Who Will Get The Most Assists In The Premier League?
Over the last few years, finishing top of the assists charts has become an objective for creative players and the best betting sites now offer odds on who will prevail.
Harry Kane became only the second player in Premier League history to finish as the division’s top goalscorer and assist provider last term, while the previous year saw Kevin De Bruyne equal Thierry Henry’s record of 20 assists in a season.
Most Premier League Assists Odds
|Kevin De Bruyne||3/1|
So above you have the odds, but who will actually come out on top in 2021/22? We have assessed seven of the main players in contention according to the top football betting sites, starting with the man who is currently leading the way…
Paul Pogba (Manchester United)
We are only eight games into the season and Pogba has already registered more assists (seven) than he managed in the last two campaigns combined (six). The Frenchman has been deployed on the left-hand side of Manchester United’s attack at times, which has allowed him to do more damage in the final third.
Pogba has a healthy lead at the top of the charts for now, but the underlying numbers suggest he will not maintain his current rate: Pogba has an expected assists rate of 1.6, which is only the 15th-highest tally in the division.
There is fierce competition for places in United’s forward line, and the 28-year-old could predominantly play as a central midfielder from here on in. It will be difficult, if not impossible, for Pogba to rack up quite as many assists from a deeper position.
Gabriel Jesus (Manchester City)
Manchester City’s failure to sign Harry Kane was interpreted as good news for Gabriel Jesus, who was presumed to be Pep Guardiola’s first-choice centre-forward. The Brazil international has been a regular starter in recent weeks, but he is now firmly established as City’s go-to man on the right flank rather than through the middle.
Jesus has only scored twice so far, but he sits joint-second in the assists chart with four. That is the same number he produced in the whole of the 2020/21 campaign, and indicates that Jesus has the creativity to be a contender in this field.
City are bound to be among the Premier League’s leading scorers even without Kane, and Jesus has the chance to prove there are more strings to his bow than previously assumed.
Trent Alexander-Arnold (Liverpool)
Alexander-Arnold’s form dipped midway through last term, but he ended the season strongly and has picked up where he left off. A right-back in name only, Alexander-Arnold is Liverpool’s creator-in-chief. His crossing from the right channel is of the very highest quality, and he also creates chances with perfectly weighted through-balls and sweeping switches of play.
Of those players who have made at least five appearances, Alexander-Arnold has the best expected assists rate per game so far this season. That shows he is fashioning good opportunities and you would expect his assists return (currently two) to accelerate at some point.
Alexander-Arnold has twice before broken into double figures for assists, and he will fancy his chances of doing so for a third time this season.
Bruno Fernandes (Manchester United)
Cristiano Ronaldo’s return to Old Trafford means Bruno Fernandes is no longer Manchester United’s talisman, but the Portuguese playmaker is still the main man when it comes to chance creation. And with Ronaldo bound to finish a large percentage of the opportunities that come his way, Fernandes’ assist tally could receive a welcome boost.
Even without Ronaldo last season, the former Sporting CP schemer set up 12 goals for team-mates. There are doubts over whether United are good enough to challenge for the title - they are currently 33/1 in the outright Premier League betting odds - but they should have no problem scoring goals. Fernandes will be at the heart of those efforts. He only has one assist so far but would be an astute pick to finish as the division’s leading goal provider.
Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City)
By his own very high standards, De Bruyne has made a slow start to the season. His indifferent form is unlikely to last, though. The Belgian is one of the best midfielders in the world and is currently third favourite in the betting on the PFA player of the year so it's surely only a matter of time before he is back to his best.
That bodes well for Manchester City, who are within touching distance of top spot even without De Bruyne shining. The 30-year-old provided 12 assists last season, placing him second on the leaderboard, and equalled a Premier League record by supplying 20 the previous year. De Bruyne is yet to get off the mark this term, but count him out of this race at your peril.
Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur)
Kane had one of his best ever seasons last time out which included winning another Premier League golden boot, despite Tottenham’s struggles, and he remains a key contender in the golden boot betting odds. Encouraged to drop deeper by Jose Mourinho, the England captain both scored and created more goals than any other player in the Premier League last term. That was a fine individual achievement, and one which no doubt fuelled Kane’s desire to join a club where such contributions might be rewarded with silverware.
Crucially, Kane’s role as a provider did not affect his goalscoring last season. But with the Tottenham talisman struggling to get going in 2021/22, we might see him focus on staying closer to the penalty area.
That in turn is likely to reduce his assists output, so it would be a surprise to see Kane compete for the prize this season. Given his tremendous accomplishment last term, though, he cannot be ruled out entirely.
Jack Grealish (Manchester City)
Some have questioned whether Manchester City really needed Grealish, who became the most expensive British footballer of all time when he moved to the Eithad Stadium in the summer. He has been ever-present in the Premier League so far, though, which suggests Pep Guardiola already views him as an integral part of the team.
Grealish only has one assist to his name so far, but the expected assists data places him just outside the top 10. Only three players in the league finished ahead of him in the assists ranking last time out, and it is worth noting that Grealish’s per-90 record was equal to that of Harry Kane. The England international is a natural creator who will be targeting double figures this season.
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