Leighton Baines

Premier League Best XI 13/14

Goalkeeper: DAVID DE GEA (Manchester United)

“What?! You’re putting a United player in here and this season?!” Why yes, yes I am. Sure, the majority of the Manchester United squad have left a lot to be desired this season and there are few if any that will come out of this (their worst in Premier League history) with any credit. But one player that certainly does is their young Spanish goalkeeper David De Gea. He has been superb all season and become the finest keeper in the country and one of the best in Europe now too.

Right-back: SEAMUS COLEMAN (Everton)

Ah now isn’t it great to have a truly top class Irish footballer plying his trade in the Premier League again? The generation of Roy and Robbie Keane, Shay Given and Damien Duff a thing of the past, Coleman has emerged as truly Ireland’s finest footballer. He has had a wonderful season thus far for Everton, to the point where Roberto Martinez’s side are within a shout of a Champions League place. Seven goals scored from right back is nothing to baulk at.

Centre-half: MARTIN SKRTEL (Liverpool)

It pains me to include Martin Skrtel in this list, not because he is a Liverpool player. No, it’s because he is one of the sneakiest and downright cheating defenders in the Premier League. Never have we seen a player blatantly drag opposition players to the ground by the scruff of their neck on such a consistent basis and pretty much get away with it all the time. The absolute gall of the man. But in fairness, he has contributed not just fine performances but goal in what has been an incredible season for Merseyside Red so far.

Centre-half: JOHN TERRY (Chelsea)

Another defender I include against my every morsel of contention. Nobody likes John Terry, except for Chelsea fans who even then must question themselves in the way you sometimes think “how could I have been so thick to fall for the idea of Santa or the Easter Bunny?”. But alas, he’s had one of his finest seasons in years, notching a few goals, doing his whole ‘Captain, Leader, Legend’ spiel on overdrive. His retirement from the England set-up has clearly been a blessing.

Left-back: LEIGHTON BAINES (Everton)

The one position on the pitch where England have an embarrassment of riches is at left full-back. There’s Ashley Cole, who hasn’t really featured much for Chelsea this season but is clearly still top class. Then there’s been the emergence of Southampton’s 18-year old Luke Shaw who is being tipped for a World Cup place and a big money move to Manchester United. But ahead of both of them this season has been the mercurial Leighton Baines. For years now Baines has been the league’s best full back, usurping previous kings Patrice Evra and Ashley Cole.

Central Midfield: STEVEN GERRARD (Liverpool)

Last season was not one to remember for Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard. Brendan Rodgers’ first full season at the club was clearly one of transition and nobody more than Gerrard epitomised this is as he struggled to adapt to his new deep-lying midfield role. This season however, we’ve seen just why Gerrard is considered one of the best midfielders of the last decade. He has pulled the strings all season for his Liverpool side to the point where they are on the brink of their first Premier League title in 25 years. And for good measure, he’s notched 13 goals from midfield. Not bad.

Central Midfield: YAYA TOURÉ (Manchester City)

This guy is one of those Rolls Royce midfielders. A man that was wasted at defensive midfield at Barcelona has become the best all-round midfield player not just in England but arguably in world football. This season has arguably been his most impressive, at least scoring wise, seeing the Ivorian notch an astonishing 18 goals from central midfield. Only Luis Suarez (30) and Daniel Sturridge (20) have scored more. His importance is such to Manchester City that his recent injury has put a massive dent in any hopes City have left of regaining the Premier League title.

Right Side: RAHEEM STERLING (Liverpool)

This one was a toss-up between Sterling and Southampton’s Adam Lallana. Sterling just about shades it thanks his STERLING form (see what I did there?.. I’m ashamed of myself) in the run-in to Liverpool’s would-be title winning season. He has scored vital goals in the last few weeks, most notably his well-beyond-his-years composure-filled goal against Manchester City in Liverpool’s 3-2 win at Anfield. He then scored two against Norwich in another 3-2 win. Where Suarez, Gerrard and Sturridge have mostly been getting the plaudits, Sterling’s form is finally getting attention. So much so that almost everyone has forgotten he beat up the mother of his child a while back. Probably the PFA Young Player of the Year.

Left-ish Side: EDEN HAZARD (Chelsea)

I’m not at all confident that Eden Hazard deserves to be in this eleven. It should probably be Adam Lallana or Ashley Young (that’s not even remotely funny) but in fairness to Hazard he was outstanding in the first half of the season and has arguably been Chelsea’s best player this season. He has certainly been their best attacking option in a frontline consisting of the neutered Fernando Torres and geriatric Samuel Eto’o, who’s only contribution this season was a hat-trick against David Moyes’ Manchester United. Without him Chelsea are even more toothless, which is probably the best compliment you can give the man. Speculation is rife however that he may be off the Paris St-Germain this Summer, which would leave Chelsea well and truly fecked.

Forward: LUIS SUÁREZ (Liverpool)

Most people hate him, and justifiably so, but you cannot deny the world class talent of the man who is without question the best player in the Premier League at the moment. His stats are just astonishing. He has scored 30 goals in 30 appearances, with 12 assists to boot. He has been the key player in Liverpool’s astonishing season and return to prominence. Considering he wanted to leave the club in the Summer it’s incredible to see not just his form but where he has helped put Liverpool this season. How different it all could have been. A shoe-in for the PFA and FWA Player of the Year.

Forward: DANIEL STURRIDGE (Liverpool)

You can’t have Batman without Robin can you? Oh, wait, you can? You know what I mean. Daniel Sturridge’s strike partnership with Luis Suárez at Liverpool has been one of the most effective of its type since Manchester United’s Treble-winning duo of Dwight Yorke and Andy Cole. Sturridge has notched 20 league goals, bringing the tally of the ‘SAS’ duo to an incredible 5o in the league so far. Just like Suárez, he is quite difficult to like, not because he is a cheat, but because of that horrible celebration that only belongs on a dancefloor after too many sambucas. He’s good though.


What an insufferable pleb




PABLO ZABALETA (Manchester City)


FERNANDINHO (Manchester City)

ADAM LALLANA (Southampton)

WAYNE ROONEY (Manchester United)

SERGIO AGUERO (Manchester City)