We’ve reached the halfway point of the Premier League 2020/21 season, and it’s been a fascinating one. About half of the league seems to be involved in a Champions League chase, and the other half are scrapping for their lives at the bottom.
There is still a long way to go, with many more twists and turns sure to be on the way. However, that can’t stop us from having a look at the standouts from this season’s standouts so far.
So, after much discussion with colleagues, here is the Premier League’s 2020/21 Team of the Season so far.
Emiliano Martinez (GK) – Since arriving from Arsenal for £20 million in the summer, Martinez has been exceptional for Aston Villa. Only Manchester City’s Ederson is ahead of the Argentine in the Golden Glove race.
Joao Cancelo (RB) – The Portuguese has played as both a left-back and a right-back this season, showing plenty of promise after a quiet opening year at the Etihad. Cancelo can often be seen almost playing a central midfield role, providing plenty of attacking threat along with defensive solidity.
Ruben Dias (CB) – Man City’s defensive signings have not always been the best, but Dias is looking like a smashing success already. The £60m man has kept ten clean sheets in his 16 league appearances, conceding just seven goals.
Centre-back partner John Stones also deserves immense credit. Ousting the impressive Aymeric Laporte from the starting XI seemed like an impossible task a few months ago, but Stones and Dias have passed that test with flying colours.
Ezri Konsa (CB) – Martinez may have been excellent for Villa, but he wouldn’t be able to keep so many clean sheets without a player like Konsa in front of him. The Englishman has been solid at the heart of the defence, and has also contributed two goals this term. If he keeps up this form, he can’t be too far away from an England call up.
James Justin (LB) – Deputising in an unfamiliar left-back role for most of the season, James Justin hasn’t looked an inch out of place in Leicester’s side. The former Luton Town man has scored one goal and recorded one assist, keeping seven clean sheets.
With Timothy Castagne and Ricardo Pereira both returning from injury, it remains to be seem whether Justin will keep his place in the side. Nonetheless, his stock has massively increased over the past few months.
Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg (CDM) – A lot has been made about Tottenham’s attacking threats (we’ll get to them later), but their system would fall apart without some steel in midfield. Hojbjerg provides exactly that, ranking in the top ten in the division for tackles, touches, and passes.
Kevin De Bruyne (CM) – Last season’s PFA Player of the Year winner has continued to shine in Man City’s side. The Belgian is the league’s second top playmaker with ten assists, on top of the three goals that he has bagged this term.
Bruno Fernandes (CM) – Fernandes arrived during a turbulent time at Old Trafford and has restored some order, bringing Man Utd back to the top of the table. The Portuguese has been phenomenal for the Red Devils, scoring 11 and assisting seven this campaign.
Mohamed Salah (RW) – Despite a recent drop in form, Salah is the Premier League’s top scorer. He is on course for his third Golden Boot in four seasons – only Thierry Henry and Alan Shearer have won three Premier League Golden Boots before.
Harry Kane (ST) – The Englishman has always had a good all round game, but this season he has elevated that to a whole new level. His 11 assists is the most in the division, while his 12 goals is just one short of Salah in first.
Heung-min Son (LW) – You can’t have one without the other. Kane and Son have been quite the partnership this season, combining for 13 goals this season – a joint Premier League record.
The Korean has statistically been the most clinical finisher in the top flight this season, outperforming his expected goals by 4.72 (via Understat).
Brendan Rodgers (Manager) – The Northern Irishman has had a mixed time in Britain, from play-off winner with Swansea, to meme king at Liverpool, to his hero-to-zero spell at Celtic.
And now he is rebuilding his reputation at Leicester City, leading the Foxes into a title charge. Rodgers’ men have played some fantastic stuff, scoring the third most goals in the division while also maintaining a solid defence.
Rodgers’ sides have a reputation for falling off in the second half of the season, so it remains to be seen whether Leicester will maintain this level of performance. Nonetheless, Rodgers deserves immense credit for his achievements thus far.