Ten games have gone and past in this fascinating 2015/16 Premier League season, so I thought this is a good time to reflect on the best performers of the season so far. At the end of this article, I will give my version of the best starting XI. I won’t be discussing the 11 players individually, I will just go through the best goalkeeper, defender, midfielder and forward.
Best goalkeeper: Jack Butland (Stoke City)
I think many a number of goalkeepers have performed admirably. The likes of Joe Hart, Petr Cech, David De Gea and Asmir Begovic have shown their qualities so far this season. But I have gone for young England International Jack Butland for the best goalkeeper. His performances have been underlined this season, particularly because of an unsteady Stoke back four, but Butland has kept his Stoke team numerous times. Having made 40 saves in 10 League appearances, only Sunderland’s Costel Pantilimon has made more saves this season (42). His performance against Arsenal was probably his best, when he made terrific saves to keep the scoreline respectable. The question now remains the same: Can he challenge Joe Hart for the number 1 spot in the England National Team?
Best defender: Laurent Koscielny (Arsenal)
I always thought of Koscielny as a complete defender. The french international is very strong in the air, but actually quite quick for a centre back. Thus he’s comfortable at dealing with both high long balls and passes on the ground. His ability to read the game is vital to Arsenal this season. As a matter of fact, he has the highest interception average per game (4.3 interceptions/game), which is much higher than the second best out-and-out defender, César Azpilicueta (3.1 interceptions/game). He certainly has contributed to Arsenal’s excellent start to this campaign, and looks like a definite starter for France at the Euros next summer.
Best midfielder: Riyad Mahrez (Leicester City)
This is a tough one, between Leicester’s Riyad Mahrez and West Ham’s Dimitri Payet, but I have gone for the Algerian international here. He has simply been unbelievable. In his nine Premier League appearences, he’s often been involved in everything Leicester have done right so far. Five goals and five assists is an astonishing tally for Mahrez. On top of that, he also creates many chances for his team mate (2.4 key passes per game) which is a remarkable return for a wide midfielder. Hopefully, he can continue this run of form to try and help his Leicester team achieve something this season.
Best Forward: Jamie Vardy (Leicester City)
There is no way you could look beyond Jamie Vardy for the best attacker this season. The man has been sensational: Premier League top scorer, with 10 goals from 10 league appearances is pretty spectacular isn’t it? Especially from someone who has started his footballing career in a non-League side. He deservedly got the international recognition, and has been involved in England’s Euros qualifiers. I do believe if he can keep up this run of form, he can put some pressure on other England strikers, especially when the likes of Harry Kane and Wayne Rooney are not performing the way they would have liked so far.
My Premier League best XI:
Substitutes: Asmir Begovic, Simon Francis, Chris Smalling, Kevin de Bruyne, Mesut Ozil, Graziano Pellè, Alexis Sanchez
Manager: Slaven Bilic
Thank you for reading 🙂 Being quite busy at the moment with the university, so won’t be able to provide articles week in week out 😉