The shape of Premier League football is changing with more emphasis being placed on midfield magic and front men who can drop into space behind a target striker. Here are the five best play makers from England’s top flight so far this season.
A lot was said and written about the transfer of Eden Hazard to Chelsea. There were questions over his commitment to Chelsea, his enthusiasm for the Premier League and whether he was good enough to make the switch from France to England. Well the statistics tell us he is having a remarkable effect on the way Chelsea are playing at the moment as he is the joint highest assists provider having set up six goals.
Who is the other player on six assists? His Chelsea teammate Juan Mata. Mata has been able to ensure that he has a regular starting place in Chelsea’s side because in terms of holding a central midfield attacking position, there is no one else better at the club. There are slight concerns about Mata for the rest of the season as recent reports have suggested that he is playing with an injury. However, his deliveries from set pieces along with his four goals suggest he is the most important player at the club.
Adam Lallana deserves a lot of credit because he is extremely effective in the attack of a side that has struggled so far this season. Southampton look as though they could be down near the bottom of the table for most of the campaign so Lallana has to maintain his consistency to give them any chance of survival. He has four assists so far this season and as captain, he is the driving force behind the team as he urges them to get up the pitch and do what Southampton do best. If only they could keep a clean sheet.
Rooney has been able to weigh in with the assists at Manchester United because he’s been allowed to drop into the hole behind Robin Van Persie and link up with the midfield. He has set up four goals this season along with the two he has scored, which is bound to improve. Rooney can thread balls through a defence and he has shown that he is a superb crosser of the ball when he is forced out into a slightly wider position on the pitch.
Shane Long of West Brom is one of many players with three assists so far this season. He makes the top five so far this season because of West Brom’s fifth place in the league, a position that very few would have expected them to have. Long is a very busy player both on and off the ball and he is able to weigh in as a play maker because his pace is a vital asset when it comes to West Brom’s counter attacks.