Arsenal are getting their main man back while Liverpool are still missing theirs. Manchester United’s highest-rated player is no longer Casemiro…
Here’s every side’s best player so far according to WhoScored’s ratings, ruling out those who have played fewer than 600 minutes.
Arsenal: Gabriel Jesus – 7.53
Even before the injury, the goals had dried up somewhat, but his overall contribution remained exemplary. Gabriel Martinelli, Martin Odegaard and Bukayo Saka have all scored more but Jesus beats players, wins fouls and bizarrely, rather a lot of headers. And now he’s back.
Aston Villa: Ollie Watkins – 6.86
Barring utter disaster, Watkins will claim his third double-figure Premier League season and has definitely proven himself not just the best of the Villa bunch but the best of the capped English strikers who won’t get much of a game while Harry Kane is still Harry Kane.
Bournemouth: Marcus Tavernier – 6.92
Has a whole four Premier League assists, three goals and a decent amount of credit in the bank to suggest his first top-flight season might not be his last. Dango Ouattara and Hamed Traore are both off to an excellent start but need more minutes in the bank to dislodge Tavernier.
Brentford: Ivan Toney – 7.30
Fifteen Premier League goals in just 23 games. Was it ever going to be anybody else?
Brighton: Solly March – 7.26
Scores, creates, tackles, works damned hard. While other Seagulls were linked with moves away, Brighton boss Roberto De Zerbi believes March is in the same bracket: “Mac Allister, Caicedo? All people understand Mac Allister and Caicedo are two big players and I would like the people to understand that March too is a big player.”
Chelsea: Thiago Silva – 7.03
The sidelined 38-year-old is still Chelsea’s best defender and most important component, though more minutes for new signing Enzo Fernandes should see him soon claim that ‘tallest dwarf’ crown.
Crystal Palace: Joachim Andersen – 6.84
He wins a lot of headers, does Mr Andersen. And hits a lot of fairly accurate long balls. But for a team with Wilfried Zaha, Eberechi Eze and Michael Olise in their ranks, they probably don’t want a centre-half as their player of the season.
Everton: James Tarkowski – 6.94
Even before Sean Dyche turned up to get the old band back together, Tarkowski was sticking his head on whatever was hurled towards the Everton box.
Fulham: Aleksandar Mitrovic – 7.15
Only Harry Kane and has taken more shots in the Premier League, with Mitro scoring with 11 of them.
Leeds United: Pascal Struijk – 6.90
One of the low-key successes of Jesse Marsch’s doomed tenure was Struijk’s conversion into a decent left-back who is defensively stout while still being comfortable on the ball. Two goals and an assist help the algorithm too. Currently missing after a concussion; Leeds have missed him.
Leicester City: James Maddison – 7.30
Nine goals and five assists is quite the record from 19 games and the Foxes miss him badly when he’s not available. Which is likely to become more of a problem since he would probably quite like to leave for a better club now, thank you.
Liverpool: Luis Diaz – 7.28
In a sea of at-best mediocrity, Diaz has been less culpable than most. He conjured three goals and two assists from just seven Premier League starts and Liverpool have missed him terribly.
Manchester City: Erling Haaland – 7.52
Just the 28 Premier League goals for Haaland. Ridiculous.
Manchester United: Bruno Fernandes – 7.34
Five goals and six assists this season for Bruno, the team skipper if not yet the club captain. Edges out Casemiro and Marcus Rashford.
Newcastle United: Kieran Trippier – 7.56
Bruno Guimaraes might want a word but Trippier plays in the Premier League’s meanest defence while simultaneously creating chance upon chance. What a signing for a club forcing talk of a Big Seven sooner than expected.
Nottingham Forest: Serge Aurier – 6.89
Tackles like a full-back, clears the ball like a centre-back. Scoring the equaliser v Chelsea was a lovely bonus.
Southampton: James Ward-Prowse – 6.99
Tottenham: Harry Kane – 7.49
Just the 20 Premier League goals this season and still no chance of winning the Golden Boot. He will have to console himself with other landmarks and records.
West Ham: Declan Rice – 6.96
Just one Premier League goal since mid-October as West Ham have slumped. But Rice is still going about his job of winning the ball in the middle of the pitch. Except v Tottenham (when he was terrible).
Wolves: Ruben Neves – 7.00
Nobody at Wolves has scored more goals, made more tackles or made more interceptions. Somebody give him a hand FFS.