The ongoing Premier League season has been another prospect filled to overflowing with drama, tension and despair. There have been magical moments which fans would remember for over a lifetime and moments which came to define Premier League football perfectly well. And our lovely players were the people who brought these moments to live, kudos to them. For the fans, every season brings a whole new package of twists and turns which make or break a side’s destiny and this season has just been exactly that. Although, the season hasn’t drawn to a close yet, but there have been players who’ve managed to stand above all others and deliver a string of stellar performances throughout the campaign. And there’s no dearth of them. So let’s take a look at the Premier League’s Team of the Season so far-
GK: David De Gea- Manchester United
The Spaniard has, once again proved why he’s one of the best goalkeepers in the world. He may have kept just 10 clean sheets, but has conceded only 28 goals despite of the fact that United had an unsettled defensive unit for quite sometime. De Gea even makes 2.39 saves per goal, which is more than the likes of Thibaut Courtois, Hugo Lloris and Adrian. His sublime reflexes and goal saving capabilities have conveyed the fact that goalkeepers may not be vital cogs in the wheels, but when in need, they can be the most important part of the side.
RB: Branislav Ivanovic- Chelsea
Not just this season, but the Serbian has been a consistent performer for the Blues since joining from Lokomotiv Moscow. And as far as this campaign goes, Ivanovic hasn’t just chipped in with match winning performances at the back but has scored a good amount of goals too. And the best part is, apart from jetting off on a rare goal spree, Ivanovic never gets caught out of position while defending. More so, the 31 year old never exposes the Chelsea defense with his actions and has been a vital part of Chelsea’s armory throughout the season.
CB: John Terry: Chelsea
This man belongs to the last crop of defenders which players like Steve Bruce, Gary Pallister, Jamie Carragher and William Gallas belonged to. Terry, who is 34 and is living his last days as a footballer, has played every minute of the season so far, and hasn’t left any void in the defense. Much like a young John Terry, the aged John Terry is never afraid to take one on his face and carry on.
This season, Terry has won a total of 67 percent of his average duels, which is more than any other Premier League defender. Not just at the back, but Terry has also been among the goals too, scoring 3 goals for Blues.
CB: Toby Alderweireld: Southampton
The reason why the Belgian has been chosen ahead of Jose Fonte is because he, rather discreetly has performed as good as his defensive partner in conditions which are untested for him. The on loan Atletico Madrid man has been one of the many success stories that have been witnessed at the South Coast of England. His reading of the game and his ability to time both sliding and standing challenges to perfection makes him a defender who can be relied upon no matter which club you manage.
More so, his aerial presence allows him to pose threats during set pieces and his versatility allows him to play both right back and left back on some occasions. If not for the injuries which derailed his progress, the 26 year old could well have overtaken Jose Fonte in the amount of impression he’s had on the fans and experts.
LB: Ryan Bertrand- Southampton
Here’s one big reason why the Saints witnessed a roller coaster Premier League ride unfold this season. Ryan Bertrand seemed to look like a man on a mission from the offset. He wanted to prove that he’s good enough to play for parent club Chelsea and has what it takes to carve an opening for himself in the first team. And this acted as a catalyst for his stellar performances for the St. Mary’s based side.
Now a Southampton player on a permanent basis, Bertrand has been a standout performer for the Ronald Koeman’s side, as if the likes of Jose Fonte, Alderweireld, Schneiderlin and Pelle aren’t enough. As per Squawka, Bertrand has the highest Defense Score when compared to the other Premier League left back’s. He belongs to one such crop of full backs, who are very good going forward and defensively sound too, much like Southampton and England team mate Nate Clyne.
CM: Nemanja Matic- Chelsea
Here’s someone without whom, Chelsea would never have been as close as they’re to the League title. The Serbian sits in front of the otherwise solid Chelsea back four and manhandles the opposition midfield to perfection. Matic holds the defense and attacks together and acts as a link between the two, supplying the goods from the midfield with consistency and winning balls back from the opposition.
So far this season, Matic has won tackles and has completed 42 takeons, which is more than any Premier League player in his position. The former Benfica man has been very good in the air too, winning around 63 percent of aerial duels and making a total of 58 interceptions too. There’s no wonder why, on his day, Matic can be very tough to get past in the Chelsea midfield.
CM: Cesc Fabregas: Chelsea
The Spaniard is starting to fade substantially, but still has racked up the most assists in the Premier League. His vision and passing accuracy is one big reason why compatriot Diego Costa has managed to score 19 goals this season. Fabregas, apart from assists, has created more chances than the likes of David Silva, Christian Eriksen, Dusan Tadic and Angel di Maria and has a better pass completion rate than all of them.
The 27 year old has 16 assists this season and has scored twice for Mourinho’s men this season. His ability to drop deep and spray balls to the forward accompanying players has flourished more than it did at Barcelona and Chelsea have benefited from it big time. If Chelsea win the title, it would all be due to the contributions up front from this man that they actually would.
LM: Eden Hazard: Chelsea
The little Belgian has been drawing comparisons with both Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo based on his recent string of performances. Hazard has thus far, scored 12 goals and has racked up a total of 8 assists too. His low centre of gravity and destructive pace has tortured full backs and centre halves every time he gets on the ball. He cuts inside and crosses very well from wide positions too.
On top of that, Hazard has created an astounding amount of 86 chances which is more than any other Premier League wing man. Over time, Hazard has even learned how to drop deep and contribute defensively too. Hazard has completed almost 65 percent of takeons and has suffered 89 percent of fouls, clarifying how he whizzes past opposition defenders and how they struggle to catch him when the Belgian is in full flight.
RM: Alexis Sanchez: Arsenal
Arsenal’s best performer by far, Sanchez’s career has turned a corner after an agitation compelling time at the Nou Camp. Sanchez is seconded only by Hazard and scored 14 times and has registered 8 assists for the Gunners. One of the hardest workers one can ever come across, Alexis is a frightening runner at defenses who has pace, technique and exceptional string to hold off defenders. He creates, scores and works hard off the ball too.
He drops deep and launches direct runs at the opposition from central areas and after Olivier Giroud’s return, Arsenal look like a more rounded side than they were in Giroud’s absence. Sanchez seconds only to Hazard in terms of chances created and completed 60 percent of takeons too. Sanchez works like a dog and tirelessly from one end of the pitch to the other and deserves a spot in the Team of the Season, without a shadow of doubt.
CF: Harry Kane: Tottenham Hotspur
What a revelation this young man has been not just for Tottenham, who needed a striker who can score 20 or 30 a season, and even for England. After Wayne Rooney’s rise to prominence, Kane’s revelation has undoubtedly been the most prolific of all. Kane has scored a total of 29 goals in all competitions and has succeeded in overtaking both Roberto Soldado and Emmanuel Adebayor in the pecking order.
Despite of starting his first game in early November, Kane became the first Premier League player to score in excess of 25 goals this season. Nobody could’ve imagined that the Englishman would’ve achieved what he has a season ago and after spending subsequent loan spells at Millwall, Leyton Orient, Leicester and Norwich, it did seem as if Kane’s career won’t take off. But he has proved doubters wrong in scintillating fashion.
ST: Diego Costa: Chelsea
The reason why Costa has been selected ahead of Sergio Aguero is due to his better overall gameplay. He bullies defenders and never gives defenders a moment of peace or tranquility. He has scored 19 goals in the Premier League and if not for some injuries, could well have scored as many as 25 times already.
He fits into the Chelsea system perfectly and takes on defenders too, and is very proficient in the air too. His attitude on the pitch is always determined, competitive and almost scary for the defenders.