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Which Players Have Created 4 Assists in a Single Premier League Match?

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Which Players Have Created 4 Assists in a Single Premier League Match?

Since the inception of the Premier League, we have seen plenty of players contribute two or even sometimes three assists within a single match, but do you know how many players have ever managed to create four(!) assists in a single match?

Following on from Jeremy Doku’s masterclass on the weekend, when the electric Belgian winger scored once and registered four assists against a pitiful Bournemouth side, we are going to take a look at the small group of players who have managed to lay on four assists in one match throughout the history of the Premier League

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Dennis Bergkamp (Arsenal 5-0 Leicester, 1999)

The first entrant of this exclusive club is Arsenal’s Dennis Bergkamp, whose exquisite first touch and ability to play a perfectly weighted pass to anyone, anywhere on the field, saw him regarded as one of the Premier League’s finest ever imports.

That talent was perfectly on display in February of 1999 when Leicester travelled to Highbury, with the memory of Bergkamp’s mesmeric hat-trick against them just two years earlier at Filbert Street surely still fresh in the mind of the Foxes. But once again, Leicester had no way of stopping the Dutchman.

A sumptuous ball over the top to Nicolas Anelka gave the Gunners the lead and Bergkamp his first assist, before a nicely weighted through-ball set Anelka on his way to bag his second. Ray Parlour then made it three, the Englishman lashing home after Bergkamp’s pass found him at the edge of the box.

Anelka completed his hat-trick two minutes later to make it 4-0, and Bergkamp’s pass to Parlour three minutes into the second half was confidently finished off by the midfielder to see Arsenal run out 5-0 winners and Bergkamp become the first-ever player to register 4 assists in a Premier League match.

Jose Antonio Reyes (Arsenal 7-0 Middlesbrough, 2006)

It would be another seven years until Bergkamp’s exclusive claim to have been the only player to have registered four assists in a Premier League game would be taken away from him – but he was actually joined by another Arsenal player in the process.

Jose Antonio Reyes, who spent three years at Arsenal after joining the club from Sevilla in 2004, is largely thought to have somewhat underwhelmed during his time in London, but he certainly ensured that he left the Gunners faithful with plenty of memories, and arguably none more so than his masterclass against Middlesbrough in January of 2006.

Thierry Henry’s thunderous volley on the 20-minute mark opened the scoring before Philippe Senderos made it two with a bullet header from a Reyes corner. A sloppy pass from a Middlesbrough man then saw Arsenal regain possession in midfield, with Reyes laying on a fantastic through-ball for Henry to finish off in his trademark style.

Robert Pires and Gilberto Silva then both scored either side of half-time to see Arsenal cruising at 5-0 at the hour mark. Reyes then got his hat-trick of assists after playing another nicely weighted through-ball for Henry to finish off for his hat-trick of goals, with Reyes then securing his fourth assist in rather fortuitous fashion – an attempted clearance from a Middlesbrough player ricocheted off of Reyes and into the path of Aleksandr Hleb, who duly slotted home for Arsenal’s seventh of the game.

Cesc Fabregas (Arsenal 6-2 Blackburn Rovers, 2009)

Cesc Fabregas sits second in the all-time charts when it comes to most assists in Premier League history, with the Spanish midfielder having set up a teammate’s goal on 111 occasions across his 350 outings in the English top-flight.

Four of those assists would come in a single match against Blackburn Rovers in October of 2009, with Arsenal running out 6-2 winners after a Fabregas masterclass, with the Spaniard even bagging a goal as well while being unlucky in not having more to his name on the day. Fabregas’ layoff for Thomas Vermaelen’s fierce long-range effort got Arsenal back into the game after the Gunners had gone 1-0 down after just 4 minutes, but Blackburn would again take the lead on the half-hour mark.

Fabregas stepped up again to get his team back into the contest though, his fine passes for both Robin van Persie’s 33rd-minute and Andrey Arshavin’s 37th-minute strikes giving Arsenal the lead heading into the break. Fabregas himself would be next on the scoresheet, scoring a sublime half-volley that completely caught Blackburn’s goalkeeper off guard.

The Spaniard would then get his fourth assist after Theo Walcott dispatched the Spaniard’s smart lay-off, before Nicklas Bendtner scored a sixth in injury time. It was a truly wonderful performance from one of this generation’s most talented yet underrated midfielders.

