Tue 26 January 2021 | 18:30

Best Premier League Players of 2021

We’re past the halfway point of the season, so let’s take a look at the best Premier League players of 2021 and find out who they are:

We are almost a month into the 2021 and this Premier League season is shaping up to be an interesting one since there are no clear set of contenders, with every contending team experiencing severe highs and lows. You only have to take a look at the current leader in the league, Manchester United who lost 6-1 at home to Tottenham earlier in the season or the crushing 7-2 defeat of the defending champions Liverpool to this season’s surprise package, Aston Villa, to see what we mean.

But as always, Premier League delivers on being entertaining, perhaps this season more than ever, and the driving factor in it being entertaining are the players. There have been some players like Mo Salah or Harry Kane who have performed great, as was expected of them, but like always there have been some surprises as well, Like Wilfried Ndidi or Tomas Soucek. So let’s see who are these

best Premier League players of 2021


Best Premier League footballers of 2021

It’s too early to tell if these players will be our final pick for the best players of the season but as of now they are the best Premier League footballers of 2021:

Emiliano Martinez (Aston Villa)

This season’s best goalkeeper so far is none other than former


academy graduate, Emi Martinez. Arsenal have in the past let some of their biggest stars leave for next to nothing but Emi Martinez’ departure may very well be the costliest. However, Martinez himself, the club and fans seemed happy with the transfer since Arsenal has Bernd Leno, who is also one of the

best Premier League players of 2020-21 season

but nearly misses out on our list.

Nonetheless, the move to

Aston Villa

seemed to work pretty well for every party involved as one of the best goalkeepers from last season joined the surprise package of the season, Aston Villa and together they are having a great time of it so far in the league. As always it has to be noted that any great goalkeeper has a great defensive line backing him, so the importance of the likes of Tyrone Mings or Matty Cash could not be understated enough.

As of now,

Emi Martinez

has kept a clean sheet in 9 of his 17 appearances in the league which makes him 2nd in the league, only a clean sheet behind Ederson who is No. 1. Aston Villa has a couple of games on hand so Martinez may very well improve upon his record of keeping a clean sheet in more than 52% of his matches. So far he has been one of best Premier League players of 2021 but it’ll be interesting to see if he ends up with the Golden Glove or not.

Tomas Soucek (West Ham United)

Perhaps even


himself wouldn’t have predicted to be amongst the best Premier League players of 2020-21 season when the season first started but any player dreams and works toward the goal of being better season after season and fortunately for Soucek and West Ham United that hard work has paid off as Soucek has undoubtedly become one of the best midfielders in the Premier League this season and has helped West Ham immensely in having a better season and a lot more security in league standings this season.

The Czech midfielder spent the latter half of last season at

West Ham

on loan and he impressed them enough to be signed on permanently. Physically strong and of towering height, Soucek shares a lot of attributes common among the Eastern European players but to his credit, he often relies on his footballing mind rather than pure physicality which is why he is such a great defensive midfielder, since he reads the game and prevents the attacks so well.

Soucek’s height (1.92 meters) also allows him to help in attack, especially in set pieces, and he has been able to score 5 goals this season so far, which is just great and counts as an added bonus for a defensive midfielder. With 1.7 tackles and 1.4 interceptions per game, he is also proficient in defensive work and shielding West Ham’s back line, making him one of the more well-rounded players on our list and exactly the reason why he is considered to be one of the

best Premier League players of 2021


Ilkay Gundogan (Manchester City)

Gundogan is the type of player that you always know could be excellent but at times he has looked like someone that doesn't have the motivation to be a world class player. He always does his job well on the pitch but he has been lacking the X-factor he had while playing for Dortmund. This season however he has finally taken that extra step and seems to have become a leader on the pitch for a Manchester City amidst their sort of rebuilding process. As of now he is one of

EPL greatest players in 2021

but the important question is that whether he will maintain his great form throughout the season or not.

With David Silva leaving

Manchester City

last summer and with Fernandinho and Aguero being past their prime, it has fallen to the likes of


, Sterling and De Bruyne to take up the leadership mantle in the squad and they seem to have welcomed that role. Gundogan in particular have been excellent since he does his usual job as well as always but has also added an extra attacking threat to his game which is a welcome addition to the side that lacks a natural goal scorer with the absence of Aguero in most games.

