Why Rangers, Celtic and Hearts stars are in world football's top 20 for 2021/22 season

No players featured in more games during the 2020/21 season than Rangers star Joe Aribo.

The 25-year-old featured in 70 games for club and country, making 57 appearances for the Ibrox side and 13 for Nigeria, as per Transfermarkt.

Such a figure put him ahead of Liverpool duo Luis Diaz and Sadio Mane, Denmark goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel and Chelsea’s Mason Mount.

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He was joined in the top 20 by team-mate Glen Kamara and Celtic captain Callum McGregor who both appeared 64 times for club and country.

Aribo, who scored in the Europa League final, missed eight fixtures across the 65-game season for Rangers.

Impressively, colleague Connor Goldson appeared in 61 of the club’s 65 matches. Yet, it wasn’t enough for him to top the list around world football for matches played for his club side. Lynner García of Guatemalan side Comunicaciones FC featured in 62 games. His 2,066 minutes on the field, however, paled in comparison to Goldson’s 5,610.

That was enough to see Goldson reach seventh around world football for minutes on the pitch, one place ahead of Aribo.

Hearts and Scotland No.1 Craig Gordon reached the 20th spot with 5,370 minutes for club and country – one place ahead of Celtic’s indefatigable superstar McGregor.

Joe Aribo and Connor Goldson made over 100 Rangers appearances between them last season. (Photo by Craig Williamson / SNS Group)

At 39, Gordon is the oldest player in the top 100 for minutes played, and he continued to show his importance at both domestic and international level throughout the campaign. With Hearts in European action next season, he could possibly top that across the next 12 months.

The only player to break the 6,000-minute mark was former Falkirk goalkeeper Schmeichel.

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Celtic's Callum McGregor and Hearts' Craig Gordon were amongst the top 25 in world football for minutes played. (Photo by Rob Casey / SNS Group)

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