Blackburn are the dominant side in the WhoScored.com League Team of the Month for December after winning all four league games. The play-offs chasing Stoke, Huddersfield and Middlesbrough are featured as we race through the best XI final of 2021 …
Goalkeeper: Adam Davies (Stoke) – Rating 7.45
The match postponements meant Stoke only played three games in December, but Adam Davies was still impressive for the Potters. Only Joe Lumley (3) kept more goalless than Davies (2), with the latter also making the fourth most saves (12) to get a WhoScored.com score of 7.45.
Central defender: Darragh Lenihan (Blackburn) – rating 7.84
With a score of 7.84, Darragh Lenihan is the best player of the month at WhoScored.com. Neither side have conceded fewer goals than Blackburn (1) in their four games in December, with Lenihan starring in his defensive performances. In fact, he has won more aerial duels (29) than any other player and provided his first assist of the season in December.
Central defender: Jan Paul van Hecke (Blackburn) – 7.61 rating
Jan Paul van Hecke joins Blackburn teammate Lenihan in this three-man defense and is the second of three Rovers representatives to make eleventh. The young Dutchman scored his first league goal of the season in December, which came in a man-of-the-match performance against title contenders Bournemouth, while 18 passes – the eighth-highest – helped Van Hecke secure a WhoScored.com rating of 7.61.
Central defender: Tosin Adarabioyo (Fulham) – rating 7.58
Completing the back line is Fulham’s Tosin Adarabioyo. The Cottagers failed to win a game in December as they lost ground in the title race, but Adarabioyo scored his first league goal of the season in their top-of-the-table bout with Bournemouth earlier this month, while 17 tackle and interceptions combined were a respectable comeback for the 24-year-old, who earned a WhoScored.com score of 7.58.
Right Back: Isaiah Jones (Middlesbrough) – 7.79 rating
Middlesbrough collected 13 points from their five games in December, with young Isaiah Jones key to Chris Wilder’s side. Jones has won more WhoScored.com Man-of-the-match awards (3) than any other player in the league, having played a starring role in victories over Swansea, Bournemouth and Blackpool. One goal and two assists came from respective returns of five shots and nine key passes, while six clear chances created were the highest in the division, as the 22-year-old returned an impressive WhoScored.com score of 7.79.
Central Midfield: Mario Vrancic (Stoke) – 7.51 rating
Mario Vrancic’s stunning performance in December came in Stoke’s 2-0 win at QPR earlier in the month, a match in which he had a direct hand in both goals. Despite making only three appearances in December, Vrancic still made 11 tackles – the 15th best return – to make the best XI with a WhoScored.com score of 7.51.
Central Midfield: Lewis O’Brien (Huddersfield) – 7.46 rating
The midfield anchor in the championship team of the month is Huddersfield’s Lewis O’Brien. Only a handful of players did more tackles than O’Brien (13) in the English second division in December, while the 23-year-old launched well from midfield when on the ball, completing 11 dribbles, the second largest, to score a rating. WhoScored.com of 7.46.
Central Midfield: Riley McGree (Birmingham) – 7.44 rating
Boasting a WhoScored.com score of 7.44, Riley McGree joins Vrancic and O’Brien in the middle of this XI’s park. McGree completed nine dribbles in December, his fourth-most in the league, and recorded his fourth-most assists (2) in the division, which came from eight key passes.
Left-back: Murray Wallace (Millwall) – 7.45 rating
Murray Wallace scored his second goal of the season in December and while two of his three starters came in a three-man defense, the 28-year-old operated left of that defensive line as he entered a string of solid rounds for Millwall. . Six combined tackles and interceptions contributed to his inclusion with a WhoScored.com score of 7.45.
Forward: Ben Brereton Diaz (Blackburn) – 7.78 vote
There were some happy punters last month when Ben Brereton Diaz scored 20 goals. The Chilean has scored more goals (4) than any other player as he launched Blackburn in the title race with aplomb. Those four goals came from 16 shots, the third biggest, to help the 22-year-old reach a WhoScored.com score of 7.78.
Forward: Tom Bradshaw (Millwall) – 7.55 rating
Flanking Diaz at the forefront is Millwall hitman Tom Bradshaw, with the Welshman getting a WhoScored.com score of 7.55. Bradshaw contributed directly to a goal in all three of Millwall’s league games in December, scoring three of the Lions’ five goals to round out the best XI.