Premier League: How the final table would look if every club lost their best player


On Sunday, we saw Liverpool’s incredible squad depth in full view..

Without Virgil van Dijk, Joe Gomez, Trent Alexander-Arnold, Thiago, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Jordan Henderson, Xherdan Shaqiri and Mohamed Salah, the champions beat Leicester 3-0 to go level with Tottenham at the top of the Premier League.

Any fans who suggested Jurgen Klopp’s side would struggle without their star players were made to look pretty foolish.

We’re not sure many clubs could miss players of that quality and still produce a performance quite like they did.

But which clubs rely on their star players the most? In fact, which club relies on their best player the most?

Well, SPORTbible decided to find out by using Football Manager 21 to remove the best player from every Premier League side and simulating an entire season.

The following players were removed from their respective clubs:

Arsenal – Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang
Aston Villa – Jack Grealish
Brighton – Neal Maupay
Burnley – Nick Pope
Chelsea – Timo Werner
Crystal Palace – Wilfried Zaha
Everton – James Rodriguez
Fulham – Aleksandar Mitrovic
Leeds United – Kalvin Phillips
Leicester City – Jamie Vardy
Liverpool – Mohamed Salah
Manchester City – Kevin De Bruyne
Manchester United – Bruno Fernandes
Newcastle United – Allan Saint-Maximin
Sheffield United – Sander Berge
Southampton – Danny Ings
Spurs – Harry Kane
West Brom – Matheus Pereira
West Ham – Declan Rice
Wolves – Raul Jimenez


So, which club proved they were definitely weren’t a one-man club?

Take a look at the final table:


20th – West Brom
19th – Crystal Palace
18th – Burnley
17th – Brighton
16th – Aston Villa
15th – Wolves
14th – Leicester
13th – West Ham
12th – Leeds
11th – Southampton
10th – Everton
9th – Newcastle
8th – Sheffield United
7th – Fulham
6th – Arsenal
5th – Tottenham
4th – Manchester Utd
3rd – Chelsea
2nd – Liverpool
1st – Manchester City

So, City clearly didn’t miss De Bruyne too much as they picked up 93 points on their way to winning the league. Incidentally, Gabriel Jesus shared the Golden Boot with Callum Wilson.

In truth, the top six looks pretty familiar with Liverpool, Chelsea, Manchester United, Tottenham and Arsenal trailing City in that order.

But then comes an almighty shock with Fulham in seventh. Mitrovic was left on the bench in real life at the weekend against Everton and perhaps it’s where he belongs in the future!


At the other end of the table, Burnley, Crystal Palace and West Brom missed Pope, Zaha and Pereira respectively as they were all relegated.

A Kane-less Spurs won the FA Cup as they beat a Chelsea side missing Werner, although Jose Mourinho’s team lost in the Europa League final to Inter.

Liverpool didn’t need Salah to beat City in the Carabao Cup final. But Guardiola’s side completed a double by winning their first ever Champions League, beating Atletico Madrid in the final.

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