Emmanuel Adebayor (Tottenham 5-0 Newcastle, 2012)

You may not have noticed, but the first three entries on this list were all Arsenal players. Now the fourth entry was not an Arsenal man at the time of him bagging his four assists, but he did actually play for the Gunners at one point in the past.

Emmanuel Adebayor made the controversial move to the Gunner’s north London rivals Tottenham in 2011, initially on loan but it was a move that would later be made permanent. During his initial year on loan, Adebayor would become the fourth player to register four assists in a Premier League game when Newcastle came to White Hart Lane in February of 2012, with the Togolese striker’s 4 first-half assists seeing Spurs go in at half-time with a commanding 4-0 lead.

Benoit Assou-Ekotto stroked the ball into an empty net after Adebayor’s pass across the six-yard box to make it 1-0 after just four minutes, and it was 2-0 just two minutes later following Louis Saha’s fine finish from an Adebayor cross. Adebayor and Saha would link up again on the 20-minute mark, Adebayor teeing up the Frenchman to lash home for Tottenham’s third.

Niko Kranjcar would score Spurs’ fourth after a fortuitous intervention from Newcastle’s Fabricio Coloccini, with the defender kicking Adebayor instead of the ball - Adebayor’s initial shot before the ball fell to Kranjcar meant that he would be credited with the assist. It got better for Adebayor and Spurs in the second half, with the striker himself then scoring a fine volley in the 64th minute to cap off a fantastic individual performance and a good day all round for Spurs fans.

Santi Cazorla (Arsenal 4-1 Wigan, 2013)

Back to Arsenal it is, with the London side overseeing a fourth entrant to this list just over a decade ago when they hosted newly-crowned FA Cup winners Wigan at the Emirates in May 2013.

The Latics had shocked the world by beating Manchester City in that season’s FA Cup final, but just three days after that memorable triumph, they faced a tough test away to Arsenal with their Premier League status still in serious doubt at the time. It was a must-win game – could Wigan repeat what they had done three days earlier by securing an unfancied victory and subsequently providing a huge boost to their top-flight survival hopes?

Arsenal’s Santi Cazorla provided the answer, with the silky Spanish midfielder setting up all four of his side’s goals as Wigan were ultimately blown away by the Gunners’ firepower. Lukas Podolski met Cazorla’s floated 11th-minute corner with a simple header having been left unmarked in the box, but Shaun Maloney’s free-kick on the stroke of half-time provided a brief glimmer of hope for Wigan.

Back came Arsenal though, with Cazorla’s perfectly weighted cross from the right flank being met by Theo Walcott to give Arsenal the lead again just after the hour mark. Cazorla would turn provider for Podolski again just five minutes later, the diminutive Spaniard using his head to play the German through for a one-on-one opportunity that Podolski coolly finished off. Three minutes later, and Arsenal had their fourth goal of the night – Aaron Ramsey’s finish from a tight angle following Cazorla’s pass down the left wing all but confirmed Wigan’s relegation from the Premier League.

Now we often talk about perfect hat-tricks – right foot, left foot, header. But have you ever heard of a perfect hat-trick of assists? That is exactly what fan favourite Cazorla did in this game – assisted with his right foot, left foot and head.

Dusan Tadic (Southampton 8-0 Sunderland, 2014)

Saturday 18th October, 2014 was a contrasting day for Southampton and Sunderland fans – it gave Saints fans one of the best days of their lives watching their beloved team, but for the Sunderland fans who made the approximately 10-hour round trip to watch their side in action, they can stake a very valid claim to having one of the worst ever Premier League away day experiences.

A comical Santiago Vergini own goal handed Saints the lead after just 12 minutes, before Graziano Pelle’s tap-in made it 2-0 just six minutes later. Dusan Tadic got his first goal involvement when his smart cross found an unmarked Jack Cork at the back post for a simple finish. Sunderland’s day got worse when Liam Bridcutt’s inability to sort his feet out on the goal-line saw an own goal attributed to him in the 63rd minute.

Six minutes later, and Tadic got his second assist of the match as his fine through ball to Pelle was finished off first time by the Italian. Tadic then got a goal for himself after a Vito Mannone error to make it 6-0 after 78 minutes of play, and the Serb would go back to playing provider for the last two goals of the match. Victor Wanyama smashed home the seventh a minute later following some trickery and then a simple pass in the box from Tadic, with Tadic’s final act being a simple cut-back for Sadio Mane to run on to and finish for Southampton’s eighth goal of the match.

