The 2020-21 edition of the Premier League has had its fair share of surprises as it has come after a very short off-season owing to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Manchester City and Liverpool, the two most dominant teams in the last few seasons of the EPL, have appeared off the pace, as Leicester City have emerged as the surprise league leaders. Both teams, as well as Manchester United, have already suffered big defeats and have conceded too many goals for their liking.
Top five center-backs in the 2020-21 EPL
Generally speaking, defenses have not ruled the roost in the EPL this season. However, the performances of a few center-backs have caught the eyes of fans and experts alike.
On that note, let us have a look at the five best center-backs in the 2020-21 edition of the EPL.
#5 Toby Alderweireld (Tottenham Hotspur)
Toby Alderweireld has been a mainstay of the Tottenham Hotspur defense since arriving at the club in the summer of 2015.
For five seasons, he formed a formidable central defensive partnership with his compatriot Jan Vertonghen at the EPL club. With the departure of Vertonghen in the summer, Alderweireld has stepped up to the plate with aplomb.
In the five appearances Alderweireld has made in the EPL this season, Tottenham have lost only once and kept two clean sheets.
The 31-year-old had a somewhat indifferent campaign last season, scoring two own goals as Spurs missed out on Champions League football. However, Alderweireld has made amends with an improved and confident showing this season barring the home loss to Everton and the 3-3 draw with West Ham.
#4 Thiago Silva (Chelsea)
The arrival of 36-year-old Thiago Silva at Chelsea in the summer raised quite a few eyebrows.
It may be early days, but the veteran Brazilian's performances at the heart of the Chelsea defense have already made his move to the EPL seem like a masterstroke.
Silva had a rough initiation to life in the EPL, as his mistake helped West Ham score one of their three goals on the night in a high-scoring 3-3 draw.
In the aftermath of that game, Lampard talked highly about Silva and expressed hope that the Brazilian would get better with more EPL games under his belt.
"Thiago Silva is going to be fantastic for us. He has been incredible in his career and absolutely, I will not look at him (for his mistake), Other than that, I thought he was pretty faultless in the game. That’s his first Premier League game done and in the bank. We will get a lot more from him as well especially as he gets fitter and as the whole squad get fitter," said Lampard.
Silva has managed to vindicate his manager's trust in him. The Brazilian's reassuring presence has contributed to Chelsea's new-found defensive resilience, with the club only conceding once in four EPL games in which Silva played. He has also notched up his first goal in the competition during this period.