like the general aspect of football itself, football players have changed as well. While defenders often used to do what they were good at by sticking back to defend the goal, modern defenders help in the offense as much as they can. That is why fullbacks have turned into an essential and one of the most integral part of any team in recent years.

These fullbacks must be both agile and strong, while possessing the athleticism needed to continue on in the game for the whole 90 minutes without feeling weary. With the English Premier League being one of the top leagues in the entire world, many world-class footballers have joined English clubs in recent years and we now have the chance to enjoy them gracing the pitch each week.

Both England and their domestic league have produced incredible right-backs throughout the years and great young talents are working daily to prove themselves as the greatest right-backs in the world. Surely you too are eager to find out who managed to outperform their peers in the year that passed and got to be amongst the

best Premier League right-backs in 2021

. So read on as we provide detailed information about the careers of these footballers and get to see how they have fared in the new season so far.

Best Premier League right-backs of 2021

From obvious ones such as Joao Cancelo and Trent Alexander-Arnold, to surprises of the season such as Vladimir Coufal and Takehiro Tomiyasu, there are a number of incredible talents on the list of greatest Premier League right-backs in the world in 2021. So without further ado, here is everything you need to know about these top-performing footballers and their stats in the current campaign so far.

Tariq Lamptey

  • Team: Brighton

  • Market value: €18M

Tariq Lamptey is one of the many incredible talents that


have lost throughout the years. While the club’s supporters are currently regretting letting go of the likes of Kevin de Bruyne and Mohamed Salah, they might also get to regret letting go of Tariq Lamptey in the near future all thanks to the young talent’s impressive performance. Lamptey joined Brighton from Chelsea’s U23 side for a reported fee of €3 million in the 2020 winter transfer window and has since been a sensational right-back for the Premier League club.

The 21-year-old might not be his side’s main choice for the time being, but he is surely rising up the ranks with unbelievable pace as he aims to become Brighton’s main and only right-back in the coming months. The Englishman has already made more than 10 appearances for Brighton this season, having played for more than 600 minutes in the process. How far do you think the youngster will go in the coming years?

Timothy Castagne

  • Team: Leicester City

  • Market value: €28M

Leicester City

are a long way away from returning to their magical title-winning season right now. Even though they managed to shock the world by becoming Premier League champions a few years ago, the Foxes have since been torn apart by other big clubs in the English top-flight, who have signed almost all of the club’s great players throughout the years.

However, Leicester City are still considered to be a top club in Europe, which is partly thanks to their fine right-back Timothy Castagne, who has been an integral part of his side ever since joining them from


for €20 million in 2020. The immensely versatile defender rose up the ranks at KRC Genk’s youth academy and joined the club’s senior side in 2014. He then went on to impress the world with his performances, which led to him joining Atalanta for €6 million in 2017.

Having joined Leicester City as one of the most expensive right-backs in the club’s history, the 26-year-old Belgian has lived up to the billing so far with solid performances week-in week-out. He made a total of 34 appearances for the Foxes in the 2020-21 season and bagged himself a couple goals, while also providing 4 assists in the process. Fast forward to the 2021-22 season and you will see that the Belgium international has repeated the same feats by performing at his best defensive form possible in most matches.

Although there have been slip-ups in the current campaign, the second half of 2021 was still a good half to remember for the versatile defender. As one of the

top Premier League right-backs in 2021

, Castagne has made more than 15 appearances in the league this season, but is yet to make an impact at the front with zero goals or assists contributed throughout the first half of the campaign.

Aaron Wan-Bissaka

  • Team: Manchester United

  • Market value: €38M

Manchester United

are in a tough place right now after having to sack Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, only to get worse results under Ralf Rangnick. The Red Devils are struggling to find their best form as their rivals get the results needed to push United further down the league table. But that does not mean that all Manchester United players are at their worst currently, because some of those footballers are absolutely killing it with their form.

While the reigning monarch of the team is still David De Gea with his phenomenal saves in each game, others such as Aaron Wan-Bissaka have been doing great as well. Wan-Bissaka is only one of the many world-class fullbacks that England have produced in recent years. He joined United from

Crystal Palace

for €55 million back in 2019 and raised oh so many eyebrows with his big-money move. Many laughed and mocked the Red Devils for the decision they had just made back then as they believed the Englishman was simply not worth all that money at the time.

Even though Wan-Bissaka’s market value is still not as much as the amount of his transfer fee, it has gone up a couple of million Euros and the right-back has certainly lived up to the billing with his impressive performances. He went on to make a total of 34 appearances in the Premier League last season and got himself 2 goals and 4 assists in the process. His outstanding performance against Paris Saint-Germain was more than enough to earn Wan-Bissaka a spot on the list of

best Premier League right-backs in 2021


However, the England international has proved to be more useful since joining the English side, with 15 league appearances in the current season already. We will have to wait and see if the former Crystal Palace man can once again prove that he was rightly chosen to be amongst the best Premier League right-backs in football in 2021 by helping his side to achieve a higher finish in the league this season.

