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Premier League Player of the Season 2023/24: Mohamed Salah, Virgil van Dijk, Phil Foden, Rodri, Bukayo Saka and Declan Rice leading candidates

Premier League Player of the Season 2023/24 candidates; cases made for top duos from Liverpool, Manchester City and Arsenal; Mohamed Salah, Virgil van Dijk, Phil Foden, Rodri, Bukayo Saka and Declan Rice assessed; Erling Haaland won the award last season


Who should win the Premier League Player of the Season award for 2023/24? We evaluate the top six candidates...

Erling Haaland scooped the prize last season during his record-breaking, first campaign in England - smashing an unprecedented 36 league goals en route to Manchester City winning their third straight league crown.

Haaland leads the goal charts once again this season but the bookmakers are favouring two of his City team-mates ahead of the Norway international.

Here, we state the case for six of the leading candidates, with two players representing each of the top three clubs in England: Liverpool, Man City and Arsenal.

Mohamed Salah

Salah creativity

Mohamed Salah remains Liverpool's key man with 24 goal involvements in the Premier League this season - comprising 15 goals and nine assists - from just 20 starts, having missed eight games due to being with Egypt at the Africa Cup of Nations and also a thigh injury.


Only Aston Villa's Ollie Watkins has scored or assisted more team goals this term. However, no player outperforms Salah's staggering return of 1.2 involvements per 90 minutes.

Virgil van Dijk

Van dijk

Virgil van Dijk is back to his very best and his late headed winner against Chelsea in the Carabao Cup final sealed Liverpool's first silverware of the campaign in Jurgen Klopp's final season in charge.

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The Netherlands international has been dominant in the air all term, winning a league-topping 113 aerial duels, while also ranking fifth in the division for passes attempted upfield.


Eleven opponents dribbled past the 32-year-old last season but only two have managed that feat this term, which ranks as the second-best per-90 ratio in the division for defenders that have clocked 750 minutes or more.

Phil Foden

Phil Foden

Phil Foden has nailed a regular starting berth at Manchester City in his seventh campaign with the senior side - registering a career-topping 26 league starts with 10 games still to play.


The 23-year-old has scored 11 goals and assisted another seven in the Premier League this season, totalling 18 goal involvements - only Haaland has more among his City team-mates.

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Phil Foden's best Premier League goals and assists so far this season.

The England international also ranks third in the Premier League for passes completed and regaining possession in the final third.

Foden also injects movement across the frontline, ranking top at City for off-the-ball runs and runs into the opposition box.


Rodri celebrates after equalising for Man City against Chelsea

Rodri is the Premier League's passmaster. When it comes to distribution, the Spain international ranks top for passes completed, passes completed in the final third and touches.

Additionally, the 27-year-old has regained possession 95 times in the middle third of the pitch during this campaign - only Christian Norgaard and Ryan Christie have done that more frequently.


Despite being a midfield destroyer, Rodri also has a rocket in his locker with three league goals from outside the box this term - no player has scored more from range.

Notably, his distribution is not always safe, short, sideways or backward. On average, Rodri's passes have cut through 132 opponents per 90 minutes - a record-breaking ratio since Second Spectrum began recording the metric at the start of 2019/20.

Bukayo Saka

Bukayo Saka celebrates after scoring Arsenal's third goal in their defeat of Newcastle

Bukayo Saka has spearheaded Arsenal's title tilt this term with 21 goal involvements (13 goals and eight assists) in the Premier League - his nearest team-mate in that department is captain Martin Odegaard with 12.


The England forward has also recorded more one vs ones against opponents than any other player and has completed 73 penetrating passes between opposition lines - which is more than any other forward in the division.

Declan Rice

Declan Rice with a muted celebration after scoring Arsenal's sixth goal against former club West Ham

Arsenal splashed a cool £105m to prise Declan Rice away from his boyhood club West Ham last summer, but that price tag has never been questioned since the campaign kicked off.

Why? Well the 25-year-old has seamlessly become Arsenal's midfield engine, destroyer and distribution hub - ranking in the top five players in the Premier League for carries, passes completed in the opposition half, distance covered and assists directly from set-pieces.


Rice also contributes significantly to Arsenal's devastating goal output, with only attackers Saka and Odegaard registering a higher 'expected goals sequence' total - which is defined as the total xG value of open-play passing sequences involving a player, which end with a shot on goal. Put simply, Rice is integral to the Gunners' build-up play.

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