Since its inception in 1992, some truly world class players have graced the Premier League; the likes of Steven Gerrard, Paul Scholes, Ryan Giggs, Thierry Henry, Dennis Bergkamp, Cristiano Ronaldo, Luis Suarez and many, many more have given us moments of euphoria, and immense thrill.
While these glamour and flair players play a part in what we love about the beautiful game, that’s exactly what they are; a part. As the popular saying goes, “Offense wins you games, defence wins you championships.”
We have been lucky enough to witness some incredible defensive masterminds in the league; Nemanja Vidic, Rio Ferdinand, Sami Hyypia, Jamie Carragher, John Terry (still going from strength to strength), Kolo Toure, Sol Campbell, all demonstrated that defenders could be stars equally important as their flashier counterparts.
Of course, not every defender that makes it to a Premier League team makes it big. Over the course of its history, the EPL has seen its fair share of woeful defenders. Many of them commanded big fees after putting in some world-beating performances in an international tournament or being excellent in another league but failed to kick on after their big money move.
Here we take a look what we feel are the 5 worst defenders to ever set foot on the field for a Premier League club. These players may not have been necessarily bad all the time, but their performances were consistently sub-par compared to their peers.
#5 Jean-Alain Boumsong (Newcastle United)
Boumsong joined Newcastle United after proving himself as a very capable centre-back in the French league with Auxerre and then with Rangers in the Scottish Premiership. The Frenchman seemed to be the real deal, with Graeme Souness splashing £8 million to bring him to Tyneside on a five and a half year deal.
At his previous clubs, he had demonstrated speed, strength and defensive nous; yet all 3 failed him spectacularly in the English top division. Rangers must have been laughing all the way to the bank with the sum they had managed to pocket on the defender.
He departed to Serie B to join Juventus after their relegation following the Calciopoli scandal.
A victim of his own inability to fulfil his potential, he will go down as one of the most inconsistent and poor defenders in Newcastle’s history.