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Ranking the top 10 Premier League players in each position

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With the new Premier League season upon us, it’s time to look forward to the superstars in action in 2016-17.

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Below is a ranking of the top 10 players in each position on the pitch ahead of the new campaign.

[ MORE: Best XI’s for PL teams ]

Agree? Disagree (most likely)? Hit us up in the comments section below to discuss the picks.


Goalkeepers

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - MARCH 02: David De Gea of Manchester United celebrates the opening goal scored by Juan Mata (not pictured) during the Barclays Premier League match between Manchester United and Watford at Old Trafford on March 2, 2016 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)
(Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)
  1. David De Gea
  2. Petr Cech
  3. Hugo Lloris
  4. Joe Hart
  5. Thibaut Courtois
  6. Jack Butland
  7. Fraser Forster
  8. Kasper Schmeichel
  9. Adrian
  10. Tom Heaton

Right backs

LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 24: Hector Bellerin of Arsenal leaps to control the ball during the Barclays Premier League match between Arsenal and Chelsea at Emirates Stadium on January 24, 2016 in London, England. (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)
(Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)
  1. Hector Bellerin
  2. Nathaniel Clyne
  3. Kyle Walker
  4. Danny Simpson
  5. Antonio Valencia
  6. Seamus Coleman
  7. Michail Antonio
  8. Branislav Ivanovic
  9. Cedric
  10. Joel Ward

Center backs

LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 26: Toby Alderweireld of Tottenham Hotspur celebrates scoring his team's second goal during the Barclays Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at White Hart Lane on September 26, 2015 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
(Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
  1. Toby Alderweireld
  2. Virgil van Dijk
  3. Wes Morgan
  4. Jan Vertonghen
  5. Laurent Koscielny
  6. John Terry
  7. Eric Bailly
  8. Vincent Kompany
  9. John Stones
  10. Jose Fonte

Left backs

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 27: Luke Shaw of Manchester United in action during the Barclays Premier League match between Manchester United and West Ham United at Old Trafford on September 27, 2014 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)
(Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)
  1. Luke Shaw
  2. Danny Rose
  3. Ryan Bertrand
  4. Aaron Cresswell
  5. Nacho Monreal
  6. Christian Fuchs
  7. Charlie Daniels
  8. Patrick van Aanholt
  9. Aleksandar Kolarov
  10. Cesar Azpilicueta

Central midfielders

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - AUGUST 05: Paul Pogba of Manchester United looks on during Paul Scholes' Testimonial Match between Manchester United and New York Cosmos at Old Trafford on August 5, 2011 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Chris Brunskill/Getty Images)
(Photo by Chris Brunskill/Getty Images)
  1. Paul Pogba
  2. N'Golo Kante
  3. Eric Dier
  4. Mousa Dembele
  5. Ilkay Gundogan
  6. Aaron Ramsey
  7. Fernandinho
  8. Granit Xhaka
  9. Danny Drinkwater
  10. Cheikhou Kouyate

Wingers

Kevin De Bruyne, Manchester City FC
Kevin De Bruyne, Manchester City FC
  1. Kevin De Bruyne
  2. Alexis Sanchez
  3. Riyad Mahrez
  4. Anthony Martial
  5. Eden Hazard
  6. Sadio Mane
  7. Willian
  8. Leroy Sane
  9. Michail Antonio
  10. Andros Townsend

Attacking midfielders/Playmakers

Mesut Ozil, Arsenal FC
Mesut Ozil, Arsenal FC
  1. Mesut Ozil
  2. Dele Alli
  3. Dimitri Payet
  4. Henrikh Mkhitaryan
  5. David Silva
  6. Philippe Coutinho
  7. Gylfi Sigurdsson
  8. Christian Eriksen
  9. Roberto Firmino
  10. Dusan Tadic

Strikers

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - JANUARY 16: Sergio Aguero of Manchester City celebrates after scoring his team's second goal during the Barclays Premier League match between Manchester City and Crystal Palace at Etihad Stadium on January 16, 2016 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)
(Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)
  1. Sergio Aguero
  2. Harry Kane
  3. Jamie Vardy
  4. Zlatan Ibrahimovic
  5. Romelu Lukaku
  6. Daniel Sturridge
  7. Diego Costa
  8. Shane Long
  9. Odion Ighalo
  10. Jermain Defoe

Red-hot Rebić scores again as AC Milan tops Torino

AC Milan
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MILAN (AP) Ante Rebić kept up his scoring form to lead AC Milan to a 1-0 win over struggling Torino in Serie A on Monday.

The Croatia international beat his marker to redirect a cross from the center of the area midway through the first half at the San Siro.

The score raised Rebić’s tally to six goals and an assist in eight matches since he earned his starting spot – a move that coincided with Zlatan Ibrahimović’s return to the Rossoneri.

[ MORE: Premier League schedule ] 

Bouncing back from a derby loss, Milan moved up to eighth and just beyond the Europa League places. The seven-time European champion is hoping to return to continental competition after voluntary withdrawing from this season’s Europa League to pay for UEFA financial fair play breaches.

