The Best XI of 2020-21 Serie A Season: Inter and Milan Players Top Charts

A hectic 38-match 2020-21 Serie A season came to an end last Sunday and is considered by many to be one of the most exciting of the last decade.

It marked the end of Juventus’ nine-year dominance as Inter secured their first Scudetto in 11 years, while their city rivals Milan are back in the Champions League after an eight-year absence.

Here we take a look at the best XI of the 2020-21 Serie A season in collaboration with the FotMob app.

Goalkeeper – Gianluigi Donnarumma (Milan)

The Italian goalkeeper had a fantastic season and was instrumental in Milan conceding just 41 goals, registering the third best defensive record in Serie A.

The Rossoneri shot-stopper kept 14 clean sheets in the recently concluded season – shared with Inter goalkeeper Samir Handanovic – and made an average of 2.5 saves per game.

The 22-year-old also faced the most number of shots on target of the top seven teams in the league (125), stopping 90 out of 125 (71.2% save percentage).

FotMob rating – 6.71

Right-Back / Right Wing-Back – Achraf Hakimi (Inter)

Antonio Conte’s 3-5-2 system worked perfectly and was a true joy to watch this season. The wing-backs were one of the key players who made this system work, with the Moroccan international Achraf Hakimi standing out the most.

The 22-year-old had an outstanding season for Inter, scoring 7 goals (4.7 xG) and providing 8 assists (6.7 xA) in his first season in the Nerazzurri colors.

Hakimi proved to be a complete wing-back who can score goals with both feet – 2 with his right and 5 with his left – and create goal-scoring opportunities for his teammates with 9 big chances created and 36 key passes played.

FotMob rating – 7.24

Right Center-Back – Milan Skriniar (Inter)

While Inter’s wing-backs were more concerned with attacking duties, the centre-backs did most of the dirty work trying to prevent the opposition from scoring.

The three-man defence earned the applause for being an irresistible unit, but if you had to pick them out, Milan Skriniar stood out the most out of the three. The Slovakian international led Inter’s back line, winning 52% of all duels (avg. 3.5), blocking 1.52 shots and making 0.87 interceptions per game.

Even more impressive is the fact that the 26-year-old defended exceptionally cleanly, making 0 errors that resulted in either a goal or a shot, and conceded 0 penalty kicks. He also contributed 3 goals after not scoring a single goal in the previous two seasons.

FotMob rating – 7.06

Left Center-Back – Cristian Romero (Atalanta)

Although Atalanta are more known for their offensive qualities and ability to score goals, the defensive side of the game should not be underestimated either.

The Argentine center-back Cristian Romero was the heart of the defense and put in a number of solid performances, despite playing his first season under the wing of Gian Piero Gasperini.

In 31 appearances this season, Romero registered solid averages, winning 58% of all duels (avg. 6.9), blocking 1.84 shots and making 3.1 interceptions per game. The Argentine also scored 2 goals and provided 2 assists.

FotMob rating – 7.13

Left-Back / Left Wing-Back – Theo Hernandez (Milan)

It could be said that modern day full-backs are valued more for their offensive actions than for their defensive capabilities.

The Milan left-back Theo Hernandez falls into this category and this season has shown exactly why that is the case. The Frenchman recorded the second highest number of goals and assists of any Serie A full-backs, scoring 7 goals and setting up his teammates 5 times.

In addition, he averaged 4.91 progressive and 1.20 key passes per game, as well as completed an average of 2.2 dribbles (61% success rate) and 8.68 progressive ball carries.

FotMob rating – 7.43

Defensive Midfielder – Franck Kessié (Milan)

Despite losing the title race in the second half of the season, Milan had managed to stay in the top four.

One of the players who played a big part in this success was the defensive midfielder Franck Kessié. At first glance, the 24-year-old Ivorian made the biggest contribution by converting an astonishing 11 penalties during the season (85% conversion rate).

However, the penalty goals were not the only successful part of Kessié’s game; the Ivorian was also an important figure in linking the defensive and offensive parts of Milan’s game, recording 89% pass completion and applying the highest number of successful pressures in the squad with 175.

FotMob rating – 7.32

Central Midfielder – Rodrigo De Paul (Udinese)

The only player to make the list from a team outside the top ten is Rodrigo De Paul of Udinese. The Argentine central midfielder had an outstanding season, attracting the attention of top clubs in Europe.

The 27-year-old showed an immense combination of offensive and defensive qualities, which is the result of his incredible versatility. De Paul repeated the highs of the 2018-19 Serie A season, scoring 9 goals and providing 9 assists.

He also excelled in his passing effectiveness, as he averaged 7.45 progressive and 2.50 key passes per game. Last but not least, the Argentine was also solid defensively, winning an impressive 8.2 duels per game.

FotMob rating – 7.54

Right Midfielder / Right Winger – Domenico Berardi (Sassuolo)

The only other player to come from a team outside the top seven is Sassuolo’s Domenico Berardi. The 26-year-old winger impressed for the second season running, and is one of the hottest prospects on the transfer market this summer.

Berardi had his best season in terms of goals scored, netting 17 times – his best scoring season since 2013/14 – and registering 7 assists. The Italian topped the charts for both of these metrics among Sassuolo players, showing 25% overall contribution to the team’s goals and assists.

FotMob rating – 7.74

Striker – Luis Muriel (Atalanta)

Although Atalanta finished the season 13 points behind champions Inter, they were the highest scoring team in Serie A with 90 goals.

The Colombian striker Luis Muriel was one of the reasons for this record. He scored 22 goals, which equates to 24% of Atalanta’s total goal output. The 30-year-old also recorded a remarkable 65 minutes scoring frequency and an impressive 25% goal conversion rate (3.7 shots per goal).

FotMob rating – 7.40

Striker – Romelu Lukaku (Inter)

Prior to the 2019/20, there were some doubts about Lukaku’s move to Inter, but the Belgian striker proved everyone wrong for the second season in a row.

The 27-year-old scored 24 goals (23.7 xG) this season, securing second place in Serie A’s top scorers list. Even more impressively, Lukaku also registered 11 assists (7.8 xA), which is his all-time career high.

FotMob rating – 7.65

Striker – Cristiano Ronaldo (Juventus)

There is not much else to say about this man. For Cristiano Ronaldo, it was the twelfth consecutive season he surpassed the 20-goal mark. This time he scored 29 goals in 33 appearances.

Although 6 of those goals were penalty goals, the Portuguese star surpassed his non-penalty expected goals (npxG) record of 20.4 by almost 3 goals.

FotMob rating – 7.89