Premier League all-time assists list

From Cesc Fabregas and David Beckham to Thierry Henry and Kevin De Bruyne: these are the players with the most assists in the Premier League era.

Published: 3 August 2022 - 3.30pm

In an era when Fantasy Football points are worth their weight in gold, assists have taken on new and unprecedented importance - and the Premier League has seen its fair share of selfless providers.

From set-piece specialists like David Beckham and Christian Eriksen, to fleet-footed pass masters like David Silva and Cesc Fabregas, we've been blessed with some of the greatest playmakers the game has to offer on our shores in recent years.

Read on for a full list of the players with the most assists in Premier League history.

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32. Damien Duff (55 assists)

Clubs: Blackburn, Chelsea, Newcastle & Fulham

A two-time Premier League champion who represented his country 100 times, Duff is the only Irishman on our list. 

He made his name at Blackburn Rovers, where he caught the eye as a nippy, old-fashioned winger during seven years at Ewood Park, which included winning the League Cup in 2001/02. 

Duff top-scored for Rovers the following campaign, earning him a move to Chelsea.

"Duffer" would go on to win two Premier League titles under Jose Mourinho as one half of a potent wing duo with Dutchman Arjen Robben.

After a difficult three-year spell at Newcastle that included scoring an own-goal to ultimately relegate the Magpies in 2009, Duff moved to Chelsea's west London neighbours Fulham, with his first season at the club coinciding with the Whites' run to the Europa League final. 

The Irishman spent four more seasons on the banks of the Thames, leaving for Melbourne City in the summer of 2014. 

32. Steed Malbranque (55 assists)

Clubs: Fulham, Tottenham & Sunderland

Malbranque made his name at Fulham as a record signing, arriving as a highly-rated France Under-21 international.

At Craven Cottage he quickly earned a reputation as a phenomenally hard-working player, linking up with the likes of Luis Boa Morte, Louis Saha and Brian McBride as Premier League new-boys Fulham took the division by storm.

His performances earned him a cross-city move to London rivals Spurs, where he would win the League Cup in 2008 - still Tottenham's only piece of silverware this millenium.

Malbranque's first season at Sunderland proved his most fruitful for Premier League assists however, setting up eight goals to help the Black Cats avoid the drop in 2008/09.

32. Danny Murphy (55 assists)

Clubs: Liverpool, Charlton, Tottenham & Fulham

Often overshadowed by Steven Gerrard, Murphy played an integral role in Liverpool's treble-winning side from 2001.

Murphy went on to have a stints at Charlton and Tottenham before finding a home at Craven Cottage.

The midfield technician pulled the strings as captain for Roy Hodgson's side in a golden period for the west Londoners, capped off by an appearance in the Europa League final.

32. Kevin Davies (55 assists)

Clubs: Southampton, Blackburn & Bolton

Over a 22-year playing career in which he represented six different clubs, Davies made over 800 first-team appearances, scoring 151 goals and notching up over 50 Premier League assists.

A no-nonsense old-fashioned centre-forward, he once held the Premier League record for fouls committed, although he also remains one of the most fouled.

Industrious and physical, the majority of his assists came in the form of knockdowns under Sam Allardyce's stewardship at long-ball merchants Bolton.

Allardyce's time at the helm saw the Trotters qualify for the UEFA Cup on two occasions, reaching the knockout phase both times, with Davies' only goal during those campaigns coming at the Allianz Arena against Bayern Munich.

32. Paul Scholes (55 assists)

Clubs: Man Utd

If Roy Keane was the brawn in Manchester United's midfield during their domination of the Premier League in the 1990s, then Paul Scholes was the brains.

A member of the Premier League 100-goal club, Scholes' most productive season for assists (seven) came in United's treble-winning campaign in 1998/99.

His eye for the killer pass helped United to 11 Premier League titles during his 20-year stay at his boyhood club.

32. Didier Drogba (55 assists)

Clubs: Chelsea

Drogba first joined the Blues in 2004 from Marseille for £24m and spent eight years at the club before leaving to join Chinese Super League side Shanghai Shenhua in 2012.

He returned to Chelsea in 2014, which proved to be his swansong season in the Premier League.

More renowned for his pace, hold up play and lethal finishing than his creativity, Drogba still notched up over half-century of assists in his time at Chelsea.

His two most productive campaigns came in 2005/06 and 2010/11, twice laying on 15 assists in title winning-campaigns for Chelsea.

Only six players in Premier League history have laid on more assists in a single season.

26. Eric Cantona (56 assists)

Clubs: Leeds & Man Utd

One of the original icons of the Premier League era.

