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The English Premier League team of the decade

CONTRIBUTOR
Feature
2.53K   //    10 Feb 2019, 04:16 IST

Sterling and Aguero, two of the Premier League's best players this decade.
Sterling and Aguero, two of the Premier League's best players this decade.

The Premier League has been a real roller coaster ride this past decade. We have seen the dominance of English Football shift as the dominance of Manchester United has slowly died out as they have won only one league title this decade. On the other hand, Manchester City has won it thrice and Chelsea twice. Even Leicester City miraculously managed a title win in the 2015-16 season.

We have witnessed many great players in the EPL who have made their marks in the history of this iconic competition. Today we discuss the best XI of the EPL after the turn of the decade.

GOALKEEPER

This is the only position which does not require a debate as we all know that David De Gea has written himself into both Premier League and Manchester United history as one of the greatest shot-stoppers in the EPL.

Having signed for Manchester United in 2011, he might have won only one league title, but his performances every single season have been nothing short of mesmerizing. Many believe that he is the reason Manchester United are still able to maintain a top 6 position in the table.

He has won Manchester United player's Player of the Season on three occasions. Memorable moments include his astonishing performance at the Emirates when he pulled off nearly 15 saves when Manchester United won 3-1 against Arsenal in the 2017-18 season.

De Gea makes a save during a Huddersfield Town match, as Matic and Lindelof look on.
De Gea makes a save during a Huddersfield Town match, as Matic and Lindelof look on.

DEFENCE

Cesar Azpilicueta, in the right-back position, is one of the most consistent defenders of this decade. With an impeccable ability to read the game and his versatility, he has previously played right-back, center-back and even left-back for Chelsea. Though not blessed with extreme pace, his positional awareness makes him very hard to beat.

A two-time title winner with Chelsea, he has also won domestic trophies (League Cup and FA cup). Still in his prime, he certainly has a lot more quality years of service to provide to Chelsea.

Cesar Azpilicueta playing for the Blues.
Cesar Azpilicueta playing for the Blues.
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Our center back pairing will be Vincent Kompany and John Terry. Two leaders at the heart of the defense, they would provide a tough time for any attack in the world.

Kompany, captain of Manchester City during their dominant years and a true leader on-and-off the pitch, has been a rock in the City defense. With formidable tackling skills and the ability to brilliantly pass the ball out of the defence, attackers were scared to go toe-toe against him in his prime.

His memorable moments include his thumping header against United at Old Trafford the season City won their first EPL title.

Vincent Kompany plays for the Citizens.
Vincent Kompany plays for the Citizens.

Many pundits consider John Terry as the best center-back in Premier League history. Though he was not in his prime during this decade, he still managed to win two EPL titles with Chelsea along with 2 FA Cups and even a Champions League trophy in 2012.

A do or die type of defender; he'll go down as the greatest captain in the history of Chelsea FC.

John Terry celebrates an EPL Title with Chelsea.

John Terry celebrates an EPL Title with Chelsea.

Aleksander Kolarov will be the left-back of this team, although he is one of the most underrated fullbacks in Premier League history. A good crosser of the ball, he is capable of making marauding runs up and down the pitch. His free-kick ability was exceptional, and he was capable of banging in goals from long-range with his monster of a left foot. He has won the league twice with City and will go down as a cult hero in the blue half of Manchester.

Kolarov playing for Manchester City.

Kolarov playing for Manchester City.

MIDFIELD

Our two central midfielders will be N'golo Kante and Yaya Toure, both who are absolute legends in their respective positions on the football field.

N'golo Kante was the dynamo of the Leicester midfield that went on to win the Premier League and his contribution was most significant to this outstanding achievement, even more than that of Jamie Vardy and Riyad Mahrez.

Chelsea were the first to understand his qualities and paid £32 million for him. Finding instant success due to their new midfield powerhouse, Chelsea won the league that year. He is supposed to be the reincarnation of Claude Makelele and can go down as one of the greatest defensive midfielders to have played the game.

