Football Features

Best Premier League forwards of 2019/20 so far

By Steve Jennings

Best forwards in the Premier League right now

Published: 15:40, 14 November 2019

As last season’s race for the Golden Boot proved, the Premier League possesses so many great forwards they can’t actually be separated.

And already this season, we have been treated to some excellent attacking play from some of Europe’s best strikers, wingers and inside forwards.

But who have been the best forwards in the Premier League so far this term?

We’ve picked out a few, and you can vote on who you think has been the best at the bottom. Or if you object to any criminal omissions from the lists below, let us hear all about it on Twitter or Facebook.

Sergio Aguero (Man City)

Sergio Aguero scores Premier League goals. A lot of them. Since the 2014/15 season, the Argentinian has scored at least 20 goals in every campaign and is well on his way to doing so again this term with nine goals in his first 11 appearances.

He has been rotated with Gabriel Jesus of late and has scored just once in his last five league outings. But Aguero is sure to be among the top scorers come the end of the season, as he always is, and he will be central to Manchester City’s hopes of retaining the title.

Key stat: Aguero became only the third Premier League player to score 100+ goals at a single venue when he reached his century at the Etihad in September.

Raheem Sterling (Man City)

There has been no stopping Raheem Sterling – unless you’re Gareth Southgate – since Pep Guardiola transformed him into one of the world’s best forwards. With seven league goals already this season, he has given multiple full-backs nightmares at the Etihad and elsewhere.

It’s undeniable that Sterling has entered that special group of players who are simply unstoppable on their day. What’s more, the 24-year-old is not just scoring, he’s creating plenty of chances for his teammates, which will serve City well.

Key stat: Raheem Sterling has had at least 44 more touches (138) inside the opposition box than any other Premier League player this season.

Riyad Mahrez (Man City)

Ever since he joined Manchester City, Riyad Mahrez has struggled to become a regular starter, such is the depth the champions possess. But so far this season he has shown the advantage of having a top-quality player in reserve with his instrumental performances.

With two goals and three assists, Mahrez has been a productive and creative key figure in the City team this term. He seems to have received a confidence boost from winning the Africa Cup of Nations with Algeria in the summer, and City are benefiting from it.

Key stat: Only Sadio Mane (23) and Raheem Sterling (22) have created more chances than Riyad Mahrez (20) among Premier League forwards this season.

Tammy Abraham (Chelsea)

One of the most pleasant surprises, particularly for Chelsea fans, this season has been the blistering form of Tammy Abraham. The striker was linked with a permanent move to Aston Villa in the summer but Frank Lampard decided to keep him at Stamford Bridge.

And what a decision it was. After a false start, Abraham has been electric in the Premier League, scoring 10 times including a superb hat-trick away to Wolves. He is keeping the more established Olivier Giroud out of the Chelsea line-up with ease.

Key stat: Abraham has registered more shots on target (20) than any other Premier League player this season.

Harry Kane (Tottenham)

It’s been a while since Harry Kane has been outscored by another England striker, but Abraham would be giving Gareth Southgate something to think about if not for Kane’s captaincy. Though that’s not to say Kane hasn’t predictably been among the best forwards, as per usual, this season.

It seems the striker is still gradually returning to full fitness while Spurs continue to stutter, yet he remains prolific, showing his predatory instinct with brilliantly taken goals against Leicester and Liverpool. When he hits his stride, his tally will grow and grow.

Key stat: Kane has a 83.3% ‘big chance’ conversion rate in the Premier League this season.

Jamie Vardy (Leicester City)

Another entry, another Englishman. Although sadly for Southgate, this one has retired from international duty. It’s a shame because Jamie Vardy’s current form would see him walk into any national team right now, such has been his prolificness in front of goal.

Vardy is a unique player in that status as a top Premier League striker did not arrive until relatively late in his career. His confidence was summed up his hat-trick in Leicester amazing 9-0 thrashing of Southampton, and there is no sign of the 32-year-old slowing down.

Key stat: Vardy currently leads the race for the Golden Boot with 11 goals.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Arsenal)

Much like Kane at Spurs, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s form belies that of his team, who look set to make hard work of finishing in the top four again this season. That said, Aubameyang’s goals will give the Gunners as good a chance as anyone.

The Gabon international’s goal record since arriving at Arsenal should not be undervalued, and it does not look like he is going to stop scoring any time soon. It’s scary to imagine the number of goals he would be racking up if he played for Manchester City or Liverpool.

Key stat: Aubameyang was named the Premier League Player of the Month for September, becoming the fifth Arsenal player to win the award multiple times.

Teemu Pukki (Norwich)

Teemu Pukki’s start to life in the Premier League was nothing short of remarkable. After five games he had scored six goals including a hat-trick against Newcastle United at Carrow Road, giving the Canaries hope this season could be more than a relegation scrap.

He may have fallen off a little since then, failing to score in his last seven appearances, but his early impact shouldn’t be forgotten, and it might only be a matter of time before he’s back among the goals and helping his side steer clear of danger.

Key stat: Only Tammy Abraham (20) and Mohamed Salah (19) have registered more shots on target than Pukki (18) in the Premier League this season.

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Marcus Rashford (Manchester United)

Here’s another player who might be scoring even more goals if he was playing in a better, more confident side. Still, his six strikes in 12 games is admirable given some of the perhaps unfair stick he has received while leading the line for Manchester United.

Since Anthony Martial’s return through the middle, Rashford has looked back in his comfort zone out on the left, cutting inside and playing as something in between an inside forward and a second striker. Rashford has three assists, too, and suddenly looks determined to makes fools of his critics again.

Key stat: Marcus Rashford has recorded the most shots (9) and goals (2, highest total jointly) from ‘fast break’ situations in the Premier League this season.

Mohamed Salah (Liverpool)

With six goals and three assists in nine matches, Mohamed Salah once again looks set to be among the players with the highest goal involvement in the Premier League this season, though he’ll need to up his goal tally a little if he wants to win the Golden Boot outright this term.

A personal battle with Sadio Mane is on the cards once again in that regard, but Jurgen Klopp will simply be happy he has a (mostly) harmonious front three, two of whom are absolute goal machines. Indeed, Salah looks set for another stellar season.

Key stat: Only Sterling (138) has had more touches in the opposition box than Salah (94) in the Premier League this season.

Sadio Mane (Liverpool)

Matching Salah’s goal tally last season (without being first-choice penalty taker) was quite an achievement, but such has been Mane’s improvement in front of goal under Klopp, it would surprise nobody to see the Senegal international outscore his teammate by the end of the current Premier League campaign.

The pair appeared to fall out over an opportunity at Burnley recently, but it was merely proof of the mentality Mane has developed when it comes to goals. Add in his creativity, dribbling and ability to defend from the front, and you have the perfect modern forward.

Key stat: No Premier League player has won possession in the final third more times than Sadio Mane (13) this season.

Roberto Firmino (Liverpool)

No list of the best forwards in the Premier League would be complete without all three members of Liverpool’s fearsome front three. It’s no surprise that Salah, Mane and Roberto Firmino have all started the season well and the Reds sit pretty at the top of the table.

Firmino may have only scored three goals, but as usual he has been instrumental in allowing Mane and Salah to do their best work. He has registered three assists and won a healthy 58 total duels, justifying the praise he receives despite scoring fewer than the players on either side of him.

Key stat: Firmino has completed 23 of his 36 attempted dribbles in the Premier League this season.