The battle to be crowned European Assists King for the 2021/22 season is nearing its conclusion and there is a familiar face at the top of the leaderboard.
Thomas Müller has been the man to beat over recent years, impressively being named the continent’s top creative player for two straight seasons despite the Bundesliga having only 34 games rather than the 38 of many other major leagues.
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Müller therefore headed into this season as one of the top candidates to produce the most assists in Europe.
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The 2021/22 European Assist King award will be won by the player who provides the most assists in the top-five European leagues – the Premier League, La Liga, Bundesliga, Serie A and Ligue 1.
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There are no coefficients or scales used for these leagues – just ranking the most goals created by each player in the top-five leagues condensed into a single table.
We will also track the players who produce the most assists in each of those five divisions individually, so stay tuned to this page for the latest standings throughout the campaign.
MOST ASSISTS IN EUROPE 2021/22
Thomas Müller leads the race to be crowned the most creative player in Europe, but Kylian Mbappe remains only one assist behind him in the standings.
Bayern forward Müller has the most assists in Europe’s top five leagues with 17 for the Bundesliga season as he seeks a historic third straight European Assists King title.
But the 32-year-old’s numbers have slowed dramatically at a pivotal stage of the campaign.
The experienced attacker has led the standings for much of the season but his closest rivals chipped away at the gap during his slump.
Bayern now only have one league match remaining due to the shorter top-flight season in Germany, with Wolfsburg their last opponents this weekend.
After registering a league assist back on January 15, Muller made 10 consecutive Bundesliga appearances for Bayern without creating another goal.
He finally ended that wait when he recorded an assist as Bayern beat rivals Dortmund 3-1 to clinch Bundesliga title on April 23, but he then missed the defeat at Mainz due to illness.
Muller was back on the pitch against Stuttgart in Sunday’s 2-2 draw and scored a goal, but did not add to his assists total.
In-form PSG forward Mbappe is now within touching distance, while Lionel Messi, Mohamed Salah, Marco Reus and Christopher Nkunku are within four at the top.
With 16 assists in Ligue 1, World Cup winner Mbappe has already more than doubled his total for last season and registered the best tally of his career to date.
Three straight games without an assist had briefly halted Mbappe’s momentum until he created a goal – as well as scoring two others – in the 3-3 draw at Strasbourg.
However, Sunday’s 2-2 draw with Troyes was a rare outing for the World Cup winner without a goal involvement, meaning Muller retained his slender lead.
Mbappe will still fancy his chances of surpassing Muller, though PSG only have two league matches left to play.
Messi is near the top of the standings after he sensationally set up three of the six PSG goals scored at Clermont Foot on April 9.
But the former Barcelona star has not created a goal in four appearances since, despite playing the full 90 minutes on each occasion.
While he has struggled to score goals in France, Messi has continued his career trend of being a superb creator, with 13 Ligue 1 assists to his name this season.
In-form RB Leipzig star Nkunku is level with Messi after creating a goal in the 1-0 win at Leverkusen on April 17. He racked up four assists last month.
Salah has recently passed Liverpool team-mate Trent Alexander-Arnold in the standings and has the most Premier League assists.
He is top of the English top-flight standings for both goals (22) and assists (13) after an impressive two outings saw him create goals against both Man Utd and Everton.
Reus has moved ahead of Alexander-Arnold onto 13 assists and a tie for third position with Messi, Salah and Nkunku.
The Dortmund attacking midfielder has racked up eight assists in seven Bundesliga matches to charge up the creative standings.
Domenico Berardi has the most assists in Serie A so far this season and sits level with Alexander-Arnold and Moussa Diaby on 12.
There is then an impressive quintet with 11 assists: Ousmane Dembele, Karim Benzema, Hakan Calhanoglu, David Raum and Benjamin Bourigeaud.
Dembele and Benzema are tied for the lead for goals created in the Primera Division.
Barcelona winger Dembele has racked up nine assists since February 20 in a strong finish to the campaign.
Muller’s Bayern team-mate Joshua Kimmich and Salah’s Liverpool colleague Andrew Robertson are among a growing group of 11 players who have reached 10 assists in 2021/22.
2021/22 European Assist Kings
Who had the most assists in previous seasons?
2020/21: Thomas Müller, Bayern (19 assists)
2019/20: Thomas Müller, Bayern (21 assists)
2018/19: Eden Hazard, Chelsea (15 assists)
2017/18: Kevin De Bruyne, Man City (16 assists)
Thomas Müller has been named the European Assists King in each of the last two seasons (2019/20 and 2020/21), as he recorded 40 assists across those campaigns in the Bundesliga.
The Bayern star finished five assists clear of joint runners-up Harry Kane and Filip Kostic last season, with 19 goals created in total.
Premier League Golden Boot: Current standings and past winners
Iago Aspas (13) had the most assists in La Liga last season, while Ruslan Malinovskiy and Memphis Depay (both 12) topped the assist charts in Serie A and Ligue 1 respectively.
Muller’s first crown came when he had 21 assists to only just beat Lionel Messi, who had 20 in La Liga 2019/20 for Barcelona. Kevin De Bruyne was another to narrowly miss out after he also set up 20 goals and topped the Premier League charts.
The award for most creative player in Europe in 2018/19 went to Eden Hazard. He had 15 assists for Chelsea, meaning he narrowly beat Jadon Sancho (14) and Ryan Fraser (14) to the award.
De Bruyne had the most assists in Europe during 2017/18. He created 16 goals for his Man City team-mates. Leroy Sane (15), Dimitri Payet (14) and Luis Alberto (14) all narrowly missed out.
What is an assist?
An assist in football is usually credited to the player who plays the final pass or cross before a goal is scored. A player may receive recognition for creating a goal by being awarded an assist even if the pass or touch they have made to set up the goalscorer is unintentional.
There can be slight differences in how assists are recorded and allocated depending on the criteria of each official competition. For example, if a player’s pass towards a goalscorer takes a deflection on its way to the intended target, an assist is often not credited. A player who wins a penalty that is then scored does not usually get an assist either.
As well as a recognised official statistic, assists are often important in fantasy football games and betting markets.
Premier League assists + full stats
Serie A assists + full stats
La Liga assists + full stats
Ligue 1 assists + full stats
Bundesliga assists + full stats