We take a look at the combined XIs of the top performing players and U23 talents in each of Europe’s Top 5 leagues, based on data from Wyscout’s Ranking indexes

The 2022/23 season provided some riveting storylines all over Europe; from Napoli’s first Serie A title in 33 years to Manchester City’s historic treble and Bayern Munich’s final day Bundesliga victory, there was no shortage of drama right up until the very last minute.

Now that the dust has settled, we cast an eye over who were the top performers from across the continent. 

Using Wyscout’s Rankings indexes, which sorts and rates players in a competition for each position based on their stats, we are able to see who has made the combined best XIs from each of Europe’s Top 5 leagues.

For each position there is a set of parameters used to calculate a final ranking, purely based on Wyscout data. For example, a winger’s ranking will be determined by key metrics such as goals, chances created, dribbles won, assists and crosses, as well as a plethora of other positionally-relevant statistics.

If you want to learn more about which specific metrics are relevant to each position, click here

Wyscout Glossary

We also take a look at the standout U23 talents from each of Europe’s Top 5 leagues. Adjusting the age range on Wyscout’s Ranking indexes allows you to hone in on specific player profiles to provide an even more in-depth level to your analysis. 

The search of the next young star is increasingly important and, along with the Ranking index, Wyscout’s expanded Exclusive Youth Competition pack is yet another tool that can help unearth upcoming prospects from across the world. Featuring over 70 tournaments and more than 900 clubs, it puts you in a privileged position to scout elite young talent and stay ahead of the curve.

Serie A

Napoli romped home to win the Scudetto in style and it’s no surprise to see some of their key players feature. 

Victor Osimhen topped the scoring charts with 26 goals to be named Capocannoniere and he also led the league for combined goals and assists, with 30 in total. The Nigerian striker had more shots (127) and more touches inside the box (202) than anyone else in Italy, while also proving an aerial threat with his league-high 7 headed goals.

While Napoli’s free-wheeling exploits going forward under Luciano Spaletti grabbed most of the attention, they also boasted the best defence in Serie A, conceding just 28 goals. As such, center back pairing Kim Min-Jae and Amir Rrahmani feature.

Kim, in particular, has impressed, averaging 11.99 recoveries per 90 and a 73.03% success rate in defensive duels. What stands out most though, is his quality on the ball. The South Korean’s ball progression of 6.07 per minute is the best in Italy and he made the third highest number of passes (2686) across all of Europe’s Top 5 leagues.

Lautaro Martínez's shooting map from Wyscout's Player Reports.

Lautaro Martínez partners Osimhen up front thanks to his combined 27 goals and assists, as Internazionale ended up third and reached the Champions League final, while Lazio provide four of the eleven after finishing second - their highest Serie A position in over two decades. 

Goalkeeper Ivan Provedel had a league high of 6 prevented goals, helping Lazio to the second best defensive record in the division, and midfield schemer Sergej Milinković-Savić topped the charts for through balls (69) and smart passes (51), as well as chipping in with 9 goals and 7 assists.

Serie A U23

Another of Napoli’s standouts, Georgian maestro Khvicha Kvaratskhelia, is the first player to jump off the page in the Serie A combined U23 XI.

Winner of the Serie A award for most valuable player, Kvaratskhelia wowed in his first season in Italy and contributed 22 direct goal involvements as Napoli won the league. His 10 assists were the highest in Serie A and his 255 dribbles were the second highest, as were his 59 deep completions. If that wasn’t enough, his 32 key passes were the third highest in all of Europe for an U23 player.

Khvicha Kvaratskhelia's dribble map using Wyscout Player Reports.

Elsewhere, there were a number of other exciting young talents on display. Flying left back Destiny Udogie averaged 10.13 offensive duels per 90 and made 5.2 dribbles per 90, prompting Tottenham to buy the 20-year-old. 

In-demand Danish striker Rasmus Højlund scored 9 goals for Atalanta in his first year in Italy and no player had a higher shot accuracy than his 55.56% on target.

AC Milan showed that they are a good place for youth to develop with three players featuring, including deep-lying midfielder Sandro Tonali, who made 6 assists and ranked third highest in Serie A for through balls (48). Another player trading Italy for England next season, Newcastle fans will hope to see more of the same at St. James' Park.


