9. Jannik Vestergaard (Werder Bremen – Southampton)
The giant centre back might not be the sexiest name on this list, but he’s helped to stabilise a Southampton defence that had struggled dramatically since losing Virgil Van Dijk to Liverpool. The Dane stands 1.99 metres in height and uses every bit of that height to dominate his area.
He averaged 7.2 clearances per game, more than any other defender in the league. Bizarrely he fell out of favour under Mark Hughes but was brought back in when Ralph Hassenhuttl took charge of the Saints. There’s a lot more to come from this Scandinavian Viking.