12 Players That Impressed In The 2021/22 Season

12 Players That Impressed In The 2021/22 Season

On the other hand, some players shone brightly this season, with some announcing themselves on the big stage.

The 2021/22 season has ended, and it was full of ups and downs; with some clubs achieving memorable feats.

In terms of player performances, established stars like Lionel Messi, Romelu Lukaku, Paulo Dybala, Sergio Ramos and Eden Hazard disappointedly failed to impress or performed well below expectations.

On the other hand, some players shone brightly this season, with some announcing themselves on the big stage.

FootballOrbit presents you with the top 12 football players that impressed in the 2021/22 season.

1. Karim Benzema (Real Madrid)

With the departure of Sergio Ramos to PSG, the mantle of leadership at Real Madrid fell to Karim Benzema and the Frenchman proved himself more than capable.

The 34-year-old was in imperious form this season as he bagged an astonishing 44 goals and 15 assists in just 45 matches this season.

He was the top scorer in La Liga and the Champions League.

Benzema’s performance helped Real win the Supercopa, La Liga, as well as the UEFA Champions League.

In this kind of form, France have a huge chance of defending their FIFA World Cup crown with Benzema in their squad.

2. Karim Adeyemi (RB Salzburg)

In recent years, RB Salzburg have been unique in term of producing or developing world-class attackers. From Sadio Mane to Takumi Minamino, Hee-chan Hwang, Patson Daka and Erling Haaland.

The latest hot attacker from the Austrian giants is Karim Adeyemi. The 20-year-old impressed in the UEFA Champions League and was in top form throughout the season as Salzburg won the Austrian Bundesliga for the 9th consecutive season, and also clinched the Austrian Cup.

Adeyemi was the top scorer in the league. He scored 23 goals and made 9 assists in 44 appearances in all competitions.

Karim Adeyemi’s displays have not gone unnoticed as he earned a transfer to Borussia Dortmund as a replacement for Erling Haaland.

3. Kylian Mbappe (PSG)

Kylian Mbappe

Mbappe continues his rise as the next big star in soccer.

Although PSG as a team flopped this season, Mbappe was in outstanding form as he scored 39 goals and provided 26 assists in 46 games in all competitions.

His dazzling displays led to a huge transfer battle between PSG and Real Madrid at the end of the season — which the French giants won by offering Mbappe astronomical fees and more influence at the club.

4. Rafael Leao (AC Milan)

AC Milan won the Serie A this season, for the first time in 11 years. One of the stars of Milan’s triumph was Portuguese forward, Rafael Leao.

The 22-year-old was in amazing form as he scored 14 goals and made 12 assists in 42 appearances in all competitions this season.

Rafael Leao was named Serie A Best Player of the Season.

5. Vinicius Junior (Real Madrid)

Vinicius and Benzema celebrate a goal for Real Madrid

Vinicius Junior came of age this season as he formed a formidable partnership with Benzema to lead Real Madrid to winning the La Liga, Supercopa and the Champions League.

The Brazilian scored 22 goals and provided 20 assists in 51 matches this season — with his most decisive goal coming in the Champions League final, the grandest stage of all.

6. Tammy Abraham (AS Roma)

Chelsea let go of Tammy Abraham last season to create room for Romelu Lukaku and they must be ruing that decision now as Abraham has taken his game to another level in Italy, while Lukaku has underperformed at Stamford Bridge.

Roma are the biggest beneficiaries here as Abraham’s performances has helped them win the UEFA Europa Conference League — their first European trophy in history.

Tammy Abraham scored 27 goals and made 5 assists in 53 matches in all competitions this season.

7. Mohamed Salah (Liverpool)

Salah has impressed since his arrival at Liverpool but he went a step further in 2021/22. The Egyptian was unplayable at times as he spearheaded Jurgen Klopp men’s bid for an historic quadraple.

While they failed to win the quadraple, the Reds had an incredible season as they won both the League Cup and FA Cup.

Liverpool lost the EPL title to Manchester City by just a single point and fought till the final match of the season while they also lost 1-0 to Real Madrid in the Champions League final.

Mohamed Salah had 31 goals and 16 assists in 51 matches in all competitions this season.

He was the joint-top scorer and had the most assists in the EPL in 2021/22.

8. Dusan Vlahović (Fiorentina & Juventus)

Dusan Vlahović celebrates a goal for Juventus

Cristiano Ronaldo and Romelu Lukaku might have departed for the Premier League but Serie A now has a new attacking star and his name is Dusan Vlahović.

The Serbian has been a huge revelation this season as he impressed at Fiorentina and was subsequently signed up by Juventus in January to replace Ronaldo in Turin.

The 22-year-old fitted in seamlessly at Juve and with the departure of Paulo Dybala, Vlahović is the new king of Juventus.

Dusan Vlahović scored 29 goals and provided 6 assists in 45 games this season.

9. Christopher Nkunku (RB Leipzig)

Nkunku was outstanding throughout the 2021/22 season as he led RB Leipzig to their first ever DFB-Pokal title and the semi-finals of the Europa League. He also won the Bundesliga Player of the Season award.

Christopher Nkunku astonishingly scored 35 goals and provided 20 assists in 51 appearances in all competitions this season.

10. Victor Osimhen (Napoli)

Victor Osimhen joined Napoli as the most expensive African footballer in history ahead of the 2020/21 season but he didn’t perform up to expectations in his debut season.

This season, the Nigerian finally showed what he is capable of as he led Napoli to 3rd place (and Champions League qualification) in the Serie A.

Arguably; Napoli might have even won the league title but Osimhen missed almost two months of action due to an injury, which greatly affected their chances.

Despite his injury-enforced absence, Victor Osimhen still managed 18 goals and 6 assists in 32 matches in all competitions.

The 23-year-old’s performances earned him the Serie A Young Player of the Season award.

11. Mike Maignan (AC Milan)

When goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnaruma left AC Milan to join PSG on a free transfer last summer, it was a huge blow for the Rosonerri. But the arrival of Mike Maignan has helped them to quickly forget and overcome those pains.

Maignan was instrumental as Lille shockingly won the French Ligue 1 title in 2020/21 and he transferred his form to Italy as he helped Milan win the Serie A for the first time since 2011.

In 32 appearances in the league, Mike Maignan kept 17 clean sheets and conceded just 21 goals. He was named as the Best Goalkeeper in Serie A in 2021/22.

12. Jarrod Bowen (Westham United)

Westham were impressive this season as they reached the Europa League semi-final, where they lost to eventual champions, Eintracht Frankfurt.

One of the stars behind the Hammers’ displays was Jarrod Bowen — who scored 18 goals and made 13 assists in 51 games in all competitions.

Bowen’s contributions ensured Westham will have another taste of European football next season (albeit in the UEFA Conference League) as they ended the season in 7th position in the Premier League.