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Revealed: The Liverpool player who created the most chances this season isn't who you'd expect

13:12 BST 08/04/2020
Mohamed Salah Trent Alexander-Arnold Liverpool 2019-20
Jurgen Klopp's champions-elect have been in stellar goalscoring form all campaign and Goal can reveal which player is the team's most creative

Liverpool look set to end their long wait for the Premier League title thanks to an incredible record of 27 wins from their first 29 games.

That has opened up a 25-point lead over Manchester City and that success can be attributed to a team effort rather than any one player leading the charge.

The fearsome attacking three of Sadio Mane, Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino are responsible for the bulk of the goals, having scored 38 of the team’s 66, whilst their Virgil van Dijk-marshalled defence has conceded only 21 times.

Those 66 strikes have come from a total of 353 chances, the second-best conversion rate in the Premier League behind Leicester City, and it may not be a surprise to know that regular corner taker Trent Alexander-Arnold has created 75 of those chances.

However, removing set pieces from the equation sees the supposedly ‘selfish’ Salah as the leading chance creator for Liverpool.

Salah has created 42 chances from open play for Liverpool in the Premier League this season, ahead of Mane’s 41 and Alexander-Arnold’s 40 by the same metric.

Firmino and Andy Robertson have each created 39 and the total of 201 non-set piece chances those five have created is more than eight entire teams have managed, including Arsenal and Newcastle United.

The Egyptian has long been maligned for failing to pass the ball to his team-mates, especially in games earlier this season against Burnley and Southampton, but Opta’s statistics clearly prove that this is not the case.

Interestingly, Salah has provided only four assists from open play which is fewer than Jordan Henderson, who has five from just 24 chances created, although this is not indicative of the Egyptian failing to pass.

Salah has created 12 ‘big chances’ – defined by Opta as a situation where a player should reasonably be expected to score – which is more than any other Liverpool player this season except Alexander-Arnold, who has created 16.

As well, the Egyptian has actually attempted fewer dribbles per game than Mane, averaging 3.12 per game compared to 3.62 for the Senegalese forward, with Salah’s 81 total dribbles the same amount as Firmino.