You can’t always be a winner in life, sometimes you have done something outstanding but you never get the credit for it because there was one person who was just that little bit better. Well we here at bm23 sports reviews like to look beyond the top of the list and give credit to those players who weren’t quite good enough to get into the team of the season, but still had a tremendous season.
There were a number of keepers who could have claimed this spot, however I felt like Lloris deserved it the most. The best measurement of goalkeepers in my opinion is how few howlers they have and to my knowledge Lloris had very few this year. Lloris is a major part of the reason that Spurs put up the joint best defence in the league for this year, he leads from the back and although I do at times think he should be more vocal as captain, I do understand it is difficult for keepers in that regard. I’d say that he’s the second best keeper in the league and one of the best in the world as well.
Kyle Walker isn’t the greatest footballer, however he is an athlete and he fits into Mauricio Pochettino’s style of play perfectly. Capable of getting up and down the wings at a high intensity, Walker had his best season since the year he won the young player of the year award. Walker is still liable to the occasional slip up or rush of blood, however he has generally matured as a player under Poch and this season is a great example of that.
I watched Van Dijk a lot when he was at Celtic, he was way too good for the Scottish Premiership, however I thought he would struggle when he took the inevitable step up. A player who is talented on the ball, built like an absolute monster, is great at attacking set pieces but often had lapses of concentration and too often thought he was better on the ball than he actually was. In his first few games, the Van Dijk blunders were there to be seen and I thought to myself that’s what I expected, but then something changed and the good Van Dijk came out for the rest of the season. I don’t know if it was just him maturing as a player or if it’s great management from Koeman, however Van Dijk has improved massively in the space of this season and was arguably Southampton’s best player in what was a very good Southampton team.
Virgil Van Dijk
Wes Morgan didn’t miss a single minute of Premier League football this season, in a team that went on and won the league, quite a special achievement. Morgan is the definition of a Championship player; he’s played the majority of his career at that level and was solid, so to think that he has been the iron man captain of the most unlikely champions of all is another great story. He only scored two goals, however both of those goals were vital to Leicester’s title win, he always led from the front and especially in the second half of the season he was vital to Leicester alongside Robert Huth. He’s an old fashioned no nonsense centre back and fits perfectly into Ranieri’s system. It’s unfortunate that Morgan opted to play for Jamaica because he thought he’d never be good enough to be selected for England, yet if he hadn’t he would be one of the first names on the team sheet for the upcoming Euros.
One of the main reasons Danny Rose didn’t make it into the team of the year was because he only managed to play 24 games. Some of that was injuries and some of it was down to Pochettino liking to rotate his full backs, despite all of that Rose had a really good year. I don’t think Rose is the greatest player out there, however he has bags of energy and pace and fits perfectly into Poch’s high press quick counter style.
Maybe a bit of a weird choice, however I felt that Antonio deserved a mention in the second team of the year. He played both right sided positions this season and looked comfortable in both, contributing 8 goals and 3 assists. In his first Premier League season Antonio looked right at home, and to think that he missed a couple of months at the start of the season, whilst also having no pre-season at all. Big, strong, fast and an end product to go along with it as well, Antonio is built for the Premier League. A massive part of West Ham’s excellent season this year and he’s unlucky that England don’t seem to call up West Ham players because he should have been in with a good shout.
Only 20 years old and in his first season of top tier football, Dele Alli managed to produce 10 goals and 9 assists and was a major part of Tottenham’s title push, quite the feat. He won the PFA young player of the year, and deservedly so, not only did Alli have a great year; he also showed glimpses of absolute genius. If Alli can keep his head in the game and if he continues to work on his development then he will be an absolute star.
An excellent first season from De Bruyne, which if it hadn’t been cut short through injuries would almost certainly have seen him in the reckoning for player of the season and would definitely have pushed City further up the table. His first year in the league and De Bruyne managed 7 goals and 9 assists, and has already become City’s most creative force. City’s drop in form just so happened to coincide with De Bruyne dropping out of the team, and when so many of his teammates looked like they couldn’t give a fuck, De Bruyne put in quality performance after quality performance. A pricey transfer, however if he keeps up this level of form then it will be well worth it.
Kevin De Bruyne
Eriksen was good last year, however this season he became great. A massive player I Spurs’ title challenging side, contributing with 6 goals and 13 assists. Eriksen has matured greatly and is now capable of creating opportunities out of very little, he dictates passing and whenever he is on the ball running towards goal, opposition defences are thinking whether they should change their undies now or wait till the end of the game. He steps up in the big games and should receive more plaudits than he currently does.
I considered not putting Ozil in this team because he was pretty dire in the second half of the season. I read a lot of people saying that Ozil is a gem in a team that isn’t up to his level; however that isn’t how I see it. For me Ozil is the sort of player who gets out when the going is tough, when the team needs him the most he is never anywhere to be found and too often he goes missing in the biggest games. His assist tally of 19 for the season is impressive; however assists are one of the worst stats for skewing how well a player has played. I’m not saying that is necessarily the case for Ozil, who was very good in the first half of the season, but he only had 3 assists in the second half of the year. When he went missing the results dropped, and although Arsenal fans think they have a gem, in fact they have a spoilt brat who likes to throw his arms about, huff at his teammates and put in dirty tackles when things aren’t going his way. Most over rated foreign player in the league.
I don’t think that Aguero had a great year, yet he still managed to score 24 goals, the second highest tally in the league. He is City’s best player and along with De Bruyne they looked like the only two outfield players who cared about what happened this season (Kompany too but he was never fit). Aguero is one of the league’s best players, and season after season he has proved that, this season was just another example of what a talent he is, and to think he’s never been able to stay fully fit, a scary thought.
If you’ve not been counting, that’s 5 Spurs, 2 City, 1 Leicester, 1 West Ham, 1 Southampton and 1 Arsenal player in the second team of the season.
So what did you think of the Premier League second team of the year? Is it short of one Andy Carroll? Maybe you’re wondering where all the Aston Villa players are? Well leave a comment and share those thoughts.