5 Best Premier League players outside the top six
Of the 13 players who scored more than 12 Premier League goals this season, only four of them belong to teams outside of the established "Big Six".
It's a sobering stat for those who claim that England's top-flight is the most competitive in Europe, but it's also slightly misleading. For the most part, strikers are only as good as the quality of their service. That's why renowned poacher Javier Hernandez flourished at the Theatre of Dreams several years ago but has thus far struggled to set the division alight at the much weaker West Ham.
A better way to take the temperature of the Premier League's supposed competitiveness is to ask how many players at clubs seven to 20 would stand a chance of getting a game for the big boys.
A couple of decades ago, you would have struggled to come up with even one name from the bottom half of the table capable of playing regularly for Manchester United, but today the situation is slightly improved. While the Red Devils are much more likely to look abroad for their next superstar signing than they are to go shopping in Watford or Burnley, there are at least a handful of so-called lesser lights who could do a decent job at Old Trafford.
Here are five who fit the bill.
#5 Pascal Groß
If not for Mo Salah, Brighton's Pascal Groß would have been the unanimous choice for this year's signing of the season. The former Ingolstadt all-rounder only cost the club £3m last summer and has already repaid most of it with an impressive eight assists in his 38 Premier League outings to date.
It's not just teeing up his teammates that the German is good at either. He found the net on seven occasions himself, including vital winning goals against West Brom, Watford and Manchester United, without which the Seagulls may not have secured their precious top-flight status for another season.
To cap off his brilliant debut year in English football, Groß was voted his side's Player of the Year at their end-of-year awards ceremony, underlining the positive impression he has made both in the Amex dressing room and among fans who follow their side home and away.