By Muhammed Enes Calli and Selcuk Bugra Gokalp
ANKARA (AA) - 2021 saw some midfielders in European football leaving their marks on their leagues and national teams with impressive performances.
Here is a list of the top five midfielders showing sterling form on the pitch:
- Jorginho (Chelsea, Italy)
Italian footballer Jorginho scored 8 goals in 43 matches in all games last season, and scored 9 goals in 26 matches in all games this season.
In the final in which Chelsea won the 2021 UEFA Champions League title, beating Manchester City 1-0, Jorginho was a vital part of the team.
The 30-year-old was also an integral part of Italy, which won the 2020 European Football Championship (EURO 2020) for the first time in over 50 years by defeating England on penalties in the final in June 2021.
The Chelsea and Italy midfielder was named the 2020/21 UEFA Men's Player of the Year.
Jorginho was also named in the EURO 2020 best 11.
He also helped Chelsea bag a UEFA Europa League title in 2019.
- Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City, Belgium)
Belgian midfielder Kevin De Bruyne scored 10 goals in 40 matches for Manchester City last season and scored 6 goals in 23 games in all games this season.
The 30-year-old was an integral part of the Belgium squad which qualified for the quarterfinals of EURO 2020.
De Bruyne, named as one of the best active midfielders in football by many, has three English Premier League titles with Manchester City, from 2018, 2019, and 2021.
- N'Golo Kante (Chelsea, France)
French midfielder N'Golo Kante, 30, made 48 appearances in all competitions last season.
He has scored 2 goals in 17 matches this season.
He was a key part of Chelsea’s winning 2020-2021 Champions league squad, playing in all matches in this tournament.
Chelsea lifted the Champions League trophy by beating Manchester City 1-0 in the final.
- Bruno Fernandes (Manchester United, Portugal)
Bruno Fernandes, 27, scored 28 goals in 58 matches last season.
The Portuguese midfielder netted five goals in 25 appearances in all competitions this season.
Fernandes scored five goals in the 2020-2021 UEFA Europa League campaign, helping Manchester United reach the final, where it lost to Villarreal on a penalty shootout.
Fernandes is number 10 on the list of top scorers in the UEFA Europa League with 19 goals.
- Hakan Calhanoglu (Milan/Inter, Turkey)
Turkish national team player Hakan Calhanoglu scored nine goals in 43 matches with AC Milan last season.
Milan are back in the Champions League campaign after an eight-year break helped by Calhanoglu’s valuable contributions.
Following his good form in Milan, the 27-year old midfielder moved to city rivals Italian Serie A champion Inter Milan on a free transfer in the summer transfer window.
So far this season he has netted scored six goals in 21 appearances.