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​The 10 Best Right-Wingers In The World Right Now, Named And Ranked​

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​The 10 Best Right-Wingers In The World Right Now, Named And Ranked​

Talk about right-wingers and images of Luis Figo and Jairzinho powering forward spring to mind. The current crop of right-forwards and wide midfielders may contain players that prove to be even better than the Portuguese and Brazilian legends.

Here we pick our top 10 right-wingers in the world. We've used a number of stats from last season to quantify our rankings, as well as a player's overall contribution to the game in recent times. So who makes it into our top 10?

All stats come from WhoScored.com and are correct as of the publish date. All images are credit to PA Images.

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10) Josip Ilicic

2020/21 Season Stats:

  • 17 appearances
  • 6 goals
  • 9 assists
  • 2.2 key passes per game
  • 2 dribbles per game
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Italian newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport once described Josip Ilicic as being built like a boxer but with the feet of a ballerina. The powerful 6ft 3in winger, who turned 33 in January has been Atalanta's best player since his move from Fiorentina in 2017. It was his goal at Anfield in November 2020 that handed Liverpool their first home loss inside 90 minutes for more than two years. A stalwart for his country, he has scored 13 goals for Slovenia in 73 appearances.

josip ilicic
josip ilicic

9) James Rodriguez

2020/21 Season Stats:

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  • 21 appearances
  • 6 goals
  • 4 assists
  • 1.7 key passes per game
  • 1.5 dribbles per game

It feels like a long time ago that James Rodriguez won the Golden Boot at the 2014 World Cup but he recaptured that form early in his first Everton season. In Carlo Ancelotti's 4-3-3, Rodriguez was given licence to roam on the right where his creativity and ability to draw tacklers to him helped the Toffees to the top of the Premier League. Injuries then slowed his roll but when fit, the 29-year-old showed he still had plenty in the tank. Rafa Benitez's appointment may mean it's one and done on Merseyside for the Colombian, who reportedly fell out with the manager when they were at Real Madrid.

james rodriguez
james rodriguez

8) Leroy Sane

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2020/21 Season Stats:

  • 18 appearances
  • 6 goals
  • 9 assists
  • 1 key pass per game
  • 1.9 dribbles per game

Blessed with blistering pace and an ability to beat opponents from wide, Leroy Sane looked to have the world at his feet after back-to-back Premier League titles with Manchester City. But a disastrous torn cruciate ligament 13 minutes into the Community Shield in 2019 put the mockers on a dream move to Bayern Munich. A year later the transfer was resurrected and there were glimpses of his old form last season as he scored six and set up nine in the Bundesliga and added three goals in six Champions League matches.

leroy sane
leroy sane
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7) Riyad Mahrez

2020/21 Season Stats:

  • 23 appearances
  • 9 goals
  • 6 assists
  • 1.6 key passes per game
  • 1.7 dribbles per game

One of Pep Guardiola's favourite weapons since he spent £60million to bring Riyad Mahrez from Leicester in 2018. While his trademark cutting inside from the right to curl a shot into the bottom corner is deadly, the Algerian can suffer from inconsistent performances. His knack for making a difference in key games and moments however ensures Guardiola turns to him for big games, which when you consider the wealth of options he has at City, is praise indeed.

riyad mahrez
riyad mahrez

6) Ferran Torres

2020/21 Season Stats:

  • 15 appearances
  • 7 goals
  • 2 assists
  • 0.8 key passes per game
  • 0.8 dribbles per game

With his smart, diagonal runs and his excellent use of width, Torres managed to make an impact in 2020/21 despite being part of the aforementioned talent-packed Manchester City squad. Able to play right and left, the 21-year-old was in competition with the likes of Raheem Sterling, Phil Foden and Riyad Mahrez for playing time in his debut season. His performance has given manager Pep Guardiola food for thought for the upcoming Premier League campaign: "He was fantastic all season, an incredible signing for us that can play in three positions up front. Maybe I have to think about playing him as a striker because every time he plays there he has a real sense of goal."

ferran torres
ferran torres

5) Domenico Berardi

2020/21 Season Stats:

  • 28 appearances
  • 17 goals
  • 7 assists
  • 1.9 key passes per game
  • 1 dribble per game

Domenico Berardi is a rarity in the modern game - a one-club man at 26. He's made 275 appearances for Sassuolo and scored 97 goals, helping them to promotion from Serie B at the age of 18. This past season was his best to date with 17 goals from 28 appearances, he was the eighth leading scorer in Serie A and was fourth in shots per game. Only Lorenzo Insigne averaged more shots from outside the box. The quick, tenacious, left-footer was reportedly being watched by Liverpool during Italy's run to the Euro 2021 title so he may become a two-club man sooner rather than later.

Domenico Berardi
Domenico Berardi

4) Bernardo Silva

2020/21 Season Stats:

  • 24 appearances
  • 2 goals
  • 6 assists
  • 1 key pass per game
  • 1.6 dribbles per game

Despite being just 5ft 8in, Bernardo Silva throws himself around the field with aggression you wouldn't expect from a man his size. Fizzing in from out wide with the ability to pick a perfect pass, the Portuguese is Manchester City's unsung hero. When Kevin de Bruyne went down this season, it was Silva that picked up the slack and ensured Pep Guardiola's side's title chase didn't falter. The 26-year-old has 59 caps for his country and seven goals.

Bernardo Silva
Bernardo Silva

3) Jadon Sancho

2020/21 Season Stats:

  • 24 appearances
  • 8 goals
  • 11 assists
  • 2.6 key passes per game
  • 3 dribbles per game

England penalty disappointment aside, 2021 is set to be the biggest year of Jadon Sancho's career. Returning to Manchester after his £73million move from Borussia Dortmund to United, the 21-year-old is being rewarded for the gamble he took four years ago. Switching from City to experience a new culture in Germany proved more than worthwhile as he showed himself to be one of Europe's brightest stars. His 79 combined goals and assists (36/43) before the age of 21 tops Robbie Fowler, Michael Owen, Wayne Rooney, Dele Alli and England teammate Raheem Sterling.

jadon sancho
jadon sancho

2) Angel Di Maria

2020/21 Season Stats:

  • 23 appearances
  • 4 goals
  • 9 assists
  • 2.6 key passes per game
  • 1.5 dribbles per game

Big-time players turn up in big-time moments and that was the case again for Angel Di Maria who scored the winner in the Copa America 2021 final against Brazil, his only goal of the tournament. The goal ended 28 years of hurt for Argentina and finally gave Lionel Messi an international trophy to lift. While his season at Manchester United was forgettable, he's won league titles in Spain, France and Portugal and the Champions League with Real Madrid. Licensed to keep his width or come more central, Di Maria is better known for his vision than his pace, which is why at 33, he's still one of the best.

angel di maria
angel di maria

1) Mohamed Salah

2020/21 Season Stats:

  • 34 appearances
  • 22 goals
  • 5 assists
  • 1.5 key passes per game
  • 1 dribble per game

While he's no longer strictly a right-winger as he was in his days at Roma and Fiorentina, "little dancer" Mo Salah has become one of the world's most effective right forwards. Come for the goals (two consecutive Premier League golden boots, 95 Premier League goals in four seasons) and stay for the work-rate. "He works his socks off in games," says his Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp. "But I see him in between games as well, how dedicated he is and how hard he works at improving." The fastest player to 100 top-flight goals for Liverpool, the 29-year-old may only now be reaching his peak - a scary thought for defenders.

mohamed salah
mohamed salah

Topics: Riyad Mahrez, Angel Di Maria, Jadon Sancho, Mohamed Salah

Colin Hubbuck
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