Trent Alexander-Arnold put on another creative masterclass at Leicester on Boxing Day, laying on two assists while helping himself to a goal. One more assist against Wolves on Sunday will see him tied with Thomas Muller and Kevin De Bruyne as 2019’s most creative player in Europe’s top five leagues.
Here are the top ten players from Europe’s top five leagues with most assists in 2019, including league, Europe and domestic cup competitions…
10) Kylian Mbappe (PSG) – 16 assists
Games played: 40; Assists per appearance: 0.40
Minutes played: 3076; Minutes per assist: 192
If you chuck in Mbappe’s 39 goals in 2019, then the France star is in the top three with Lionel Messi and Robert Lewandowski for the most goal contributions. Last year, Mbappe recorded 38 goal contributions in total. It’s a mouthwatering prospect to imagine what 2020 will bring for the 21-year-old – most likely a move to Real Madrid.
9) Luis Suarez (Barcelona) – 17 assists
Games played: 49; Assists per appearance: 0.35
Minutes played: 3891; Minutes per assist: 229
By laying on three goals, the Barcelona striker recorded more assists in a single game against Alaves last week than Eden Hazard has managed all season for Real Madrid. And though we’re talking about assists, if you haven’t seen Suarez’s back-heel goal form a fortnight ago, you must right that wrong immediately…
🤤 Oh my word, Luis Suarez!
🔥 Barca are RAMPANT!
🐐 It’s 4-1 at HT as Leo Messi goal also got his second and Barca’s third pic.twitter.com/gTxk2C6TmE
— Premier Sports 📺 (@PremierSportsTV) December 7, 2019
8) Kevin Volland (Bayer Leverkusen) – 17 assists
Games played: 45; Assists per appearance: 0.38
Minutes played: 3712; Minutes per assist: 218
Seven of Volland’s assists have come in the Bundesliga this term in addition to five goals scored either as a central striker or off the left flank. No wonder Leverkusen will try to resist Arsenal’s approach for the 27-year-old – though with only 18 months remaining on his contract, that may be easier said than done.
7) Luis Alberto (Lazio) – 17 assists
Games played: 39; Assists per appearance: 0.44
Minutes played: 3041; Minutes per assist: 179
One of Liverpool’s cast-offs, Alberto has recorded 12 assists in 16 Serie A matches this term, which is seven more than he managed during the whole of last season. There has been talk of interest from Barcelona and the 27-year-old would certainly be up for returning to the Nou Camp: “If Barcelona were to come knocking on my door, I’d love to play with them.”
6) Lionel Messi (Barcelona) – 18 assists
Games played: 48; Assists per appearance: 0.38
Minutes played: 3875; Minutes per assist: 215
No one in Europe’s top five leagues has been involved in more domestic and European goals this year than Messi. But with 45 goals and 18 assists, the GOAT is slacking after 47 goals and 23 assists in 2018. Pull your finger out, Lionel.
5) Angel Di Maria (PSG) – 20 assists
Games played: 42 Assists per appearance: 0.48
Minutes played: 3345; Minutes per assist: 167
Depending on whether you support Manchester United or not, the best thing Di Maria did in 2019 was either hurtling into the fence at Old Trafford at the hand of Ashley Young, or this pass for Mbappe at Club Brugge…
Ángel Di María though 🤤🤤🤤 pic.twitter.com/6kXfOlx5BW
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) October 23, 2019
4) Jadon Sancho (Borussia Dortmund) – 21 assists
Games played: 42; Assists per appearance: 0.5
Minutes played: 3417; Minutes per assist: 163
Dortmund might not have been all that impressed with Sancho’s attitude through the latter part of 2019 but they can’t fault his output. With 13 assists and 12 goals in all competitions, the England winger has had a hand in 25 goals in 24 matches this term. His £100million price tag doesn’t seem all that unreasonable.
3) Trent Alexander-Arnold (Liverpool) – 22 assists
Games played: 43; Assists per appearance: 0.51
Minutes played: 3597; Minutes per assist: 164
The only player on this list who isn’t a midfielder or a forward may well eventually become one. But for now, the 21-year-old is redefining the role of a full-back. It’s been quite the year for the Scouser in Liverpool’s team.
2) Kevin De Bruyne (Man City) – 23 assists
Games played: 42; Assists per appearance: 0.55
Minutes played: 2958; Minutes per assist: 127
De Bruyne’s place in this list is all the more remarkable when you consider that 2018/19 really wasn’t his season. The Belgium star has already bettered his number of assists for last term and equalled the number of goals he scored in City’s Treble triumph.
One of the best passers in the game…
One of the best crossers in the game…
Every striker's dream…
Kevin De Bruyne is king of the assist 👑⚽️pic.twitter.com/Pfz7rtvpGf
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) October 1, 2019
1) Thomas Muller (Bayern Munich) – 23 assists
Games played: 44; Assists per appearance: 0.52
Minutes played: 2743; Minutes per assist: 120
Not good enough for Germany and rumours persist that his time at Bayern Munich could be coming to an end, but Muller has been on fire in 2019. Despite having made only 11 league starts for Bayern, his lowest tally ever by this point in any campaign, the 30-year-old became the first Bundesliga player to register 11 assists in the first half of the season. In the last seven games since Niko Kovac’s sacking, Muller has laid on seven goals in six starts in addition to netting a couple for himself.
No player has ever registered 11 assists in the first half of a #Bundesliga season.
— FC Bayern English (@FCBayernEN) December 21, 2019