English Premier League: 10 Possible Contenders for Player of the Season so Far

Matthew Celentano@@Gunner_NYCFeatured ColumnistNovember 5, 2011

English Premier League: 10 Possible Contenders for Player of the Season so Far

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    Although there may have only been 10 gameweeks so far in the 2011-12 Premier League season, there have been plenty of players who have stood out from the crowd.

    Some of them have already established themselves as world-class footballers in previous seasons while others are emerging talents who transferred to a top English club this summer and are already lighting up the Premiership.

    Either way, here are 10 possible contenders for the 2011-12 Premier League Player of the Season so far.

Rafael Van Der Vaart

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    Rafael Van Der Vaart is one of the most in-form midfielders in the Premier League right now—and the highest-scoring.

    The Dutchman has hit the net six times in his first 10 Premier League matches, a tally you'd expect from a forward. The ironic thing is, Spurs have had trouble finding a forward who can score goals week in and week out, so Van Der Vaart happens to be the perfect man for them, scoring goals as a midfielder.

    If he continues to perform as well as he currently is, Rafael Van Der Vaart could very well be in contention for the Premier League Player of the Season.

Ashley Young

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    Ashley Young got his career with Manchester United off to a flying start, scoring the winner in their Premier League opener and a brace against Arsenal a few matches later.

    Although he's cooled down since then, the Englishman is still one of the focal points of Manchester United's attack, giving them the brilliant wing play that they're so famous for. Ashley Young has proved himself as one of the best transfers of the summer, and it's clear that he has a glowing career ahead of him at Old Trafford.

    The winger's good form is key to United's success this season, and as long as he stays excellent, he could very well be rewarded.

Juan Mata

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    After some brilliant performances for Valencia last season and in the Under-21 European Championships this summer, Juan Mata completed his move to the Premier League after Chelsea beat a number of top clubs to the Spaniard's signature.

    Well, the dynamic winger has taken absolutely no time adjusting to the Premier League, scoring on his debut and putting in superb performance after superb performance since then. He's exactly the creative midfielder that Chelsea were in need of this summer and has proved himself as the Blues' attacking engine.

    Keep it up, Juan Mata, and you'll be winning a lot more than just the PFA Player of the Year.

Luis Suarez

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    Although Luis Suarez isn't scoring nearly as many goals as people expected him to, that doesn't mean the forward hasn't been playing outstandingly. 

    Suarez seems to be at the heart of every one of Liverpool's attacks and can be the most dangerous player on the pitch when he's at his best. The way he plays means the Uruguayan is an absolute nightmare to opposing defenders, with silky skills, a ferocious finish and quite the eye for a pass.

    Suarez may already be out of the race for the Golden Boot, but he's very much a contender for the Player of the Year.

Frank Lampard

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    What? Frank Lampard the PFA Player of the Year at 33 years old?

    Yes.

    After much speculation on whether or not Lampard could still perform at top level for yet another season, the Englishman proved his doubters wrong by scoring five goals and notching up four assists in his first 10 Premier League matches.

    Although it may be a long shot, Lampard could very well end up adding another piece of silverware to his personal collection, and I'm not talking about the Champions League (sorry, Roman). 

Sergio Aguero

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    Carlos who?

    Tevez went from being Manchester City's most beloved player to being, well, their most hated player.

    But the mega-rich Manchester outfit took no time to find a replacement for their misfit forward, and it was out with the old Argentine and in with the new Argentine, as Sergio Aguero arrived at the Etihad Stadium and made his impact immediately.

    The former Athletico Madrid striker has already set the Premier League on fire, scoring nine goals in eight appearances, including a stunning debut which saw him score two goals and an assist.

    Expect Aguero to hit the net quite a few more times this season, and if things go his way, he could even bag some silverware in his first season in England.

Wayne Rooney

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    Wayne Rooney hit the ground running at the beginning of the season, scoring two stunning hat tricks, but more importantly being the heart of Manchester United's attack.

    The 26-year-old is finally filling the boots of being England and United's prolific forward. He had quite a patchy 2010-11 season, but has made no mistake of making his mark on the Red Devils' 2011-12 campaign, already scoring nine in the league.

    The Englishman is starting to approach the peak of his career, so we can expect to see Rooney's best football yet this season. 

Mario Balotelli

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    Although Mario Balotelli seems more likely to win the Young Player of the Season award, he's got a good chance of going all the way and winning the Player of the Season award as well.

    The 21-year-old has scored five goals in the league so far this season, including a spectacular overhead kick against Aston Villa and a brace against Manchester United at Old Trafford. Balotelli does have some tough competition for the striker spot at Manchester City, but if he keeps up the good form, he could finally solidify a regular place in the team.

    I've said it before and I'll say it again: It's scary to think about what Balotelli will be doing in the peak of his career.

David Silva

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    "David Silva is a mixture between a wizard and a little weasel."

    That's what Joe Hart said about his teammate, and it's pretty spot-on. David Silva has proved himself as the best midfielder in the Premier League without a doubt, and the Spaniard could easily fit in at Barcelona. Silva's creativity and playmaking ability have made him the heart of Manchester City's squad, and he is now the player that they rely on the most.

    Already notching up seven assists and three goals in the league, David Silva has undoubtedly been the Player of the Season so far, with stiff competition from only one man...

Robin van Persie

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    Robin van Persie isn't just a prolific forward, he's a legend in the making.

    The Dutchman has scored 10 in 10 Premier League matches. Here's some crazy statistics: seven of those goals have come in the last three matches, and he's hit the net 28 times in 27 league appearances. 

    Van Persie could easily end up scoring 30 goals this season, and to be honest, the best player in the Premier League is either the Flying Dutchman or David Silva.

    The Premier League Player of the Season is completely in the air at the moment with only 10 matches played so far, but if anyone's in the lead right now, it's Robin van Persie.

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