Even though the 2022-23 Premier League season has been hampered by the winter Qatar World Cup, it has already provided some really memorable moments.
Arsenal have raised quite a few eyebrows to storm to the top of the league heading into the new lead with a stunning seven points ahead of second-place Manchester City.
Liverpool and Chelsea have both struggled in the first half of the season. Newcastle United have been the surprise package of the season, storming to third place in their first full season under the Saudi Arabia ownership.
However, there have also been some players that have stood out with their performances so far this season.
These players have been pivotal to the success of their teams and operated at a higher level than the others in the league. Here we look at the six standout players so far this season.
Erling Haaland (Manchester City)
Before the season started, there were a few who doubted whether Erling Haaland would be able to replicate his Bundesliga goal numbers in the Premier League for Manchester City.
Well he has shut those doubters up spectacularly. Haaland has absolutely steamrolled through teams in the Premier League, scoring 21 goals in 15 appearances. That includes three hat-tricks so far this season, including one against arch-rivals Manchester United during City’s 6-3 win over the Red Devils.
Haaland has been unplayable so far and only been unable to score a goal in three of his 15 appearances so far.
The Norwegian forward has been an absolute menace for the opposition side, tormenting them with his off-the-ball and incredible instinct to get at the end of the chances for his side.
Even though Haaland has been helped by having world-class midfielders to back him up, his goal numbers are still insane and helped him be top of the European Golden Boot charts.
If he can stay injury free and maintain this goal spree, Haaland is en route to ending the league season with well over 45 goals.
Martin Odegaard (Arsenal)
Arsenal have shocked a lot of fans with their storming start to the new Premier League season, in which they’ve won 14 of their first 16 games.
A reason behind their impressive form is their captain Martin Odegaard. The Norwegian midfielder was only appointed as their new permanent captain before the start of the season.
While some might buckle under that kind of pressure, Odegaard has managed to thrive. The Norwegian midfielder is now making Real Madrid regret letting leave so easily, being the creative beacon which the Gunners have missed since the departure of Mesut Ozil.
He has scored 7 goals and provided 5 assists in 15 appearance so far, coming up with vital goal contributions every now and then.
Odegaard has been able to create a solid bond with his teammates and helped them play better with his fantastic final delivery. If he continues this heroics for the entire season, Arsenal could write a special story come May.
Ivan Toney (Brentford)
While the majority of the attention in the Premier League is hogged up by the traditional ‘top-6’ sides, one player not playing in that kind of a team and still thriving is Brentford forward Ivan Toney.
The 26-year-old has been at the heart of his side’s impressive second season back in the Premier League, helping them stay afloat in the top half of the table.
Toney has scored 12 goals and provided 3 assists in 16 appearances so far, leading them with confidence and showing no fear even against superior sides.
The 26-year-old scored a brace in their win away to Manchester City, as well as getting goals against Tottenham Hotspur, West Ham United and Newcastle United.
Toney’s impressive form still didn’t get him a place in England’s World Cup squad, which might’ve been because of a gambling case he is stuck in.
Despite that, Toney has been one of the league’s best strikers and impressively raised his value ahead of what could be a summer window with much demand for his services – as long as his gambling case is dismissed.
Bukayo Saka (Arsenal)
Another English player to be taking the Premier League by storm this season is Arsenal winger Bukayo Saka. The 21-year-old has come a long way since being racially abused by some English fans after missing a penalty in the Euro 2020 final.
He’s now genuinely one of the best things about his club and national side. Saka has been a thorn at the sides of almost every Premier League side he’s faced so far this season, playing some of the best football of his short career so far.
The winger has scored 6 goals and provided as many assists in 16 appearances for his side, helping them grind through the results.
Saka’s pace, dribbling ability and incisiveness has helped bring a cutting edge into the Gunners’ attacking style. He’s helped those around him with his polished final product and been a driving force in Arsenal’s surging run in the league so far.
Miguel Almiron (Newcastle United)
Newcastle United have introduced themselves as the newest member of the ‘big’ Premier League sides, as they hope to relive some of their success of the 1990s.
The Magpies have actually not spent insane money on transfer fees like Chelsea or Manchester United did in the summer, but have been smart with their acquisitions so far.
One really smart acquisition has that been of manager Eddie Howe. The Englishman has been able to raise the performance levels of many players, including that of Miguel Almiron.
Since arriving at St. James Park in 2019, the Paraguayan midfielder has been having his career-best campaign. Almiron has scored 9 goals in 17 appearances for Newcastle, helping empower their storm to a top-4 season.
It appears that he might’ve been motivated by Jack Grealish’s jibe at him last season, when the Man City midfielder criticized a wasteful performance from Riyad Mahrez in the final game against Aston Villa – stating ‘he played like Almiron’.
It was a clear dig at Almiron’s inability to finish chances or score goals, but it has inspired the Paraguayan to go on a stunning goal spree – scoring more this season than Grealish has scored in entire City career.
Kevin de Bruyne (Manchester City)
Kevin de Bruyne might be into his 30s, but that isn’t stopping him from continuing to be the Premier League’s most creative player.
The Belgian star appears to have found new life with a goal machine like Erling Haaland ahead of him after having seen the other forwards in recent years miss the majority of chance he created.
De Bruyne has provided 10 assists and scored 3 goals this season, setting up more goals than anyone else in the league. The 31-year-old has also created the most big chances in Europe’s top-5 leagues this season and has been one of the Premier League’s most consistent players this season.
Even though his heroics have not been enough to help City stay atop of the league yet, if De Bruyne keeps up this up until the end of the season, then his side can unseat Arsenal to win another league title.
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