The arrival of eight teams from the UEFA Champions League has upped the ante in the race to become the UEFA Europa League's most in-form player.
Article top media content
The UEFA Europa League round of 32 will bring eight new teams into contention for the trophy, the sides which finished third in the eight UEFA Champions League groups in the autumn. We take a look at the players from those clubs are making waves in the FedEx Performance Zone.
.@FedExEurope ambassador & Dutch legend @GullitR shares how you can discover, analyse and compare Europe's best in the FedEx Performance Zone. https://t.co/VMQZuU8LnX #GameChangingDelivery pic.twitter.com/iZxENTepo6— UEFA Europa League (@EuropaLeague) February 1, 2018
Saúl Ñíguez (Atlético)
Second in the latest rankings thanks to his outstanding performances this season, Ñíguez has made more tackles than any other Atlético player, and his distribution has been excellent with 82.5% pass completion rate. Only goalkeeper Jan Oblak has played more minutes in the league than the midfielder.
Naby Keïta (Leipzig)
The Guinean may already have agreed to join Liverpool in the summer, but form suggests his head has not been turned. Naby Keïta is third in the current rankings, his work rate combined with four goals in his last nine matches in all competitions making him one of the form central midfielders in Europe.
Bas Dost (Sporting)
The Dutch striker has scored eight goals in his last seven matches – and 19 in 20 Liga games this season. Not quite as amazing as last season, when he scored 34 in 31 domestic league games, but three goals in the UEFA Champions League group stage suggest he will be one to watch in the UEFA Europa League.
Antoine Griezmann (Atlético)
The French striker has started 2018 with a bang, with two goals and two assists in five league matches so far. He scored twice in the UEFA Champions League group stage and will be looking to add more to his collection as he makes his UEFA Europa League debut against København.
Dries Mertens (Napoli)
Napoli are top of Serie A as they chase their first Italian title since 1989/90, with 14-goal Dries Mertens a key component of a fine side. The Belgian has scored five in his last five matches in all competitions, and has hit the woodwork twice in the process, suggesting he has his eye in as his team take on Leipzig.