Some footballers leave an everlasting impression on the minds of their fans, with their skills, passion and love for the club. In this article, we are going to have a look at 3 greatest players ever of each of the 20 Premier League Clubs.
These 3 greatest players of each club are not just picked from Premier League era but from all time. Sorting is done in alphabetical order, i.e. we start with Arsenal and end with Wolves. Here are our 3 greatest players ever of each of the 20 Premier League Clubs.
3. Dennis Bergkamp
Bergkamp redefined football in England’s top division. His textbook technique, physical prowess and second-nature for picking out the killer pass made him the ultimate symbol of fantasy football.His arrival at the club was significant not only because he was an established international footballer who looked to have his best years ahead of him but also because he was a major contributor to Arsenal’s return to success after much decline in the mid-1990s.
Bergkamp plundered 120 goals in his time with Arsenal, making him the 10th highest goalscorer in the club’s history.With Arsenal he won three Premier League titles, four FA Cup trophies, and reached the 2006 UEFA Champions League Final, which marked his last appearance as a player.
2. Tony Adams
Adams was the ultimate one-club man – a rarity in modern football – and a rock at the heart of Arsenal’s defence. He thrived as the leader of the famous Back Four, developing an instinctive understanding with his centre-back partner Steve Bould and full-backs Lee Dixon and Nigel Winterburn. On an individual level, it’s hard to think of a more committed, more gutsy and more inspirational footballer in Arsenal’s history.
Fourteen years as captain, 669 appearances and 10 major trophies, including league titles in three different decades. He is the only player in English football history to have captained a title-winning team in three different decades.
It’s no surprise that ‘Mr. Arsenal’ is regarded as one of the greatest Arsenal players ever.
1. Thierry Henry
Arsenal’s club record scorer with 228 goals scored in just about every way possible.The Frenchman had exquisite technique, searing pace and surprising strength. And like the typical schoolboy superstar, he did pretty much everything for his team. Henry was the talisman, the dead-ball expert, the penalty-taker and the assist-maker.
The Frenchman was unplayable at times, capable of scoring from anywhere and terrorising defences all over the continent, especially when he drifted out left to pick up possession and run at retreating opponents.
He won two league titles, three FA Cups, four golden boots and five player of the year awards – he would be considered a great in any era.
2. Aston Villa
3 Peter Withe
Peter is the man who got that famous winning goal against Bayern Munich in the European Cup final in 1982. He spent five years at Villa, scoring 92 goals in 233 appearances. 20 of those came in the title winning season and he is a player who will always be remembered by the Villa fans.
2 Gordan Cowans
Cowans is regarded as a huge Legend at the club. He made more than 400 appearances for the club in three successful spells. He was known for his superb passing and is one of the most decorated players in the history of the club winning the League, League Cup, European Cup and the European Super Cup.
1 Charlie Aitken
It’s doubtful Charlie Aitken’s Aston Villa appearance record will ever be beaten. Aitken turned out 660 times, including 657 starts, during a remarkable claret and blue career between 1959 and 1976.
The Scottish defender established himself as Villa’s regular left back with his impeccably timed tackling a feature of his game.
His greatest achievements were the 1975 League Cup final win over Norwich at Wembley, the Third Division championship triumph in 1972 and promotion back to the top flight in 1975.
3. Eddie Howe
Much has been said about Howe’s tremendous managerial promise, and he is certainly one of the brightest talents in the English game, but little mention is ever made of what a glorious footballer he was. A centre-back blessed with Bobby Moore-like grace and the determination of Steve Bruce, Howe almost always looked a cut above the other 21 players on the pitch at League One level.
It’s rare for a defender to be so popular with a club’s younger supporters — normally a goal-getting striker or a flying winger would be the apple of their eye, but even most of the kids down at Dean Court would lap up Howe’s performances.
2. Steve Fletcher
Steve Fletcher holds the club record for most appearances, with 728 matches and scored 122 goals.The former striker made himself a firm favourite with the Cherries faithful over two spells and 728 appearances after first signing from hometown club Hartlepool United in 1992.
