Contrary to popular opinion, the Republic of Ireland has a long history of producing great players, and we will select the best Irish defensive linemen who have played in the Premier League from August 1992 to the present.
No consideration is given to individual or team performance or a player’s future in the Premier League. Indeed, some of the players in this team have just experienced their prime in the English FA.
In general, this team was selected based on its potential to beat other world groups in the Premier League. None of the players will be considered unless they are seriously interested in the Premier League.
All players had to play in a standard position. Generally, it was not expected that players would play in that group or formation so as not to discourage them. The formation was a 4-4-2 model.
Ireland played their best stalwarts in the Premier League.
Goalkeeper – Shay Given
There is no room for debate here: in the 28-year history of the Premier League, the Donegal-born goalkeeper is the best Irish keeper; in 451 Premier League appearances for five different clubs, he has certainly prevented more goals than any other keeper.
For 12 years, Shay Given has protected Newcastle United’s defensive line at St. James’ Park; in 2009, he moved to Manchester City, where he has been a key member of the club’s defence for the past three seasons. Before heading to Aston Villa, he toasted the club’s first trophy under the current owners in 2011, winning the FA Cup.
Prior to joining Newcastle, he played for Celtic under legendary Irish goalkeeper Pucky Bonner and Blackburn Rovers (alongside Swindon Town and Sunderland).
After Villa, he went on to Middlesbrough and Stoke City. And now he has cemented his place as probably the best goalkeeper in the Premier League.
Givens’ greatest strength, both at club and in country, has been his godlike reflexes and his amazing ability to dodge shots.
Despite being Irish, he has made his phenomenal recovery a matter of course.
LB – Dennis Irwin
Ireland had many excellent goalkeepers, and Steve Stanton and Ian Hart were strong candidates for left back.
But none of them could match Denis Irvine, the best Irish goalkeeper in Premier League history.
He played two seasons for Wolves and completed an approved call-up. From what we have said, paying homage to this player is not a challenge, and that is fine. Regardless of the fact that this man played on occasion in the most serious aspect for club and country, legitimate . He doesn’t need an assignment to be clean.
Irwin, a two-time PFA Group of the Year in the Premier League, had all the ingredients to make it happen. He was tough to beat and defend, but he also mastered the forward pass, an area in which English pupils are usually not known for their commitment to attack. (He scored 25 more goals in the league.) And Irwin was a polished player.
He may even be the best goalkeeper in Premier League history.
CB – Paul McGrath
That is Paul McGrath. There is no doubt about his presence in this group.
McGrath played only 166 Premier League games for Aston Villa and Derby County between 1992 and 1997. However, as mentioned in the foreword to this article, a player’s length of service is not the point of judgment.
Ferguson’s desire to make a significant impact on life at Old Trafford led to McGrath’s expulsion from Manchester United in 1989, which undoubtedly helped Aston Villa in many ways. Although McGrath was generally outplayed in the preseason at Villa Park, he was recognized by his teammates in the 1992/93 main Premier League season when he was named PFA Player of the Year.
Overall, the main protected players recognized since then have been John Terry in 2004/05, when Chelsea won the Premier League, and Liverpool’s Virgil van Dijk in 2018/19, when the Dutchman finished the season as European champion.
Rolls-Royce is one of those protectors who, if a little fit, can hold off the best forwards in the world. The best Irish protector of all time.
CB – Richard Dunne
McGrath’s choice of partner was not an easy one.
John O’Shea was a finalist, but despite his brilliant trade at Manchester United, the Waterford native is adaptable in his own way. Staunton, for the second time in this article, is a 102-time winner, which is incredibly unfortunate considering how exceptional he is in general and how remarkable his two stints at Liverpool and Aston Villa were.
Incidentally, Manchester City legend Richard Dunne was selected.
After Everton, Villa (where he was named PFA Player of the Year for 2009/10), and Queens Park Rangers, there can be no tougher signing than the player who stopped the Russian Army on that famous Moscow night.
The Dublin native has long shone as one of the notable guards in a City squad that was in the doldrums prior to Abu Dhabi. Dunn became a fixture in City’s ranks and was named Player of the Year several times in a row between 2005 and 2008.
Considering the hustle and bustle of Eastland at the time, it was a fantastic accomplishment.
His generally unassuming style will complement McGrath’s social class well. He has the makings of a great keeper, but needs better opposition to break through him.
RB – Seamus Coleman
Returning to the Irish backs’ equipment, the choice of right back was never easy.
Champions League winner Steve Finnan was the obvious choice, but Tottenham Hotspur and Leeds United legends Stephen Carr and Gary Kelly were also in the running. In any case, Republic of Ireland captain Seamus Coleman has outdone him in the battle for soul.
The Kilibag man is a true team player, enthusiastic, frenetic, not yet set in stone, and ready to lead any open group to victory.