N'golo Kante is currently Chelsea's dynamo midfielder.

N'golo Kante is currently Chelsea's dynamo midfielder.

Yaya Toure, on the other hand, was of the pioneering figures of Manchester city's revolution. Signed in 2010, he played a pivotal role in every single trophy Manchester City have won this decade. A central midfielder in the mold of Patrick Vieira, he was a complete box-to-box player who was capable of scoring an insane number of goals and also lending a hand in defensive duties. In the 2013-14 season when City won their second league victory, he scored a mind-boggling 20 goals which helped them overpower Liverpool to the title.

Yaya Toure has been at the heart of Manchester City's successes.
Yaya Toure has been at the heart of Manchester City's successes.

The central attacking midfield role is being taken up by a Spanish magician David Silva, a player so mesmerizing to watch that he might be able to get into the all-time EPL XI too! Another one of City's great core players of this decade, he was also part of the great Spanish national team which dominated international football,

Despite not being blessed with unbelievable pace or power, his guile, vision, and weight of pass are unparalleled. He is the greatest Spaniard to play in the Premier League, and many consider him the greatest player to grace the blue half of Manchester.

Silva, the midfield maestro of the Citizens.
Silva, the midfield maestro of the Citizens.

WINGERS

The wide players in this team will be Chelsea and Manchester City representatives again in the form of Eden Hazard and Raheem Sterling.

Eden Hazard is the most talented player to play in the premier league this decade. Blessed with talents which attackers desire to possess, he is one of the greatest players in Chelsea football club's history.

Pace, power, an inhuman capability to win fouls in any possible situation, his magic has dazzled Stamford Bridge for the better part of this decade. He has won the league title twice in blue and Chelsea fans would be hoping that they see him at the Bridge for years more to come.

His runs cutting inside from the left-hand side of the pitch are iconic; his solo goal against Arsenal in a 3-1 win at the Bridge the year which he won his second title showcases all his outstanding qualities.

He also won the Premier League player of the season in 2014-15.

Hazard scores one of many goals for Chelsea FC.
Hazard scores one of many goals for Chelsea FC.

Raheem Sterling will be our right winger in the team. People might argue that he has won the league title only once till now, but his contributions to English football this decade have been immense as he has almost won the league wearing Liverpool red too.

In the 2013-14 season, he was rampant alongside Luis Suarez and Daniel Sturridge when Liverpool was surging towards their first league title. Unfortunately, they missed out on the title by 2 points that year. The year after that, he switched allegiances to Manchester City.

He has justified his decision by winning two league cups with City and the premier league title in record fashion by securing 100 points in 2017-18 season. A player blessed with fiery pace and good crossing ability, his goal scoring capacity is underrated. He can be one of England's greatest prospects on the football field and true legend of the Premier League.

Sterling has been a fantastic player for Liverpool and Manchester City.

Sterling has been a fantastic player for Liverpool and Manchester City.

STRIKER

Another representative of Manchester City is our number 9 in the form of Sergio Aguero. He is one of the most lethal strikers the Premier League has ever seen. A poacher in every sense of the word, he is the man to go to inside the penalty box. You need to give him only one chance as he rarely misses many.

Scoring more than 150 goals for Manchester City in the premier league, he never fails to deliver as he consistently scores more than 20 every season. It is arguable that he is the best goalscorer to have played in the Premier League after Thierry Henry and Cristiano Ronaldo. He, like Kompany, Silva, and Toure, has won the league thrice and has written himself into English football folklore as he scored the iconic title-winning goal against QPR in the 2011-12 season in the second-to-the-last minute of extra time to win the league the title from under Manchester United's noses. Still going strong, he will go down as the player who lifted Manchester city from United's shadow to take the mantle of dominance from their neighbors.

The best EPL striker of the decade: Sergio Aguero.
The best EPL striker of the decade: Sergio Aguero.

SUBSTITUTES

Courtois, Vertonghen, Dembele, Eriksen, Coutinho, Kane, Suarez.

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