Welcome back to another ultimate XI! Today’s instalment includes players who have scored less than 10 Premier League goals.
To qualify, the player must have played in the Premier League and scored at least one goal in the competition. All of the players have finished their Premier League careers as this XI would loose validity if I didn’t do this!
You’d have thought this list would be filled with a plethora of one season wonders or anyone of the like, but I have actually been able to select 3 Ballon D’or winners…
GOALKEEPER- Peter Schmeichel
Only a handful of goalkeepers have even scored a goal in the Premier League, and Peter Schmeichel is by far the best.
The Dane’s solitary Premier League goal came for Aston Villa against Everton when he came up for a corner, search it on YouTube, it’s a good goal.
Of course his legendary Premier League status is courtesy of his time at Manchester United where he won five Premier League titles, three FA Cups and a Champions League.
He was also part of the Danish side that won the Euros in 1992, so his trophy room at home must be full to the brim.
LEFT BACK- Patrice Evra
Patrice Evra is one of the highest scorers in this XI, with seven PL goals to his name and he was a shoe in at Left Back.
The Frenchman made 273 appearances for Man United, winning five titles with them. Some of his strange antics recently has probably made a lot of people forget about his achievements, but he certainly goes down as a PL great.
Evra’s best goal for United came against Bayern Munich (again, get to YouTube) and it leaves you wondering how he didn’t surpass the 10 goal mark…
RIGHT BACK- Gary Neville
Despite playing nearly 700 times for both club and country, Gary Neville only has a career goal tally of seven, with five coming in the PL.
With numbers like that, thank god he wasn’t a striker, but Neville was a great fullback who always did the job he was asked to do. His formidable partnership with David Beckham down United’s right side probably led to a lot of goals being scored anyway!
He won eight Premier League titles, three FA Cups and two Champions Leagues. I am sure that these are the only statistics that the Sky Sports Pundit is worried about.
CENTRE BACK- Jamie Carragher
It seems only fitting to follow Gary Neville with his on screen partner, Jamie Carragher. Another one club man, Carragher also never managed to reach 10 PL goals, with just four to his name.
He actually scored on his PL debut, but in the next 507 league games, he only netted three more times. However as a centre back this is understandable and he was an excellent servant to Liverpool for the best part of two decades.
He is the first player on this list to have never won the PL, but there is no doubting his legendary status.
CENTRE BACK- Jaap Stam
Yes, another Man United player, but Jaap Stam was a wonderful defender and his one PL goal makes him eligible for this XI.
Stam spent three seasons at Man United and won a PL title in each, and his commanding presence would compliment this side perfectly.
He has a far more attractive career goalscoring record than the rest of the defence (23 career goals) but due to his short time in England, he can be included.
DEFENSIVE MIDFIELD- Claude Makelele
Our first Chelsea entrant is another player with a glittering career, which includes two PL titles, a Champions League title and a World Cup silver medal.
Makelele redefined what it meant to be a defensive midfielder and he was a perfect fit for Jose Mourinho’s all conquering Chelsea side.
He scored just two PL goals, but obviously his defensive responsibility is the reason for this and he is another star to add to this XI.
CENTRAL MIDFIELD- Ruud Gullit
I bet you were not expecting to see such an esteemed name here, but Gullit scored just nine PL goals in his three years at Chelsea.
The Dutchman is our first Ballon D’or winner (and runner up the year after), his other accolades include: Six league titles, two European Cups and a European Championship title.
Although he didn’t exactly lead Chelsea to any great heights, the fact that he was a generational talent makes him excellent for this XI.
CENTRAL MIDFIELD- Bastian Schweinsteiger
Schweinsteiger spent just over a year at Man United, and it was tight call between him and Glenn Hoddle as to who would make this XI.
I had to go with Schweinsteiger, simply because he has won so many trophies. No less than eight Bundesliga titles came his way, with a World Cup and Champions League just for good measure.
He was part of a struggling Man United side and scored just one PL goal in his 18 appearances, but again it was his quality elsewhere that got him into the XI.
ATTACKING MIDFIELD- Paul Gascoigne
The first instance where I have to mention that I do understand that football did exist before the Premier League. ‘Gazza’ didn’t make his debut in the PL until 1998, and played just four seasons.
Obviously I never actually saw him play, but the legend of Paul Gascoigne is a well trodden path for football fans, once I saw he had scored just five PL goals, he was straight in here.
His goals came for Everton and Middlesbrough, but his overall career tally is over 100, but this man is certainly more than just goals…
STRIKER- George Weah
I was worried about how I would find a striker of any quality in this XI seeing as it is their job to get goals, but I have somehow plucked out two Ballon D’or winners.
Weah was the first non European to win the Ballon D’or and he scored nearly 200 goals over his career.
His time in England was spent with Man City and Chelsea, and he managed four goals during his 18 appearances for both clubs. Another player who we never saw the best of in the PL, but he certainly did enough to warrant a place in this XI.
STRIKER- Andriy Shevchenko
It is such a shame that Shevchenko never stamped his authority on the PL with Chelsea, but his nine goals means he can be selected for this XI!
His superb form for AC Milan ensured he would go down in history as one of the Rossoneri’s best ever imports, and his record for them is why he appears in this XI. He guided them to one Serie A and one Chanpions League title, scoring 172 times for Milan in the process.
He spent two seasons at Chelsea, but he never showed the form he was clearly capable of. His penalty miss in the 2005 Champions League final must always haunt him, but he was so so good for Milan.
My front two have also both dipped into their respective countries political system, so you could call it a Swiss Army knife of an attack!
Neville Carragher Stam Evra
Gullit Makelele Schweinsteiger
Thanks for reading!
Have I missed anyone?