The top five overachievers across Europe this season
Play • 51 min

The Athletic's Michael Cox and Tom Worville join Ali Maxwell for a whistle-stop tour across Europe to look at five unheralded teams who have found themselves in unexpectedly lofty positions in the league table so far. Starting on home soil with high-pressing Southampton.

We also head over to Italy to look at a swashbuckling Sassuolo side who find themselves second in Serie A, before crossing to Spain to look at the surprising top two of Real Sociedad, who we think could be the real deal, and Villareal who are of course managed by Unai Emery.

There's also a trip north of the border for some detail on Rangers, currently nine points ahead of Celtic, with The Athletic's Rangers correspondent Jordan Campbell

Will any of these sides go the distance and deliver on their early promise? We look at the numbers and the eye test to give you our verdict


You can subscribe to The Athletic for just £1-a-week at the moment - head to theathletic.com/zonalmarking for access to Michael & Tom's unrivalled tactical & statistical analysis plus all the other brilliant content from our world class team of football writers

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