With Valentine’s Day around the corner, we’ve turned our attention to football’s most successful partnerships.
For the Premier League and Championship, we’ve looked at the most effective attacking and defensive duos, along with the players who have graced the most starting line-ups together.
While Manchester City have been out of sorts overall this season, the emerging partnership of Kevin De Bruyne and Gabriel Jesus should give Pep Guardiola plenty of optimism for the future.
These two have assisted a combined 14 Premier League goals for each other in their City careers so far, which works out as the highest rate of any duo who have played together this season, and created at least five league goals together.
One pair that we were surprised not to see in the Premier League top 10 was Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane.
Liverpool’s world-class African attackers have bagged plenty of goals this season, including 10 that one of them has set up for the other, but their chemistry appears to be fading.
The first nine league goals they created together came in their first 3,313 minutes on the pitch at the same time, but the following 2,984 minutes have yielded just one more.
In the Championship, the five goals that Barnsley’s Conor Chaplin and Jacob Brown have combined for in just over 1,700 minutes this season is the best return of any current pairing in the division.
If the Tykes fail to beat the drop, then any larger side looking to poach one of these two would be advised to snap up the other as well.
Liverpool may not boast the Premier League’s top attacking partnership but there’s no touching them in defence.
Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez have conceded just eight Premier League goals in the 2,391 minutes they’ve played together in central defence: the equivalent of just over 11 goals per season.
The next best centre-back pairing of Nicolas Otamendi and Aymeric Laporte at Manchester City is almost twice as leaky.
In the Championship, it’s a more surprising pair of names which top the charts.
Despite conceding 99 goals in 77 games since being relegated from the Premier League, Stoke boast the top-performing central defensive partnership in Danny Batth and Bruno Martins Indi.
Their concession rate when on the pitch together suggests the Potters would have shipped just 68 goals – 31 fewer – if they had been ever-present.
The two names which have cropped up together the most often on team sheets in the Premier League era are Jamie Carragher and Steven Gerrard.
The two Liverpool legends walked out onto the pitch together 344 times, which is 20 more than any other club’s top pairing.
Frank Lampard and John Terry can both be found in the dugout this season but their 324 appearances in the same starting XI for Chelsea makes the Blues the only other top-flight side with a partnership of 300 starts or more.
There are 13 pairs of players who ended up playing alongside each other at three different clubs during the course of their Premier League careers, only one of which spanned at least 100 matches.
Rory Delap and Danny Higginbotham first played together over 18 matches at Derby before being reunited for 43 games at Southampton.
The pair then swapped one red and white kit for another over a 57-game spell at Stoke under Tony Pulis for a total of 118 joint Premier League appearances.
Join bwin today and receive up to £20 money back as a FreeBet if your first wager at odds of 1/1 (2.0) or greater is a loser! Terms and conditions apply.