Barcelona won their first LaLiga title in four years, largely based on a rock-solid defence that conceded just 20 goals in 38 games. Marc-André ter Stegen was in spectacular form with just 0.45 goals conceded per 90 and coming up with big saves when it mattered most, as demonstrated by the fact his 6.61 prevented goals was the highest in LaLiga. The German stopper was also important in their build-up from the back, boasting a 90.22% pass completion.

At the other end of the pitch, Robert Lewandowski wasted no time settling into Spanish football after his summer move from Bayern Munich. The experienced striker topped the scoring charts with 23 and could have had even more if it wasn’t for the seven efforts that hit the woodwork. 

Up front, Antoine Greizmann also enjoyed an excellent season, with his combined goals and assists of 29 only one behind Lewandowski. As well as having the most key passes (39) and smart passes (50) in La Liga, the Frenchman's 14 assists were the joint second highest across all of Europe's Top 5 leagues.

A comparison of LaLiga's top forwards from the 2022/23 season using Wyscout's Player List tool.

Arguably the most exciting player in Spain right now, Vinícius Júnior underlined his position as one of the best players in the world with another stellar campaign. His 451 dribbles were the highest in all of Europe’s Top 5 leagues by a country mile - the next closest was Nico Williams with 280 - and unsurprisingly he also made the most progressive runs (232) and was the joint most fouled (117) in Europe.

Electric, audacious and fearless, the 22-year-old Brazilian also had the most touches in the penalty area in LaLiga (203) and made the most key passes (33) for any U23 player in Europe’s Top 5 leagues - performance levels all the more impressive given the constant abuse and racism he has faced.

LaLiga U23

One of three players to make both line-ups, Fran García’s dynamic performances for the entertaining Rayo saw Real Madrid trigger the clause to bring him back to the Bernabéu next season.

Only Vinícius Júnior made more progressive runs in Europe’s Top 5 leagues than García’s 156 and, compared to U23 players across the continent, the left back ranked third for defensive duels (310) and top for crosses (156).

We also see a strong Athletic Bilbao contingency in LaLiga’s U23 combined XI, with Nico Williams, Oihan Sancet and Dani Vivian all featuring. The club’s focus on youth is not surprising given their Basque-only policy and the need to draw from their own academy.

Oihan Sancet recoveries map from Wyscout's Player Report.

It was a coming-of-age season in particular for Sancet, who played 36 times and scored 10 goals from midfield. An all-action midfielder who is technically sound, can carry the ball forward and win the ball back too, as shown by his 1.79 recoveries in the final third and 2.74 counterpressing recoveries per 90 this season

Celta Vigo’s Gabri Veiga also enjoyed a breakthrough campaign with 11 goals and 2 assists, while Valencia’s Giorgi Mamardashvili was the player in the Top 5 leagues to play the most minutes (3801) - all the more impressive given how young goalkeepers are rarely given much responsibility and especially as Valencia were in a relegation battle for most of the season.

Ligue 1

Lens surprise second place finish was without a doubt the story of Ligue 1 in 2022/23. Les Sang et Or have gone from the second tier to the Champions League in just three years, only lost one game at home all season and boasted the best defensive record in France.

As a result, the Wyscout combined XI is dominated by Lens players in defence. Goalkeeper Brice Samba’s 11.72 prevented goals was the highest in France and second highest in Europe’s Top 5 leagues, while his 15 clean sheets helped earn him a call-up to the France squad. Przemysław Frankowski, Kevin Danso and Jonathan Gradit all make it into the back four after Lens conceded just 29 goals.

A comparison of Lens defenders from the 2022/23 season using Wyscout's Player List tool.

There are less surprises up front with the iconic Lionel Messi and Kylian Mbappé leading the line. Mbappé’s 29 goals saw him finish as top scorer for the fifth season in a row and no-one in Europe averaged more touches in the penalty area per 90 than his 7.6. 

Meanwhile Messi topped the assists in France with 14, giving him a combined G+A of 30. On top of becoming world champion with Argentina, he also ranked first in Europe’s Top 5 leagues for through passes (165), smart passes (134) and deep completions (140). Not a bad way to sign off before his move to Inter Miami.

