Best European XI so far: Kane, Mbappé, Buongiorno


Every week, we usually bring you the best performers across Europe’s top five leagues (English Premier League, German Bundesliga, Spanish LaLiga, French Ligue 1 and Italian Serie A) using the unique WhoScored ratings system.

The ratings are based on a comprehensive algorithm that uses Opta data during live matches, with more than 200 raw statistics, that gives us a single rating from 1-10 (1 being bad; 10 being excellent) weighted according to a player’s influence within a game. Find out more about how the ratings are calculated at WhoScored here.

This time, however, we bring you the top players from the entire season so far.

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Goalkeeper: Michele Di Gregorio (Monza | Serie A) – 7.07 rating

Monza are exceeding expectations to sit 10th in Serie A this season, in part due to the exploits of Di Gregorio between the sticks. While not the most glamourous name, the 26-year-old has still made 93 saves and boasts a solid save success rate of 75.2%. With 11 clean sheets, too, Di Gregorio is one of the more active goalkeepers in Europe.

Right-back: Jeremie Frimpong (Bayer Leverkusen | Bundesliga) – 7.20

A key reason behind Leverkusen’s stunning season so far has been coach Xabi Alonso’s utilisation of his full-backs. Frimpong, who does not need a second invitation to bombard up field, has scored eight times and provided an additional seven assists. An incredible 39 key passes and 39 successful dribbles is testament to the Dutchman’s desire to aid in the final third.

Centre-back: Virgil van Dijk (Liverpool | Premier League) – 7.30

Van Dijk looks back to his best as Liverpool seek to seal the Premier League title in Jurgen Klopp’s final season at Anfield, and routinely dominates in the air having returned an 84.3% aerial success rate. Van Dijk rarely gets beaten with the ball on the deck either, as evidenced by a 93.9% tackle success rate.

Centre-back: Alessandro Buongiorno (Torino | Serie A) – 7.23

An unlikely addition to this world-class team, Buongiorno has shone for a Torino side that have conceded the fourth-fewest goals (26) in Serie A this season. Buongiorno’s impressive reading of the game has contributed towards a solid Torino backline, with the 24-year-old ranking top for interceptions (50) and ninth for clearances (99) in Italy’s top tier this term.

Left-back: Álex Grimaldo (Bayer Leverkusen | Bundesliga) – 7.69

Grimaldo has proven a fine signing for the Bundesliga leaders after his arrival on a free transfer from Benfica last summer, with the Spaniard proving an assist machine for Alonso’s side. Indeed, no player has registered more assists than Grimaldo (11) in Europe’s top-five leagues this season, while 65 key passes is more than any defender and 14th overall.

Right midfield: Bukayo Saka (Arsenal | Premier League) – 7.69

Saka is enjoying his best season to date as he plays a key role in Arsenal’s title push. The England winger has scored 13 times and provided an additional eight assists for Mikel Arteta’s side, with returns of 81 shots and 68 key passes ranking 12th and 11th, respectively, in Europe’s top five leagues this season.

Central midfield: Jude Bellingham (Real Madrid | LaLiga) – 7.78

The only LaLiga player in this XI, Bellingham is enjoying a fine debut season with Real Madrid. While many have struggled with the pressure that comes with playing for Los Blancos, Bellingham is thriving and has scored 16 times in 22 appearances under Carlo Ancelotti.

Central midfield: Jamal Musiala (Bayern Munich | Bundesliga) – 7.79

Bayern may be struggling domestically but their star players are shining with Musiala the first of three Bayern representatives in the side. Musiala has been directly involved in 16 goals for Thomas Tuchel’s team this season, netting 10 times, while his 79 successful dribbles ranks third across Europe’s top five leagues.

Left midfield: Leroy Sané (Bayern Munich | Bundesliga) – 7.81

One of those to have surpassed Musiala, Sané has completed dribbles more than any other player (91) in Europe. He has forged a fine partnership with summer signing Harry Kane, with five of his 11 assists coming for the England captain, marking the best assist-to-goals scorer combination in the Bundesliga.

Striker: Harry Kane (Bayern Munich | Bundesliga) – 7.87

Kane has already enjoyed a record-breaking season for Bayern and he’s now scored at least seven more goals (31) than any other player in Europe’s top five leagues. Those 31 goals have come from 119 shots (also the most), while an additional seven assists is a solid return. While Bayern may be struggling in the Bundesliga, Kane is thriving in his debut season.

Striker: Kylian Mbappé (PSG | Ligue 1) – 7.78

Mbappé ranks second to Kane for both goals (24) and shots (107) in Europe’s top five leagues, with the France star enjoying what looks to be his final campaign in Paris. PSG will be crowned Ligue 1 champions before too long as Mbappé looks to bow out at the Parc des Princes — before a potential move to Real Madrid in the summer — on a high.



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