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Thursday, 6 August 2015

Premier League Team of the Season 2014/15

The new season is fast approaching and so I have had a quick look back at the 2014/15 season and what was my 'Team of the Season'.

Some of these players have moved on since the end of the last season, while others may also perhaps be on their way ahead of September when the transfer window is closed.

However, these were the top performers of last season in my mind and perhaps those to look at when determining where the prizes go in the coming year.

GK- David De Gea
There were some games where David De Gea might not have been at his best, but there wasn't another goalkeeper in the League that Manchester United fans would have called to replace their own.

He made big saves throughout the season and helped United into the top four, although rumours about an impending move to Real Madrid won't seem to go away.

Right Back- Nathaniel Clyne
This was a tight choice between Nathaniel Clyne and Branislav Ivanovic for this spot but I ended up siding with the former who had his best season in the top flight. Ivanovic has had the more consistent career, by Clyne offered both the attacking requirements of a full back coupled with decent defensive performances to earn his spot.

The performances saw Clyne linked with the big teams in England, and this summer he moved on to Liverpool where he takes over from Glen Johnson and will hope to push his England credentials ahead of Euro 2016.

Left Back- Aaron Cresswell
There actually weren't a lot of options in this position as injuries seemed to affect teams in the left back position through the season.

I liked how Aaron Cresswell made the move up from the Championship to the Premier League with West Ham United and he is perhaps another player hoping to break into the England team ahead of next summer's European Championship.

Centre Back- Jose Fonte
When Dejan Lovren moved on to Liverpool last summer, many expected Southampton to struggle, but Jose Fonte was part of a very impressive defence.

He helped Southampton surpass all expectations that many had for them and formed an impressive partnership with Toby Alderweireld but the pressure will be on Fonte to continue that form with more movement out of St Mary's this year.

Centre Back- John Terry
I am not a fan of the man, but I respect the player and there is no doubt that John Terry was back to near his best last season for Chelsea. He continues to be part of a strong spine at Stamford Bridge that helped Jose Mourinho bring the title back to the capital last season and will remain a stalwart at the heart of the defence.

Age is beginning to be an issue, but Terry was still the first name on the team sheet for Jose Mourinho and he will continue to lead them going forward.

Centre Midfield- Nemanja Matic
As well as John Terry played for Chelsea, he would have been grateful for the presence of Nemanja Matic in front of the back four.

There is no better defensive midfield shield in the Premier League than Matic and you have to credit Mourinho for bringing him back after previous years had seen him moved on to Benfica.

Centre Midfield- Cesc Fabregas
Cesc Fabregas was the perfect partner for Nemanja Matic to pass the ball off to in the Chelsea midfield.

The Spaniard is playing much deeper than in his Arsenal and Barcelona days which means he isn't scoring as many as some may have thought, but the assists continue to climb.

A top midfielder that I really wish Manchester United had signed last summer and I expect Fabregas to have another big season for Chelsea.

Attacking Midfield- Alexis Sanchez
Without a doubt he proved to be the signing of the summer in my opinion as Alexis Sanchez proved why Arsenal paid as much as they did to bring him in.

He can do a bit of everything- he scores goals, he creates chances, he can beat a man on the dribble and he isn't that bad in the air despite not being the tallest player.

If Arsenal are going to win the Premier League this season, I would bet Alexis Sanchez is at the heart of things and he looks a player that might even win the Player of the Year award in the coming year. One question mark would be how much winning the Copa America with Chile has taken out of him both physically and emotionally but expect Arsene Wenger to ease him back into proceedings.

Attacking Midfield- David Silva
Manchester City might have lost their title last season, but David Silva continues to ooze class and I think he can have an even better season when picking out the pace of Sergio Aguero and Raheem Sterling ahead of him.

Not many can play the Number 10 role better than David Silva and my one previous criticism of him was that he doesn't score enough goals.

However, he got 12 in the League last season and getting into double digits again might help Manchester City get close to reclaiming the title they lost last season.

Attacking Midfield- Eden Hazard
It is no surprise that I have four players from Chelsea, the Champions, in my Team of the Season, and the biggest shock would have been if there was no room for Eden Hazard.

While I am not ready to say he is the third best player in the World behind Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, Hazard has the pace, creativity and goalscoring to certainly get up to that level.

If Chelsea are going to win the Champions League, they will need Hazard firing on all cylinders in the coming season.

Centre Forward- Sergio Aguero
Some might have called for Harry Kane, but he didn't have the same consistency as Sergio Aguero in the games he played and I don't think there is a better striker in the Premier League.

It isn't just about what I think of someone, because Aguero also finished as the top Premier League goalscorer and Manchester City will be desperate to get him through the season unscathed this time around.

If they can keep Aguero fit and pair him with both David Silva and Raheem Sterling, Manchester City will feel they can cover defensive vulnerabilities by out-scoring anyone in the Premier League.

These players will all be expected to have a big impact going into the new season but I wouldn't be surprised if half of them are in the Team of the Season at the end of this campaign too.

I would hope there are more Manchester United representatives in the Team next time around, but there is some gelling to be done at Old Trafford and I am not that surprised that the majority of players came from the top three teams.

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