Manchester City’s Kevin De Bruyne recently became the fastest player in Premier League history to reach 50 Premier League assists, and with five already to his name this season the Belgian looks primed for another productive campaign.
De Bruyne’s highest tally was 18 in the 2016/17 season, but where does that stack up against the all-time best creative talents throughout Premier League history?
Here are the five players with the most assists in a single Premier League season:
Cesc Fabregas – 18 assists (2014/15)
The second-highest assist provider in Premier League history, Cesc Fabregas certainly knows how to play a killer pass.
Under the guidance of Jose Mourinho, the Spanish midfield star was the creative hub of the Chelsea side, creating chances for the likes of Eden Hazard and Diego Costa as Mourinho secured a third Premier League title in his second spell at Stamford Bridge.
Fabregas would play a crucial role as Chelsea finished eight points clear of nearest challengers Manchester City, laying on 18 assists for his grateful teammates.
Kevin De Bruyne – 18 assists (2016/17)
Arguably the best creative talent in the Premier League right now, De Bruyne has been a regular provider of goals since returning to the English top flight for a second spell in 2015.
Having failed to establish himself at Chelsea, the Belgian flourished in German football before moving to Manchester City in a £55m deal four years ago.
At the Etihad, De Bruyne has been a dream teammate for the City forwards, his vision and passing range creating countless opportunities for the club’s forward line.
His most productive season to date came in 2016/17, the midfielder providing 18 assists in a fine personal campaign.
Frank Lampard – 18 assists (2004/05)
The Chelsea midfielder would have an inspired season in 2004/05, helping the Blues to secure a first league title in 50 years in Jose Mourinho’s first season in charge.
Lampard’s goalscoring exploits and double at Bolton to secure the title are well remembered, but his contribution extended much beyond that including notching a then record 18 assists as Chelsea marched to the title.
It was one of three seasons in which Lampard led the league for assists during his career, whilst his performances also saw him crowned FWA Footballer of the Year and finish runner-up to Ronaldinho for the Ballon d’Or.
Mesut Ozil – 19 assists (2015/16)
The Arsenal playmaker can often be a frustrating figure, but his creative talents are up there with the very best in world football.
Cristiano Ronaldo was reportedly left angered by Ozil’s move to Arsenal, such had been the German’s influence in providing for the Portuguese superstar at Real Madrid.
Blessed with control, vision and movement, Ozil’s best performances in North London came in the 2015/16 season, where he created 19 goals for his teammates to be named as the club’s Player of the Season.
Ozil’s tally also meant he had now led the league for assists in the top flights of Germany (2009/10), Spain (2011/12) and England (2015/16), the only player in history to achieve the feat.
Thierry Henry – 20 assists (2002/03)
Not only one of the Premier League’s greatest goalscorers, but also a prolific provider, Arsenal icon Thierry Henry is regarded by many as the Premier League’s best-ever player.
The only player in the league’s history to score and assist 20+ goals in the same season, Henry’s 2002/03 campaign was memorable and his performances saw him claim the first of successive PFA Player’s Player and FWA Footballer of the Year doubles.
Unplayable at his very best, Henry’s most productive season statistically in an Arsenal shirt came a year before their famed ‘Invincible’ season, the French forward being involved in a remarkable 44 goals in 2002/03 as Arsene Wenger’s side finished runners-up to Manchester United.
17 years on from his achievement, his record is yet to be broken.