Football Features

Who are the Premier League’s best attacking midfielders in 2024?

By James Amey

Who are the Premier League’s best attacking midfielders in 2024?

Published: 20:00, 15 April 2024

Who are the best attacking midfielders in the Premier League right now?

Mesut Özil set the bar high during his time at Arsenal, setting the records for the most chances in a single Premier League season (146) and the most chances created in a single Premier League game (12 vs. Sunderland in 2017), while Kevin De Bruyne equalled Thierry Henry’s records for the most assists in a single Premier League season (20). Both these players are just two of the many incredible attacking midfielders that have strutted their stuff in the English top flight, but who are the best attacking players in the Premier League right now?

We’ve used the Twenty3 Sport Discovery Tool to find the best players in each position. For the top five attacking midfielders, the Discovery Tool rates a player’s per 90 output for a number of key stats to produce a percentage score. We have also weighted each stat from 1-5 to highlight the most important aspects of a striker’s play style. This is the Squawka Score.

Each player’s stats are compared to the average output of attacking midfielders across the past three seasons of big-five European league football based on an automatically calculated minutes threshold. The more they rank in the 95th percentile and above for each metric, the higher the Squawka Score.

With 2024 well underway, here are the best attacking midfielders in the Premier League ranked by their Squawka Score from the year so far, with only players who have 585 minutes under their belt considered (half the amount available).

To be clear, we are only looking at attacking midfielders in this article, you can find the best central midfielders in the Premier League right now here.

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More Premier League player rankings:

5. Morgan Gibbs-White

  • Club: Nottingham Forest
  • Squawka Score: 65%

If Nottingham Forest manage to stay in the Premier League, they’ll definitely have to thank Morgan Gibbs-White for the role he has played this season. Really finding his feet in the Premier League, Gibbs-White has created seven big chances in 2024, with only one player creating more. He has also been directly involved in seven goals, including one in a 2-2 draw against his former club Wolves recently. Gibbs-White is being linked with a move away in the summer, and there are some big clubs touted in having an interest. It’s easy to see why.

4. Julian Alvarez

  • Club: Man City
  • Squawka Score: 66%

Although he was signed more as a forward, Julian Alvarez became one of the first names on Pep Guardiola’s team sheets this season as an attacking midfielder. He was filling in Kevin De Bruyne’s shoes at the point of the midfield three and now often partners the Belgian in a system with two No.10s — though Alvarez is also pushed wide at times.  Nonetheless, the Argentine has been directly involved in five goals in the Premier League this year (17 across the season), with an average of 4.05 shots and 2.18 chances created per 90 minutes.

3. Bruno Fernandes

  • Club: Man Utd
  • Squawka Score: 70%

Looking at the season as a whole, only one player has created more chances in Europe’s top five leagues than Bruno Fernandes’ 90, with 36 of those coming since the turn of the year. Although that has him slightly lower done on the list, Fernandes has stepped up in goals with five, as Man Utd suffer from indifferent form. Overall, Fernandes has been directly involved in eight league goals in 2024, the joint-most of any Man Utd player. He has also created five big chances, taken 37 shots, attempted 281 final third passes and 60 crosses.

Bruno Fernandes isn’t everybody’s cup of tea, but in terms of a midfielder who can combine creativity, an eye for goal and deadly set-piece delivery, there are few better than him. You cannot deny how effective he is, or just how much worse Manchester United would be right now without him.

2. Eberechi Eze

  • Club: Crystal Palace
  • Squawka Score: 78%

Crystal Palace recently left Anfield with a 1-0 win thanks to a goal from Eberechi Eze, and the Englishman continues to be crucial to how the Eagles play. Eze’s placing at second comes despite him missing four matches through injury, which saw Palace earn just four points, including a 4-1 hammering at the hands of rivals Brighton. He scored against Tottenham on his return from injury and has netted four goals overall in 2024 (adding to one in the final game of 2023). He’s averaging 0.56 goals per 90 minutes alongside 2.38 chances created, 2.52 take-ons completed and 2.8 shots.

1. Kevin De Bruyne

  • Club: Man City
  • Squawka Score: 82%

Kevin De Bruyne missed the first half of the season due to injury, but he has returned with a bang, reclaiming his crown as the top attacking midfielder in the Premier League. Since the start of the year, De Bruyne leads the Premier League on assists — with six — one more than Cole Palmer and Rodri. He has also created 41 chances, with only Andreas Pereira creating more, though De Bruyne averages a ridiculous 5.05 chances created per 90 minutes, including 1.85 big chances.

Delving a bit further into the stats, 44.44% of chances created from open play by De Bruyne in 2024 are classed as big chances, while he also averages 7.03 touches in the opposition box per 90. His reintroduction to the Man City team has come at just the right time for their title challenge.

Squawka Score metrics and weighting

Here are the metrics used and weighting given to each metric to come up with the overall Squawka Score:

  • 5: Goal Contribution, Open Play Expected Assists, Non-penalty Expected Goals
  • 4: Percentage of Open-play Chances Created that are Big Chances, Percentage of Sequences Featured In That End In A Shot, Percentage of Sequences Featured In That End In The Final Third, Big Chances Created, Shots On Target
  • 3: Open Play Chances Created, Touches In Opposition Box, Successful Passes Into The Box, Shot Accuracy (%), Conversion Rate (%), Number Of Sequences Ending In A Shot Featured In
  • 2: Shots, Take-On Success (%), Take-Ons Completed, Possessions Won In Attacking Third, Through Balls Attempted
  • 1: Fouls Won, Dispossessions, Retention Rate

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