Vladimir Coufal

  • Team: West Ham United

  • Market value: €12M

West Ham

have been the surprise package of the season so far as they are currently sitting above the likes of


and Manchester United thanks to how their manager David Moyes has coached the team during his tenure. Moyes’s second spell at West Ham has proven to be a dream move for both the club and the manager as he helped the Hammers finish the 2020-21 season in a Europa League spot with 65 points.

Of course none of this would have been possible if it were not for all the help he got from his players, who did everything as their manager asked of them. One of the hardest-working parts of Moyes’ machine is without a doubt Vladimir Coufal, who was certainly one of the

best Premier League right-backs in 2021

. Coufal spent most of his career in his home nation of Czech Republic, playing for various Czech clubs throughout the years.

That is why he raised some questions when he joined the English club from Slavia Prague for €6 million in October 2020. Since then, the Czech footballer has been one of the most effective parts of his side and has managed to help them achieve a higher finish in the race for the league title. Thanks to his incredible form since joining West Ham, his market value has doubled to reach €12 million.

It is never too late to achieve great things and the 29-year-old fullback might be on his way towards winning more trophies if he plays his cards right. As one of the best Premier League right-backs in football in 2021, the former Slavia Prague man made a total of 34 appearances for West Ham in the previous campaign and managed to provide 7 assists in the process.

He has already appeared in more than 15 games this season and has provided a couple of assists as well. Will he be able to help his side keep their distance with Manchester United and Tottenham by staying in a Europa League spot?

Cesar Azpilicueta

  • Team: Chelsea

  • Market value: €11M

When a young Cesar Azpilicueta joined Chelsea from Olympique


for almost €9 million way back in 2012, few could have thought that the Spaniard would go on to one day become an icon at the Premier League side. Azpilicueta began his career as a professional footballer at Osasuna after joining the club’s senior side in 2007. He then earned himself a move to Marseille three years later in 2010, just when his national team went on to win the World Cup in Africa.

The 32-year-old has been an integral part of his side ever since joining the Blues all those years ago, and is without a doubt one of the main reasons behind Chelsea’s recent success in both the English top-flight and the Champions League. Even though they did not get to win the league title last season, they somehow managed to win the Champions League in an all-English final against Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City.

The Spain international is quite a versatile defender and is able to be deployed on either side of the pitch. That is why he made a total of 43 appearances for Chelsea across all competitions in the 2020-21 season and even provided three assists in the process while scoring a single goal in the EPL.

 As one of the

best Premier League right-backs of 2021

, Azpilicueta has played in more than 20 games this season and has already provided three assists in the process. The former Osasuna man is now Chelsea’s main captain and is leading a relatively young squad in the race towards winning the Premier League in a tight and thrilling contest against the likes of

Manchester City

, Liverpool and



Takehiro Tomiyasu

  • Team: Arsenal

  • Market value: €25 million

It had been quite a long time since we had seen Arsenal roaming the fourth spot on the league table. The Gunners had been struggling to find their best form since Arsene Wenger’s departure. While they are surely a long way away from their golden ages of being the Invincibles, Arsenal have finally managed to find their feet once again under Mikel Arteta’s management. Next on the list of best Premier League right-backs in 2021 is someone who has helped Arteta on his way towards getting Arsenal back on track.

That man is none other than the club’s most recent arrival Takehiro Tomiyasu, who joined the Gunners from Bologna for a massive fee of €18.6 million in the 2021 summer transfer window. The 23-year-old actually arrived at Bologna not so long ago in 2019 and impressed everyone with his phenomenal performances during his spell at the Serie A side. Having joined Arsenal, Tomiyasu has upped his game by earning himself a spot amongst the greatest Premier League right-backs in the world in 2021, despite having played in the English top-flight during only the second half of the 2020-21 season.

Of course these past few months were certainly enough to earn the Japanese right-back a spot amongst the best of the best. With a market value of €25 million, Tomiyasu is without a doubt one of the most outstanding players in Arteta’s squad and the Japan international knows it pretty well. He has made over 15 appearances for the Gunners since the start of the season and is slowly becoming his side’s main and only right-back.

Arsenal have returned to their favorite spot on the league table once again partly thanks to Tomiyasu’s remarkable performances both in defense and offence. That is why the versatile Japanese defender has been selected to be amongst the

best Premier League right-backs in football in 2021


Reece James

  • Team: Chelsea

  • Market value: €55M

Aaron Wan-Bissaka is not the only world-class right-back England have produced in recent years. The Three Lions are jam-packed with unbelievable talents, all of whom are trying their best to earn a call-up for international games. Reece James is certainly one of those remarkable talents as he surely was one of the best Premier League right-backs in 2021. James has had to climb his way up at Chelsea’s youth academy, the same academy that has rejected numerous legends and world-class talents throughout the years.

