Ranking the best four players in every single age group this season

Best players by age group

With the international break now in full swing, there is no better time to sit back and analyse the first portion of the 2020/21 season.

Of course, it has had a very different feel to it for obvious reasons, but it's been highly entertaining.

In the Premier League, for example, there have been goals galore in a division that could throw up a very unlikely winner this season.

However, elsewhere there has also been unpredictability. Real Sociedad and Villarreal lead the way at the top of La Liga while Milan and Sassuolo head things up at the top of Serie A.

Normality has been resumed in France where PSG are top of Ligue 1 but for the most part, it's been fascinating to see some new teams have emerged as challengers for the top spot across Europe.

Thus, with the second break of the season for internationals, we've delved through the statistics to work out who the best four players in the top five leagues are from every single age group.

Now, with the assistance of WhoScored, we compiled a list of their ratings together to work out who is the best in every category ranging from the wonderkids at the age of 17, to the old veterans at the age of 35.

Some of the normal faces are all there but there are also some very unexpected names that make our list.

So without further ado, here is our list in all its glory. 

17-year-olds

Giovanni Reyna – Borussia Dortmund - 7.27
Jude Bellingham - Borussia Dortmund - 7.01
Florian Wirtz – Bayer Leverkusen - 6.97
Jamal Musiala – Bayern Munich - 6.64

Yep, the Bundesliga is supreme when it comes to young talent and this just about sums it up. Surprisingly, there is no room for Barcelona starlet Pedri who has burst onto the scene under Ronald Koeman this term. 

Giovanni Reyna

18-year-olds

Ansu Fati – Barcelona - 7.38
Adrien Truffert – Rennes - 7.25
Nathanael Mbuku – Reims - 6.98
Brandon Soppy – Rennes - 6.94

Fati has been incredible for Barcelona this season and already has more goals for the Spanish giants than Lionel Messi did at the same age. The surprising absentee here is Eduardo Camavinga of Rennes - he scored on his debut for France earlier this year.

19-year-olds

Wesley Fofana – Leicester - 7.23
Aimen Moueffek – Saint Ettienne - 6.84
Ivan Iilic – Verona - 6.83
Rodrygo – Real Madrid - 6.81

Fofana joined Leicester in the summer and has taken to the Premier League like a duck to water, emerging as one of the most promising young defenders around.

20-year-olds

Erling Haaland – Borussia Dortmund – 7.75
Amine Gouiri – Nice – 7.29
Jadon Sancho – Borussia Dortmund – 7.29
Moise Kean – PSG – 7.28

This is where we start to see some of the big boys of European football. Haaland has already scored 11 goals in 11 games this term so undoubtedly deserves his place at the top of our best 20-year-old's. Meanwhile, Kean looks a completely different player since his loan move from Everton to PSG, finding the net on five occasions. 

Haaland and Sancho

21-year-olds

Kylian Mbappe – PSG – 8.79
Matheus Cunha – Hertha Berlin – 7.94
Joao Felix – Atletico Madrid – 7.74
Victor Osimhen – Napoli – 7.50

There was only ever going to be one winner in this category. Mbappe has seven goals and seven assists in as many matches so far this season.

22-year-olds

Romain Faivre – Brest – 7.36
Yvann Macon – Saint Etienne – 7.33
Manuel Locatelli – Sassuolo – 7.27
Amadou Haidara – RB Leipzig – 7.23

Not a household name in sight here which makes things very interesting. Watch out for these four names in the coming years. 

23-year-olds

Ben Chilwell – Chelsea – 7.77
Dominic Calvert-Lewin – Everton – 7.68
Theo Hernandez – AC Milan – 7.51
Angelino – RB Leipzig – 7.50

Another fascinating crop of names. Chilwell has been excellent since swapping Leicester for Chelsea, contributing to four goals in five outings. As for Dominic Calvert-Lewin, he simply cannot stop beating the goalkeeper. The Everton forward has 11 in 12 matches.

Ben Chilwell

24-year-olds

Ollie Watkins – Aston Villa – 7.82
Mikel Merino – Real Sociedad – 7.64
Jonathan Bamba – Lille – 7.50
Lorenzo Pellegrini – Roma – 7.48

Watkins signed for Aston Villa for a huge fee of £28m in the summer and has been one of the key reasons behind their league placing of sixth in 2020/21. The former Brentford man has found the net on six occasions. 

