From rock-solid centre-back pairings, through destroyer and creator central midfield partners to the lethal combinations up top, football has a history of great partnerships.
But which twosomes have been the most fruitful in Premier League history?
It is fairly common knowledge Tottenham’s Harry Kane and Son Heung-min lead the way, but with Bayern Munich one of several clubs desperate to land the England striker this summer, is that pairing about to come to an end?
BBC Sport gives a countdown of the top 10 pairings that have yielded the most combined goals and assists in the English top flight since the start of the 1992-93 season.
We also want to hear who your favourite attacking duos are from any club at any level. Use the form at the bottom of this article to get in touch.
=9. Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane – 22 goal combinations for Liverpool
Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane
They did not always look like they enjoyed playing with each other, but Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane certainly linked up effectively during their time together at Liverpool.
First appearing together for the Reds in the first game of the 2017-18 season – a 3-3 draw at Watford – the pair would go on to play a major role in the club winning four major trophies under Jurgen Klopp, including ending Liverpool’s 30-year wait for a 19th top-flight title in 2019-20. Of their 22 combinations Salah scored 12, Mane 10.
The pairing was broken up when Mane left the club to join Bayern Munich in the summer of 2022, after scoring 90 league goals for the Reds.
Salah is still at Anfield and netting regularly, his 29 goals last season taking his Liverpool league tally to 137, fifth on the club’s all-time list.
=9. Alan Shearer and Nolberto Solano – 22 goal combinations for Newcastle
Nolberto Solano and Alan Shearer
When you have scored more Premier League goals than any other player it is inevitable you will have forged a productive partnership with a team-mate or two.
Alan Shearer netted 260 times for Blackburn and Newcastle, and the partnership that yielded most goal contributions was with Nolberto Solano during their seven seasons together at the Magpies.
It is fair to assume Solano did more of the providing from his position on the right wing and number nine Shearer the scoring, with the Peruvian’s overall league assist tally at the club outweighing his goals by 54 to 37. Of the combinations between the two, Solano assisted 16 of them.
Shearer’s retirement from playing at the end of the 2006 season brought the partnership to an end, with Solano playing on for two more campaigns during which he provided eight more goals and nine assists.
=7. Robbie Fowler and Steve McManaman – 24 goals combinations for Liverpool
Robbie Fowler and Steve McManaman
When two highly talented players grow up playing together in the youth system and then first team of a club, it is natural they form a bond.
Liverpool duo Robbie Fowler and Steve McManaman milked that for all it was worth on the pitch in more than 250 appearances together for the Reds during the 1990s.
The latter broke through first in 1990, beginning a Liverpool career that yielded 66 goals and 86 assists. Fowler joined him in the first team three years later before going on to score 128 times in the league for the club. McManaman was very much the provider of the two, assisting 20 of 24 goal combinations between the two.
In an interview with BT Sport in 2020, Fowler said he was “gutted” and “almost cried” when McManaman told him he was leaving to join Real Madrid at the end of the 1998-99 season. His parting gift was an assist for Fowler’s last goal of that season – a 3-2 win over Everton.
They reprised the partnership at Manchester City, but it yielded no further goal combinations to add to their tally.
=7. Freddie Ljungberg and Thierry Henry – 24 goal combinations for Arsenal
Freddie Ljungberg and Thierry Henry
Freddie Ljungberg had already spent a promising first season at Arsenal before Thierry Henry joined him at the club in the summer of 1999.
Over the next eight years, the Sweden midfielder and France winger-turned-striker formed a very fruitful partnership predominantly down the right for the Gunners. They would win two Premier League titles and three FA Cups together, with Ljungberg providing 46 goals and 31 assists, with Henry netting 175 times and setting up others for another 80 in the Premier League.
It might surprise you to learn Ljungberg scored the majority of goals in their combinations, netting 15 of the 24. As part of that, Henry provided all three assists for the Swede’s only career hat-trick, against Sunderland on the final day of the 2002-03 season.
Both players left Arsenal in the summer of 2007, with Ljungberg heading to West Ham and Henry to Barcelona.
- Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino – 25 goal combinations for Liverpool
Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino
Salah’s second appearance on the list comes courtesy of the impressive on-field relationship he forged with the other member of Liverpool’s famed attacking trio under Klopp – Roberto Firmino.
The Brazilian pre-dates Klopp at Anfield, signing four months before the German was appointed manager, and became a key player in his side, scoring 82 Premier League goals and assisting 55 during his Reds career.
