Who were the best midfielders in January? Cazorla, Wilshere and more

Arsenal, Liverpool, Manchester City, Sunderland and West Brom stars all feature.

The midfielders in a side are arguably the most important players because they protect the defence and also setup the attack.

Manchester United showed last month with the £37 million signing of Juan Mata, how valuable modern, creative players are and the fees sides will spend to snap up the best talent.

There were some great midfield performances last month, we’ve taken a look at the best players across several key areas.


Adam Johnson Sunderland MF 5 4 277
Santiago Cazorla Arsenal MF 3 4 356
Steven Gerrard Liverpool MF 3 4 298
Jason Puncheon Southampton MF 3 4 352
Yaya Touré Man City MF 3 4 305

Adam Johnson has been a real thorn in the side for several teams lately and he cashed in on his good form last month with some goals. He’s always had the potential to score frequently and is starting to show it in the North East.


PlayerClubPosGoal AssistAppsMins
Jack Wilshere Arsenal MF 3 3 270
Philippe Coutinho Liverpool MF 2 4 280
Jonathan De Guzmán Swansea MF 2 2 178
Damien Duff Fulham MF 2 3 165
Christian Eriksen Spurs MF 2 4 339

Wilshere’s current absence from the Arsenal first team is hurting them, because last month he showed he can create chances for other attacking players from a variety of midfield positions.

Tackles Won

PlayerClubPosWon TackleAppsMins
Claudio Yacob West Brom MF 15 3 270
Mousa Dembélé Spurs MF 13 4 315
Gareth Barry Man City MF 12 4 360
Fernandinho Man City MF 11 3 270
Jason Puncheon Southampton MF 11 4 352

West Brom’s Yacob was the most effective player last month in terms of breaking up the play, getting stuck in and disrupting the momentum built up by the opposition. Fernandinho also deserves a mention because he’s been integral to a Manchester City side near the top of the league.

Interceptions Won

PlayerClubPosInterception WonAppsMins
Mile Jedinak Crystal Palace MF 13 4 360
Youssuf Mulumbu West Brom MF 13 4 300
Glenn Whelan Stoke MF 13 4 328
Michael Carrick Man Utd MF 12 3 241
Cheick Tioté Newcastle MF 11 4 360

It’s no surprise to see Michael Carrick on this list but it’s Mile Jedinak, Youssuf Mulumbu and Glenn Whelan who share the honours, with all three reading the play effectively and stepping in to win possession back for their sides.

Accurate Passes

PlayerClubPosAccurate PassAppsMins
Santiago Cazorla Arsenal MF 258 4 356
Gareth Barry Man City MF 250 4 360
Scott Parker Spurs MF 246 4 360
Jack Cork Southampton MF 245 4 302
Cheick Tioté Newcastle MF 240 4 360

It’s no surprise to see Santi Cazorla featuring in this area. The Spaniard has helped Arsenal compensate for injury and also for a dip in form to record signing Mesut Ozil, who has gone off the boil since Christmas and New Year.

image: © Ronnie Macdonald

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