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Hazard – not Kanté – was Best Premier League Player this Season | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Chelsea’s Eden Hazard celebrate’s his team winning of the Premier League. (Getty Images)

London – Eden Hazard – not N’Golo Kanté – was the best performer this season, closely followed by Alexis Sánchez, Paul Pogba, Romelu Lukaku and Roberto Firmino.

Arsenal: Alexis Sánchez, 7.74

The second highest rated player in the entire league, Alexis Sánchez has carried Arsenal for much of the season, scoring 23 goals and laying on 10 assists, all of which have come from open play. He is the only Premier League player to register double figures for both. His workrate has been clear to see once more, winning possession the second most times in the final third (29).

Bournemouth: Steve Cook, 7.18

One of just four individuals to play every single minute for their side in the Premier League this season, Steve Cook has developed a reputation as a strong defender at this level. He has drawn admiring glances from a number of clubs, having made the most clearances in the entire division (342).

Burnley: Ben Mee, 7.14

Burnley’s home form guaranteed their safety, with much of that down to the performances of Ben Mee and Michael Keane at the heart of the defense. Mee ranks second for clearances (300) and first for shots blocked (46) in the league this season, with his proactive approach to defending a vital reason why Sean Dyche’s side will be back in the league next season.

Chelsea: Eden Hazard, 7.79

He may have missed out on the PFA Player of the Year award to team-mate N’Golo Kanté but Eden Hazard has been the top performer in the Premier League according to our statistical ratings. Along with 15 goals and five assists, he has completed the most dribbles (138), drawn the most fouls (98) and created the most chances from open play (75).

Crystal Palace: Wilfried Zaha, 7.39

Wilfried Zaha set Crystal Palace on their way to a thumping 4-0 win on Sunday, confirming their place in the Premier League for another season. This has probably been his best season to date, with nine assists and seven goals.

Everton: Romelu Lukaku, 7.50

As the top scorer in the Premier League (24 goals without a single penalty), it’s little surprise that Romelu Lukaku is Everton’s highest rated player, having also had the most shots on target this season (51). He has also laid on six assists, while completing more dribbles than any of his team-mates to ensure he is in demand once again this summer.

Hull City: Harry Maguire, 7.07

There are a handful of relegated players who are likely to return to the Premier League this season and Harry Maguire is one of them. The 24-year-old has been a standout performer for Hull, having completed more dribbles than any other defender in the league. It’s no wonder a number of clubs are interested in bringing him back to the top flight.

Leicester City: Christian Fuchs, 7.06

It was a disappointing title defense from Leicester City, but a top-half finish is still possible following their change of managers in February. Christian Fuchs has again enjoyed a decent campaign, ranking highly for assists (four), tackles per game (2.5) and crosses per game (0.8).

Liverpool: Roberto Firmino, 7.55

He may be the least lauded member of Liverpool’s front three but Roberto Firmino has led the line well this season. A return of 11 goals may be modest but his link-up play and work rate from the front ares invaluable to Jürgen Klopp. Only Eden Hazard has created more chances from open play this season (65), while the Brazilian ranks third for possession won in the attacking third (29).

Manchester City: Kevin de Bruyne, 7.49

While a goal tally of five is disappointing for a player of Kevin de Bruyne’s considerable talents, his creativity has set him apart. His tally of 15 assists is the highest in the league and only Eden Hazard and Alexis Sánchez have won more of our man of the match awards this season (eight).

Manchester United: Paul Pogba, 7.71

A controversial award, no doubt, but Paul Pogba has been influential for Manchester United in the league and in Europe this season. He has averaged the second most passes per game in the Premier League this season (73.7), delivered the second most accurate through balls (12) and also leads the way for United in both key passes (1.9) and dribbles (2.4) per game.

Middlesbrough: Calum Chambers, 7.07

It says a lot when your highest rated player for the campaign is on loan from another Premier League club. Calum Chambers has impressed during his time at the Riverside, at center-back and right-back, and he has made more clearances per game (7.2) than any other Boro player. Like Maguire, he is likely to be playing Premier League football next season, be it with parent club Arsenal or elsewhere.

Southampton: Virgil van Dijk, 7.43

When Virgil van Dijk’s season was cut short in January due to a serious knee injury, Southampton fans could have been forgiven for thinking they had seen the last of him in the red and white stripes. The 25-year-old is perhaps the most in-demand defender in the Premier League and for good reason. He has been dominant in the air, winning 4.7 aerial duels per game, and calculated when stepping in to make interceptions, averaging 2.6 per game. It would be a shock if Van Dijk were still at St. Mary’s next season.

Stoke City: Joe Allen, 6.94

Stoke City’s big money signing came in the form of Joe Allen and he has not disappointed, even if the team’s form has dipped towards the end of the season. Allen ranks highly for tackles (2.4) and interceptions per game (1.7), with his ball winning ability vital for Mark Hughes’ side. He is also their joint-top scorer in the league.

Sunderland: Jordan Pickford, 7.05

Jordan Pickford’s form has been a shining light amid Sunderland’s dreary season. The 23-year-old will surely return to the Premier League this summer, having made more saves per game (4.5) than any other goalkeeper, with his rating of 7.05 the highest in the league.

Swansea City: Gylfi Sigurdsson, 7.26

It’s no surprise to see Gylfi Sigurdsson top of the pile at Swansea. He is seventh for key passes (78), second for clear-cut chances created (16) and joint-second for assists (13) in the Premier League. A lot of clubs will be keen to sign Sigurdsson this summer, but Paul Clement really needs to retain the services of the 27-year-old.

Tottenham Hotspur: Harry Kane, 7.52

Having become only the fourth player to score at least 20 goals in three consecutive Premier League seasons (after Ruud van Nistelrooy, Thierry Henry and Alan Shearer), Harry Kane took his tally to 22 by scoring Spurs’ last ever goal at the old White Hart Lane. A couple of injuries mean Kane has only started 27 times in the league but he has still mustered the second most shots on target (50) and registered a career-high total of six assists.

Watford: José Holebas, 6.99

José Holebas has been a consistent performer for Watford this season, with the experienced left-back topping the assist charts for the club, with four. The 32-year-old has attacked well – he ranks high for key passes (1.1) and dribbles per game (1.3) – without shirking his defensive responsibilities, as shown by his 1.8 tackles and 1.7 interceptions per game.

West Bromwich Albion: Gareth McAuley, 7.11

It may seem risky for a club to renew the contract of a 37-year-old but Gareth McAuley remains a crucial player for West Brom and warranted a new deal this year. The Northern Ireland international is a fantasy football favorite, having scored six goals this season – as many as any other defender when excluding penalties. He also leads the way of the Baggies in clearances (6.3) and blocks (0.9) per game.

West Ham United: Michail Antonio, 7.25

Michail Antonio was linked with a move to Chelsea earlier in the season and looked reluctant to sign a new deal but he has now put pen to paper on a fresh contract. West Ham will be relieved as he has been their top scorer this season, with nine goals in the league.

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