They say it’s very difficult to win the league, but even harder to retain it. And so likewise, the sign of a great player should be not only to top the player performance statistics, but to be there year after year.
Looking at the Eurofantasyleague tallies for midfielders last season, we can see the best performers across Europe last term, and see what impact they have made so far in 2014/15.
The leading points scorer last year was Manchester City’s Ivory Coast international Yaya Toure – he helped himself to an incredible 630 points as the Citizens picked up the Premier League trophy, netting 20 goals and contributing 15 assists. Whilst the numbers cannot possibly be matched so early in the season, the fact that Toure, who endured personal problems in the Summer, is far from a leader in the EFL stats currently where he is currently on the edge of the top 200 midfielders in Europe.
Not all top players have failed to meet their high standards. From the Spanish La Liga, Gareth Bale was second in the top midfielder table last year, and currently sits in sixth. In Germany, Thomas Muller was fifth after a season of domestic success with Bayern Munich, and such is the tall German’s consistency, fifth is where he stands at present too.
And for some it can be age that catches up with a player. Liverpool’s Steven Gerrard finished eighth in the EFL midfielder standings, helping the Merseysiders to an unexpected title challenge. However this season, and potentially without his key passes being converted by Luis Suarez, the now ex-England international sits outside the top 120 midfielders in Europe based on EFL stats.
It is still early in the season, and players still have plenty of games left in order to increase their points levels, but with only one or two usual suspects falling short, top players like the pre-mentioned, plus Mario Gotze, James Rodriguez and Cesc Fabregas, will continue to top the tables probably for many seasons to come.