2019 was another a year of greatness for the footballing world. We saw the emergence of new faces alongside the reestablishment of some of our old-time favourites.
Here are the Top 19 players of 2019.
2019 was a breakout year for the Portuguese midfielder. He led Portugal to a UEFA Nations League victory. He’s proven once again that size doesn’t matter in the Premier League as long as you have the intensity to match your talent.
Simply put, Alisson is now the best goalkeeper in the world. Alongside his Dutch counterpart, he’s the reason for Liverpool’s improved defensive record. He has led Liverpool to a Champions League win as well as a Club World Cup trophy throughout the course of the year.
Despite playing in the most physical league in the world, Fernandinho has gotten better with age. His positional play and timing of tackles under Pep Guardiola have only improved, raising him to a level that’s simply unplayable.
He played a key role in Manchester City’s title victory last season, and continues to be an important player in the heart of Guardiola’s midfield.
The Brazilian’s year was almost that of a fairy tale. Moura single-handedly took Spurs to the UCL final in the absence of Harry Kane. In the same year, he scored his first hat-trick for the club at the new stadium. In 2020, we’ll see whether this was an anomaly for the 27-year-old.
Although in the midst of a struggling team, the Gabonese international was still able to become the league’s top scorer. His 28 goals across 3007 minutes of football have established him as one of the best strikers in the world.
Frenkie de Jong
Like his friend at Juventus, De Jong earned himself a move to Barcelona through his displays at Ajax. His performances were filled with so much quality that he even earned praise from the great Xavi himself.
Firmino is often the player that people forget to mention in regard to Liverpool’s attack, but he may be the most important. The centre forward is the link that glues them all together, often dropping deep to create space for the other two.
It’s no debate that England currently possesses the strongest depth of right-backs in the world. Gareth Southgate has between Alexander-Arnold, Kyle Walker and Aaron Wan-Bissaka to choose from. But what sets the Liverpool full-back out from the rest is his passing range and ability to think quick on his feet, as shown against Barcelona in that memorable night at Anfield.
Jadon Sancho was the one name that kept popping up in the year 2019. His stunning performances for Dortmund has attracted the interest of multiple clubs including Chelsea. The Englishman has notched 18 goal and assist contributions in 15 Bundesliga appearances for Dortmund this season.
Intensity, pace and crossing are the three attributes no left-back can beat Andrew Robertson on. The defender has taken his game to new heights under Jurgen Klopp, becoming an irresistible force in attack and immoveable object in defence.
This was the year that Raheem Sterling announced himself to the entire world. His influence on the pitch was matched by his powerful stand against racism off it. Sterling has bagged nine goals already this season, he looks set to notch even more going into 2020.
2018 was a better year for the Egyptian but his 2019 has still been better than most. The electric winger is now a UCL winner and well on his way to becoming a Champion of England having contributed a combined tally of 13 goals and assists to Liverpool’s title charge.
Matthijs de Ligt
Golden boy winner and Dutch champion, De Ligt secured himself a move to European giants Juventus off the back of a wonderful UCL run with Ajax. He’s now aiming to dethrone his Dutch counterpart as the best CB in the world one day.
In a team full of stars, the Senegalese forward often gets overlooked. But his goals and assists also speak for themselves, as he hit the back of the net 31 times this year. Where have others have hidden, he’s stepped up and become Liverpool’s main man on several occasions.
The French sensation once again took the world by storm in 2019, scoring 36 goals in the calendar year. Next year, the star boy will be looking to add a UCL title to his already illustrious trophy cabinet.
Kevin De Bruyne
As he proved in a masterful first half against Arsenal, Kevin De Bruyne is the best midfielder in world football. His influence on Manchester City is second to none as he’s the one player Pep can’t seem to replace in the starting XI.
Virgil van Dijk
2019 was the year that the Dutchman solidified himself as the best centre-back in the world, so much so that he nearly beat Messi to the Balon d’Or.
The 34-year-old has continued the revitalization of his career in Italy by adding several trophies to his collection. Ronaldo dominated on the international stage with a first-ever UEFA Nations League win and domestically with Juventus’ eight consecutive scudetto.
Another year, another Balon d’Or for Lionel Messi. 2019 saw the Argentinean become the first player ever to win the award six times. Just when we thought the 32-year-old was losing his powers, he raised the bar again by dragging his team to another La Liga title.