Premier League players North v South: Coral’s starting XI teams
With the NFL Super Bowl XLIX to take place on February 1st 2015, and following the recent Pro Bowl all-star match, football (soccer) writers at Coral have created two starting line-ups from north and south Premier League clubs.
Since 2014, rather than having the best players from each conference in the NFL, two Hall of Fame stars get to pick their dream team XI, so that is what we have done too.
From the north, we have picked players from a pool of Manchester City, Man Utd, Liverpool, Everton, Stoke City, Newcastle United, Sunderland, Burnley, Hull City and Leicester City.
Whereas, stars from the south have been chosen from Chelsea, Arsenal, Tottenham, Southampton, West Ham United, Swansea City, Crystal Palace, West Bromwich Albion, Aston Villa, and QPR.
David de Gea – Goalkeeper (Manchester United)
The absolute stand-out stopper from the north, Manchester United’s super keeper earns our number one spot due his out-of-this acrobatic saves and outstanding consistency. Despite his gangly appearance, he is a rock at the back.
Pablo Zabaleta – Right back (Manchester City)
Argentine full back Zabaleta was a 2014 World Cup finalist and a part of Manchester City’s Premier League title-winning campaign last season.
Martin Skrtel – Centre back (Liverpool)
The Slovakian has had his fair share of criticism during his time at Anfield, but was superb in the heart of defence last term to help his club come so close to winning the top flight trophy.
Vincent Kompany – Centre back (Manchester City)
Man City’s skipper is perhaps one of the greatest centre backs to grace the Premier League, and the tough-tackling defender has been a huge part of the Citizens’ rise to the top, leading them to claim multiple silverware.
Leighton Baines – Left back (Everton)
Baines quietly goes about his business, but is devastating to play against. The England international now has the most amount of assists in the Premier League out of any defender and a fantastic penalty-taking record too.
Michael Carrick – Holding midfield (Manchester United)
It is no coincidence that since Carrick’s return from injury this term, Man Utd have stepped up their form and now find themselves up in the top four and second-favourites for the FA Cup at 11/4.
Raheem Sterling – Right wing (Liverpool)
It is hard to believe Sterling is still juts 20 years old, but the Jamaican-born attacker has a wonderful career ahead of him if he has the right guidance. Sterling was another crucial part of Liverpool’s remarkable run last season.
Yaya Toure – Attacking midfield (Manchester City)
The Ivorian star has not lived up to his devastating form of last season, but Toure would make it into any starting XI in the world.
Angel Di Maria – Left wing (Manchester United)
Di Maria is the newest addition to the Premier League from the north team, but he slots right into this side due to being a world class star. Yet to set the league alight, but has showed flashes of brilliance.
Sergio Aguero – Striker (Manchester City)
Prolific striker and another Argentine in this side, Aguero is truly one of the greatest players in the world right now, and it is difficult to see how Man City could replace him if he ever leaves.
Daniel Sturridge – Striker (Liverpool)
Sturridge has been injured most of the season, but his outstanding form last term, alongside ex-Anfield teammate Luis Suarez, puts him in this team. He is nearing to fitness, and Liverpool are 5/1 chances to get back into the top four at the end of the season.
Thibaut Courtois – Goalkeeper (Chelsea)
Chelsea players dominate the southern starting side, and Courtois, who won La Liga and got to the final of the Champions League last term on loan at Atletico Madrid, is our pick in goal. He has been chosen ahead of the likes of Hugo Lloris and clubmate Petr Cech.
Nathaniel Clyne – Right back (Southampton)
Right back was a tough decision, but Clyne has excelled since Calum Chambers’ move to Arsenal, and he is our pick ahead of Branislav Ivanovic.
John Terry – Centre back (Chelsea)
Chelsea’s captain fantastic Terry seemingly continues to get even better, despite his advancing age, and could could his side to another Premier League trophy this season.
Toby Alderweireld – Centre back (Southampton)
The Belgian was an outcast at Atletico, and sent to Southampton on loan, but has been a revelation for them, helping them to third place so far. The Saints are 11/8 chances to finish in the top four.
Cesar Azpilicueta – Left back (Chelsea)
Spaniard Azpilicueta came to Chelsea as a young right back, but edged out then-club hero Ashley Cole on the left and highly impressed there. Not much else to chose in this position from the likes of Arsenal and Spurs.
Nemanja Matic – Defensive midfield (Chelsea)
Matic was so highly-rated that Chelsea bought him back for a far higher price than when they sold him to Benfica. He really is a complete player, and still just 26.
Alexis Sanchez – Right wing (Arsenal)
The Gunners do have one player that without a doubt makes the XI, in Chilean Sanchez. It is hard to believe why Barcelona let him leave, but he has excelled at the Emirates, even if his club haven’t.
Morgan Schneiderlin – Centre midfield (Southampton)
The Frenchman wanted out of St Mary’s in the summer, following the exodus of many of his former teammates. Schneiderlin could have sulked and refused to play, but instead has been one of the Saints’ success stories this season.
Eden Hazard – Left wing (Chelsea)
Another that would make it into any team in the world, Hazard is perhaps the best player of Belgium’s ‘golden generation’ and has shone brightly since his move to Chelsea.
Harry Kane – Striker (Spurs)
Kane is still yet to make his senior England debut, but can be a star of the future, following his prolific form this term, including a terrific double against Chelsea in the Premier League.
Diego Costa – Striker (Chelsea)
The last name on the list, and the six Chelsea player in the team, Costa’s goals really have turned the Blues from a decent side into potential world beaters. The Brazilian-born striker really is a natural scorer.