Brian Pitter

Thu, 14 Jan 2021

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10. Zack Steffen

Zack Steffen has perhaps started more times this season than he would have ever imagined for five-time Premier League champions Manchester City. The American has made a total of 7 appearances this season across four competitions and has kept 4 clean sheets in total. His big break came thanks to an injury sustained by City’s main shot-stopper Ederson. The 25-year-old will look to continue to impress during the Brazilian’s absence but has no doubt announced himself in a positive light during a shaky campaign for the Citizens.

9. Alphonso Davies

Alphonso Davies was, by far, the best CONCACAF player last season. However this year he hasn’t necessarily been at his best but that’s solely down to injury. Having gotten back to fitness, the Canadian left-back will be hoping to improve on his 13 appearances that he made in the first half of the season and help The Bavarians secure their 9th title in as many years.

8. Gio Reyna (USA)

Giovanni Reyna started the season like a man on a mission, quickly recording goals and assists in his first few games and creating a deadly partnership with Dortmund’s lethal striker Erling Haaland. The 18-year-old can be forgiven for not maintaining the same standards that he had reached at the beginning of the campaign but he has more or less kept his place in the starting lineup. With that said, there is no doubt that the American creative midfielder is already one of the brightest talents in Europe.

7. Edson Alvarez

Edson Alvarez has been linked with a move away from Ajax in the January transfer window, even after only signing for the club back in July 2019. He has started the season well, making 13 appearances for the Eredivisie league leaders so far this season. The 23-year-old has made 34 appearances for the Mexican national team and has been touted with a move to Spanish giants Valencia, who see him as their primary transfer target.  A versatile defender who is comfortable on the ball, Alvarez fits perfectly into Ajax’s footballing culture. In only his first season in Europe, expect Alvarez to bring his skills to one of Europe’s top 5 leagues over the next two years.

6. John Brooks

John Brooks is one of the US National team’s most vital players and in recent years, he has become one of the best defenders in the Bundesliga. At 6ft, 3inches, the towering center back has helped Wolfsburg to a great start this season with the club sitting in 6th midway through the season. Talks have already begun linking the American away from Die Wölfe and if he continues his hot run of form, he could very well sign a lucrative contract with a bigger club in Europe.

5. Bobby Decordova-Reid

Bobby Decordova-Reid has been a shining light for Fulham despite being involved in a very lacklustre campaign so far. The Jamaican forward is the club’s leading goalscorer this season with 6 goals and has helped the team secure some much needed points in recent games thanks to his impressive finishing, his goal vs. league leaders Liverpool comes to mind. If the London club fails to avoid relegation and Reid continues his impressive run of form for the entirety of the campaign then it is hard to imagine that another Premier League club will not swoop in and keep the 27-year-old in the top flight.

4. Keylor Navas

Keylor Navas is undisputedly one of CONCACAF’s most valuable and decorated exports. The Costa Rican shot-stopper has won it all at the club level and continues to ply his trade with French champions Paris Saint-Germain. He led the team to the UEFA Champions League final last season where they were narrowly beaten by German giants Bayern Munich 1-0. This season however, Navas has continued to show his class, recording 11 clean sheets in 20 appearances, underlining his value to the team. If the club are to finally go one step further and secure that elusive Champions League title, then Navas’ fitness and consistency will be vital to that effort.

3. Sergino Dest

Sergino Dest’s much anticipated move to the Camp Nou last summer has gone quite well for the American, becoming one of Ronald Koeman’s most important players throughout the La Liga campaign so far. Not only has he been a constant in the league for the Catalonian club, but his performance in the UEFA Champions League has also been something to take note of as well, scoring 1 goal and making 5 appearances at right back. In what has been a turbulent start of the season, Dest has been a shining light who has shown he is undaunted by the Barca shirt. Starting week in, week out for one of the best clubs in the world makes him a shoo-in for a top 3 position in this list.

2. Leon Bailey

What more can be said about Leon Bailey? The Jamaican continues to improve season after season and if he stays fit throughout an entire campaign, he can become one of the most lethal attackers in Europe. Bailey’s fiery start to the 2020/2021 campaign has seen him record 16 goal involvements in 20 appearances so far. His sublime form has also, once again, seen media outlets link him with moves away from Bayer Leverkusen, with many suggesting that he could be a perfect fit for Manchester United.

1. Weston McKennie

Weston McKennie’s loan transfer from Schalke 04 to Juventus has been an overwhelming success. Playing alongside one of the greatest players in the world in Cristiano Ronaldo has not daunted the 22-year-old as many have even identified him as Juventus’s best player so far and possibly, the potential player of the year for the club. The United States international has been bossing the midfield for the Old Lady this season and has recorded 3 goals and 2 assists, even mustering up a goal of the season contender in the UEFA Champions League with his stunner against FC Barcelona at the Camp Nou, a game he was also awarded the Man of the Match award. Week in, week out McKennie has matched industry with an end product not seen before in his armoury, and at a top club like Juventus, it is no surprise he closes out this list at No. 1



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