De Bruyne, Mane, Werner: The Premier League's best player for every age from 17 to 35


The Premier League continues to play host to some of the world's best players.

Sure, Lionel Messi might not have secured a move to Manchester City after all the speculation, but there can be no denying the standard of professionals within England's top flight.

Besides, only a year has passed since Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur locked out the Champions League final, while Chelsea and Arsenal achieved the same feat in the Europa League.

Close to Premier League return

As a result, it should come as no surprise that the Premier League continues to attract the creme de la creme of the beautiful game - and we can't wait to see them return to action this month.

The three-month delay brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic means that the 2019/20 and 2020/21 seasons have essentially bled into one another.

And with the latter just a few days away from kicking off, we couldn't resist looking at the star players who catch the eye during one of the Premier League's most unique campaigns.


The best Premier League players by age

To mix things up, though, we've decided to select the player we think is the best in the competition for every age between 17 and 35 at the time of writing and using data from Transfermarkt.

Some of the decisions were incredibly straightforward, while other ages were stacked with top quality stars, so you can check out the difficult decisions we had to make down below:

17 years old: Harvey Elliott

To tell you the truth, there aren't too many options when it comes to pre-drinking-age Premier League starlets but Elliott, fresh from scoring at Anfield against Blackpool, stands out for us.


18 years old: Mason Greenwood

Honestly, the world is Greenwood's oyster after scoring 17 goals in all competitions in 2019/20 and there's not another Premier League star at his age that comes close to holding a candle to him.

19 years old: Bukayo Saka

The Premier League is stacked with brilliant 19 years old and it's credit to Saka's remarkable breakout season that he fends off William Saliba, Callum Hudson-Odoi and Gabriel Martinelli.


20 years old: Phil Foden

The City starlet's senior England debut might have flattered to deceive, but you can't ignore the fact that Pep Guardiola considers him to be the greatest young talent he's ever worked with.

21 years old: Trent Alexander-Arnold

You can probably count on one hand the number of Premier League players who are better than Liverpool's right-back, so even Christian Pulisic and Declan Rice never really stood a chance.


22 years old: Marcus Rashford

Last season felt like a watershed moment for Rashford at Old Trafford, finally backing up his ability with raw goal-scoring stats and he's comfortably the Premier League's number one 22-year-old.

23 years old: Richarlison

Trust me, we're as surprised as you are by the lack of options at age 23 and although Richarlison falls short of being a world beater, he tops Gabriel Jesus and James Maddison by our estimations.


24 years old: Timo Werner

The jury is still out on whether Werner will set the world alight in the Premier League, but his recent contention for the European Golden Shoe is enough for him to oust Rodri and Anthony Martial.

25 years old: Raheem Sterling

While it might seem crazy that Bruno Fernandes isn't even the Premier League's best 25 year old, you simply can't look past Sterling's astonishing goal-scoring tally of 31 from out wide last season.


26 years old: Aymeric Laporte

This was one of the toughest categories of all, there's no doubt about it, with Laporte getting the nod by an absolute nose-hair from Andrew Robertson, while Bernardo Silva brings up the rear in third.

27 years old: Harry Kane

Paul Pogba and Alisson Becker can count themselves as very unlucky here, but an in-form Kane is arguably the world's best number nine and he has two Premier League Golden Boots to show for it.


28 years old: Sadio Mane

Believe it or not, Liverpool's entire front three is age 28 right now, so this was an incredibly tough decision, but I think most Kopites would agree that Mane has been the best of the bunch in 2020.

29 years old: Kevin De Bruyne

Even if every single footballer in the Premier League was 29 years old, this selection wouldn't change because the jewel in Guardiola's crown is without a doubt the league's MVP.


30 years old: Jordan Henderson

Kyle Walker might command a higher transfer value, but the fact Henderson captained Liverpool to the title and could win the PFA Player of the Year award tells you everything you need to know.

31 years old: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang

Is there a more lethal striker in the Premier League right now? Arsenal would have teetered with falling into the bottom half last season if they didn't have the competition's finest 31-year-old.


32 years old: Sergio Aguero

While most strikers are on the way down in their early thirties, Aguero continues to prove the doubters wrong as one of the world's finest number nines and an easy pick for our list.

33 years old: Jamie Vardy

Shoutout to Kasper Schmeichel and Hugo Lloris as two of the Premier League's finest goalkeepers, but we had to hand this one to the reigning Golden Boot winner himself.


34 years old: James Milner

This one was a no-brainer with Milner - a three-time Premier League champion, no less - still having plenty left in the tank to ensure Tom Heaton and Gary Cahill don't get a look in here.

35 years old: Thiago Silva

Only time will tell whether Silva will make the grade in the Premier League, but his pedigree with PSG and Brazil is enough to warrant selection over Fernandinho and Lukasz Fabianski.


Stacked with quality

It goes without saying that there's hardly a weak link amongst the Premier League's number one players for each age with Richarlison, Elliott or Milner arguably being as bad as things get.

Nevertheless, it will come as no shock that world-class stars like Alexander-Arnold, De Bruyne, Mane and Sterling all take pride of place on the list after fantastic 2019/20 campaigns.

But if we know anything from watching the Premier League for so long, it's that everything can change in an instant and we just know that this list would look very different this time next year.


It will be fascinating to see which of these players improve, stagnate or decline as the Premier League moves into the 2020/21 season. 

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