, pub-7771400403364887, DIRECT, f08c47fec0942fa0 Who are Erling Haaland's PFA Player of the Year rivals?

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Who are Erling Haaland's PFA Player of the Year rivals?

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The Manchester City striker is the big favourite, but Bukayo Saka, Martin Odegaard and Harry Kane are also contenders. Erling Haaland is the favorite to win the PFA Player of the Year award. The 22-year-old has been an instant hit, scoring 28 Premier League goals this season - more than seven for the division's 20 sides. If he leads Manchester City to the title, he won't miss out.

The Norway international was consistent when getting his chances and his conversion rate of 31.1% was the highest in the league. New signings - especially forwards - can take time to adapt to the Premier League, but Haaland has been outstanding in his first season of English football. If he wins the PFA award, he will become the first player to be recognized by his peers in his first season since Ruud van Nistelrooy won the award in 2001-02. Still, some other players will want to beat Haaland if City don't win the league.

Bukayo Saka
Bukayo Saka is the only player to hit double the goals (12) and assists (10) in the league this season as he moves from Starboy to Starman to help Arsenal win their first league title 19-year-old champion Champions Saka was brilliant last season, scoring 11 goals for Arsenal, but took his game to 4,444 the next. The 21-year-old ranks sixth in the league in key passes (61) and dribbles completed (46). Every Arsenal player can make a difference in their title race, but it will be hard to ignore the England international's Player of the Year award if Mikel Arteta's side stay the course.
Martin Ødegaard
The Arsenal captaincy has been a toxic holy grail in recent years, so when Martin Ødegaard was handed the armband last summer some fans may have feared the worst. Nonetheless, Odegaard was exceptional in midfield, scoring 10 goals to help Arsenal climb to the top of the table.
His six assists are sixth in the league this season, but most of his best performances have come off the ball. Ødegaard has gained more possession in the final third (40) than any other player this season, and when he does he knows exactly what to do with the ball - as evidenced by his 62 key assists, ranked fourth in the league. .

Kevin De Bruyne
Two-time PFA Player of the Year winner Kevin De Bruyne will win for the third time in four years after seeing his treble hopes last year dashed by Mohamed Salah. No one has won the award three times and given De Bruyne's stop-and-go form it's unlikely to be his year.
Yes, he has more assists (12) and assists (78) than anyone else in the division, but he hasn't been more efficient since the World Cup.

Kevin De Bruyne and Erling Haaland.
Kevin De Bruyne and Erling Haaland. Photo: Oli Scarff/AFP/Getty Images

Marcus Rashford
Everything Erik ten Hag said to Marcus Rashford after the World Cup apparently worked. Rashford has 14 league goals this season, fourth in the Golden Boot race. Since the World Cup, no player has scored more goals than Marcus Rashford (10), and his excellent form has lifted United to third place in the table.
Rashford has already medaled this season, scoring in United's 2-0 win over Newcastle in the Carabao Cup final last month, and is still in contention for the FA Cup and Europa League.

Harry Kane
Harry Kane is pretty much in the same position as Rashford. He's an underdog for the price, but he's already broken Tottenham and England goalscoring records this season, so never say never. Kane is Haaland's main opponent for the Golden Boot. He scored 21 goals for Tottenham.

Haaland led by seven goals in this match, but Kane was playing in a team full of uncertainties. Tottenham's season was in danger of coming to an end after Antonio Conte was sacked on Sunday night, but Kane has been consistent in front of goal. If the 29-year-old makes a miraculous recovery, he could also be in the running for the award.

Gabriel Martinelli
Slightly under the radar, Gabriel Martinelli is fifth in the Golden Boot race. The young Brazilian scored 13 league goals this season and ended the season on a high.

If Arsenal win the title, Saka and Odegaard should edge out the 21-year-old in the prize race, but Martinelli cannot be ignored either. It was by far the most productive campaign of his short career. The Brazil international has sorted out his injury problems and played a vital role in the club's title chase.

William Saliba
Attackers often receive individual rewards while defenders can be unfairly overlooked. Yes, Saka, Odegaard and Martinelli are key to Arsenal's attacking third, but their title challenge rests on solid defensive foundations. William Saliba has fitted right into the heart of Arsenal's defense after his loan spell at Marseille last season.

Arsenal have the third-best defensive record in the league, having conceded just 26 goals in 22 games. Saliba quickly adapted to the Premier League, helping his team to the top of the table and staying there. He has won more possessions in the defensive third (112) than any other player in the league, and 91 possessions in the midfield third. He moved into midfield when needed, taking the pressure off Arsenal's goals and putting them on the front foot.

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