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Football News: Overrated Premier League XI

Overrated Premier League XI
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Overrated Premier League XI


Just to be clear this is not the worst players in the Prem, merely the ones I keep reading or hearing about how great they are last season, that I think are least deserving of the accolades and acclaim they receive. It is not that they are the worst player in their position in the league, merely the ones that people most seem to overrate. I would like to thank the person who suggested this article, but I forgot to note down who it was, so apologies to whoever it was!


Once I dismissed Simon Mignolet and Joe Hart as people have mostly cottoned on to the fact they are dodgy, it left a straight shootout between Thibaut Courtois and Kasper Schmeichel. While Courtois is an excellent keeper, he has never quite hit the heights of the likes of David de Gea, yet is often referred to as being in the same bracket but I decided to go for Kasper as, for some reason, looking a little like his dad and doing the same starfish impression is enough to fool people into thinking he is top class. Of course you cannot question his ability or you will get 'he won the league' thrown in your face by people, however he is an adequate Premier League keeper at his very best. Last season he was a very poor error-prone keeper.
Kasper Schmeichel - Leicester City


Right Back:
This was an easy choice, there are very few highly rated right backs about, so very few have anything much to live up to. Once I decided to discount Nathaniel Clyne, as he spent most of the season injured, though it is shocking how many people forgot just how poor he was before the injury, it only really left one option. While the other Spurs right back is far worse, most people have spotted that Serge Aurier was hopeless, but they still seem to think Kieran Trippier is an improvement on Kyle Walker. He simply is not and it was clear last season that the full backs last season were a much weaker level than the season before.
Kieran Trippier - Tottenham Hotspur


Centre Backs:
This was probably the most difficult choice of all, so few defenders can actually defend these days yet are lauded as great players. You have the Brighton pair of Lewis Dunk and Shane Duffy, that somehow are highly rated despite numerous errors and an inability to cope with deadball situations (or to offer anything attacking deadballs). You have the likes of Nathan Ake and Davinson Sanchez that are all over the place positionally but are quick so normally get held up as great defenders because they chased back and got in the way, as the commentators always seem to miss the fact that they were 5 yards out of position in the first place. Then there is Chris Smalling, who can be comical on the ball at times. Laurent Koscielny, who looks like a man whose legs have gone but the commentators still talk about him as the player he was a few years ago before injuries took their toll. There are more as well, but I was only choosing two, so I went for Harry Maguire and Ryan Shawcross. Shawcross was never the greatest defender, he relied on not leaving space in behind and being very grabby. I have yet to see him close to an attacker in the box without having hold of a shirt, it often astounds me that he does not give away more penalties. These days he has slowed down so much, he is completely lost positionally because that first yard in his head has long gone. Maguire is being talked about like he is the second coming of Beckenbauer and Moore, despite being a very average defender, positionally suspect and having a tendency to give away possession by trying to run the ball upfield. I personally like a centre back to bring the ball out of defence, but not when they give it away 9 times out of 10. Whenever you watch him play, commentators completely gloss over his numerous errors to the point that it annoys me. He is clearly a favourite and I fail to see why. It is not a coincidence that Leicester's defence has been poor since he became a part of it.
Ryan Shawcross - Stoke City
Harry Maguire - Leicester City


Left Backs:
Like right back, there were not that many options to choose from. There was one outstanding candidate, a guy who seems to have let all the praise from the previous season go to his head and who spent more time believing he was a centre forward then a left back (well left wing back to be precise). He did pop up with the odd goal, but he was also regularly missing when attacks developed down that side of the pitch and lacks the pace, and the inclination a lot of the time, to get back. I am, of course, referring to Marcos Alonso. He is a good player with a lovely left foot delivery, but there were far too many times that he was in the box looking to get on the end of things when he should have been the one out on the wing delivering it.
Marcos Alonso - Chelsea


There were three central midfielders that stood out for me as overrated more than the rest, so this was an easy choice. First off the obvious choice, Paul Pogba. A quality midfielder but not even close to being as great as he is claimed to be. Flits in and out of games far too much and is a MOTD/YouTube highlights player, rather than a 90 minute man. Secondly I decided on Cesc Fabregas. It is no wonder N'Golo Kante admitted to being tired this season, he spent it carrying Fabregas! I have seen roadkill show more mobility than him. The final piece of the midfield puzzle has to be Jack Wilshere, one of the most overrated players of the last 20 years. Even on those rare occasions he is fit he offers little to nothing as a player but still seems to get lauded simply for making it onto the pitch.
Paul Pogba - Manchester United
Cesc Fabregas - Chelsea
Jack Wilshere - Arsenal


The first two choices were easy, but the actual central striker was a difficult one, there are very few ridiculously overrated that I could think of. I even toyed with the idea of picking Harry Kane as, great player that he is, he does take a ludicrous number of shots to get his goal tally. However, despite that, he is still a top striker and, while a case can be made for him being overrated, it is a very shaky one! Instead I went for another striker that scores goals mainly because he just hits a shot any time he gets the ball within 50 yards of the net, no matter how many better options there are and wastes so many good chances for his team by doing so - Jermain Defoe. Yes he is a decent striker, but he is nowhere near the level of the best strikers that he is often compared to. The other two pretty much picked themselves. Firstly Xherdan Shaqiri as he only looks good on highlight reels. He spends 89 minutes of a game strolling around complaining and whining and offering absolutely nothing apart from earache for teammates. Plenty of ability but it is being wasted by a player who just wants to stroll about the pitch. The other forward is totally the opposite and I was shocked to read the esteem he is held in as he is pitifully poor, despite the excellent work ethic. It has to be Danny Welbeck, who has a poor touch, has the 'Bambi-on-ice' routine down pat and is injured so often you tend to forget just how bad a player he is. In fact you can be forgiven for forgetting he even exists with the amount of time he is out and how few goals he registers.

Written by Tris Burke June 09 2018 21:38:41