EVERY MONDAY following a Premiership programme we are featuring the Independent Premiership Index, an ongoing assessment of every player's progress in League matches this season. Our reporters give a mark out of 10 to players in all Premiership matches. We then calculate who are the leading players based on performances throughout the season. A player must have featured for at least 15 minutes in at least a third of his side's games to register in the rankings. Out on his own in first place is Manchester United's Ryan Giggs with an average of 7.2. The Welsh winger is followed by team- mate Roy Keane (7), the only other player on seven or more. Two other United players make it into the top 30, with Paul Scholes averaging 6.3 and Ruud van Nistelrooy 6.2. Only his slow start has kept him from the upper echelons of the list, which gives a picture of form for the whole season. Newcastle's Kieron Dyer (joint third, on 6.9) has been the most significant mover. Injuries could cost club and country his services in the coming weeks. Arsenal have three players in the top 10, all French: Robert Pires (6.9), Thierry Henry (6.8) and Patrick Vieira (6.8). Teddy Sheringham (6.8) continues to be ranked joint- best forward and Rio Ferdinand (6.7) the best defender.
See Monday's Independent for the team of the weekend, the team of the season so far and all the latest rankings
Leading players of the season so far
Rank Player (Club) Ave
1 R Giggs (Man Utd) 7. …