EPL 100: Ranking of Premier League's Best Players After Matchday 24

Sam Tighe@@stighefootballWorld Football Tactics Lead WriterJanuary 23, 2018

EPL 100: Ranking of Premier League's Best Players After Matchday 24

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    Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

    The Premier League never ceases to deliver. Swansea City's shock 1-0 victory on Monday over a Liverpool side that had handed Manchester City their first loss of the season just last week capped off another brilliant slate of fixtures.

    We have updated our lists to take into account the latest gameweek of action. They are divided into seven position groups and based solely on performances in the Premier League in 2017-18.

    To be eligible, a player must have taken part in at least half the games his team has played.


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    Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

    A clean sheet against Burnley helps David De Gea hold stock—even if he was a virtual spectator for much of the match—in the face of increased competition from the cluster just below him.

    Thibaut Courtois, Kasper Schmeichel and Ederson are all playing well and/or earning clean sheets, with the Leicester City man, in particular, enjoying a good patch.

    Lukasz Fabianski was outstanding for Swansea on Monday night and rivalled Alfie Mawson for man of the match against Liverpool.          

    Biggest rise: Asmir Begovic (+2)

    Biggest fall: Petr Cech (-2)


    Top 10 Goalkeepers
    1David De Gea (Stay)Manchester United
    2Thibaut Courtois (Stay)Chelsea
    3Ederson (Stay)Manchester City
    4Kasper Schmeichel (+1)Leicester City
    5Nick Pope (-1)Burnley
    6Lukasz Fabianski (Stay)
    Swansea City
    7Asmir Begovic (+2)Bournemouth
    8Jordan Pickford (-1)Everton
    9Hugo Lloris (New!)Tottenham
    10Petr Cech (-2)Arsenal

Right-Backs/Right Wing-Backs

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    GLYN KIRK/Getty Images

    Kyle Walker's strong performance against Newcastle United keeps him entrenched at the top, but some action just below him might well be bubbling.

    Antonio Valencia, who has been second almost all season, is now under serious threat from the impressive Victor Moses.

    Cedric Soares moves up one after playing his part in a spirited, resilient display against Tottenham Hotspur, while Craig Dawson enters the rankings after putting together a good run post-injury. West Bromwich Albion may not excite, but they have been defensively strong. 

    Biggest rise: Cedric Soares (+1)

    Biggest fall: Matthew Lowton (-1)


    Top 10 RBs/RWBs
    1Kyle Walker (Stay)Manchester City
    2Antonio Valencia (Stay)Manchester United
    3Victor Moses (Stay)Chelsea
    4Kiko Femenia (Stay)Watford
    5Joe Gomez (Stay)Liverpool
    6Hector Bellerin (Stay)Arsenal
    7Cedric Soares (+1)Burnley
    8Matthew Lowton (-1)Southampton
    9Craig Dawson (New!)West Bromwich Albion
    10Kieran Trippier (Stay)Tottenham Hotspur

Left-Backs/Left Wing-Backs

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    Julian Finney/Getty Images

    There are plenty of small movements among the left-backs this week, with six moving up or down.

    Ryan Bertrand's lung-busting performance against Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday earns him the biggest shift (up two), while Sead Kolasinac's inability to get into the Arsenal XI means he has to drop three.

    Ben Chilwell enters the rankings at the expense of Leicester team-mate Christian Fuchs; it's clear which of the two that manager Claude Puel prefers.

    Biggest rise: Ryan Bertrand (+2)

    Biggest fall: Sead Kolasinac (-3)


    Top 10 LBs/LWBs
    1Fabian Delph (Stay)Manchester City
    2Marcos Alonso (Stay)Chelsea
    3Ashley Young (+1)Manchester United
    4Ben Davies (+1)Tottenham Hotspur
    5Ryan Bertrand (+2)Southampton
    6Sead Kolasinac (-3)Arsenal
    7Stephen Ward (-1)Burnley
    8Arthur Masuaku (Stay)West Ham United
    9Ben Chilwell (New!)Leicester City
    10Alberto Moreno (Stay)Liverpool


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    Catherine Ivill/Getty Images

    Jan Vertonghen moves up to second this week—his highest ranking of the season—after putting in another solid showing for Spurs on Sunday. In a time when they've needed him to play above his station, he's delivered consistently.

    Antonio Rudiger drops a few spots despite helping Chelsea keep a clean sheet, as he and Marcos Alonso struggled to contain Ezequiel Schelotto's marauding runs for Brighton & Hove Albion.

    Chris Smalling, Phil Jones, Nacho Monreal and Harry Maguire all impressed, so they all rise. Lewis Dunk and Christian Kabasele are extremely fortunate to hang on to spots at the bottom, but the Premier League's offering of quality centre-back performances is lacking right now.

