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7 Premier League Players Who Used To Be Brilliant But Now They're Crap

kieron dyer lee bowyer punchup 7 Premier League Players Who Used To Be Brilliant But Now They're Crap

It’s a joy to watch players evolve in the Premier League and become world-class footballers. A few examples include Wayne Rooney, Cristiano Ronaldo and Theo Walcott. But for every starlet, there are also shining stars who seem to get worse each week and fail to live up to the promises they showed earlier on in their career.

Here are top 7 Premier League players who used to be brilliant, but now they’re crap:

  • Damien Duff (Newcastle United) - Under Jose Mourinho at Chelsea, Duff was a powerhouse down the left wing, cutting back and causing all sorts of havoc for defenders. Now the Irish winger is a shadow of himself at Newcastle.
  • Kieron Dyer (West Ham United) – Once recognized as one of the most promising England international players when he was at Ipswich and Newcastle, Dyer’s career has plummeted from worse to worse and has been hampered with injuries galore. He was signed by West Ham for £6 million more than a year ago, but has only made two appearances for the East London club.
  • Alan Smith (Newcastle United) – While at Leeds United, Smith played with a passion and energy that is rarely seen in the Premier League anymore. After Leeds were relegated, Smith’s career went from bad to worse at Manchester United and then Newcastle.
  • Lee Bowyer (West Ham United) – When Bowyer joined Leeds from Charlton, he was a record signing for a British teenager at that time. He went on to become a key figure in Leeds United reaching the semi-finals of the Champions League and UEFA Cup, and was voted player of the year by supporters for two years. But despite playing his best football for Leeds, his career has been riddled with court cases, injuries and even an on-field brawl with fellow Kieron Dyer.
  • Jermaine Jenas (Tottenham Hotspur) – Some would argue whether he was good in the first place, but the frustrating thing about the England midfielder is that he shows flashes of brilliance five percent of the time, but then is practically invisible the remaining portion of time.
  • Darren Bent (Tottenham Hotspur) - At Ipswich and Charlton, Bent was a goalscoring machine knocking in 121 at the East Anglia club and 68 for Alan Curbishley’s side. At Charlton, he was the highest scoring Englishman in the Premier League during the 2005/2006 season. But after joining Spurs for £16.5 million, his career has slumped and he’s only scored twice in the Premier League so far this season.
  • Sami Hyypia (Liverpool) - Believe it or not, but there was a time when Hyypia was a rock in the centre of defense for Liverpool. In the 2000-2001 season, when he was co-captain, he helped lead the club to a historic treble, winning the FA Cup, UEFA Cup and League Cup. And he played a key role in helping Liverpool win the Champions League trophy in 2005. Since then, his performances have suffered and whenever the Finland international plays for the Reds, he appears to be a liability for the club.

Which players are we missing that should be on the list? Click the comments link below and let us know.

About Christopher Harris

Founder and publisher of World Soccer Talk, Christopher Harris is the managing editor of the site. He has been interviewed by The New York Times, The Guardian and several other publications. Plus he has made appearances on NPR, BBC World, CBC, BBC Five Live, talkSPORT and beIN SPORT. Harris, who has lived in Florida since 1984, has supported Swansea City since 1979. He's also an expert on soccer in South Florida, and got engaged during half-time of a MLS game. Harris launched EPL Talk in 2005, which was rebranded as World Soccer Talk in 2013.
View all posts by Christopher Harris →

26 Responses to 7 Premier League Players Who Used To Be Brilliant But Now They're Crap

  1. Jeff C. says:

    Sami got old (he's 35). It happens to everyone, and you can't really blame him for it.

  2. Auslander25 says:

    Bent has scored twice this season (Chelsea, Stoke). I think Bent shouldn't be on the list; he's playing in a system that doesn't suit his talents. Put him at Liverpool or Aston Villa and I think you would see completely different results.

    I'd put Owen Hargreaves on the list. Granted most of his career was spent in Germany, but United paid ~18 million for him and he's always injured.

  3. DoublePivot says:

    Bentley will join this list soon.

  4. ben says:

    Funny how many players on this list have a Newcastle connection. You might even make the argument that Michael Owen was far better during his Liverpool days than he is now, and he plays for Newcastle too.

  5. The Gaffer says:

    Jeff, Sami may be old, but you can't use that as an excuse. Look at Paolo Maldini. He's 40 and still playing good football for AC Milan.

    Cheers,
    The Gaffer

  6. Smiff says:

    He also plays in Serie A which is of a slower pace to that of the Premier League. Sami Hyypia has been a fantastic player for Liverpool over the years and his performances last season weren't that bad. Indeed, it was only due to him and Carragher being our only fit centrebacks at the time that he even started as many matches as he did.

    His experience on the training ground is also proof that he is far from 'crap'. However since you've obviously plucked Sami Hyypia out of thin air to make up your list of 'seven', let me correct it by picking Wayne Rooney.

    He was brilliant, then he was crap. Yeah he might be brilliant again now but if you can make such ludicrous suggestions then so can I. ;-) In all seriousness though, Andy Johnson is worth a shout. As is Luis Saha (although injury plays a part). Or at least his form at Fulham was 'brilliant'.

  7. ls7 says:

    Except for Hyypia, who I agree simply just got a bit old, and Alan Smith — who has been messed up by being shuffled between attack and midfield, the others have a commonality.

    They were all overrated !

  8. timmyg says:

    you could add pedersen from blackburn to that list

  9. Matt says:

    “He was signed by West Ham for £6 million more than a year ago, but has only made two appearances for the East London club.”
    Harsh, the lads been injured since his second game with one of the worst injuries possible to a player.

