Modern football has come a long way. As the business aspects of the game look to be more and more prominent in today’s world, we get to witness a lot of foreign players come in and play in English conditions in the present age. Since the beginning of the Premier League (earlier known simply as the First Division) in 1992, football fanatics all around the globe have seen some serious talents set the British soil on fire over the decades gone by.
A team strives with success when all the players play their definitive role with full conviction. Along the years, we have witnessed some top teams of the English top tier in the ‘Invincibles’ Arsenal in 2003-04, the trophy-laden Manchester United side under Sir Alex Ferguson, the Gerrard-led Liverpool team in the 00s, the City side under Mancini and Pellegrini and Chelsea under Mourinho and Di Matteo are some of the few examples of teams which have scripted history displaying utterly flawless football without ceasing. One thing common in all these iconic sides was their bunch of foreign talents who were able to take their game to the next level amalgamating perfectly with the English players available to produce brilliant play on the field.
Keeping in mind that a good team needs quality players on each position to produce the best possible output, here’s a line-up of the Greatest Foreign Premier League XI ever:
GK: Peter Schmeichel (MAN UTD; Denmark) –
Legendary Danish shot-stopper Schmeichel made over 390 appearances for the club over a 8-year period and also led his side to a famous treble in the 1997-98 season and is widely regarded as one of the best the country has ever seen. Prior his retirement in 2003, he also played for Aston Villa and Manchester City in the Premier League.
RB: Branislav Ivanovic (CHELSEA; Serbia) –
Following his father’s footsteps and starting his senior playing career at FK Srem in 2002, the Serbian caught the attention of many clubs after which he was signed by Chelsea in 2008. He quickly fit into the team and success followed hence which includes 3 Premier Leagues, 3 FA Cups and one each of the prestigious UEFA Champions League and the Europa League before moving to Zenit in 2017.
RCB: Vincent Kompany (MAN CITY; Belgium) –
One of the first signings post Sheikh Mansour’s takeover at the club, Vincent Kompany has been a sturdy figure at the Etihad ever since he was appointed the skipper by Mancini. Having led City to their maiden Premier League title in 2012 and later again in 2014, he has instilled a sense of leadership at the club and is a fitting example of a perfect captain.
LCB: Nemanja Vidic (MAN UTD; Serbia) –
Spending 8 long years from 2006-14 at probably the best team in the country at that moment, Vidic had won three consecutive PL titles (five in total), the UEFA Champions League, the FIFA World Club Cup, 3 League Cup medals and was included in three consecutive (four in total) PFA Team of the Year squads from 2007 to 2009 during his eventful stay at United.
LB: Patrice Evra (MAN UTD, WEST HAM; France) –
Following his successful years at Monaco from 2002-06, the attacking-minded French left-back was roped in by United in the January of 2006 which then saw him become one of the club’s most prized assets. He left the club in 2014 with 5 PL trophies, 5 FA Cups, 3 League Cups, the UEFA Champions League and the FIFA Club World Cup before he joined West Ham in 2018 to start his second innings in the league.