As with the partnership with Mane, these two also shared the goals pretty equally between them in their combinations – Salah 13, Firmino 12 – with the latter assisting the former’s first Liverpool goal, on his debut at Watford in 2017.
The Egyptian is now the last man standing at Anfield of the attacking trio, with Firmino having left to join Saudi Arabian club Al-Ahli.
- Darren Anderton and Teddy Sheringham – 27 goals combinations for Tottenham
Teddy Sheringham and Darren Anderton
Even with Teddy Sheringham moving to Manchester United for four seasons and Darren Anderton’s well-documented injury problems, the pair still managed to forge a very productive partnership at Tottenham.
In seven seasons, split over two spells, the duo used all their vision, skill and guile to pick open defences, combining 27 times for goals, with Sheringham netting the vast majority of those (20). Their peak as a partnership came at the start of the 1994-95 season, with Anderton providing six assists for Sheringham in the first half of the league campaign.
They also played together 15 times for England, most notably throughout Euro 1996 as the Three Lions reached the semi-finals on home turf.
Sheringham’s second departure from Spurs in 2003, to join Portsmouth, ended their playing relationship, with Anderton leaving the club a year later to join Birmingham.
=3. Robert Pires and Thierry Henry – 29 goals combinations for Arsenal
Robert Pires and Thierry Henry
Like Salah, Henry is a two-timer on this list, with his second appearance coming courtesy of the link-up he forged at Arsenal with France team-mate Robert Pires.
Unlike his partnership with Ljungberg, this time Henry provided the greater share of the goals, scoring 17 to Pires’ 12 before the latter departed for Villarreal in 2006.
It is unsurprising to see the pair so high on the list, such was the craft and ruthlessness each possessed during what was a particularly fruitful period for the club under manager Arsene Wenger.
In six seasons together at Arsenal – during which Pires scored 63 goals and provided 42 assists in the league – they won five major domestic trophies, including the ‘Invincibles’ Premier League title of 2003-04. They also won the World Cup and European Championship together for France.
=3. David Silva and Sergio Aguero – 29 goal combinations for Manchester City
David Silva and Sergio Aguero
One has the fourth most goals in Premier League history, the other seventh most assists and they played together for one of the most successful clubs of the modern era – of course Manchester City’s Sergio Aguero and David Silva were going to be on this list.
With the Argentine’s notoriety as a scorer and the Spaniard’s creative qualities, it will be no surprise to learn Aguero scored 21 of their 29 goal combinations.
Fittingly, the last of Silva’s assists for Aguero was for one of the goals in his final City hat-trick – a 12th in total that saw him surpass the Premier League record held by Alan Shearer.
After nine seasons together at City, which brought 11 major trophies including four league titles, the partnership was ended when Silva joined Real Sociedad in 2020. Aguero left the club the next year for a brief spell at Barcelona before retiring.
- Didier Drogba and Frank Lampard – 36 goal combinations for Chelsea
Didier Drogba and Frank Lampard
When you have two of the most powerful and prominent finishers in Premier League history operating together in one of the most ruthlessly efficient sides the division has known, it is inevitable that they are going to provide for each other.
Lampard was involved in 240 league goals (scoring 147, assisting 93) while Drogba scored 104 times and set up another 64 in the top flight for Chelsea. In eight seasons together at the club, they combined for 36 goals, with the Ivorian striker netting 24 of them.
They also combined twice in finals to help the Blues win the FA Cup, Lampard teeing up Drogba to score the only goal to beat Manchester United in extra time in the 2007 final, and assisting his goal in the 2-1 win over Liverpool in 2012.
Their prolific partnership ended in 2012 when Drogba left Chelsea to join Chinese Super League side Shanghai Shenhua.
- Harry Kane and Son Heung-min – 47 goal combinations for Tottenham
Harry Kane and Son Heung-min
They have been the most lauded attacking pairing in the Premier League in recent seasons, so it will surprise few to see them number one on this list.
Kane and Son are now way out in front of their nearest challengers and closing in on 50 goal combinations.
The England captain has long been one of the Premier League’s leading marksmen, netting 213 times in the division to date, but it is since he refined his game to become a complete forward and also turn master provider that he and the rapid Son have soared as a duo.
Of their 47 combinations, Son edges it on goals with 24 to Kane’s 23. In a prolific two-season period – 2020-21 and 2021-22 – they linked up 21 times for goals. Kane provided all the assists for Son’s four goals at Southampton as they combined for nine goals in five games at the start of the 2020-21 campaign.
Things dropped off last season as Son struggled in front of goal, with their hopes of passing a half century of combinations now depending on whether Kane remains at Tottenham during another summer of intense transfer speculation.