Harry Kane (Southampton 2-5 Tottenham, 2020)

Heung-min Son and Harry Kane are statistically one of the most lethal partnerships in Premier League history, and the duo’s respective performances against Southampton in 2020 showed exactly why they are considered so.

On a day in which the roles between the two were reversed, with Son being the primary scorer and Kane setting him up instead of the other way round, it was Kane’s four assists that saw him become just the second Tottenham player to join the small group of players in this list, and the first player to do so since Dusan Tadic’s exploits on the south coast six years earlier.

Now, Danny Ings actually gave Saints the lead in this one, but Son got the equaliser and his first goal on the stroke of half-time, the South Korean doing extremely well to reach Kane’s overhit cross and slam home the equaliser.

Two minutes into the second half, and the pair were at it again. This time, Kane’s slightly under-hit through-ball forced Son to use all his speed to beat the defender in a footrace, which he did before firing home his second of the match. But it was third time lucky for the duo, with Kane’s ball over the top for Son of a perfect speed, meaning that the Korean had the time to take a couple of touches before slotting home Tottenham’s third.

Kane would get his fourth assist of the match 10 minutes later, with a cross from the right flank landing perfectly in front of Son for him to slot home. Kane’s next act would be getting on the scoresheet himself after his playmaking exploits, with Spurs’ fifth goal being a simple tap-in from close range for the Englishman. Fellow Englishman Danny Ings would then score his and Southampton’s second goal of the game via an injury-time penalty.

Paul Pogba (Manchester United 5-1 Leeds United, 2021)

Paul Pogba assisted all three of Manchester United’s goalscorers during the Red Devils’ 5-1 win over Leeds United in 2021, with the Frenchman laying on assists for Fred, Mason Greenwood and two for Bruno Fernandes in what was a devastating second-half display from Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side.

United took the lead on the half-hour mark following fine link-up play between Pogba and Fernandes, the Frenchman’s fine first-time ball to Fernandes brought down wonderfully by the Portuguese before finding its way into the net. Luke Ayling’s stunning long-range equaliser did bring some hope for Leeds, but those hopes lasted a total of just three minutes as Greenwood then ran on to an inch-perfect long ball from Pogba before crisply finishing the move off.

2 minutes later, and Fernandes had his second and United’s third following a simple Pogba through-ball before the Portuguese international then completed his hat-trick with a thumping first-time finish on the hour mark.

Midfielder Fred then made it 5-1 in the 68th minute, the Brazilian timing his run perfectly to get on the end of Pogba’s cut-back and ensure that the Premier League’s once most expensive signing has a place in this exclusive group.

Jeremy Doku (Manchester City 6-1 Bournemouth, 2023)

We should not at all have been surprised that Manchester City and Bournemouth’s meeting last Saturday resulted in the Cherries being thrashed by the Citizens – the last five league meetings between these two sides sees City lead by an aggregate scoreline of 19-4.

However, what surprised everyone was the performance of new boy Jeremy Doku, who bagged four assists and a goal in the rout. While Doku has had an impressive start to life in English football, few would have expected a performance like this so soon from the electric young Belgian. Now Doku opened the scoring after 30 minutes, a trademark quick drop of the shoulder just outside the box took him away from a defender before laying the ball off to Rodri – the Spaniard returned the ball to the onrushing Doku who fired home the opener.

Doku’s trickery was too much to handle for Chris Mepham, who could not deal with the youngster’s quick feet and movement as he next went on to set up the first of two Bernardo Silva goals on the day. Manuel Akanji got on the scoresheet himself next, with Doku’s initial wayward strike taking a huge deflection off the Swiss international for City’s third.

Phil Foden later added a fourth after more good work by Doku, before Bournemouth scored a consolation through Luis Sinisterra in the 74th minute. Bernardo Silva then scored his second of the night in the form of an impish chip over the onrushing Ionut Radu following a sublime pick-out from Doku, for what was then his fourth assist of the game. Nathan Ake would then make it six with a diving header two minutes from time to cap off a dominant City win, and it was a win that saw Doku become the youngest player on this shortlist.

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