    As for the Hyypia thing. My god, another “Gaffer in shock have a go at Liverpool for no reason”. You clearly know absolutely f-all about football if you now think Hyypia is 'crap'. He has performed admirably in the last few seasons, remains an important player in the squad and has been a tremendous servant for TEN years at one club (a rarity in this day and age). Ask any knowledgeble football fan and they will disagree with Hyypia being thrown in with the other crap in this “article” (yeah right). If Hyypia was so crap, how come a host of Premier League clubs tried to sign him in the summer and will do so again this January?

    You really do show your bias Gaffer and it's pretty pathetic.

  10. Matt says:

    Smiff, well put. Having Hyypia on this list is truely pathetic.

  11. BishopvilleRed says:

    Nope. Pederson had a great season. That doesn't make you a brilliant player, jus one who had a great season. And came back to earth.

  12. BishopvilleRed says:

    Leeds and Newcastle. What more do you need to ay about a good chunk of this list?

    And Hyypia IS crap. Age doesn't matter. If you go on the pitch, you're good or you're not; not “good for a kid” or “good for a codger”, just good or crap. End of.

    And on that note, I offer you…..Sol Campbell

    SB

  13. doomcade says:

    Most of them played for newcastle, i can't guess why they are crap now!

  14. Django says:

    Hyypia is unfounded…putting him in the same article as Lee Bowyer is an insult. Hyypia filled in admirably last season; sure, his pace is less, but he's still quality in the air and a threat on set pieces. I keep coming back hoping the writing will get better, but time and time again it doesn't.

  15. The Gaffer says:

    Django, let me know what types of articles you'd like to see. I can't please all the people all the time, but I can try. Your input would be welcome.

    Cheers,
    The Gaffer

  16. The Gaffer says:

    Matt, how is having an opinion about a player showing my bias? I support no Premier League clubs so I call it as I see it. If Liverpool does things to impress me, I'll write about them favorably.

    Cheers,
    The Gaffer

  17. Raatzie says:

    For example, if Liverpool wins the quadruple without conceding a single goal OR point the entire rest of the season . . . well, then Gaffer will acknowledge that they had an above average year.

    Then he'll write 793 posts about why they won't win anything NEXT year.

  18. The Gaffer says:

    Raatzie, if Liverpool deserves praise, I'll gladly write about them in a favorable light as I have done on countless occasions before. To me, Liverpool fans are too sensitive. If they had won the Premier League this season, I'd be over the moon and would give them the deserved praise.

    Cheers,
    The Gaffer

  19. Raatzie says:

    “It's time for Liverpool to walk the walk instead of talking the talk.”

    I certainly agree with that.

    And as I've said before, if I were a betting man (and objective), I'd be plunking a sizable chunk of change on Chelsea, not Liverpool, to win the League.

    But mid-September through mid-October is too early for a “Liverpool (or Arsenal or Man U or Spurs . . . well, not Spurs) won't win the league” article.

    Much less the approximately 17 you've written in that span.

  20. Mateo says:

    If Hyypia belongs on this list, then so does David Beckham.. Granted he is not in the Premier League anymore but he is barely cutting it in a crap league like the MLS..

    I think you cant judge a player on the fact his age has caught up to him.

  21. steviethek says:

    Boy that Bobby Charlton doesn't play like he used to.

  22. Jon says:

    Harry Kewell should be on the list, although I accept here's no longer an EPL player.

    When he broke through at Leeds he was a marouding, flamboyent and pacey wingers. He played a key part in the club's (flashing) European success and genuinely terrified defenders.

    He joined Liverpool and seemed to lose every once of his natural talent, confidence and motivation for the game. Now he plays in Turkey – oh what might (and should) have been, Harry.

    Another Leeds United connecton too.

  23. Todd says:

    Come on Gaffer, you must be kidding about Hyppia. In fact you show pure ignorance in including him in this post. He is absolute legend and will be remembered as one of Liverpool's greatest defenders. He's 33 and has lost his spot to two very promising youngsters Daniel Agger and Martin Skyrtel. I never worry when he takes the pitch and still get joy out of watching him take on the class strikers that play in the premier league. He has had a brilliant career and it makes you look ignorant and biased to include him on this list.

  24. Tibbsy says:

    Jon,

    You make it sound as if Kewell simply chose to disappoint after his hugely impressive opening years with Leeds.

    Fact is Kewell suffered from a terrible spate of serious injuries including his achilles tendon while still at Leeds and tearing his groin off the bone at Liverpool – causing him to lose his athleticism (his electric pace and leap are all but gone) and any semblance of ongoing match fitness.

    As is the case with a lot of players with unfulfilled potential, If he stayed fit he could've been anything.

  25. Tibbsy says:

    The Gaffer, you seem to have read Wikipedia wrong while conducting your research..

    Darren Bent “knocking in 121 at the East Anglia club and 68 for Alan Curbishley’s side” didn't happen – they were his total appearances for both clubs.

    In reality he scored 49 times for Ipswich and 31 times for the Addicks.

  26. Arturi says:

    I also disagree about Hyppia although I’m not a Liverpool fan.
    But I respect your opinion.

    Yeah it’s funny how Newcastle seemed to be a bad-luck-charm to some of the guys… quite like Inter Milan post-Matthaus and before 2006-Calciopoli-scandal era.

    Darren Bent, on the other hand, has found a club to be called home by now. He’s on the right track.

    I thought maybe managers like Graeme Souness and Mark Hughes seems like a talent-drainer for some of the lads.

    Nice topic… although crap is a bit too harsh

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