25-year-olds

Jack Grealish – Aston Villa – 8.18
Joshua Kimmich – Bayern Munich – 7.58
Hirving Lozano – Napoli – 7.53
Serge Gnabry – Bayern Munich – 7.43

Grealish is very much the flavour of the month and he tops some of the best talent in Europe in this category. He has broken into the England squad and has four goals and five assists this term. No wonder Villa were quoting £80m for his services in the transfer window. 

Jack Grealish

26-year-olds

Domenico Berardi – Sassuolo – 7.85
Emre Can – Borussia Dortmund – 7.67
Bruno Fernandes – Manchester United – 7.65
Ross Barkley – Aston Villa – 7.62

Another Villa player in Barkley crops up on this list but it's Berardi we want to talk about. The tricky Italian has benefited from Sassuolo's league placing of second in Serie A and so far this campaign has three goals and two assists.

27-year-olds

Harry Kane – Tottenham – 8.39
Zinedine Ferhat – Nimes – 7.85
Romelu Lukaku – Inter Milan – 7.43
Mauro Icardi – PSG – 7.42

Kane has been absolutely obscene for Spurs this season so it's no great surprise to see him top his age group. The Tottenham striker has found the back of the net on 13 occasions, racking up ten assists too.

Harry Kane in action for Spurs

28-year-olds
Neymar – PSG – 8.25
Heung-min Son – Tottenham – 7.83
Lucas Alario – Bayer Leverkusen – 7.79
Filip Djuricic – Sassuolo – 7.77

Neymar may have only scored two goals in 2020/21 so far but he's still had a blistering start to the campaign. The Brazilian has four assists to his name and has completed 5.5 successful dribbles a match.

29-year-olds

Andrej Kramaric – Hoffenheim – 8.18
James Rodriguez – Everton – 7.84
Marcel Halstenberg – RB Leipzig – 7.69
Andy Delort – Montpellier – 7.49

Remember Kramaric when he was at Leicester? No? Well, he scored just four goals in 20 games for the Foxes. Now, however, he is a goalscoring sensation and has eight strikes to his name from just four appearances at Hoffenheim.

Kramaric

30-year-olds

Florian Sotoca – Lens – 7.37
Joshua Guilavogui – Wolfsburg – 7.36
Karl Darlow – Newcastle – 7.30
Benjamin Andre – Lille – 7.27

What a weird list of names this is, particularly with Karl Darlow making the top four. The Newcastle stopper is the highest-ranked goalkeeper in Europe's top five leagues this season despite the Magpies' league position of 13th. Bizarre.

31-year-olds

Thomas Muller – Bayern Munich – 7.84
Henrikh Mkhitaryan – Roma – 7.62
Mats Hummels – Borussia Dortmund – 7.62
Bas Dost – Frankfurt – 7.35

Muller is just the man that keeps on giving at the elite level. The German is always a bundle of energy and has five goals and six assists this season.

Muller and Lewandowski

32-year-olds

Robert Lewandowski – Bayern Munich – 8.65
Angel Di Maria – PSG – 7.93
Alejandro Gomez – Atalanta – 7.60
Karim Benzema – Real Madrid – 7.52

Lewandowski was widely tipped to win this year's Ballon d'Or before it was scrapped because of the ongoing pandemic so it's no surprise to see him top the list of 32-year-olds. His average match rating is obscene, beating the goalkeeper 13 times this term.

33-year-olds

Lionel Messi – Barcelona – 7.74
Dries Mertens – Napoli – 7.52
Francesco Caputo – Sassuolo – 7.48
Pedro – Roma – 7.47

Messi has not been his usual self over the last few months and has scored just once from open play for Barca this season. That being said, he has been excellent at creating chances and is comfortably the best 33-year-old playing in Europe right now. 

Lionel Messi

34-year-olds

Edin Dzeko – Roma – 7.56
Nacho Monreal – Real Sociedad – 7.28
David Silva – Real Sociedad – 7.05
Sergio Ramos – Real Madrid – 7.04

Hats off to Real Sociedad here. They are top of La Liga and are doing it with some household names of Premier League days gone by. Silva is like a fine wine and after leaving Man City in the summer, hasn't allowed his performance levels to drop. Ramos is still going strong at Madrid too.

35-year-olds

Cristiano Ronaldo – Juventus – 7.94
Laurent Koscielny – Bordeaux – 7.26
Burak Yilmaz – Lille – 7.18
Luka Modric – Real Madrid – 7.15

Ronaldo could play until he's 50 at the rate he's going. The Juventus striker has defeated COVID this season and has still managed to produce incredible performances. 

Ronaldo and Pirlo

The Portuguese sensation has six goals in five games and is now being touted with a remarkable return to Manchester United.

It would be quite something if that deal went through. 

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