Recently, the Premier League announced that they would be opening up a Premier League Hall of Fame. Induction into this prestigious Hall of Fame is reserved for only the elite of English football; the greatest of players plying their trade at the highest level, at a consistent basis for a Premier League club.
The Hall of Fame will recognise players of "exceptional skill and talent" who have played in the top division since it began in 1992. There is no nationality quota, which means both English and foreign players are eligible to be inducted. However, only retired players will be inducted, and each inductee will receive a personalised medallion, engraved with the year of their induction.
Since 1992, the Premier League has established itself as the most popular league in the world. With records in audiences across the globe and TV rights, England's top division of football has witnessed some of the greatest footballing talents of the last three decades. From Cristiano Ronaldo to Eden Hazard and Paul Scholes to Steven Gerrard, many legends of the game have made a name for themselves in this competition.
The first two inductees into the Hall of Fame will be announced on March 19th. In this article, we take a look at who should be the inaugural five members into this committee -
#5 Tony Adams
The Golden Age of the Premier League is widely considered to have begun in the early 2000s till the day Sir Alex Ferguson retired. During that time, we saw the rise and the peak of some of the greatest players ever - Dennis Bergkamp, Roy Keane, Frank Lampard, and Wayne Rooney, to name a few. However, the early days of the Premier League are often forgotten due to the glamour which came later - during those days, no player shined brighter or had more impact than Tony Adams.
A one-club man, Adams is one of the greatest defenders in the history of England's top flight. He spent 22 years with Arsenal and holds the unique distinction of being the only player to captain a title-winning team in three different decades. Making his debut in 1983 and retiring in 2002, Adams is one of the originals of the Premier League, who was everpresent when the First Division officially became the Premier League.
As a defender, there are only a select few who can stand toe-to-toe with the great Gunners captain. The former English international has won the Premier League twice, along with two first division titles. Barring Arsene Wenger, there is perhaps no personality greater than Adams when it comes to the rise of Arsenal Football Club - as such, it is no surprise that there is a statue of Adams right outside the Emirates.
Currently the President of the Rugby Football League in England, Adams is the original Premier League legend who was very important in the rise and establishment of the league as we know it today. Due to his class, consistency, and contributions to the league, his place here is well deserved.