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Standout performers in the 2022/23 Champions League

08 Jun Standout performers in the 2022/23 Champions League

As we edge ever closer to the 2023 Champions League final, where maiden title hunters Manchester City will face three-time European Champions Inter Milan at the Ataturk Olympic Stadium in Istanbul on June 10, now is a good time to take stock of some of the top performers in this year’s edition of the continent’s most prestigious club competition.

Andre Onana – Inter Milan

It is not often that goalkeepers get the recognition they deserve, so it seems only fair to shine the spotlight on Andre Onana for the role he has played in Inter Milan reaching their first Champions League final since they beat Bayern Munich under Jose Mourinho in 2010.

The 27-year-old has been the leading shot-stopper in the competition this season, making the most saves (45), conceding the least goals (10) and keeping the most clean sheets (8) in his 12 appearances to date.

If Inter are to upset the Champions League winner odds and stun Manchester City in Turkey, they are going to need Onanato be just as solid between the sticks as he has been thus far.

Erling Haaland – Manchester City

While Onana’s form has been fantastic, he’s unlikely to pip Man City’s goal machine Erling Haaland to the Champions League Best Player accolade. Some pundits and fans had reservations when the Norwegian signed for the Sky Blues from Borussia Dortmund last summer, but the 22-year-old has been at his goalscoring best all season.

Haaland leads the race for the Champions League golden boot and is guaranteed to win the award as he goes into the final with 12 goals in his 10 games to date. Five of those goals came in the 7-0 win over RB Leipzig in the second leg of the round of 16, while he also managed to find the back of the net in both outings against Bayern Munich in the quarter-finals.

Real Madrid found the formula to keeping Haaland at bay in the semi-finals as he failed to score across the course of the 180 minutes, but it didn’t prove decisive as Man City still won 4-1 on aggregate. Unfortunately for Inter, Pep Guardiola’s men are not a one-trick pony.

Vinicius Junior – Real Madrid

A player who made the difference in last year’s showpiece match, scoring the winning goal in the final against Liverpool, we won’t be seeing Vinicius Junior’s flare and skill in Turkey but that’s not to say he hasn’t had another fantastic campaign in the Champions League.

The Brazilian scored seven goals and assisted seven in 12 appearances for Los Blancos. He went on a particularly impressive run of form during the knockouts, scoring twice and assisting once in the 5-2 win over Liverpool before setting up another in the last 16 second leg against the Reds, assisting in both games against Chelsea in the quarters as well as a fantastic strike vs City in the semi-finals.

Man City playmaker Kevin De Bruyne also deserves a shoutout after registering seven assists in nine games for the finalists, while Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah looks set to finish second in the top scorers’ chart with eight goals in as many games. Paris Saint-Germain star Kylian Mbappe also managed an impressive seven goals in eight outings.