Elsewhere, Lorient’s Enzo Le Fée and Marseille’s Nuno Tavares made both XIs for their impressive seasons. Attack-minded full back Tavares - on loan from Arsenal - placed in the top 10 in France for dribbles (184) and progressive runs (89), while Le Fée’s all-round skills were highlighted by the fact he was the only Ligue 1 player to make more than 100 tackles, dribbles and shot-creating actions.

Ligue 1 U23

The Ligue 1 U23 combined XI features two of the most in-form young forwards in all of Europe. Lille’s Jonathan David was third top scorer in France with 24 goals and he proved himself to be lethal from the spot with an unsurpassed 10 penalty goals. What’s more, the young Canadian posted the highest expected goals and assists in Europe’s Top 5 leagues with 32.38.

Loïs Openda joins him up front thanks to his 21 league goals for Lens. The Belgian maintained the form he had shown at Vitesse and had the third highest goals and assists (25) for an U23 player in Europe’s Top 5 leagues. Openda also had the most headed goals (5) in Ligue 1.

Top goal involvements in the Ligue 1 2022/23 season using Wyscout Ranking Indexes.

An interesting aspect of the U23 XI is the presence of two Toulouse wide players, in the form of Zakaria Aboukhlal and Fares Chaibi. Tricky winger Aboukhlal scored 10 league goals and was also on the scoresheet as Toulouse beat Nantes 5-1 in the Coupe de France - the first major trophy in their history.  Meanwhile, 20-year-old Chaibi marked a great debut campaign with 5 goals and 5 assists and earned a call up to the Algeria national team

Another noteworthy stat is that the center back pairing of Castello Lukeba and Arthur Theate rank as the two U23 players in Europe’s Top 5 leagues who made the most passes, with 2176 and 2485 respectively.


Despite Borussia Dortmund snatching defeat from the jaws of victory on the last day of the season, Jude Bellingham enjoyed another standout season. The 19-year-old English midfielder showed maturity beyond his years to consistently turn out performances befitting of a seasoned pro. 

Bellingham had the joint-most smart passes (42) in Germany and ranked in the top five for through passes (55) and dribbles (190), as well as scoring 8 goals and making 4 assists. A big money move to Real Madrid has been completed and it will be fascinating to see if he can replicate his performances next season in Spain’s capital.

Jamal Musiala, the man who ultimately won the title for Bayern with a trademark strike in the 89th minute, is another of the league’s leading lights despite being only 20. Pacey, incisive and creative, he was one of the few positives in a below-par season for Die Roten and his combined 22 goals and assists was second highest in Germany.

Randal Kolo Muani's player profile from the 2022/23 Bundesliga season.

Perhaps the biggest revelation was French striker Randal Kolo Muani, who had the most direct goal involvements (15 goals and 10 assists) in the league in his debut season with Eintracht Frankfurt. 

Although the defining moment of his season may have been that chance against Argentina, domestically he took the Bundesliga by storm. As well as contributing 26% of Frankfurt’s goals, Kolo Muani topped the league for dribbles (222) and touches in the penalty area (163).

Another of the stories of the Bundesliga came in the form of Union Berlin, who qualified for the Champions League for the first time in their history. Counter-attack specialists, they relied heavily upon their defence and, as a result, goalkeeper Frederik Rønnow makes our XI. His 0.86 goals conceded per 90 was equal with Bayern’s Manuel Neuer but he also prevented the most goals in the league by some distance with 9.5.

Bundesliga U23

The Bundesliga’s reputation as a league with some of the top young talent in Europe holds up, with no less than 5 players making both lists. As well as the aforementioned Bellingham and Musiala, Matthijs de Ligt, Jeremie Frimpong and Dominik Szoboszlai appear in both XIs.

Leverkusen’s Frimpong displayed why he is one of the most forward-thinking right backs in Europe with the most progressive runs (153) in the Bundesliga and second highest key passes (23) for any U23 players in Germany. 