King Eric first showcased his talent in England with Leeds before crossing the Pennines to help end Manchester United's 26-year wait for a top-flight title as the Red Devils became inaugral Premier League champions by a 10-point margin. 

The talismanic Frenchman would inspire United to win three of the next four titles before stunning English football by announcing his retirement at the age of 30. 

26. Raheem Sterling (56 assists)

Clubs: Liverpool & Man City

Almost a Premier League champion aged 19, Sterling was a key member of Liverpool's frontline as they went agonisingly close to a first title in 2013/14.

Eyebrows were raised when Man City shelled out £50m for him , but it has since proved one of the best signings of the Premier League era.

Sterling repaid his fee and them some, honing his craft under the tutelage of Pep Guardiola to help City win consecutive Premier League titles on two occasions - in 2017/18 and 2018/19 and 2020/21 and 2021/22 - before the Londoner opted to return home this summer by joining Chelsea. 

24. Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink (58 assists)

Clubs: Leeds, Chelsea, Middlesbrough & Charlton

Mr Master Blaster himself.

The Dutchman boasted one of the hardest shots in the history of Premier League football, but he was also capable of subtlety. 

Along with a haul of 18 goals in the 1998/99 campaign, Hasselbaink laid on 11 assists in an unforgettable final season as a Leeds player.

24. Peter Crouch (58 assists)

Clubs: Aston Villa, Southampton, Liverpool, Portsmouth, Tottenham, Stoke & Burnley

The second BT Sport pundit to make our list, Crouch surpassed pass-master Paul Scholes for Premier League assists during his spell at Stoke. 

The 6'7'' giant nodded and flicked his way to 58 assists thanks to his unique aerial ability, laying it on a plate for an array of grateful smaller strike partners including Kevin Phillips, Robbie Fowler, Jermaine Defoe and Fernando Torres.

His most productive campaign for assists came in 2010/11 with nine under Harry Redknapp at White Hart Lane. 

22. Steve McManaman (59 assists)

Clubs: Liverpool & Man City

Rarely is a team's best player also its most hardworking, but Steve McManaman was the exception.

So much of Liverpool's attack went through him in the late 90s, while his mazy runs never failed to get the Anfield faithful off their seats.

The winger epitomised everything positive about Liverpool during his spell at Anfield with his flair and determination.

22. Stewart Downing (59 assists)

Clubs: Middlesbrough, Aston Villa, Liverpool & West Ham

An out-and-out left-winger in the traditional sense, Downing narrowly misses out on our top 20.

Twenty-five of his 59 Premier League assists came during two spells at his boyhood club Middlesbrough, who he helped to the 2005/06 UEFA Cup final. 

His most productive campaign came in 2010/11 as nine assists helped Aston Villa to a ninth-placed finish and earned Downing a £30m move to Kenny Dalglish's Liverpool. 

The England international failed to settle at Anfield however, eventually returning to Middlesbrough after two seasons with West Ham before hanging up his boots in 2021 after a stint at Blackburn Rovers. 

20. Nolberto Solano (62 assists)

Clubs: Newcastle, Aston Villa & West Ham

Only a handful of Peruvians have ever played in the Premier League, and the first was undoubtedly the best.

Whereas the others had brief and largely forgettable stays, Nolberto Solano spent a decade at the top level with Newcastle United, Aston Villa and West Ham United, becoming a cult hero in the process.

In his most successful campaign Solano produced 14 assists in the 1999/00 season as Newcastle finished 11th, despite 23 goals from the boot of Alan Shearer.

19. Matt Le Tissier (63 assists)

Clubs: Southampton

A true Premier League cult hero, no player came closer to being a one-man team than Matt Le Tissier in the 90s.

So often Southampton's hero and saviour, Le Tissier's goals and assists helped the Saints stay afloat in more than one relegation battle.

In the 1993/94 campaign, the Jersey-born playmaker scored 25 times and assisted another 10, meaning he was directly involved in 71 per cent of Southampton's total goals as they avoided the drop.

The following season he notched 19 and assisted another 15 to underline his status as a Southampton great.

18. Alan Shearer (64 assists)

Clubs: Southampton, Blackburn & Newcastle

Alan Shearer may be synonymous with goal-getting, but the Newcastle-born marksman was just as effective in creating them. 

It's well known that Shearer won the Golden Boot in Blackburn's title-winning season in 1994/95, but his tally of 13 assists was also the third-most in the league that season, only behind Le Tissier and Darren Anderton.

Shearer is still the undisputed king when it comes to Premier League goals with 260, but he also created a fair few for his team-mates down the years.

