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Ranking the five best strikers in the Premier League right now

Ranking the best strikers in the Premier League right now was a difficult task, with English football home to some great – and very different – goalscorers.

Scoring goals is often described as the hardest task in football and that’s the reason number nines usually command the premium price tags when the transfer window rolls around. Forget your false nines and the rest, our list contains out-and-out forwards in the traditional sense.

Here, we’ve ranked the best strikers in the Premier League right now.

5. Ivan Toney – Brentford

Ivan Toney’s return to Brentford has boosted the club’s survival hopes with the Bees talisman having made an instant impact after eight months out. The 27-year-old has scored three goals in four Premier League games since his suspension ended, swelling his total to 35 in 70 games since Brentford’s promotion – the gold-standard one-in-two ratio in the top division.

Toney’s focus will be on finishing the season strongly in west London, where a strong run-in could see him make the England squad for this summer’s European Championship. Excellent in the air and clinical around the box, no centre-forward in the division won more aerial duels than Toney last season, who is a brilliant outlet for Brentford’s direct style.

Far more than a target man, however, he is equally comfortable dropping deeper and a move to one of the Premier League’s top teams appears inevitable in the summer, when he will have 12 months remaining on his deal. Having handled each step in his career, from League One to the Premier League, effortlessly to date, Toney has the ability to take another.

4. Alexander Isak – Newcastle

Frustrating fitness problems are perhaps all that has prevented Alexander Isak from featuring higher on this list. The Swedish striker has been sublime on occasion for Newcastle over the last 18 months, justifying the ยฃ63m club-record fee it took to sign him from Real Sociedad.

There’s an admirable arrogance to the coolness of Isak’s finishing around the area, while he combines an almost unique blend of tall frame, nimble footwork in tight areas, and pure pace. Isak’s assist in last season’s win at Everton was an example of his quality, as he twisted and turned a route through the Toffees before squaring for Jacob Murphy to tap in at the back post.

The 24-year-old has scored 20 goals in 31 league starts for Newcastle, averaging a goal in the Premier League every 135 minutes. That’s a better return than Luis Suarez (139 minutes) and Robin van Persie (140 minutes) in English football.

If Isak can put his injury issues behind him, he has the potential to become an elite forward at St James’ Park.

3. Darwin Nunez – Liverpool

Darwin Nunez can be a frustrating watch for Liverpool fans, but what is indisputable is the threat he poses to Premier League defences. The Uruguayan has earned the nickname Captain Chaos at Anfield, a nod to his ability to unsettle defences with occasionally profligate finishing.

Nunez, in essence, is a paradox. Yes, he’s a centre-forward who can be wasteful, but he also makes Liverpool a better team and returns good statistical output. The 24-year-old has 12 goals and 11 assists in all competitions this season, numbers which should have swelled with a little refinement. He’s hit the woodwork nine times this season – three times more than the next-highest player in the Premier League – including a record-breaking four times in one game against Chelsea.

Nunez is an enigma, raw, rash and remarkable all at once. You might not put your house on him scoring one against one, but he makes a boat-load of chances for himself with good movement and sheer persistence. There’s no defender in the division who enjoys an easy afternoon when he’s around. Make of that what you will.

2. Ollie Watkins – Aston Villa

Ollie Watkins has elevated his game to a new level this season, firing Aston Villa’s unexpected challenge for Champions League football.

Watkins has long been a reliable option at centre-forward for The Villans, but has evolved into one of the most complete centre-forward packages in the division under Unai Emery. The 28-year-old is a physical handful who combine selfless hard work with intelligent awareness in the final third, while his finishing has improved across the last 18 months.

Watkins has 16 goals in all competitions this season and a further 10 assists. No player in the Premier League has provided more goals than Watkins this season, with his performances having placed him front of the queue for a place in the England squad this summer.

1. Erling Haaland – Manchester City

In a league of his own, Erling Haaland is the Premier League’s finest goal-getter.

Haaland’s has joined an elite bracket of footballers whose absurd numbers have become routine. Some have suggested he has not quite recaptured the heights of last season to date, despite a league-leading return of 16 goals in 18 games in the Premier League.

He’s now scored 52 times in 53 appearances in England’s top tier, while he’s averaging better than a goal-per-game (40 in 36) in the Champions League.

Scary stuff.

Read –ย Ranking the five best strikers in the world right now

See more –ย Remembering every Premier League Golden Boot winner from the Noughties

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