The Premier League this season seems to be a young man’s game, the latest data shows, with the average age of the starting XIs in 2019/20 at their lowest level for 11 years.
It is still early on in the season, but in the 40 Premier League matches so far clubs have fielded players from the start with an average age of 26 years and 275 days.
This is the second-youngest average age ever for starting XIs compared with those in the month of August in past Premier League seasons.
It was eclipsed only by the 2008/09 season, when the average age was 26 years and 265 days.
Average age of starting XIs in August
|1992/93||26y 293d||2006/07||27y 37d|
|1993/94||27y 66d||2007/08||26y 300d|
|1994/95||27y 60d||2008/09||26y 265d|
|1995/96||27y 98d||2009/10||27y 132d|
|1996/97||27y 116d||2010/11||27y 198d|
|1997/98||27y 162d||2011/12||27y 63d|
|1998/99||27y 78d||2012/13||27y 182d|
|1999/00||27y 237d||2013/14||27y 116d|
|2000/01||27y 215d||2014/15||27y 38d|
|2001/02||27y 228d||2015/16||27y 62d|
|2002/03||27y 132d||2016/17||27y 261d|
|2003/04||27y 241d||2017/18||27y 67d|
|2004/05||27y 198d||2018/19||27y 22d|
|2005/06||27y 169d||2019/20*||26y 275d|
*includes 1 Sep 2019 fixtures
More than 10 per cent of the minutes played in the 2019/20 Premier League have been by players aged 21 or under. That is also a high in the last 10 years.
The arrival of players such as Aaron Wan-Bissaka (aged 21), Daniel James (21) alongside Academy graduates including Marcus Rashford (21), Scott McTominay (22) and Andreas Pereira (23) have lowered the average age.
The XI who drew 1-1 at Wolverhampton Wanderers in Matchweek 2 averaged 24 years and 173 days and was United’s youngest in the competition since the final day of the 2016/17 campaign.
Southampton are next in the rankings, having named the youngest starting XI this season.
The Saints side who won 2-0 at Brighton & Hove Albion in Matchweek 3 had an average age of 24 years and 128 days, helped by 20-year-old full-backs in Yan Valery and Kevin Danso, and 21-year-old scorer Moussa Djenepo.
Norwich were only the second club in Premier League history to hand four British players aged 21 or younger (Max Aarons, Todd Cantwell, Ben Godfrey and Jamal Lewis) their Premier League debuts in the same match.
Average age of starting XIs this term
|Man Utd||24y 312d||Wolves||26y 305d|
|Southampton||25y 22d||Sheff Utd||27y 0d|
|Norwich||25y 68d||Man City||27y 56d|
|Chelsea||25y 88d||Liverpool||27y 59d|
|Bournemouth||25y 220d||Spurs||27y 84d|
|Everton||26y 73d||West Ham||27y 120d|
|Aston Villa||26y 108d||Brighton||27y 167d|
|Newcastle||26y 109d||Burnley||28y 123d|
|Arsenal||26y 116d||Crystal Palace||29y 153d|
|Leicester||26y 177d||Watford||29y 204d|
Chelsea are fourth in the rankings thanks to Frank Lampard putting faith in youth products of the Academy. The average age of the head coach’s starting XI against Sheffield United, at 24 years and 158 days, was the Blues' youngest in a Premier League match.