18. Gareth Barry (64 assists)

Clubs: Aston Villa, Man City, Everton & West Brom

The record-holder for the most Premier League appearances of all time, Gareth Barry is also in the top 20 for assists. 

Barry finished his career as a deep-lying midfield enforcer, but he made his name as a cultured left-back for Aston Villa.

His most fruitful campaign would come in 2007/08 under manager Martin O'Neill, laying on 10 assists in a single season to help Villa to a sixth-placed finish from the heart of midfield.

16. Christian Eriksen (66 assists)

Clubs: Spurs & Brentford

Eriksen is back in the Premier League having made a miraculous recovery from a cardiac arrest a year ago. 

Joining Spurs from Ajax in 2013, Eriksen showcased his creative flair from the off, earning Tottenham's Player of the Season award in his debut year for the club.

Named in the PFA Team of the Year for the first time in 2017/18, the following season would see Eriksen become only second player after David Beckham to record 10 or more assists in four consecutive Premier League seasons.

The Dane made an immediate impact for newly-promoted Brentford last season, earning him a fairytale move to Manchester United earlier this summer.

15. Darren Anderton (69 assists)

Clubs: Tottenham & Birmingham

Darren Anderton picked up the unfortunate nickname "Sick Note" during an injury-plagued Premier League career, but that should not overshadow his output on the pitch. 

Despite injuries hindering his minutes, Anderton still managed to chalk up 318 Premier League appearances in his 12 years at Spurs, winning the League Cup with them in 1999.

He was also a key member of the England national side in the mid-to-late 90s and made 30 appearances, scoring seven goals.

14. Ashley Young (71 assists)

Clubs: Watford, Aston Villa & Man Utd

The 35-year-old winger-turned-defender has racked up assists aplenty in Premier League appearances for Watford, Villa and Manchester United, where he won the title in 2012/13.

Young is also Aston Villa's most successful Premier League provider in their history across two spells with the Midlands club.

He is the oldest Englishman to assist in three consecutive matches, breaking Chris Waddle’s record from 1997.

13. Andrew Cole (73 assists)

Clubs: Newcastle, Man Utd, Blackburn, Fulham, Man City, Portsmouth & Sunderland

In the forgotten era of strike partnerships, few compare to the chemistry between Andrew Cole and Dwight Yorke. 

The duo forged one of the most lethal double acts in Premier League history, dovetailing to devastating effect as Manchester United made history by completing a remarkable treble in 1998/99 with Yorke and Cole at the forefront. 

Cole would add to his assist tally at Blackburn, Fulham, Manchester City and Portsmouth before drawing the curtain on his top-flight career at Sunderland, but his haul of 73 will always be synonymous with his time at Old Trafford.

12. Thierry Henry (74 assists)

Clubs: Arsenal

"To me, the most beautiful thing is making the pass when you are in a position to score," Henry once said, and it was that mindset that made him impossible to defend.

In a time before most people bothered to check who had set up a goal, Henry finished the 2002/03 with a record 20 assists that still stands to this day. 

Kevin De Bruyne managed to match the feat in 2019/20, but nobody has surpassed one of the league's leading marksmen for assists in a single campaign.

"None of the greatest goalscorers can compare with his assist record," Arsene Wenger once said, and that might always hold true.

11. Teddy Sheringham (76 assists)

Clubs: Nottingham Forest, Tottenham, Man Utd, Portsmouth & West Ham

Sheringham is renowned as one of the finest deep-lying centre-forwards of modern times. 

In a remarkable professional career spanning almost 25 years, Sheringham played Premier League football for five different clubs, with a trophy-laden period at Manchester United sandwiched between two spells at Tottenham. 

His best years were spent at Old Trafford, where he was part of the treble-winning side of 1998/99, before winning the PFA Player of the Year award in 2001. 

10. David Beckham (80 assists)

Clubs: Man Utd

The Class of 92 hero made his Premier League debut against Leeds back in April 1995. 

A winger without searing pace or trickery, he did however possess a wand of a right foot that he worked hard to improve year on year.

That single-minded dedication to his craft saw Beckham become the most devastating set-piece taker of his generation. 

Indeed, Becks is one of only two players in Premier League history to provide 10 or more assists in four consecutive campaigns from 1997 to 2001.

9. James Milner (86 assists)

Clubs: Leeds, Newcastle, Aston Villa, Man City & Liverpool

The Premier League's answer to Benjamin Button, James Milner has enjoyed the career of a dozen different players.

He's been the Premier League's youngest-ever scorer with Leeds, a winger under Sir Bobby Robson and a goal-getter with Martin O'Neill's Aston Villa. 

Now in his mid 30s the top-flight veteran has settled into his role as Liverpool's Mr Reliable with the ability to play almost anywhere on the park.

