Eden Hazard in action for Chelsea

No Mohamed Salah? The Premier League statistical team of the decade has left us speechless

The Premier League is home to some of the best players in the world and stars from Manchester City, Liverpool and Chelsea have made their way into the team of the decade based on statistics.

Thanks to the match rating system at WhoScored, an intriguing Premier League team of the decade has been created based on the highest single-season ratings across the last 10 years.

While plenty of familiar faces appear, some of the names included will shock you and some of the most obvious stars have been snubbed.

GK: Lukasz Fabianski (Swansea, 2014-15)

There’s no room for the likes of Ederson or Alisson as Fabianski makes the cut in between the sticks. While playing for Swansea in 2014-15, the Polish goalkeeper boasted an average match rating of 7.09 which is higher than any other goalkeeper from the last 10 years.

While Fabianski probably isn’t the sexiest of names, he was on fire for Swansea around 2015. He boasted an impressive save percentage of 74.6% in 2014-15 and made 135 saves which was the most of any Premier League goalkeeper from that season.

RB: Trent Alexander-Arnold (Liverpool, 2021-22)

No surprises here as Alexander-Arnold makes it into the XI as the best right-back from the last 10 years. While Liverpool didn’t win the title in 2021-22, Alexander-Arnold arguably had his best individual season.

The creative full-back was involved in 14 goals during the 2021-22 campaign and he boasted an impressive average rating of 7.52. Liverpool finished within one point of the title that year and there wasn’t much more that Alexander-Arnold could have done.

CB: Virgil van Dijk (Southampton, 2015-16)

We’re not surprised that Van Dijk makes the cut, but it is eyebrow-raising that he makes the XI based on the 2015-16 season with Southampton, rather than one of the excellent campaigns he had with Liverpool.

In his first season with the Saints, the Dutch defender had an average match rating of 7.56. Amazingly, this is higher than he ever managed in all of his years with Liverpool.

No wonder the Reds splashed £75million on him.

CB: Nicolas Otamendi (Man City, 2016-17)

Okay, this one really did shock us. Considering all the great defenders the Premier League has seen over the last 10 years, we’re taken aback that Otamendi boasts one of the highest average match ratings.

Throughout the 2016-17 season, he managed to average a rating of 7.49 which is higher than the likes of John Stones, Ruben Dias or Aymeric Laporte ever managed.

What’s even more baffling is that Man City finished third in 2016-17 and conceded 39 goals along the way. Still, Otamendi was plenty of fun to watch while at City, we suppose.

LB: Christian Fuchs (Leicester City, 2015-16)

We assumed that Andy Robertson would have this position locked down, but Fuchs just managed to edge the Scotsman out based on his exceptional 2015-16 campaign.

We can’t really have many complaints over this one, either. The whole Leicester City team played out of their skin in 2015-16 and they managed to achieve the unthinkable by winning the title.

Fuchs had an average match rating of 7.50 during Leicester’s title-winning season which is mightily impressive. For context, the highest average rating Robertson has ever had is 7.23 in 2021-22.

RM: Riyad Mahrez (Leicester City, 2015-16)

Another inclusion from Leicester’s title-winning squad. Mahrez was absolutely unplayable at the time as he scored 17 goals and produced 11 assists to earn an average rating of 7.84.

While no one can dispute Mahrez’s greatness, it does mean that Mohamed Salah somehow doesn’t make the cut. Salah’s best match rating over a season was 7.69 in 2017-18 which isn’t high enough to edge out Mahrez from this spot.

CM: Steven Gerrard (Liverpool, 2013-14)

It’s a testament to his longevity that Gerrard manages to make this XI. Despite being at the back end of his career, he had an exceptional season in 2013-14 which almost saw Liverpool win the league.

The Liverpool legend was involved in 26 of the goals Brendan Rodgers’ side scored in 2013-14 and he managed to maintain an average match rating of 7.77. That’s some going.

CM: Kevin De Bruyne (Man City, 2019-20)

Arguably the best player that the Premier League has seen in the last decade, it’s no surprise that De Bruyne makes the cut. By the time he hangs up his boots, there will be a legitimate case to be made that he is the best Premier League midfielder of all time.

His highest-rated season came in 2019-20 as he boasted a huge 7.97 average match rating. De Bruyne chipped in with 33 goal contributions during that season as Man City finished second in the league.

LM: Eden Hazard (Chelsea, 2014-15)

In terms of natural ability, there aren’t many Premier League players that can hold a candle to Hazard. The Chelsea maestro was unplayable on his day and Whoscored reckons 2014-15 was his best season.

The dynamic playmaker boasted a 7.96 average match rating during this season as he guided Chelsea to the title. Hazard scored 14 goals and produced nine assists during the season in question and we can’t have any complaints over his inclusion in the XI.

ST: Sergio Aguero (Man City, 2017-18)

Few foreign players have left the sort of Premier League legacy that Aguero has managed. With five league titles and 184 Premier League goals, his impact at the Etihad is unrivalled.

His best goalscoring year came in 2014-15 but Whoscored reckons he was at his best in 2017-18. The Argentine forward was involved in 27 goals in just 25 matches during the season in question.

He was averaging a goal every 93.7 minutes and had he stayed fit all season, he would have been projected to score 36 goals. Aguero managed an average match rating of 7.81 which is mightily impressive.

ST: Luis Suarez (Liverpool, 2013-14)

He didn’t stick around in the Premier League for too long, but what an impact he left. Suarez produced one of the greatest individual seasons we have ever witnessed in 2013-14 and it’s no surprise he makes the XI.

Despite not winning the league, Suarez was on another planet around this time. He scored 31 goals, produced 12 assists and ended up with an average match rating of 8.43 which is higher than any other player in this XI.

A truly remarkable individual campaign.

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