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The Premiership Team Of The Decade

This decade has seen the Premiership continue to grow and attract some of the worlds greatest players throughout the last ten years. By continuing to attract some of the biggest stars in the world, only La Liga can truly consider itself a rival for the quality of the players on show throughout the league. Yet who would make the best Premiership team of the decade?

Which players have consistently delivered year in, year out, or given years of sterling service throughout the decade? Well I present you with my best 11 of the last ten years, from goalkeeper to striker and I think you may be surprised with some of my choices. Once you’ve glanced through the team, let me know who you think should have been in or your best 11 of the decade.

1. Shay Given

The most consistent goalkeeper of the last ten years, with only the criminally underrated Jussi Jaaskelainen coming close for me. Seemingly trying to keep Newcastle up on his own, he served under 9 managers at St James Park this decade until he finally ran out of patience with the chaos in the boardroom and accepted a move to Manchester City. Since joining City in January, along with Craig Bellamy, he’s easily been head and shoulders above the other high profile signings at Eastlands.

2. Gary Neville

England’s most underrated player of the last 15 years and one of the best fullbacks this country has ever produced. Solid, dependable and wholly committed to Manchester United, Neville has often been in the shadow of higher profile players at United. For all the plaudits that Scholes, Giggs and Beckham received, without Gary Neville, it would have been a very different period without his consistent quality for club and country.Was clearly the best full back in Europe for a while along with Michel Salgado.

3. Ashley Cole

Yes, he’s got the personality that gets on your nerves and his autobiography was beyond deluded, but he’s been head and shoulders above most other left backs in the last ten years. Despite his issues, Cole is a fabulous full back and his duels with Ronaldo for both club and country have been more exciting than they should be. Only Patrice Evra can come close to him over the last few years. If only he could score more goals!

4. Roy Keane

Love him or hate him, Keane was the ultimate midfield enforcer over the first half of the decade in the Premiership. When Arsenal and Manchester United clashed, Keane vs Vieira was always worth the waiting for. Yet, he scored more than his fair share of important goals than Vieira and Makelele who were the other two key players in a similar position. Controversial until the end, Keane has always spoke his mind, but as a player, for me he was peerless.

5. John Terry

Mr Chelsea, 100% no nonsense defending, Terry epitomises everything that defenders represent. Tough, uncompromising and occasionally has too much to say on the pitch but as captain of club and country, Terry has given everything for the cause at domestic and international level. When he retires, Chelsea will have a major job on replacing him.

6. Rio Ferdinand

Another player who’s off field antics can sometimes grate with the followers of football, but there is no doubting the quality he has as a player. The silk to Terry’s steel for England and Vidic for Manchester United, Ferdinand is the best centre half of his generation. He’s had a ropey few months struggling with injuries and the scandal that the missed drug test caused unfairly tainted his reputation for a while but only Ledley King can come close as a footballing centre half over the last decade.

7. Christiano Ronaldo

Love him or hate him, Ronaldo’s 2007-2008 season was something magical. Quite how he kept scoring at the rate he did can’t really be explained and the following season was always going to disappoint but even though his head had been turned, he still kept scoring marvelous goals throughout the season. If he can replicate his domestic form internationally, then he will be remembered as one of the greats, but he has yet to deliver for Portugal. He needs a great World Cup to cement his reputation. Pace, trickery and explosive finishing that belies his size.

8. Frank Lampard

There is a hair’s breadth between Lampard and Steven Gerrard for me but Lampard gets my nod because he creates more chances for his team mates and doesn’t have the nasty streak that Gerrard can fall back in to on the pitch. A fabulous finisher and a master of the late run, Lampard has consistently delivered season after season for club and country. Has struggled a little this season with the new system that Ancelotti has implemented at Stamford Bridge this year, but I wouldn’t back against him to score another 20 goals this season.

9. Thierry Henry

Well, at least he didn’t have as bad a year as Tiger Woods, his fellow Gillette endorsed scandal buddy but that handball has certainly tainted his reputation almost as much as his whining after Arsenal lost the 2006 Champions League. That aside, Henry was immense for the majority of the decade, even suffering from sciatica for the last few years. His partnership with Bergkamp left defenders dizzy during the Gunners pomp. Failings aside, a damn fine player and terrifying sight in full flight.

