Messi Beats Vinicius Junior As the “God” of Dribblers in Europe’s Top 5 Leagues

Messi Beats Vinicius Junior As the “God” of Dribblers in Europe’s Top 5 Leagues

Godwin Nii Armah Tagoe
updated at April 12, 2023 at 8:28 PM
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  • The art of manipulating the round leather object known as a football to skip past an opponent is described as "dribbling"
  • With the help of Opta Stats, Sports Brief takes a look at the top five players with the most dribbles completed in Europe's top five leagues this season
  • Usual suspects Lionel Messi and Real Madrid's Vinicius Junior make the list of players giving defenders a hell of a time

Dribbling in football is a hard nut to crack. It is one of the most difficult skills to master in the sport regarded by many as the "most popular" in the world.

Few things can rival football as a spectator sport, and this is largely born out of the bewitching skillset displayed by the main actors on the pitch.

Alphonso Davies, Lionel Messi, Vinicius Junior, most dribbles
Lionel Messi tops the chart of players with the most dribbles in Europe's top five leagues. Photo credit: @FCBayernEN @brfootball @realmadriden
Source: Twitter

A cross-section of footballers have managed to perfect the art of ghosting past their opponents as if they never existed with cheeky ease.

With the season drawing to a close, Sports Brief, via stats culled from Opta, takes a look at the players with the most dribbles completed in Europe's top five leagues this season.

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The likes of PSG pair Neymar and Kylian Mbappe are surprisingly absent from the top 5 dribblers in Europe’s five major leagues (English Premier League, Ligue 1, La Liga, Bundesliga and Serie A).

5. Jeremie Frimpong 57 - (59%)

Maybe not the most fanciful name on the list, but those who have watched Jeremie Frimpong in action will testify to his explosiveness.

Cast in the mould of PSG's Achraf Hakimi, Frimpong is an attack-heavy fullback who takes delight in breezing past his markers.

Frimpong literally behaves like a right-winger rather than a right-back. He has the pace to eat up ground in the final third and boasts a keen eye for a decisive pass.

4. Leroy Sané 58 - (62%)

Another player from the Bundesliga makes the list of the most skillful players in Europe.

Sané's stocks might have dropped since swapping Manchester City for Bayern Munich but appears to have rediscovered his form, making him a dreaded opposition for any defender.

His exceptional pace, dribbling ability and clinical finishing have come to the fore once again this term, terrorizing defenders on his flank for fun.

3. Alphonso Davies - 62 (54%)

The marauding Bayern Munich fullback makes the list of players with the most successful dribbles across Europe's top five leagues.

Originally a winger, he has been given the license to run riot on the left flank as an attacking left back, tormenting defenders with his explosive pace, zippy dribbling, creativity, and pin-point crossing ability.

Barring any unforeseen injury or suspension Davies could climb up the chart.

2. Vinícius Júnior - 75 (36%)

The Brazilian has completed 75 dribbles in La Liga, more than any other player in the Spanish top tier.

Considered one of the best wingers in the world currently, Vini has continued from where he left off last season, playing the lead role in Real Madrid's quest to defend their titles last season.

His searing pace, agility, balance, and unique technique make Vini a complete nightmare for defenders.

The "zippy left-wing wizard can play anywhere along the front line and has added goals to his fleet-footedness, stepping in to fill Benzema's big shoes this season.

1. Lionel Messi - 75 (56%)

Lionel Messi's 2022-23 campaign is a classical example of "form is temporary, class is permanent."

Although falling short in the Champions League, the 2022 World Cup winner has been immense for PSG in their chase for a record-extending league crown.

As well as notching up lots of goals and assists, the Argentinian is a menace with the ball at his feet once again.

He sits at the top of the list with the same number of dribbles as Vinicius but with a better success rate.

Godwin Nii Armah Tagoe photo
Godwin Nii Armah Tagoe
Godwin Nii Armah Tagoe is a Ligue 1, Bundesliga, and La Liga editor with five-year experience. He previously worked with Sports Corna and 360SportsGH.