The Premier League season might not have even had 10 games played yet, but there are clear standout players and teams that are taking this season by storm.
Manchester City are the deserved league leaders, but clubs like Burnley and Watford are proving everyone’s pre-season predictions wrong, with some excellent football played under Sean Dyche and Marco Silva.
At the other end of the table, Everton, who have just sacked Ronald Koeman, are in a terrible position just above the relegation zone. It is to no surprise that they are looking for a new coach who can get the best out of the 13 new players they signed over the summer.
Here are Liam Canning’s five best players this season so far:
5. Phil Jones
It might be six years on since Sir Alex Ferguson brought Jones to Manchester United from Blackburn, but we are now only seeing why he was so highly-rated by England’s most successful manager ever.
The England centre back has been plagued by injuries, which has considerably dented his career development through a lack of playing minutes. It is very difficult for any player to take his game to the next level without the ability to play consistently.
However, this season, Jones has only missed two games through injury. He finally looks like an experienced defender that is worth of wearing the Manchester United jersey.
What has been impressive this season is Jones has been far more controlled and composed when defending his goal. In the last few years, we have seen an erratic and irrational player, but Jones finally has the confidence to play out from the back and not to make rash decisions.
His blossoming relationship with Eric Bailly is proving wonders, and they have only conceded four goals in the Premier League this season. There is more to come from Jones, but for his sake, as well as England’s, he must stay injury free.
No one had expected the young Brazilian to hit the heights he has since arriving to England this summer. A left field signing from Marco Silva, Richarlison has been sensational for Watford and a main part of why they currently sit in sixth place.
While he is only 20 years old, Richarlison possesses such a cold-blooded streak that is seldom seen in youngsters. Nothing has fazed him so far in his short life to the Premier League.
Before the game against Antonio Conte’s men, in which Watford eventually lost 4-2, he said: “Scared of Chelsea? I had a gun pointed at my face.”
The Brazilian has a great attitude to the game and can go from strength to strength. There will be plenty of Premier League teams now taking an active interest in Richarlison, and there is no reason why he cannot make the next move up in a few years’ time.
3. David Silva
Any year since Silva has been in England, when compiling a ‘top five list’, it is criminal not to involve the Spanish magician. No matter who Manchester City bring in and spend tens of millions of pounds on, Silva will always be one of the first names on the team sheet.
Silva is a truly sensational attacking midfielder and will surely be hailed as one of the all-time best Manchester City and Premier League players. He makes everything he does look effortless, in a similar way that Pep Guardiola’s great Barcelona team played at the peak of their powers.
It is to no surprise that Silva has elevated his performance yet again since the introduction of Guardiola. An obvious partnership grew quickly and Silva is paramount to the way City play on the front foot.
For all Premier League defenders, it is horrible to play against a player that ghosts in-between the lines and picks up positions on the pitch that you thought you had covered.
Silva is a wonderful player and has shown his very best this season.
2. Harry Kane
He was labelled a ‘one season wonder’ when he broke through at Tottenham, but Kane has been sensational ever since that moment in 2014.
Yet again, the English centre forward has been delivering the goods for Mauricio Pochettino. Kane has such a relentless edge to him that he will not let up anything until his name is on the score sheet as many times as possible.
For any young player watching Kane, they will surely be inspired when watching a man from humble beginnings take centre stage week in, week out.
13 goals in 12 games this season, with five coming in three Champions League games, Kane’s form is irresistible. He has firmly silenced his critics and placed his name into the hat for the best centre forward on the planet discussion.
England’s number nine has it all: he is physically strong, incredibly intelligent in finding spaces in a crowded box and he also does not have a weak side. He can score goals with his left, right and head.
Kane is one of the best players in Europe right now and so it is no surprise that Real Madrid are closely monitoring the striker.
1. Kevin de Bruyne
The Belgian midfielder has not had it easy since arriving on the scene under José Mourinho at Chelsea, but if he has learnt anything, it is surely the fact that persistence and hard work pays off.
De Bruyne is now Guardiola’s love child. He is simply operating on a different level to anyone in the Premier League right now. Just take a look at City’s games against Stoke and Burnley.
It was De Bruyne who was running the show and delivering some absolutely sumptuous passes. In the Citizen’s 7-2 romp against Stoke, the Belgian international provided two immense passes.
One was a pre-assist to Leroy Sané, in which seemed impossible, as he disguised a reverse pass that split Stoke’s defence and took out four players. From the replays, there was no way De Bruyne could have actually seen Sané’s run, and yet he picked him out with an inch perfect pass.
The other was an assist, in which he picked the ball out-wide on the right-hand side. De Bruyne looks up and delivers a low-sweeping curling ball into the box – which intersects four Stoke players – and finds Sané at the back post to make it 6-2.
As long as De Bruyne is healthy and playing in the form he is now, City will be favourites for this year’s Premier League title.