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What Makes A Player Worthy Of The Premier League?

March 3rd, 2012 by
SUNDERLAND, ENGLAND - JANUARY 21:  Leon Britto...

Image by Getty Images via @daylife

There are always players in the Championship that seem to stand out amongst the crowd, with fans and pundits alike calling for them to get their chance in the Premier League, but why do only a few get the opportunity to bridge the gap between Football League obscurity and fame in “the best league in the world”.

A component which is vital when a top club scouts a lower league player is decision making. It doesn’t take much to realise when watching the average Championship game the wrong choice is made far more frequently than during a Premier League game (yes, even Blackburn). Knowing when to pass or shoot, when to close a man down or defend the space may seem like individual decisions, however that one choice forces the whole team to react, and is often the difference between scoring or wasting a chance, clearing or conceding, winning or losing.

Teamwork is often valued as the fabric of the game, and no matter how good each player is, a team is only equal to the sum of its parts. Therefore if a player is not willing to work as part of a larger system, problems are created and the “star” player(s) often struggles to hold a regular place, quite often their ego taking them elsewhere. A current and blatant example is Adel Taarabt of QPR (probably not for long) who , despite being the Football League player of the year last season, has

only made 16 appearances in the Premiership and has proved largely ineffectual in the games he has been involved in. The other side of the coin here is Norwich, currently sitting in a highly impressive 8th position, the majority of their players being plucked from the lower leagues. Not many would have predicted these players possessed Premier League quality (case and point Grant Holt), but every player works hard for the team and each other to grind results out.

Most teams have a definable style of play, and teams such as Swansea with their free-flowing, expansive system has allowed certain players to become much more technically able than they had previously shown. Roberto Martinez implemented Swansea’s continental style of play (earning him the managerial position at Wigan), and since Brendan Rogers has taken over the reins, players such as Leon Britton and Joe Allen have blossomed into sought after players. Britton, originally an Arsenal trainee, failed to fulfill his early promise (most expensive 16 year old when bought for £400,000) until this season where he famously passed his way above Barcelona’s Xavi with a 93.3% pass accuracy compared to Xavi’s 93%. The system team’s adopt can allow players to express their true potential and possibly reach the standards demanded in the Premiership.

Players who could perform in the Premier League

  • Peter Whittingham – Cardiff City’s star performer, ball-playing central midfielder, superb ball retention and special awareness with a sweet left peg.
  • Robert Snodgrass – Prized Asset of Leeds United has already had interest from teams such as Fulham, dynamic attacking player who has the ability to change a game
  • Jordan Rhodes – Prolific goal scorer for Huddersfield Town who is being watched by many Premier League clubs. Strong, complete forward who can score any type of goal, and has done so this season with 28 goals in 24 starts in the League.

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