Midfielders are the one who controls the game from behind. They maintain possession and give key passes from which the best part of the game comes: Goal! These players are the link between attack and defense, often playing defense-splitting passes and breaking up opposition play as and when required.
Over the last year, we have witnessed many amazing midfielders go about their business. All the best teams across Europe have that one player capable of making a difference at the center of the field. Let us have a look at some of the best midfielders in the world right now.
Here are the top 15 midfielders in the world right now. We have not included players who also play as forwards such as Sancho, Hazard, or Sterling.
15. Leon Goretzka
Having signed for the record champions Bayern from Schalke in the summer of 2018, Goretzka has blossomed into a truly world-class box-to-box midfielder for Hansi Flick’s all-conquering Bayern Munich outfit. In his first full season at the club, Goretzka was deployed in no less than six different positions and even turned out at left-back in 2018/19. All of that has changed under Flick, who gave him the role in the centre of the midfield, where he is thriving now.
14. Sergio Busquets
Barcelona has witnessed many great midfielders in recent history, but Busquets fits the best defensive midfielder crown of the Catalan side with no doubt. He dribbles and flips the side by side to dodge the attackers. He lies to dominate the midfield. Busquets is also strong in key passes and aerial duels. 32 years old Busquets still holds the key to Barcelona’s midfield.
13. Bernardo Silva
Portuguese midfielder Bernardo Silva quickly established himself under manager Pep Guardiola at Manchester City. The 26-year-old showed his capabilities of creating goals with his sensational range of passing as well as showing a clinical edge, picking up essential goals from midfield.
12. Miralem Pjanic
Barcelona’s new midfielder, Pjanic, is a glorious player who dictates the tempo of matches and has been one of Europe’s most quietly consistent players for quite some time. One of the best midfielders in the world right now, Pjanic won Serie A in all four of his full seasons with Juventus since signing from Roma in 2016. He will hope to win titles with Barcelona as well.
11. Marco Verratti
Often compared to Andrea Pirlo, Verratti is known for his brilliant ball retention skills and his ability to pick out the right pass under pressure. Always ensuring that the ball keeps moving at the centre of the park, the Italian is probably one of the best midfielders of the world in recent times.
Xavi told about him, “He’s one of the best midfielders in the world, and plays a little bit in the same way as I tried to do with Barcelona and the national team. Verratti likes having the ball. He also has perfect mastery over long and short passing, he can play the final ball, and he doesn’t lose the ball that easily. He is really a very high-class player.”
10. David Silva
One of the reasons behind Manchester City’s success over the past decade has been David Silva. He is a talented and agile left-footed player. He is known for having an excellent first touch, good dribbling skills, and outstanding technical ability, which, along with his intelligent attacking movements, allow him to retain possession in tight spaces, and to create space for himself and teammates to open up a defence.
Silva has started very well at his new club Real Sociedad, winning the Copa del Rey in the very first season. He still has the capacity to play at the highest level.
9. Thiago Alcantara
This Barcelona academy graduate was brilliant for Bayern Munich and will expect to do the same for Liverpool. He was often the link between attack and defense for the Bundesliga champions. He is very strong in passing, ball interceptions, and defensive play work. Alcantara also likes to play long ball. Though he is not much of a goalscorer, he has maintained 90% passing accuracy.