Later in his career, Fletcher enjoyed spells at Chesterfield and Crawley Town as well as a loan stint with Plymouth Argyle but insisted Dean Court had become his spiritual home.
1. Ted MacDougall
MacDougall was a prolific goalscorer who had two spells at Bournemouth, scoring 142 goals in 215 appearances and winning seven full international caps for Scotland. In an FA Cup tie for Bournemouth, in November 1971, he scored nine goals in an 11–0 win against Margate.
He once said, “When it came to goalscoring, I was utterly single-minded. I never fetched the ball – you had to deliver it to me, preferably on a silver tray about five yards out.”
Now 70, MacDougall regards Bournemouth as his team – and they regard him as their favourite son.
4. Brighton & Hove Albion
3. Mark Lawrenson
Lawrenson joined Brighton & Hove Albion from Preston in 1977 for £100,000. Ironically, they outbid Liverpool who also showed interest in the 19-year-old Lawrenson. Lawrenson made his Brighton debut on 20 August 1977 in a 1–1 draw against Southampton at The Dell. He settled in at the Goldstone Ground and made 40 league appearances by the end of his first season of the club.
Lawrenson went on to make 152 league appearances by the end of the 1980–81 season. However the club entered a financial crisis in 1981 and Lawrenson was forced to leave the club to make funds available. A number of clubs were interested in signing Lawrenson after his resilient performances for both Preston and Brighton, but it was Liverpool manager Bob Paisley who, finally, secured his signature.
2. Peter Ward
Ward joined Brighton & Hove Albion F.C. in 1975 for a fee of £4000.He spent 5 years with the club scoring 79 goals in 178 league apps.
During the 1976–77 season, he scored 36 goals, beating the club record and winning him the golden boot. He is still revered by Brighton fans who sing a song dreaming of a team in which every player is Peter Ward: ‘We all live in a Wardy Wonderland.’ After finishing second in Division Two in 1978–79, Brighton were promoted to the old Football League First Division.He left for Nottingham Forest in 1980.
1. Bobby Zamora
If one place in this side was guaranteed, it was Bobby Zamora leading the line. One of, if not the greatest player of any era to play for Brighton and Hove Albion, Zamora was the main reason for the success of the early part of the last decade, breaking the thirty goal a season mark two years running and then still managing to hit 15 in a season in which he missed half in Division One. A well deserved place for arguably the best player to play at Withdean.
3. George Beel
Beel was a professional footballer who played as a centre forward. He is regarded as the best centre forward in Burnley’s history and holds their records for the highest number of goals in a season and the highest number of league goals ever.
He spent nine years at Turf Moor, where he scored 187 goals in 337 games in all competitions for the Clarets, being their top goal-scorer in six of those seasons and runner-up in another two.
2. Jimmy Adamson
Adamson, a right-half, joined Burnley in January 1947 after playing non-league football in his native Ashington and working as a miner. His early career was interrupted by national service, which he completed with the Royal Air Force, meaning his debut had to wait until February 1951, when Burnley played away to Bolton Wanderers. He played once for the England B team, but never made the full England side.
He was an ever-present as Burnley won the First Division in 1959–60 and captained the side to the 1962 FA Cup Final which they lost against Tottenham Hotspur. He was also named Footballer of the Year in 1962.
Adamson formed a midfield partnership with inside-forward Jimmy McIlroy, around which much of Burnley’s creative play was centred.
1. Jimmy Mcllroy
Mcllroy is regarded as one of the greatest players in the history of Burnley, having played 497 matches for the “Clarets” and scoring 131 goals.
He was dubbed as the ‘Brain’ of Burnley and was a very composed passer of the ball only releasing it when he was sure of finding a team-mate. His neat footwork made him a crowd favourite at Turf Moor and indeed for the Northern Ireland national team where he made 55 caps.He helped Burnley win the First Division in 1959–60 and reach the FA Cup Final in 1962, losing 3–1 to Tottenham Hotspur.
After 497 matches for the “Clarets” scoring 131 goals, McIlory was allowed to leave for Stoke City for a cut price £25,000, which came as a shock to the Burnley fans who branded chairman Bob Lord ‘insane’.