By Danny Carrington
Last Updated: 20th January 2020
The Premier League is awash with some of the finest talent in European football and the January transfer window will likely see more come to ply their trade in the British top tier. What is not as commonplace, though, is Brits playing abroad. Here, we take a look at some of the best homegrown players currently playing on the continent.
For a man intent on vocalising his lack of interest in playing for one of the greatest clubs in the world, Gareth Bale hasn’t had an entirely bad season so far. He has made 14 appearances for Real Madrid and, somewhat tellingly of his time in Spain, scored twice in a game that also saw him sent off. His topsy-turvy time at the Bernabeu isn’t what he would have hoped for but there’s no denying his talent. Winning the Champions League four times is on the lengthy list of his accrued honours and the winger is still one of the finest footballers Wales has ever produced.
You’d be hard-pressed to read any of the transfer lines without seeing this man’s name crop up. Jadon Sancho’s signature is being sought after all across Europe but Borussia Dortmund are loathe to let him go, and for good reason. He has recently scored six goals in the same number of Bundesliga appearances as well as providing four assists in that time. The former Manchester City player has proved himself in Germany and could be up for a new challenge if his skyrocketing price tag allows.
If you discount his last two games that saw him humiliated by Cristiano Ronaldo’s skill and give away one of the most bizarre penalties you’re likely to see, Chris Smalling has been thriving at Roma. Since arriving on loan from Manchester United, he has even been given the captain’s armband. The centre-back has helped his team amass seven clean sheets this season, as well as netting twice and providing an assist. Some United fans are even calling for his return and if he can eliminate the moments of madness from his game, we may see him back in the Premier League.
Kieran Trippier has returned to his best since leaving Spurs for Atletico Madrid in the summer. A regular in his new team, the right-back has also secured his place in the England side once again. He wasn’t selected for the Nations League Finals squad last summer but has since shown why he merits the call-up. Trippier has made 22 appearances for Atleti to date, notching four assists, including one against Levante at the weekend. The 29-year-old could theoretically face-off with former outfit Tottenham in the Champions League quarter-finals, provided his side beats Liverpool and Spurs overcome RB Leipzig.