Football News

Best Premier League playmakers: Most assists & chances created records

By Harry Edwards

Published: 19:35, 25 July 2023

The Premier League is home to some of the most creative players in world football.

Kevin De Bruyne finished the 2022/23 campaign on 16 assists, more than any other player. The Belgian is expected to be up there once again in 2023/24, battling the likes of Bruno Fernandes, Leandro Trossard and Mohamed Salah.

But when it comes to serving up chances and assists, where does De Bruyne stand among the best Premier League playmakers in history?

With the help of Opta, we combed through the records to establish a definitive list of top 10s. Read on to find out who has the recorded the most assists and chances created in Premier League history, the most within a single season – and even the most within a single game.

Most assists in Premier League history?

Player Team(s) Assists
Ryan Giggs Man Utd 162
Cesc Fàbregas Arsenal, Chelsea 111
Wayne Rooney Everton, Man Utd 103
Kevin De Bruyne Chelsea, Man City 102
Frank Lampard West Ham, Chelsea, Man City 102
Dennis Bergkamp Arsenal 94
David Silva Man City 93
Steven Gerrard Liverpool 92
James Milner Leeds, Aston Villa, Man City, Liverpool 87
David Beckham Man Utd 80

Most assists within a single Premier League season

In 2020, De Bruyne wrote his name in the history books by becoming just the second player to record 20 assists in a single campaign. The first was Thierry Henry, who did so during the 2002/03 campaign, albeit having played two extra games compared to De Bruyne. Funnily enough, neither player won the Premier League title in that season. Arsenal lost out to Manchester United while Man City fell behind Liverpool.

De Bruyne and Fabregas are also the only two players to record at least 15 assists in more than one Premier League campaign.

Season Player Games Assists Team
2002/03 Thierry Henry 37 20 Arsenal
2019/20 Kevin De Bruyne 35 20 Manchester City
2015/16 Mesut Ozil 35 19 Arsenal
2004/05 Frank Lampard 38 18 Chelsea
2014/15 Cesc Fabregas 34 18 Chelsea
2016/17 Kevin De Bruyne 36 18 Manchester City
2007/08 Cesc Fabregas 32 17 Arsenal
1992/93 Eric Cantona 35 16 Manchester United
2017/18 Kevin De Bruyne 37 16 Manchester City
1994/95 Matthew Le Tissier 41 15 Southampton
1995/96 Steve McManaman 38 15 Liverpool
1999/00 Noberto Solano 30 15 Newcastle United
1999/00 David Beckham 31 15 Manchester United
2001/02 Robert Pires 28 15 Arsenal
2011/12 David Silva 36 15 Manchester City
2018/19 Eden Hazard 37 15 Chelsea

Most assists within a single Premier League game

We can stop going on about De Bruyne now because he doesn’t make this list. Fabregas gets yet another mention, though.

Just seven players have achieved the remarkable feat of setting up four goals within a single Premier League game, and no one has done it twice yet. Dennis Bergkamp was the first. His four assists came against Leicester in the 1998/99 season, and there must be something in the water at Arsenal’s training ground because three more of their players have hit four assists in a single game while representing the club.

Player Team Opponent Date Season Assists
Dennis Bergkamp Arsenal Leicester City 20/02/1999 1998/99 4
José Antonio Reyes Arsenal Middlesbrough 14/01/2006 2005/06 4
Cesc Fábregas Arsenal Blackburn Rovers 04/10/2009 2009/10 4
Emmanuel Adebayor Tottenham Newcastle United 11/02/2012 2011/12 4
Santi Cazorla Arsenal Wigan Athletic 14/5/2013 2012/13 4
Harry Kane Tottenham Southampton 20/09/2020 2020/21 4
Paul Pogba Manchester United Leeds United 14/08/2021 2021/22 4

Most chances created in Premier League history?

Most chances created within a single Premier League season

It’s no surprise to see Mesut Özil top the list here for the most chances created in a single Premier League campaign (representing Arsenal, yet again). The German was in top form as the Gunners finished second in the Premier League in 2015/16, creating 146 chances and recording 19 assists. The assist record really could have been his but for a bit of errant finishing from his forwards.

There are also the usual suspects in the rest of the top 10, but some may be surprised to see former Chelsea winger Florent Malouda in there with his 118 chances created in 2010/11.

Player Season Games Played Chances Created
Mesut Özil 2015/2016 35 146
Kevin De Bruyne 2019/2020 35 136
Frank Lampard 2008/2009 37 134
Dimitri Payet 2015/2016 30 119
Bruno Fernandes 2022/2023 37 119
Florent Malouda 2010/2011 38 118
Cesc Fàbregas 2006/2007 38 116
Leighton Baines 2012/2013 38 116
Christian Eriksen 2015/2016 35 115
Frank Lampard 2009/2010 36 114

Most chances created within a single Premier League game

Malouda’s name pops up again in the list for most chances created in a single game, and it turns out he really doesn’t like Birmingham. In December 2009, Malouda created 10 chances for Chelsea against Birmingham and almost a year later he went one better with 11.

However, once more Özil stands clear above the rest with 12 chances created in a 2-0 win for Arsenal over Sunderland towards the end of the 2016/17 Premier League campaign.

Player Team Opponent Date Season Chances Created
Mesut Özil Arsenal Sunderland 16/05/2017 2016/2017 12
Samir Nasri Manchester City Tottenham Hotspur 28/08/2011 2011/2012 11
Antonio Valencia Manchester United Burnley 16/01/2010 2009/2010 11
David Silva Manchester City West Bromwich Albion 21/03/2015 2014/2015 11
Florent Malouda Chelsea Birmingham City 20/11/2010 2010/2011 11
Jermaine Pennant Birmingham City Norwich City 07/05/2005 2004/2005 11
Bruno Fernandes Manchester United Aston Villa 25/09/2021 2021/2022 10
Kevin De Bruyne Manchester City Norwich City 26/07/2020 2019/2020 10
Pascal Groß Brighton Watford 02/02/2019 2018/2019 10
Mesut Özil Arsenal Southampton 02/02/2016 2015/2016 10
Florent Malouda Chelsea Birmingham City 26/12/2009 2009/2010 10
Matthew Etherington Stoke City Blackpool 11/12/2010 2010/2011 10
Ryan Giggs Manchester United Manchester City 20/09/2009 2009/2010 10