    Biggest rise: Phil Jones (+4)

    Biggest fall: Jamaal Lascelles (-4)


    Top 20 CBs
    1Cesar Azpilicueta (Stay)Chelsea
    2Jan Vertonghen (+1)Tottenham Hotspur
    3Andreas Christensen (-1)Chelsea
    4John Stones (Stay)Manchester City
    5Ben Mee (Stay)Burnley
    6Nicolas Otamendi (Stay)Manchester City
    7Phil Jones (+4)Manchester United
    8James Tarkowski (-1)Burnley
    9Antonio Rudiger (-2)Chelsea
    10Nacho Monreal (+2)Arsenal
    11Davinson Sanchez (-1)Tottenham Hotspur
    12Chris Smalling (+3)Manchester United
    13Harry Maguire (+1)Leicester City
    14Jamaal Lascelles (-4)Newcastle United
    15Christopher Schindler (-2)Huddersfield Town
    16Shkodran Mustafi (+1)Arsenal
    17James Tomkins (-1)Crystal Palace
    18Jonny Evans (New!)West Bromwich Albion
    19Lewis Dunk (-1)Brighton & Hove Albion
    20Christian Kabasele (-1)Watford

Defensive Midfielders/Central Midfielders

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    Matthew Ashton - AMA/Getty Images

    What a difference David Silva makes. With him restored to Manchester City's XI, the performances look all the more smooth, and the recent games played without him highlight what a difference he can make.

    Paul Pogba didn't show what he's capable of in a tight game at Turf Moor, and he drops as N'Golo Kante surges into his place. Fernandinho bounced back well after a poor performance last week.

    Wilfred Ndidi is this week's biggest mover, having now excelled in two successive games and helped Leicester to four important points.

    Biggest rise: Wilfred Ndidi (+3)

    Biggest fall: Multiple (-2)


    Top 20 DMs/CMs
    1David Silva (Stay)Manchester City
    2N'Golo Kante (+1)Chelsea
    3Paul Pogba (-1)Manchester United
    4Fernandinho (Stay)Manchester City
    5Nemanja Matic (Stay)Manchester United
    6Steven Defour (Stay)Burnley
    7Abdoulaye Doucoure (Stay)Watford
    8Cesc Fabregas (Stay)Chelsea
    9Jack Cork (Stay)Burnley
    10Aaron Ramsey (Stay)Arsenal
    11Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (Stay)Liverpool
    12Mario Lemina (+2)Southampton
    13Eric Dier (Stay)Tottenham Hotspur
    14Vicente Iborra (-2)Leicester City
    15Wilfred Ndidi (+3)Leicester City
    16Emre Can (-1)Liverpool
    17Georginio Wijnaldum (Stay)Liverpool
    18Mikel Merino (-2)Newcastle United
    19Mousa Dembele (+1)Tottenham Hotspur
    20Aaron Mooy (+2)Huddersfield Town

Attacking Midfielders/Wingers

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    GLYN KIRK/Getty Images

    For the first time in weeks, we have movement at the top of this section.

    Eden Hazard and Raheem Sterling again dazzled as their teams earned comfortable victories, while Mohamed Salah put in a poor performance against Swansea City. It means the former two move above the latter.

    That's a big call, and Salah's goalscoring tally leaves it open to question. But it's very important not to condense football into a reductive contest of goals and assists, and Hazard's game-defining, sparkling displays must be recognised. Very often, he's the best player on the pitch and runs the match, but Hazard doesn't get the deserved credit because his pass wasn't the one before the goal.

    At the other end, Brighton's Pascal Gross and Anthony Knockaert drop out of the top 20 after fading badly, while Richarlison is hanging on by a thread.

    Biggest rise: Anthony Martial (+3)

    Biggest fall: Sadio Mane (-3)


    Top 20 AMs/Wingers
    1Kevin De Bruyne (Stay)
    Manchester City
    2Eden Hazard (+2)Chelsea
    3Raheem Sterling (Stay)Manchester City
    4Mohamed Salah (-2)Liverpool
    5Leroy Sane (Stay)Manchester City
    6Riyad Mahrez (Stay)Leicester City
    7Christian Eriksen (Stay)Tottenham Hotspur
    8Mesut Ozil (Stay)Arsenal
    9Anthony Martial (+3)Manchester United
    10Jesse Lingard (Stay)Manchester United
    11Sadio Mane (-3)Liverpool
    12Alexis Sanchez (-1)Manchester United
    13Juan Mata (Stay)Manchester United
    14Marc Albrighton (+1)Leicester City
    15Heung-Min Son (-1)Tottenham Hotspur
    16Marcus Rashford (Stay)Manchester United
    17JB Gudmundsson (+1)Burnley
    18Willian (New!)Chelsea
    19Dele Alli (-2)Tottenham Hotspur
    20Richarlison (-1)Watford


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    Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

    You won't be surprised to see Harry Kane retain top spot—even if he did only score the one goal this weekend. That's a light load for him.

    Further down, there's plenty of switching around, with Sergio Aguero's hat-trick propelling him upward. Romelu Lukaku impressed too, and Alexandre Lacazette finally ended a drought lasting more than 10 hours. Roberto Firmino's late miss against Swansea cost him dearly, paving his descent to fourth.

    Jamie Vardy has quietly reached double figures for a third successive campaign, and that moves him above the suspended and out-of-form Alvaro Morata.

    Biggest rise: Sergio Aguero (+2)

    Biggest fall: Roberto Firmino (-2)


    Top 10 Strikers
    1Harry Kane (Stay)Tottenham Hotspur
    2Sergio Aguero (+2)Manchester City
    3Romelu Lukaku (Stay)Manchester United
    4Roberto Firmino (-2)Liverpool
    5Jamie Vardy (+1)Leicester City
    6Alvaro Morata (-1)Chelsea
    7Gabriel Jesus (Stay)Manchester City
    8Alexandre Lacazette (Stay)Arsenal
    9Wilfried Zaha (Stay)Crystal Palace
    10Marko Arnautovic (Stay)West Ham United


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