Hungarian midfielder Szoboszlai also impressed with 6 goals and 7 assists for Leipzig and was never afraid to have a shot from range, as shown by his 40 shots from outside the box. His performances attracted the attention of Liverpool, who splashed out to bring him to Merseyside next season.

Youssoufa Moukoko's shot map from Wyscout's Player Reports.

The youngest player in the line-up is 18-year-old Youssoufa Moukoko, who managed 7 goals and 2 assists in just 1237 minutes of football. He averaged 2.47 shots per 90 and had the third highest shot accuracy in the division with 55.88% on target. 

His Dortmund teammate Nico Schlotterbeck also makes the list after a good debut season, scoring 4 goals and ranking in the top three for progressive passes per 90 (12.09) both in the Bundesliga and among all U23 players in Europe’s Top 5 leagues.

One of the lesser known players in the line up is Koln’s Linton Maina. The 23-year-old winger made 6 assists and, of the U23 players in the league, ranked in the top 5 for crosses (91), key passes (22) and progressive runs (84).

Premier League

Manchester City may have won the treble - becoming only the second English side to do so - but only one of their players makes the combined XI.  Perhaps fitting for a side focused so intently on the collective over the individual.

There are no prizes for guessing which player does make the list. Erling Haaland smashed records left, right and center: 36 goals in a single Premier League season, 52 goals in all competitions, first player to score three consecutive hat-tricks in home appearances… The list goes on.

Unsurprisingly, the imperious Norwegian also topped Europe’s Top 5 leagues for direct goal involvements with a total of 44 goals and assists combined. Interestingly though, he is only ninth highest for total shots (119), demonstrating his staggering efficiency in front of goal.

Premier League runners up Arsenal contribute three players to the team. Martin Ødegaard - another Norwegian starring in the Premier League - orchestrated the Gunners attack, contributing 15 goals and 7 assists, while Martinelli also provided another 15 goals and 5 assists.

A comparison of Arsenal's attacking players from the 2022/23 Premier League season using Wyscout's Player List tool.

Newcastle’s excellent defensive record sees the Magpies provide three defence-minded players. Nick Pope’s 0.8 goals conceded per 90 was the best in the league, while Kieran Trippier expected assists of 14.2 (the best in Europe) and 159 crosses were important going forward and in propelling Newcastle towards Champions League football.

There were also individuals who excelled despite their teams not being at their best. Harry Kane’s 30 goals would have been enough to be named top scorer in eight out of the last ten Premier League seasons and was all the more impressive given Tottenham’s eighth place finish.

Similarly, Mohamed Salah still managed 19 goals and 11 assists - third in direct goal involvements in the Premier League - despite Liverpool slipping down to fifth and the Egyptian forward was also top of second assists (8) and had the second most touches in the penalty area (230) in Europe’s Top 5 leagues.

Finally, Ecuadorian attacking left back Pervis Estupiñán makes the team for his role in Brighton’s qualification for European football for the first time in their history.

Premier League U23

As with the overall combined XI, the U23 team also draws heavily from Arsenal and Newcastle. 

In defence, Sven Botman and William Saliba make up the center back pairing after great debut seasons in England. Botman recorded the second highest number of blocks (25) of any U23 player in Europe’s Top 5 leagues, while Saliba’s importance was highlighted by just how much Arsenal missed him as they fell away during the title run-in.

Further forward, Martinelli is joined by teammate Bukayo Saka, who has quickly developed as an integral player for club and country. Saka’s 14 goals and 9 assists means that his direct goal involvements are fourth highest in Europe for U23 players, while he ranks top of the Premier League for dribbles (258) and progressive runs (141).

Morgan Gibbs-White's penalty area deliveries from Wyscout's Player Reports.

Despite battling relegation for most of the season, Nottingham Forest contribute two players to the XI. When looking deeper into the statistics, Morgan Gibbs-White’s inclusion becomes more obvious. 

The Forest talisman ranks highest among U23 players across Europe’s Top 5 leagues for expected assists (9.86) and aerial duels (199), as well as being second for smart passes (46) and fourth for key passes (26).

Elsewhere, Crystal Palace left back Tyrick Mitchell is rewarded for a good season, ranking second highest for defensive duels (313) in both the Premier League and for U23 players across Europe’s Top 5 leagues.

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