Torino, meanwhile, lost its fifth straight, with new coach Moreno Longo still unable to turn things around in his second match in charge.

Ibrahimović narrowly missed a curling shot shortly after the break.

More AP soccer: https://apnews.com/Soccer and https://twitter.com/AP-Sports

Simeone: Liverpool intensity “makes me admire it as a rival”

UEFA Champions League
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The UEFA Champions League returns at long last on Tuesday, and two of the greatest managers in the game will match wits for the first time.

No we’re not talking about Lucien Favre and Thomas Tuchel, the meeting of the minds in Tuesday’s other kickoff between Borussia Dortmund and Paris Saint-Germain in Germany.

[ MORE: Premier League schedule ] 

Liverpool’s Jurgen Klopp will go head-to-head with Atletico Madrid’s Diego Simeone in Spain, and the fiery German thinks it will be “absolutely interesting.”

From The Liverpool Echo:

“People say I emotional on the sideline,” Klopp said. “I am only on level 4, Diego is level 12. Really I am the kindergarten cop against him. He is so impressive after all these years, after so many years at the club – eight years. That is really long and having still this emotional level, still, wow. So impressive. I say, his teams are always organized world class.”

The admiration is mutual.

Simeone expects a huge challenge from a Liverpool team he regards on a historic plane.

“We are facing a magnificent team, really well-trained by a coach who is different and has different alternatives in his team,” he said, via The Independent. “We have always spoken about great teams throughout time and I have no doubt this Liverpool is going to go down in history as a great team because it is different to teams that we have admired. This team is much more intense, more adaptable, and it makes me admire it as a rival.”

The bettors say Liverpool is the heavy favorite in the first leg despite the match’s location at the Wanda Metropolitano. With football geniuses like Klopp and Simeone, however, either could have a plan to throw the other for a loop.

CONCACAF Champions League preview: Five MLS sides eye history

CONCACAF Champions League preview
Photo by Alfredo Lopez/Jam Media/Getty Images
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Once the Premier League and La Liga had taken their final bows of the day on Saturday, there felt was a particular absence, one soon-to-be filled by domestic soccer.

Yes, MLS is coming soon, and the CONCACAF Champions League is even closer.

[ MORE: Premier League schedule ] 

Five MLS sides begin their Round of 16 ties over the next three evenings, some with easier paths than others to elusive CCL glory.

The competition may not have burned itself onto the mainstream, lagging behind continental competitions in Europe and South America, but those who’ve embraced it (hint: this guy) love the thing.

For all the progress Major League Soccer has made in its quarter-century, it’s yet to find much success in dealing with Liga MX powers in the fight to qualify for the Club World Cup.

MLS sides have not won the competition since it was rebranded the CCL. Only three MLS sides have made the CCL final this decade, with Real Salt Lake (2011), Montreal Impact (2015), and Toronto FC (2017) all coming up short at the last step.

The CCL provides everything you love and hate about World Cup qualifying, and those dicey pitches with sometimes worse lighting mean the favorites aren’t guaranteed much.

The top half of the bracket sees three MLS teams — Montreal, Seattle, and NYCFC — and just one Liga MX side, while the bottom half gives us a Liga MX v. MLS match-up straight away.

That’s Leon v. LAFC, and it begins Tuesday night in Mexico. That tie carries the added intrigue of MLS superstar Carlos Vela bringing his act back to his home country for the first time… ever.

Bracket

Saprissa (Costa Rica) v. Montreal — 8 p.m. ET Weds.
Olimpia (Honduras) v. Seattle — 10 p.m. ET Thurs.

San Carlos (Costa Rica) v. NYCFC — 8 p.m. ET Thurs.
Alianza (El Salvador) v. UANL Tigres — 8 p.m. ET Weds.

Leon v. LAFC — 10 p.m. ET Tues.
Portmore United (Jamaica) v. Cruz Azul — 8 p.m. ET Tues.

Comunicaciones (Guatemala) v. Club America — 10 p.m. ET Weds.
Montagua (Honduras) v. Atlanta United — 10 p.m. ET Tues.

The 2 Robbies podcast: VAR carnage at Stamford Bridge

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Robbie Mustoe and Robbie Earle dissect a crazy game at Stamford Bridge that saw Chelsea on the wrong side of several VAR decisions (00:45).

The gents also recap the big moments from the weekend; Liverpool beat Norwich (18:30), Son’s late winner against Aston Villa (24:45) and Arteta‘s attackers thrash Newcastle United (30:15).

[ MORE: Premier League schedule ] 

To listen to more lively conversations and passionate debate from Robbie Earle and Robbie Mustoe, subscribe to The 2 Robbies Podcast on Apple Podcasts or anywhere you listen to podcasts.

And you can follow them on Twitter @The2RobbiesNBC here.

Click here for The 2 Robbies archive ]