Gundogan’s form since the start of 2021 has been excellent with his best coming at Stamford Bridge against Chelsea where he absolutely dominated the midfield and even scored a goal himself. He has already scored doubled the amount of goals he did last season and in 11 games no less. With 5 goals and a 91.3% pass accuracy, Gundogan seems to be back to his best and is among the best Premier League players of 2021. whether he and Manchester City could maintain their great form of late and go for the title remains to be seen though!

Dominic Calvert-Lewin (Everton)

Everton was leading the Premier League at some point this season and a huge part of that was

Dominic Calvert-Lewin

, someone whom they trusted and were patient with as he grew to the player he is today. In all fairness, Calvert-Lewin has been great ever since Carlo Ancelotti was appointed Everton’s manager at the start of 2020 which resulted in him scoring 13 goals last season but this season he has legitimately become one of EPL greatest players in 2021 and has scored almost as much as he did last season!

Although everyone is quick to point out James Rodriquez, Lucas Digne and the changes Ancelotti has made in


’s style of play, as the deciding factors in Dominic Calvert-Lewin’s rise to greatness, it has to be noted that no matter how great the situation around a player is, the player himself has to make the best of it. Which to Calvert-Lewin’s credit he has and that takes a certain amount of ambition and a great amount of quality.

With Dominic Calvert-Lewin being extremely dangerous in aerial duels with defenders, Everton has shifted their style of play accordingly which has resulted in an abundance of crosses being made into the box from either flanks. Calvert-Lewin has so far converted 11 of those chances into goals and has even picked up several International caps for England and has even scored a couple of goals. Although as the season has progressed he, and Everton have experienced a loss of form, there is no doubt that he is one of the best Premier League players of 2021.

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Best Young Strikers of 2020

Son Heung-Min (Tottenham Hotspurs)

Son Heung-Min is a player that does not stop improving. Ever since joining


, hell even before when he played in the Bundesliga, Son seemed to improve his game match after match and now he is hitting his absolute best as he is teaming up with Kane to create one of the greatest attacking partnerships that the Premier League has ever known.

Assisted hugely by Harry Kane in the first few games,


made a good start to the league as he scored several goals in the first few games of the season. But as always he showed that more than anything, he is a team player and he returned Kane’s generosity with his own as he assisted him in turn. Making the two absolutely crucial to Tottenham’s good form this season.

Together the duo has scored 24 goals which is 72% of Tottenham’s goals. Add to that their assists and their contribution goes above 80%, which is just incredible. Son’s share has been 12 goals and 6 assists which is just incredible considering we are only halfway through the season, which is why Son Heung-Min is one of the best Premier League players of 2021.

Jack Grealish (Aston Villa)

The emergence of Jack Grealish as a top player is something that has been brewing for a couple of years but this season he has taken his game to a new level as he has become one of the

best football players in EPL of 2021

. Grealish’s loyalty to his boyhood club,

Aston Villa

, is something that you don’t often see in modern football but Villa’s skipper played a big role last season in them escaping relegation and continued his strong performances well into this season.

Although at times Villa were in pretty bad shape last season, they showed that there is a fight and a level of quality in them that needed to be polished. Perhaps for both Villa and Grealish that moment came when they beat the defending champions of the league 7-2 at Villa Park.


made perhaps the best right back in the world, Trent Alexander-Arnold, look like a school kid defender as he tore Liverpool’s defense to pieces and scored 2 goals as well as having a hat-trick of assists.

Grealish’s strong performances didn’t finish there as he has had one of the best and most consistent forms amongst the best Premier League players of 2021, producing 8 assists and scoring 5 goals. With 2.9 dribbles per game, he is also 3rd in the most dribbles per game which shows he often breaks opposition’s defense with his dribbles and then create chances with his passes, which is a kind of throwback to the early 2000s’ number 10s rather than today’s more predictable playmakers.

Mohammed Salah (Liverpool)

The King of Egypt’s inclusion on this list comes as a shock to absolutely no one as it’s expected of him to be nothing but the best. Since joining Liverpool he has constantly been great and is one of the reasons that


has experienced a resurgence. This season has been no different as Salah has helped Liverpool mount a strong title defense and has himself been one of the best football players in EPL of 2021. Although Liverpool, and to a lesser extent Salah, has had a bad run of form since the start of the new year.

