Premier League 2019/20: A combined XI of players representing London Clubs
Ever since the emergence of football as a significant recreation, and later, profession, in England, there have been certain hotspots for the sport all over the world, and in its birthplace as well. Of these hotspots, one significant one is England's capital city of London.
Currently, there are 32 clubs based in London which participate in the bottom four divisions of the English footballing structure, including Romford FC, Haringey Borough and Dagenham & Redbridge. When it comes to clubs in the professional leagues, London is represented by 12 clubs in League 2, League 1, the Championship and the Premier League.
League 2 sees London representation in the form of Leyton Orient, while League 1 has AFC Wimbledon. The Championship has 5 clubs from London participating in it, namely, Brentford, Charlton Athletic, Fulham, Millwall and Queens Park Rangers.
However, our focus today is on the Premier League, and the 5 London clubs competing in it this season; Chelsea, Arsenal, Tottenham Hotspur, West Ham United and Crystal Palace. We will attempt to make a combined XI using players from these clubs, with a couple of rules:
There must be a minimum of two players from each club.
There can only be a maximum of three players from each club.
Here are some honourable mentions:
Sebastian Haller (West Ham United)
Heung-Min Son (Tottenham Hotspur)
Antonio Rudiger (Chelsea)
Alexandre Lacazette (Arsenal)
Luka Milivojevic (Crystal Palace)
Without further ado, let's get started with our London team, lining up in a 4-4-2 formation.
Goalkeeper: Lukasz Fabianski (West Ham United)
First on our list is the West Ham and Poland goalkeeper, Lukasz Fabianski. Currently injured, Fabianski has been one of West Ham's most important players since signing for the club in 2018, and it is clear to see given the Hammers' sharp dip in form in his absence.
In 2007, he was brought to England by then Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger, who would later claim that Fabianski could become one of the best goalkeepers in the Premier League. However, after just 32 matches across seven years at Arsenal, Fabianski moved to Swansea City, where he made a name for himself as an extremely reliable goalkeeper, appearing 149 times for the club in four seasons. In 2018, Fabianski signed for West Ham for £7 million after Swansea was relegated.
Since his first season at Swansea, in 2014, Fabianski has put up excellent numbers, consistently averaging over 3 saves per match in 5 consecutive seasons, bailing out his team time and again with breathtaking saves. Last season, he played every single minute of West Ham's league campaign, averaging a career-high 3.8 saves per match as his side finished a respectable 10th in the table.