Weekend Review Show: EPL Talk Podcast

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Manchester United has snapped their losing streak to Liverpool while Chelsea stumbled at Ewood Park. In this episode of the EPL Talk Podcast, I am joined by Laurence McKenna and Kartik Krishniayer to talk about those results, Arsenal’s sole possession of second place, the race for fourth and the two big matches that reinforced the fight against relegation.

Late in the podcast, we refer to an email thread that has been going-around amongst us, where I posit that a credible EPL XI of the Season can be made from players from eleven different countries.

In a 4-4-2 formation, here are the eleven countries represented in my team:

Cote d’Ivoire
South Africa
South Korea
United States

There were hints within the show, and if you’re so inclined, give it a try. Figure out which eleven players were on my mind when I sent that email to Laurence.

I look forward to your guesses.

20 thoughts on “Weekend Review Show: EPL Talk Podcast”

  1. Haven’t had the chance to listen to the podcast for clues, but my guess:

    GK – Friedel (United States)
    LB – Evra (France)
    RB – Corluka (Croatia)
    CB – Dunne (Ireland)
    CB – Hangeland (Norway)
    ML – Pienaar (South Africa)
    MR – Park (South Korea)
    MC – Palacios (Honduras)
    MC – Fabregas (Spain)
    ST – Drogba (Cote d’Ivoire)
    ST – Rooney (England)

    1. I can’t believe the first person got so close. You’re one off. I would tell you which one, but that would totally give it away. But I feel completely transparent by the first person replying almost unraveling the “riddle.”

        1. No, not Clichy.

          Evra is one of the three players I can’t see leaving off the team.

          But also regarding Clichy – and this will serve as another hint – the amount of time somebody has been able to play in league was a consideration.

          1. You got it. Lee takes advantage of a.) him being very good, b.) be being a sticker for using a 4-4-2 with a LW, RW, and DM, and c.) it not being a stellar season for RWs. At the same time, I’m not sure – gun to my head – I would stay with Lee. However, if I switched to Valencia, we would still have 11 different nations represented.

            Congrats, Jean-Christian.

  2. Drogba Rooney

    Pienaar Park Fabregas Dempsey

    Evra Figueroa Hangeland Corluka


    p.s. And If Fabregas were to go to Chelsea I don’t know what I would do with myself

  3. I think the first man had it, so I tried to make my own personal 11 from 11 different countries.
    ST- Drogba (Ivory Coast)
    ST- Rooney (England)
    MF- Arshavin (Russia)
    MF- Fabregas (Spain)
    MF- Valencia (Ecuador)
    MF- Song (Cameroon)
    LB- Evra (France)
    CB- Vermaelen (Belgium)
    CB- Dunne (Ireland)
    RB- Corluka (Croatia)
    GK- Friedel (USA)

      1. Funny, because I’m a diehard Spurs fan. Arsenal really benefits with this exercise from having a bunch of different international players who’ve stayed healthy. A healthy Vidic or Carvalho easily would have knocked out Vermaelen, as would Essien with Song. It killed me to do it, but I had to choose Song over Palacios as the superior central midfielder.

  4. So my guess for your list is:

    GK: Friedel (USA)
    LB: Evra (FRA)
    CB: Dunne (IRE)
    CB: Hangeland (NOR)
    RB: Corluka (CRO)
    MF: Park (KOR)
    MF: Fabregas (ESP)
    MF: Palacios (HON)
    MF: Pienaar (SA)
    F: Drogba (CIV)
    F: Rooney (ENG)

    Personally, there is no way that Palacios or Hangeland belong in any XI of the year. Also, I am not sure that the old trick of going 3-4-3 isn’t the only real way to reward all of the people that deserve to be in the EPL best XI even if you are doing “one from each nation” thing.

    GK: Friedel (USA), Aston Villa
    D: Evra (FRA), Man Utd
    D: Dunne (IRE), Aston Villa
    D: Vermaleen (BEL), Arsenal
    LM: Pienaar (SA), Everton
    CM: Fletcher (SCO), Man Utd
    CM: Fabregas (ESP), Arsenal
    RM: Valencia (ECU), Man Utd
    F: Drogba (CIV), Chelsea
    F: Tevez (ARG), Man City
    F: Rooney (ENG), Man Utd

    1. Everybody’s real close, and your XI is probably better than mine. The XI I came up with may not being the XI I would argue for team of the season, but it is one I think is credible.

      Regarding Palacios, at his best (particularly at the beginning of the season), he was the best defensive midfielder in the league. How long that lasted, I’m not sure.

  5. We have one guess that came incredibly close, but here is one caveat to remember:

    No club has more than two representatives in the team.

    Jean-Christian was three players from one club.

  6. In case people missed it, Jean-Christian solved the puzzle:


    I’m not sure that this would be my XI of the season, but I believe all of these players have strong arguments. The picks I would have the most trouble “standing by” are not difficult to guess: Hangeland, Palacios, Lee, and Pienaar. All four are still having wonderful seasons.

  7. Thanks for including my question in the weekend review podcast Richard. That was really cool! I’ll get back to you with my global 11


  8. Solid selection, I don’t agree with 3-4 of the picks but your picks are certainly credible. My missing plalyers would be:

    Fletcher, Vermaelen, Song, Ivanovic, Milner, Tevez

    1. All credibile replacements, in my mind, too.

      When I pick teams, I expect to be “wrong” – to a certain extent – with some of my picks merely because my viewing experience and bias is different than others’.

      I suppose that’s why they ask more than one person to vote for these types of teams/awards, huh? Regardless, I find the different views fascinating.

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