Salah, Aubameyang and Premier League Team of the Season so far

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As the Premier League enters the busy Christmas period, we take a look at the best individual performers during the first half of the season

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    Alisson | Liverpool

    The most commanding goalkeeper in the Premier League this season and one of the best impact signings made in Premier League history. It’s a close-run thing between Alisson and his Brazilian colleague Ederson at Manchester City. They are practically neck-and-neck in terms of their out-and-out goalkeeping skills as well as having the ball at their feet. However Alisson shines when it comes to clean sheets and goals conceded. He may have been expensive but is one of the big reasons behind Liverpool’s surge to the top of the table.

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    Cesar Azpilicueta | Chelsea

    His standout performance of the campaign came against Manchester City, when Chelsea snapped Pep Guardiola’s long unbeaten run. He is a long-time Stamford Bridge favourite and has made the switch back to right-back with minimal fuss under Maurizio Sarri having played centre-back under Antonio Conte. Azpilicueta is one of only 10 outfield players to have featured in every minute of this Premier League campaign so far.

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    Virgil van Dijk | Liverpool

    Last season Jurgen Klopp opted to take no signings over the wrong one, delaying Liverpool’s pursuit for a centre-back until January when they knew they’d have another chance at making Virgil van Dijk the world’s most expensive defender. It’s paid off in a big way. Van Dijk has along the way become arguably the best defender in the world on form this year, helping Liverpool to the top of the league with his command of the back four.

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    Aymeric Laporte | Manchester City

    Like Van Dijk, Laporte is another January recruit who has become absolutely integral in the way that his side plays. Guardiola’s preference for a left-footed centre-back has seen Laporte deployed as a key component in how Manchester City set about creating chances. He is ready-made for English football due to his strength and physique. Furthermore, no player in the Premier League has won more matches or played more passes to this point than the French centre-back.

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    Andrew Robertson | Liverpool

    Liverpool have made a habit of recruiting some of the best talent relegated from the Premier League in recent seasons with the additions of Gini Wijnaldum, Andrew Robertson and Xherdan Shaqiri. None have stood out quite as much as the Scotland captain, now established as the best left-back in the Premier League. His 23 chances created, and three assists, have helped Liverpool to the summit and he has played his part in 11 clean sheets for good measure.

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    Lucas Torreira | Arsenal

    It took a while for the little Uruguayan to establish himself in Unai Emery’s new-look team but he has since become Arsenal’s find of the season. He capped his meteoric rise with a well-taken goal in the north London derby against Tottenham but has put in a lot of good work away from the limelight. Just when it seemed Arsenal would lack bite in the midfield, along came Torreira from Sampdoria in one of the summer transfer window’s best deals. The next challenge for Emery will be staving off interest in the 22-year-old from even bigger clubs.

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    Raheem Sterling | Manchester City

    The England winger came off World Cup duty without missing a beat. He has been the outstanding attacker in the Premier League so far this season, scoring nine goals and adding six more assists. Manchester City now look to the 23-year-old as their chief source of goals and inspiration. Having been without David Silva and Kevin De Bruyne for large spells of the season, Pep Guardiola now knows he can look to Sterling for devastating effect.

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    Eden Hazard | Chelsea

    The Belgium captain is arguably the Premier League’s most complete attacker and certainly Chelsea are not the same team without him. It’s no secret that he might see his future away from Stamford Bridge but that distraction has not stopped the goals and assists from flowing. He’s scored eight times and laid on nine assists for the Blues under their new boss Maurizio Sarri as they seek to work their way back into the Champions League.

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    Mohamed Salah | Liverpool

    By his standards it was a slow start to the season but that’s all in the past now. Eleven goals and five assists later, it’s like Mohamed Salah has never been away. His frustrations at the way his Champions League final ended and how his World Cup fizzled out are now long in the past as he carries on with his task of firing Liverpool up the league table. There is plenty more to come for the Egyptian King, again crowned Africa’s best player this year.

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    Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang | Arsenal

    Arguably the most impactful Arsenal signing since Thierry Henry, the Gabon captain has been on fire since joining from Borussia Dortmund last January. He is out on his own as the Premier League's top goalscorer, having got 12 in all this season, and his finishing ability is a big reason behind the Gunners' impressive form in front of goal.

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    Harry Kane | Tottenham

    Spurs might have slipped under the radar due to the form of Manchester City and Liverpool but that is to take nothing away from their own record-breaking start to the season. While the likes of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Sergio Aguero, Callum Wilson and Glenn Murray have been no less effective in front of goal, Kane remains one of the pre-eminent strikers in world football. With 15 goals in all competitions already, any title challenge or push to the latter stages of the Champions League will depend hugely on the England captain.
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    Premier League Team of the Season so far

    So, there you have it! This is our final selection. Do you agree with our choices? Are there any glaring omissions? Let us know in the comments box.