The Englishman spent a short spell on loan at Wigan Athletic, before finally joining the Blues’ senior side in 2019. Since then, James has been going improving his game every week, which is why he was called up to help his nation in Euro 2020. The England international was one of the best Premier League right-backs in 2021 since he helped his side win the Champions League against Pep Guardiola’s star-studded Manchester City.

Even though the young right-back did not get to win the European Championship with England as they lost to Italy in the penalty shootouts, he still did get to help his nation reach the final despite a shaky start to the competition as their striker’s shot blanks in the early stages of the tournament.

The 22-year-old has been on fire in the current campaign as he has already scored 4 goals while providing 5 assists in 15 league appearances this season. With the first half of the season belonging to last year, surely you too would select James to be on the list of

greatest Premier League right-backs in the world in 2021


Kyle Walker

  • Team: Manchester City

  • Market value: €25M

Manchester City are blessed with having two of the greatest full-backs in the world at their disposal. While some teams struggle to have only one world-class right-back in their squads, Pep Guardiola’s lavish spending style has landed him two incredible ones, both of whom were amongst the best Premier League right-backs in 2021. One of these two phenomenal players is Kyle Walker, who seems to be an unstoppable pace machine when he reaches his full speed. The 31-year-old was already considered to be one of the best during his days at Tottenham.

He spent several years with the Lilywhites before joining Man City for a whopping fee of €52 million back in 2017. Since then, Walker has been nothing but great for the English side and has helped them to conquer the domestic league on several occasions. He has already won three Premier League titles with City and is well on his way towards winning yet another league title with Guardiola and his genius tactics.

As one of the top Premier League right-backs in 2021, Walker made a total of 42 appearances across all competitions in the 2020-21 season and amassed a total of 3457 minutes, scoring two goals and providing a single assist in the process.

The England international has managed to repeat the same feats by making more than 15 appearances across all competitions in the first half of the 2021-22 season, during which he reminded everyone why he is considered to be one of the best Premier League right-backs in 2021. The Englishman has won almost everything since joining City in 2017, which is perhaps why he made the right choice.

Trent Alexander-Arnold

  • Team: Liverpool

  • Market value: €80M

“Corner taken quickly, Origiiiiiii…..” We would never have heard this iconic commentary during Liverpool’s memorable comeback against Barcelona if it weren’t for Trent Alexander-Arnold’s brilliance and quick-thinking during their return leg against Barcelona a couple of years ago. That was the year when the Englishman rose to prominence to introduce himself as one of the best right-backs of his generation. Arnold is a Liverpool youth academy graduate and his blood obviously runs red as the color of his boyhood club.

He actually joined Liverpool’s senior side way back in 2016, but it took him a while to finally get his big break and to earn a spot amongst his side’s starting-XI. He has already won almost all the major trophies during his short career under Jurgen Klopp’s management and is surely eyeing bigger things for the following years. Having made a total of 36 league appearances last season, the England international certainly earned himself a spot on the list of best Premier League right-backs in 2021.

He scored two goals and provided 7 assists in the process of those appearances and it seems that he has upped his game even more in the new campaign. With 18 appearances in the 2021-22 season so far, Arnold has already bested his previous assists record with 9 assists in the league so far. Jurgen Klopp is definitely happy with his young fullback and we are surely witnessing the making of an iconic and legendary-to-be footballer, who is already considered to be one of the best Premier League right-backs in 2021.

Joao Cancelo

  • Team: Manchester City

  • Market value: €60M

If you were wondering who Manchester City’s other blessing was, then wonder no more as the answer to that question is Joao Cancelo, who is the most-expensive right-back in Premier League history. Not only did the Portuguese footballer break that record, he also broke the record for the most expensive right-back in history by joining Manchester City from Juventus for a staggering fee of €65 million in 2019.

It is quite interesting to see how much Pep Guardiola wanted Cancelo in his squad as the Portugal international had just arrived at Juventus from Valencia for €40 million. He only spent a single season with the Bianconeri before joining the Premier League side, for whom he has already made more than 100 appearances throughout the years. Cancelo is immensely versatile and can play on either side of the pitch.

However, he is definitely more comfortable playing as a right-back. That is why Guardiola has developed a rotating system to make use of both of his available right-backs. Cancelo has already made more than 25 appearances across all competitions this season and is on fire with three goals and seven assists so far.

Will Manchester City finally win the Champions League with the help of their two world-class right-backs? Will they add yet another Premier League trophy to their trophy cabinet? We will have to wait and see as the 2021-22 season progresses to become even more of a nail-biter.




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