Although not as bombastic as they were last season, Liverpool’s front three has been firing again this season with a welcome addition of Diego Jota who joined them from Wolverhampton last summer. Although as always


seems to be the main man when it comes to scoring goals. He has also the added bonus of taking penalties, with 5 of Salah’s goal coming from the spot.

Salah is currently leads the top goal scorer list and barring any serious injury, he may very well end up winning his third Golden Boot in the Premier League, which puts him in elite company. The fact that he performs at such a high level season after season, in a league that is known for being tough and having an exhaustive calendar, shows what a great player he is. So it’s no wonder that he is counted among the world’s very best and is one of the best Premier League players of 2021.

Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City)

2020’s Best Midfielder in Europe is the next player on our list of

best Premier League footballers of 2021

. The Belgian Wizard,

Kevin De Bruyne

, has again been Manchester City’s Talisman this season. Earlier we mentioned Manchester City’s need for new leaders on and off the pitch and De Bruyne as always has stepped up to the task and delivered. Although he has been filling that role for a couple of seasons now, this season his responsibility seems greater and he has not shirked away from it.

Although the season started slowly for

Manchester City

and De Bruyne as they were finding their new rhythm, as the season progressed De Bruyne has again been performing to his best, the way he did last season, and has been putting in the needed shift to propel Manchester City to a title challenge. In fact his form may prove vital in their title challenge as there are no players that could fill in for De Bruyne if he were ever to miss a game or even have a bad run of form.

De Bruyne has already produced half the number of assists he did last season but his goal scoring hasn’t been as great as last season. With 3 goals and 10 assists De Bruyne sits only an assist behind Harry Kane in the top EPL assisters table.

Like Salah and Kane, De Bruyne is another one of Premier League stars who is expected to perform at such a high level season after season and yet despite being one of the best Premier League players of 2021, a lot of fans and critics seem to think De Bruyne is having an off season, which tells you how great he would be if he was performing to the best of his abilities!

Bruno Fernandes (Manchester United)

It’s not an overstatement to say that

Bruno Fernandes

has transformed Manchester United from a mid-table side to a genuine title contender as it’s exactly what the Portuguese playmaker has done since arriving from Sporting Lisbon last season. Although the season started slowly for Manchester United and Fernandes, as they suffered huge defeats, his form has picked up immensely as the season progressed and he is a big part of why United sits at the top of table right now.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has been looking for a creative midfielder since being appointed the manager of

Manchester United

and while a lot of the fans though that role must go to none other than Paul Pogba, it seems that Fernandes is the one to fill the role. The Portuguese midfielder has the ability to break the deadlock of a game with his well-placed passes, strategic dribbling or even clever dives which earns Manchester United penalties so often. His experience as a leader and a captain in Sporting Lisbon has also helped galvanize United's rather inexperienced attack into one of the best in the league.

Although a lot of his goals has been from the penalty spot, Fernandes has managed to score 11 times this season and is in the contention for the top goal scorer award. Although he is not expected to win the award, the mere fact that he is up there with Kane and Salah is an achievement for a midfielder like him.

His main contribution to United however has been his creative excellence as the main playmaker for United which has resulted in him assisting 7 of United's goals. He has certainly been one of the

best Premier League players of 2021

and United absolutely needs him to continue his great form if they are to maintain their title challenge.

Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspurs)

Before the season started, nobody really doubted that

Harry Kane

would again be Tottenham’s best player this season but no one expected to see this side of his playing style, which made him one of the best assist providers in the league. Hell, nobody even knew that Harry Kane had this side to his playing style. What is even more impressive is the fact that his goal scoring ability has not even suffered a bit which is why he is one of

Premier League best players in 2021


Last season Jose Mourinho and Tottenham struggled as Kane lost a few months due to injury. It was always apparent that Mourinho favored to build any sort of strategy he had around Kane, as he is exactly the player that the Portuguese manager has always adored throughout his career. And it seems that Kane has like always stepped up when his team needed him and this time has expanded his role to not only be the finisher but also the provider as well.

This comes at the perfect time as Dele Alli, who was one of the main sources of creativity at Tottenham, has all but vanished from first team action. Kane’s great team up with Son has gone to almost telepathic levels as the pair are assisting each other on almost every goal that they score. With 12 goals and 11 assists, Harry Kane is the best assist provider and almost the best scorer in the league so far, only one behind Mo Salah, and he thoroughly deserves to be amongst the best Premier League players of 2021. He may even take the Best Player of the season award in the end, who knows!


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