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Is Hull City's Curtis Davies currently the best defender in Europe?

Manchester United's Zlatan Ibrahimovic in action with Hull City's Curtis Davies

Most fans might say Sergio Ramos, Eric Bailly, John Terry or Ashley Williams is the best defender in Europe. But based on the stats, they'd be wrong - it's Hull City's Curtis Davies.

Hull City's Curtis Davies celebrates after the gameHull City's captain fantastic Curtis Davies

Curtis Davies is currently the best defender in Europe, according to football website Oulala.

An analysis of key defending stats from the first few games of the season sees the Hull City talisman comfortably ahead in first place.

Davies has made 31 interceptions - with the next best players having made only 19, 11 blocks and 43 clearances, putting him in gold-medal position when compared with players from the Premier League, Serie A, La Liga, Bundesliga and Ligue 1.

Football Soccer - Spanish Liga Santander - Real Madrid v OsasunaRamos may score more goals, but he doesn't hold a defensive candle to Davies right now

Having started the season without a squad large enough to provide full bench cover and without a 'permanent' manager, Davies has been instrumental in inspiring Hull City to an outstanding start to the 2016/17 campaign, which sees them lie in 7th place.

The Tigers immediately proved nonsense any suggestion that the club could threaten Derby County's record for the lowest number of points in a Premier League season by winning their opening two games - a 2-1 win at home to reigning champions Leicester City, and a 2-0 win away at Swansea.

After a 3-1 EFL Cup second-round win over Exeter, Hull finally dropped points after Marcus Rashford scored the winner for Manchester United with one of the last kicks of the game when Jose Mourinho's men visited the KCOM Stadium. 

Manchester United's Zlatan Ibrahimovic in action with Hull City's Curtis DaviesDavies clears from Zlatan Ibrahimovic

The 1-0 reverse to United was in no way down to Davies' performance, as he put in a man-of-the-match showing

Hull returned from the international break with a 1-1 draw against Burnley. Surprise, surprise - Davies' efforts were highly rated in the press, and he even came close to scoring when his header hit the crossbar.

There have been suggestions that Davies should receive a call-up to the England squad, and if his form continues in a similar vein he will have to surely be a serious contender for Sam Allardyce's squad before too long. 

Burnley's Andre Gray in action with Hull City's Curtis DaviesThree-times capped for the U21s, Davies is deserving of higher honours

Davies may not be regarded as highly as John Stones and Gary Cahill right now - due to their presence at top clubs - but all that matters is performances on the field, and Davies is as good as - or rather, better than - anyone else at the moment.

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