Tchouameni a wanted man: The most in-form player in Europe

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Real Madrid's interest in Monaco midfielder Aurelien Tchouameni should come as no surprise if you look at the numbers, as they tell you that the Frenchman is the most in-form player in Europe right now at just 22 years old.

The Bordeaux youth product joined Monaco in January 2020 and already has seven caps for France, including playing a part in Les Bleus' Nations League victory over Spain. Los Blancos have had him scouted in person on several occasions, and his reports are glowing.

Real Madrid aren't the only ones impressed, however, with advanced stat website WhoScored rating Tchouameni as the top-performing player on the continent in recent games.

Using an algorithm to deliver an overall performance rating out of 10, the platform has given the Monaco man an average score of 8.24 across his last six games. That rating leads the way across Europe's top five leagues over the period.

Coming in behind Tchouameni at the top of this ranking are Robert Lewandowski (8.23), Kylian Mbappe (8.22), Serge Gnabry (8.2), Casemiro (7.96), Thomas Muller (7.96) and Vinicius Junior (7.93). Not bad company to be in.

Omnipresent against Lyon... goal against Amiens

Tchouameni has become one of the leaders of Philippe Clement's Monaco side - their motor in the middle of the park - and after an imperious display against Lyon, he capped his recent form with a goal in the cup against Amiens on Tuesday.

"I'm very happy with Tchouameni, not just today. He's very important to maintaining the balance of the team, but also for his ability on the ball," said Clement after the win over Amiens.

"He has all the qualities necessary to become one of the best in Europe in his position.

"That said, he still needs to improve in some areas and we're here to help him reach his maximum potential."

A ball-recovery magnet

The midfielder, who has recently been playing as a single pivot in a 4-1-4-1, has defensive ability beyond all doubt and the advanced stat site Sofascore ranked him as the player with the most tackles and interceptions in December 2021, as well as being third in recoveries and 10th in duels won.

It wasn't just a purple patch for Tchouameni, however, as no one in Ligue 1 has more interceptions all season, or successful tackles for that matter.

The 22-year-old is so much more than a defensive workhorse, however, as he can dictate the play and run with the ball as well. He is the Ligue 1 player with ninth-most dribbles and the ninth-most fouled.

As many progressive passes as Messi

The Frenchman is comfortable acting as a playmaker on the ball, too, and has as many progressive passes (at least nine meters) in Ligue 1 as Lionel Messi. He's also sixth in the league for passes in the final third.

Most things Monaco do go through Tchouameni, evidenced by the fact he has the sixth-most touches of any player in Ligue 1.

It's easy to see why Real Madrid are keeping a close eye on him, but they won't be the only ones.

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