Monday 18 December 2017

Retiring MOTD pundit Alan Hansen names his Premier League all-time XI

Alan Hansen has gone for his Match of the Day colleague Alan Shearer up front
Alan Hansen has gone for his Match of the Day colleague Alan Shearer up front

One Irish player has made Alan Hansen's all-time Premier League XI while another he found difficult to leave out.

1. Peter Schmeichel

"Every team with title ambitions must have a great goalkeeper and Schmeichel was the best in the Premier League for almost a decade during his time at Manchester United."

2. Denis Irwin

"Could play on either side as full-back and Manchester United man was one of the most consistent and reliable defenders I have witnessed."

3. Rio Ferdinand

"In his prime, Ferdinand was the best defender of the Premier League era and is now putting his experience to the fore after lengthy injury problems."

4. John Terry

"A fantastic leader and a key figure at Chelsea over the past decade, when they have won every trophy in sight, despite the managerial changes."

5. Ashley Cole

"The best left-back of his generation and has been an outstanding performer for Arsenal, Chelsea and England."

6. Steven Gerrard

"The first name on the team-sheet. Has driven Liverpool for more than ten years, but sadly has not won the title medal to complete his set of honours."

7. Paul Scholes

"Very difficult to leave out Roy Keane, but I had to find a place for Scholes, who had everything as the complete midfielder."

8. Gianfranco Zola

"Came to England late in his career, but his professionalism, talent and quality shone as brightly as his personality."

9. Thierry Henry

"For two or three seasons, Henry was absolutely unstoppable at Arsenal and he was a huge figure in the Invincibles team of 2004."

10. Cristiano Ronaldo

"At his best, he carried Manchester United to two league titles before leaving for Real Madrid. Strong, quick and with a great goalscoring record."

11. Alan Shearer

"Still the all-time leading Premier League scorer with 260 goals. Way ahead of the next man and hard to see his record being broken."

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