The right-back position is one that, along with the role of wide defenders as a whole, has evolved drastically in recent years. This has meant that the best right-backs get plenty of attention, that their transfers command big fees, and that fantasy football managers know first-hand their importance.
The world of the full-back is as competitive as it has ever been. Even so, some names just jump out when mentioning the best right-backs in the world.
With help from data, stats, and FootballCoin contest results, we have turned our attention to the Premier League, the world’s premier domestic football competition. Today, we are analyzing the performances of the best EPL right-backs in 2023.
The Best Premier League Right-backs in 2023
Kenny Tete (Fulham)
Kenny Tete has proven a wise transfer move by Fulham. Clubs of this level know that they must get their scouting and business deals just right if they are to reap the benefits that their wealthier counterparts can get more easily.
Tete had already made a name for himself playing for Ajax Amsterdam and Lyon. The decision to move to Fulham, a team that at the time was still playing in the Championship, may have seemed a strange one. But this has allowed the Dutchman to thrive as one of the club’s most important players.
And while an injury blow has sidelined Kenny Tete since September, his performances have not gone unnoticed. He is one of the Premier League’s best right-backs in our books.
Diego Dalot (Manchester United)
Diego Dalot’s time in England looked bound to be a short one, judging by his early performances. While he was, not long ago, a player that Manchester United was looking to move on, Dalot has stepped up into the role of right-back and, to many analysts’ surprise, became one of the best in the EPL.
It bears mentioning that Dalot was signed from Porto while playing as a right-sided midfielder or that loan spells away from the club didn’t yield great results. Still, in 2023, there were few better right-backs in the Premier League. And, certainly, there were very few Man. Utd. players who did not disappoint atrociously.
Trent Alexander Arnold (Liverpool)
Trent Alexander Arnold never received as much criticism as he did in 2023. At the same time, TAA’s 2023 stats, in fantasy football and elsewhere, are nearly just as good as the ones he has registered through a short but stellar career.
No, Alexander-Arnold is not the best defender in the world. What he is, however, is the best representation of what a right wing-back must do.
And, while manager Jurgen Klopp has occasionally opted to play TAA in a defensive midfielder role, the point still stands. Yes, he has provided fewer assists than he once did, but he remains a great player.
Pedro Porro (Tottenham)
Pedro Porro has used his short spell in the EPL to confirm what scouts and Football Manager enthusiasts already knew – the Spaniard is immensely talented. His level of maturity and desire to win, however, couldn’t have been guessed.
The former Sporting Lisbon player has been in incredible form this season. He is one of the top right-backs for total shots or expected assists. And with Porro as a starting player, Spurs have even found themselves in the position of challenging for the title. The right-back has had an instant effect.
Kieran Trippier (Newcastle)
Kieran Trippier has been the best right-back in the Premier League in 2023, and there can be little debate about this fact. While Trippier‘s return to England, following a successful stint playing for Atletico Madrid, was surprising to some, it meant that Trippier was able to step into the role of leader at Newcastle and earn back a spot in the England national team.
What makes Kieran Trippier such an important player to the nouveau-rich Newcastle United? The wing-back leads the charts when it comes to assists and short-creating actions by a defender. He is also a masterful passer, a great freekick taker and a responsible leader. With Trippier acting as Eddie Howe’s general, Newcastle have one of the best teams that they’ve managed to assemble in decades.