10. Didier Drogba

When Jose Mourniho signed him for £24 million from Marseille back in 2004, eyebrows were raised all over England, but he has made the critics more than eat their words. On his day, he is simply unplayable and is once again banging the goals in for Chelsea. His form dipped under Scolari and he flirted with leaving the club, but he’s still at Stamford Bridge and the Blues are far more formidable for his continued presence.

11. Ryan Giggs

What is there to say about Ryan Giggs that hasn’t been said? How good would England have been if he’d stayed true to his schoolboy football roots instead of choosing to represent Wales. Clearly in the category of the greatest players never to have made it to a World Cup, he has scored and created more goals for Manchester United than you can think of. Even now, with Ferguson wrapping him in cotton wool he still delivers. A truly remarkable player.

Notable mentions must go to the following players: Jussi Jaaskelainen, Patrice Evra, Jamie Carragher, Ledley King, Patrick Vieira, Cesc Fabregas,Michael Essien, Paul Scholes, Steven Gerrard, Wayne Rooney, Fernando Torres and Dennis Bergkamp. I don’t think anyone would come up with a similar starting 11, so comments please!

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  1. samy

    January 22, 2011 at 12:27 pm

    lampard rocks and Stephen Gerard is a loser with liverpool he got a red card
    with man utd

  2. jabril mumin

    December 9, 2010 at 9:34 am




    no team should be with out garard and schols for this peirod i will also find
    machal assein haman

  3. kevin

    July 21, 2010 at 8:39 pm

    neville??? id put his brother over him any day and hes average.
    carragher campbell terry cole

    ronaldo keane scholes gerrard

    rooney henry(player of decade)

    close: vieira , lampard , pires , friedel , gary neville….haha not

  4. Slaton

    May 6, 2010 at 5:27 pm

    Interesting team and it works though not what I would consider the Team of the Decade.

    Given was good for this decade but certainly not as good as Van der Sar or Petr Cech prior to injury or Brad Freidel. In addition to this error no team should be without Scholes or Gerard for this period. I would also find it impossible to exclude Michael Essien.

    My team would therefore be

    Brad Feidel

    Michael Essien (Left Back) just because I cannot leave him out and he can do it
    Rio Ferdinand
    John Terry (by a toe)
    Stephen Gerard (Right Back) imho his best position

    Roy Keane
    Paul Scholes

    Frank Lampard

    Thierry Henry
    Didier Drogba
    Christiano Ronaldo

  5. tony

    March 17, 2010 at 10:53 pm

    i stumbled across this website and flicked through a few articles which i quite enjoyed, thats until i read this one.

    no scholes, bergkamp or shearer???

    think whoever wrote this should stick to writing articles about that funny shaped football game you guys play over the pond

  6. albin

    January 9, 2010 at 12:30 am

    I cant imagine Ashily Cole in the list.And why not included Gerrard n Rooney

  7. alan mccoy

    January 2, 2010 at 2:59 pm

    Lampard over Gerrard? Drogba? Terry? Cole? Where’s Paul Scholes? Obviously written by a Chelsea “fan”. Hyypia was better than Terry and the over-rated Ferdinand put together! I’m surprised Mutu and Casiraghi didn’t make it. Bollocks

  8. Liam

    December 31, 2009 at 10:31 pm

    Lampard was the premiership player of the decade like it or lump it.The stats as Rafa would say have Lampard playing the most games,the most wins.The fourth top scorer and the second most assists.The man is a Rolls Royce.Gerrard is a terrific player,all blood and guts and endevour but it’s no good putting a donkey into the Grand National.

  9. Gman

    December 30, 2009 at 6:17 am

    Where is PAUL SCHOLES??? Goodness me, over the past ten years, players such as: Henry, Zidane, Giggs, Davids, Fabragas and many more have all stated that Scholes is the best player they have played against/watched.
    My first choice in midfield-no question!

    • BH

      January 2, 2010 at 9:22 am

      being solid for a long time does not equate one for being part of a team of the decade. same goes for Giggs. Never exceptional IMO, just good and consistent – which is why his team won so much. But a team of the decade? never. Gimme Gerrard, Rooney or even Ruud over Giggs and Scholes any day.

  10. Simon Burke

    December 30, 2009 at 4:54 am

    These are always fun – you can never include them all.
    Personally I’d have Robert Pires over Giggs – one Arsenal player in the team of the decade hardly seems fair.

