Salah, Mane, Ronaldo: Who's been the best Premier League player in 21/22?

Salah, Mane, Ronaldo: Who's been the best Premier League player in 21/22?

With just a single round of fixtures to be played before the end of the 2021/22 Premier League season, much is left still to be decided.

Relegation, European qualification and ultimately the destination of the title itself will all be determined during the final 90 minutes of the campaign.

It’s been one of the most absorbing campaigns in the history of the competition – and we’re surely set for several more twists and turns during Sunday afternoon’s finale.

Which players, though, have lit the England top-flight up the brightest over the past 10 months of action? Manchester City and Liverpool might be going head-to-head for the right to call themselves champions over the weekend, but plenty of top talent have strutted their stuff elsewhere this season.

Read: Premier League Final Day: Predictions, Scenarios and More

Recently, FourFourTwo took on the admittedly tricky task of ranking the top 20 players in the Premier League this season. As always with rankings like this, everything comes down to individual opinion, but we reckon they’ve given it a decent crack.

Below is a look at the countdown in full.

The top 20 players in the Premier League in 2021/22 (as ranked by FourFourTwo)

20. Conor Gallagher (Crystal Palace – On loan from Chelsea)

19. Andy Robertson (Liverpool)

18. Cristiano Ronaldo (Manchester United)

17. Diogo Jota (Liverpool)

Diogo Jota celebrates a Liverpool goal
MANCHESTER, ENGLAND – APRIL 10: Diogo Jota of Liverpool celebrates his goal during the Premier League match between Manchester City and Liverpool at Etihad Stadium on April 10, 2022 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)

16. Mason Mount (Chelsea)

15. Jarrod Bowen (West Ham)

14. Joel Matip (Liverpool)

13. Bernardo Silva (Manchester City)

Bernardo Silva in action for Man City
MANCHESTER, ENGLAND – NOVEMBER 21: Bernardo Silva of Manchester City celebrates after scoring their side’s third goal during the Premier League match between Manchester City and Everton at Etihad Stadium on November 21, 2021 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)

12. Bukayo Saka (Arsenal)

11. Declan Rice (West Ham)

10. Alisson Becker (Liverpool)

9. Joao Cancelo (Man City)

Joao Cancelo celebrates a goal
NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE, ENGLAND – DECEMBER 19: Joao Cancelo of Manchester City celebrates after scoring their sides second goal during the Premier League match between Newcastle United and Manchester City at St. James Park on December 19, 2021 in Newcastle upon Tyne, England. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

8. Harry Kane (Tottenham)

7. Virgil van Dijk (Liverpool)

6. Rodri (Man City)

5. Trent Alexander-Arnold (Liverpool)

Trent Alexander Arnold
LEEDS, ENGLAND – SEPTEMBER 12: Trent Alexander-Arnold of Liverpool runs with the ball during the Premier League match between Leeds United and Liverpool at Elland Road on September 12, 2021 in Leeds, England. (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)

4. Son Heung-min (Tottenham)

3. Sadio Mane (Liverpool)

2. Kevin De Bruyne (Man City)

1. Mo Salah (Liverpool)

Salah scores v Man Utd
MANCHESTER, ENGLAND – OCTOBER 24: Mohamed Salah of Liverpool celebrates after scoring their side’s third goal during the Premier League match between Manchester United and Liverpool at Old Trafford on October 24, 2021 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)

The most high-profile transfer of the Premier League season took place on the final day of the summer transfer window when Ronaldo made a shock return to Manchester United.

The five-time Ballon d’Or winner made plenty of headlines when he touched down for a second time at Old Trafford. It’s lucky for the Red Devils that he did, as without him United might well be looking at a bottom-half finish this season.

His 18 Premier League goals this term make him the third-highest scorer in the competition – and United’s most prolific player by some distance.

Cristiano Ronaldo playing for Manchester United
MANCHESTER, ENGLAND – SEPTEMBER 11: Cristiano Ronaldo of Manchester United looks on during the Premier League match between Manchester United and Newcastle United at Old Trafford on September 11, 2021 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

The Portuguese icon might have carried his club in 21/22, but his exploits still only see him ranked 18th on this list. No other United player made the cut.

On the other side of the city, however, four Manchester City players are included – with three representatives in the top 10.

Bernardo Silva, Cancelo, Rodri and second-placed Kevin De Bruyne have each played a major role in taking Pep Guardiola’s men to the brink of a second-straight Premier League title. Victory over Aston Villa on Sunday will guarantee City that honour.

Kevin De Bruyne celebrates scoring v Man Utd
MANCHESTER, ENGLAND – MARCH 06: Kevin De Bruyne of Manchester City celebrates after scoring their sides first goal during the Premier League match between Manchester City and Manchester United at Etihad Stadium on March 06, 2022 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)

Another duel that will go down to the final day is the scrap between Tottenham and Arsenal for fourth place (and the Champions League football that comes along with it).

England winger Saka is Arsenal’s sole presence in the top 20, while the dynamic Spurs duo of Kane and Son both claim top 10 slots having notched an impressive 37 league goals between them.

The only strike pairing that can match that number is Liverpool pairing Mane and Salah.

Kane and Son celebrate together
LONDON, ENGLAND – MAY 15: Harry Kane celebrates with Heung-Min Son of Tottenham Hotspur after scoring their team’s first goal during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Burnley at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 15, 2022 in London, England. (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)

Third-placed Mane has contributed 15 goals to Liverpool’s title challenge, with top-ranked Salah leading the race for the competition’s Golden Boot on a tally of 22.

Outside of the top three, Liverpool have a further six entries, including the only goalkeeper on the countdown in Alisson.

Luis Diaz
MILAN, ITALY – FEBRUARY 16: Luis Diaz of Liverpool during the UEFA Champions League Round Of Sixteen First Leg match between Inter and Liverpool FC at Giuseppe Meazza Stadium on February 16, 2022 in Milan, Italy. (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)

Notable by his absence, though, is Colombian winger Luis Diaz who has taken Anfield by storm since arriving from Porto at the start of 2022.

One of the finest January signings in Premier League history, Diaz hasn’t been a Red for long, but the 25-year-old can’t have been far away from inclusion here.

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