Messi, De Bruyne, Alexander-Arnold: Who's the best playmaker in the world?

It’s safe to say Lionel Messi is one of the greatest playmakers in history.

The Paris Saint-Germain superstar has scored a ridiculous amount of goals in his career, but he’s also contributed an enormous number of assists.

Over on Transfermarkt, Messi has a whopping 311 assists to his name at club level, with eight of them coming in 21 appearances this season.

And as well as setting up teammates to score on a regular basis, the diminutive Argentine often dictates the tempo of games and kickstarts attacks from deep.

Messi really is an elite-level playmaker, however, the folks over at FourFourTwo believe that the seven-time Ballon d’Or winner’s powers in that department are waning slightly.

In their list containing what they believe are the 10 best playmakers on the planet at this moment in time, the former Barcelona man has to make to do with sixth.

Three Premier League players sit ahead of him, while Messi isn’t even the highest-placed footballer from Ligue 1.

Let’s take a look at the 10-man list in full…

The 10 best playmakers in the world right now

10. Nabil Fekir (Real Betis)

9. Hakan Calhanoglu (Inter Milan)

8. Iker Muniain (Athletic Bilbao)

7. Bernardo Silva (Manchester City)

6. Lionel Messi (Paris Saint-Germain)

5. Dimitri Payet (Marseille)

4. Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City)

3. Bruno Fernandes (Manchester United)

2. Trent Alexander-Arnold (Liverpool)

  1. Thomas Muller (Bayern Munich)

Fernandes ahead of De Bruyne? Alexander-Arnold, a defender by trade, ahead of both? All three ahead of Messi? Oh you better believe it! Fair play to FourFourTwo for making some seriously bold calls.

Alexander-Arnold’s place in second is more than justified given that he regularly runs games from right-back at Liverpool and has 16 assists in 29 appearances across all competitions this season.

That’s an insane return for a defender and it’s what makes the 23-year-old one of the most unique footballers in the world.

Muller’s position at the top of the pile cannot be disputed either. The Bayern legend has been a bona fide assist machine in recent years and has 21 to his name already in 2021/22, which is quite absurd really.

Oh and don’t tell City fans that Fernandes is ahead of both De Bruyne and Silva, as they’ll probably get a tad angry…

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