9. Kevin De Bruyne (86 assists)

Clubs: Chelsea & Man City

Deemed surplus to requirements at Chelsea by Jose Mourinho, De Bruyne returned to the Premier League with unfinished business when City paid Wolfsburg over £50m for his services in 2015.

Since then the Belgian has gone to become Man City's creative hub, a driving force in midfield whose range of passing is unmatched. 

His CV includes four Premier League titles and matching Thierry Henry's longstanding single-season assist record of 20.

With 86 and counting, you get the feeling De Bruyne has a Premier League century of assists in his sights.

7. Steven Gerrard (92 assists)

Clubs: Liverpool

The best player never to win a Premier League winner's medal, Steven Gerrard chose Liverpool immortality over glory, knocking back the overtures of Jose Mourinho's Chelsea.

Of the myriad of modern Liverpool greats to have graced the Premier League, Gerrard stands head and shoulders above the rest for his composure in a crisis and his appetite for big moments. 

Arguably the most talented Englishman of his generation, Gerrard symbolised Liverpool as a club and a city, scoring over 100 goals and laying on 92 top-flight assists.

6. David Silva (93 assists)

Clubs: Man City

El Mago - The Magician.

Eyebrows were raised when Manchester City splashed out £24m on the 5'7'' Spaniard, but Silva quickly proved size does not matter - even in the Premier League. 

It was not unusual for opposition midfielders to go whole games without landing a single punch as Silva glided across Premier League pitches up and down the land, pulling the strings for City's all-star cast of superstars.

His effortless midfield displays soon became pivotal to Man City's domestic dominance, with Silva the mainstay of a side that won four Premier League titles under three different managers. 

5. Dennis Bergkamp (94 assists)

Clubs: Arsenal

It's apt that Dennis Bergkamp's Emirates statue depicts him plucking the ball out of the sky. 

The Dutch magician celebrated three Premier League titles and 87 goals in north London, but it's his class and elegance that endures to this day. 

Lethal and incisive in front of goal, Bergkamp was just as deadly in providing for his team-mates. 

Arsenal's record goalscorer and Premier League Hall of Famer Thierry Henry credits Bergkamp as being the best footballer he played with, testament to just how good "The Iceman" really was.

4. Frank Lampard (102 assists)

Clubs: West Ham, Chelsea & Man City

Chelsea great Frank Lampard is widely remembered for being the best goalscoring midfielder of the 21st century, but many forget that the former England international was equally adept at creating chances for others.

One of only four players to reach 100 assists, Lamaprd is also one of only three men to have brought up centuries for Premier League goals and assists.

Lampard made the bulk of his assists in a Chelsea shirt, with exactly 90 coming as a Blues player. 

His most productive campaigns came in 2004/05 in Jose Mourinho's debut season, and in 2009/10 under Carlo Ancelotti, twice notching 16 assists in title-winning seasons.

3. Wayne Rooney (103 assists)

Clubs: Everton & Man Utd

That Wayne Rooney ended his career as the Premier League's second-top goalscorer with 208 is impressive, but it's testament to his talent that he also managed to rack up over 100 assists. 

Versatile and unendingly selfless, 'Wazza' had the knack of making other players around him look good. 

Five Premier League winner's medals, one FA Cup, three League Cups and a Champions League crown later, Rooney will go down as a true immortal of English football.

2. Cesc Fabregas (111 assists)

Clubs: Arsenal & Chelsea

Cesc Fabregas trained with Arsenal's first team as a bright-eyed, mullet-haired 15-year-old.

Such was the Spaniard's remarkable technical quality that he was able to hold his own among icons of the club's legendary Invincibles vintage and it didn't take long for Fabregas to become a regular in Arsene Wenger's midfield.

A fairytale return to Barcelona saw Fabregas leave the Emirates in acrimonious circumstances, and the ill will only intensified when he joined London rivals Chelsea in 2014.

He went on to produce 18 assists in 2014/15 as the Blues stormed to the title under Jose Mourinho, the first of Fabregas' two winner's medals with Chelsea.

1. Ryan Giggs (162 assists)

Clubs: Man Utd

The most decorated British footballer of all time, with 13 Premier League crowns, four FA Cups, three League Cups and two Champions League titles, Ryan Giggs is in a class of his own.

His 162 assists in a top-flight career spanning 21 glorious years is a staggering 51 more than Fabregas' tally.

Having racked up a record 963 appearances for the Red Devils, he has a strong case for being Manchester United's greatest-ever Premier League player.

Others may have garnered more column inches, but Giggs tore defences apart time and time again with super-human consistency.