    Gerrard over Lampard.

    Ruud over Drogba.

    I cant believe we cant find a better Right back than Neville who at his peak was never world class. Still we can hardly give it to Steve Finnan.

    Anelka too deserves a mention as he scored bags of goals for half the clubs in the league!

  11. Bishopville Red

    December 29, 2009 at 10:13 pm

    I’d take Van Nistlerooy over Drogba, and EASILY put in Sol Campbell or Ricardo Carvallho over the painfully overrated John Terry. JT’s not even the best centre half at Chelsea, let alone the league for the last 10 years.

    Quick question: Whom did the most successful manager in England choose when he neded to fix his goalkeeping issues?

    The fact that your choice for ‘keeper of the decade can’t play a ball with his feet or handle crosses speaks volumes about the drop in level of Goalkeeping in England over the last 10 years. I’d take Ed Van Der Sar. He’s been around the EPL since 2001. Time certainly does fly! In addition to winning almost everything there is to win with Manchester United, he did a lot more with a lot less at Fulham compared to Given.

    Jaaskelainen: another excellent shot stopper, but like Given, does little to prevent the shots in the first place. Terrible with his feet, sub-par on crosses.


  12. Clampdown

    December 29, 2009 at 9:28 pm

    It’s like a who’s who of Premier League tw*ts, except for Giggs.

  13. Rob McCluskey

    December 29, 2009 at 9:12 pm

    Its a good list and a nice insight into who you think is the best team of the decade

    I think up front is up for a lot of debate though, i’d personally put Shearer instead of Drogba up front, because he was Newcastle united (he’s the real person that kept us going on the pitch all those years – although shay was one of the best players i’ve ever seen play and will always be welcome back!) and i’m quite suprised he didn’t even get any mention at all. You could always say Bergkamp, owen or van nistlerooy i suppose! I wouldn’t say Rooney, not yet, the next decade will be his i think rather than this one!

    I suppose i’d agree in the fact i’d put Gerrard instead of Lampard, hes better at playing at more positions on the pitch (Lampard changed position at the moment and not getting many goals!) and hes saved Liverpool countless times.

  14. Afif

    December 29, 2009 at 8:56 pm

    who make this list have to be a chelski i know it

    • john

      January 9, 2010 at 8:02 pm

      could be a rag fan there s enough of them in the team even the diving ballerina got in . bet fergys on the bench

  15. edgar

    December 29, 2009 at 8:10 pm

    I also think that you should take out Lampard and put in Gerrard. He is Liverpool (this coming from a Manchester United fan). How many times has he single-handedly saved Liverpool after being down, or destined for a draw, to take them to a win? Lampard is good also, but I do not think he has been such a key role for Chelsea this whole decade, as Gerrard has been for Liverpool. My biggest problem with your starting eleven? No Van Nistelrooy? Just look up his stats…

  16. kevin_amold

    December 29, 2009 at 7:41 pm

    Yeah, I thought van Nistelrooy might have been included. I’m okay with the list though.

  17. Dan B

    December 29, 2009 at 7:37 pm

    Gerrard should definately be in the first, he is mr Liverpool, one of the most inspirational players of the decade by far. You can take any of those midfielders out to accomodate him. Also Rooney is a must, as is brad friedel.

  18. Eric T

    December 29, 2009 at 7:19 pm

    Honestly, how the hell can Steven Gerrard be excluded from the list. I’ve seen thousands of these “Team of the Decade” things and this is the only one that has failed to include him.

    Also, Drogba? Seriously? Over the likes of Rooney, Owen, and van Nistelrooy?

  19. Tom Dixon

    December 29, 2009 at 6:55 pm

    Rooney has to be in there somewhere. No one plays all over the pitch to do what has to be done for his team quite like Rooney. United suffered after Keane left and didn’t quite recover until Rooney really let it loose playing in the hole or out on the right. His attitude on the pitch is pervasive.

  20. Pocketinfo

    December 29, 2009 at 6:35 pm

    Steven Gerrard – would have to be in it. (take out Lampard)
    Wayne Rooney also. ( remove Giggs – over-rated IMHO) – maybe previous decade.

    Goalkeeping spot is harder as many have dropped in and out of form.

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