Coleman, who was named PFA Team of the Year for the 2013/14 season, has been a mainstay at Everton since leaving Sligo Rovers in 2009 after a spell at Blackpool.
Everton’s 2013/14 Player of the Season has played 274 Premier League games, scoring 20 goals and 21 set-pieces. Certainly, none of this is more surprising than Coleman’s successful recovery from a badly broken leg suffered against Wales at the Aviva Stadium and his return to top-level soccer.
LM – Damien Duff
After Kevin Kilbane, it was an easy choice for the left winger. Damien Duff is the most talented and solid Irishman in Premier League history.
There was talk at one point of bringing Duff back for the 2002 World Cup, but when he made a name for himself, we used him.
No one is shocked that Duff, who played for Blackburn, moved to newly rich Chelsea in 2003 for a huge transfer fee and won two Premier League titles and a League Cup under Jose Mourinho.
Despite his small stature, Duff showed immense protection with ideal footwork and determined pace, complemented by A-League cover.
CM – Roy Keane (Head)
First name on the team sheet. Great leader. Seven Premier League titles, four FA Cups and one Champions League with Manchester United (although there was little interest in tilt!). , 1999/00 PFA Player of the Year, although he had been surpassed the previous year by Spurs winger David Ginola.
Roy Keane’s impact is hard to quantify with 39 Premier League goals and 33 assists in 366 games, but he had it all and you know it.
He ran, he ran, he fought, he scored goals, and he passed the ball better than you could ever imagine. Still, Keane was the boss. He won a lot too.
CM – Stephen Ireland
Of course, it’s easy to argue with this. Certainly, it seems that Ireland had some of its most committed midfielders, including Andy Townsend, Matt Holland, Mark Kinsella, John Sheridan, Andy Reid, Stephen Reid, and Wes Houlihan, each of whom is more deserving of his position in terms of commitment The “I” in “I” is the first word in the phrase “I”.
In any case, Stephen Ireland, the Manchester City prodigy, stands out so much that, along with his Cork counterpart, he is only noted for his abilities. For a few seconds, his star shone brightly.
The prodigious midfielder has played 246 Premier League games for Villa, Newcastle, and Stoke, scoring 28 goals and scoring 19 own goals. But it was at City that he became a star.
In 2009, he gave way to the Brazilian duo Robinho and Errano, who were named player of the season. Things changed when Roberto Mancini took over, and although he was voted player of the year by Villa fans in 2012, nothing comparable has happened since he left City. Injuries and the inevitable lack of care have preceded him.
A long time player, he certainly scored some great promotional goals, but it was his commitment to the ball and overall vision without it that made Ireland indifferent; for two seasons, the Irishman was better than most midfielders in the Premier League, and his ability to get the ball out of the box and into the box was a major factor in the team’s success, and his ability to get the ball out of the box was a major factor in the team’s success. To be precise, he is the standard player for Ireland.
So we only saw him occasionally, but when he did play, he did it like no one else.
RM – Jason McAteer
In fact, no player has ever been more successful in construction, no matter how small. We must remember that every player in this group has to play in the conditions in which they normally play. Overall, with the exception of Ray Horton at his peak, there is no player in the Premier League better than Jason McAteer.
Just hearing his name brings back memories to this country of the September 1, 2001 match against the Netherlands at Lansdowne Road, and in the 1990s, McAteer played two years in the Premier League as Liverpool’s monitor and was an outstanding winger.
Called up by Jack Charlton to the U.S. national team in 1994, the teenager caused a sensation with his outstanding performance in the international match against Italy.
In the 1995 League Cup final against Liverpool, McAteer played a big role for Bolton Wanderers, and in the spring of that year, manager Roy Evans scouted the player from Liverpool after McAteer turned down a possible final transfer to Blackburn, the new Premier League champions.
McAteer spent four years on Merseyside. His first two seasons were considered very strong, including a standout performance against Newcastle (4-3) in April 1996 (see Stan Collymore’s goal).
CF – Robbie Keane
Is there another one?
He is the country’s top scorer. He scored 106 Premier League goals and 37 assists in 349 games for Coventry City, Leeds, Spurs, Liverpool, West Ham United, and Villa. He has three Spurs Player of the Year awards. Three Premier League Player of the Month awards for three different teams.
In 2008, he won the League Cup with Tottenham, where he combined wonderfully with Dimitar Berbatov. The Taranham striker was a regular replacement for the Bulgarian as a dribbler.
Robbie Keane was an incredible goalkeeper and a brilliant scorer. Two of his goals are in Nathan Murphy’s top ten goals in the Irish Premier League and there could be more.
Every soccer fan knows how good Keane is at scoring goals, and the reports about his performances prove it. In general, he seemed to make a lot of bad decisions anyway.
Keane was a great soccer player, but also an exceptional goalkeeper. All in all, he was certainly more than many of us thought he was at the time.
ST – Neil Quinn
Kevin Doyle and Shane Long kept Neil Quinn awake and alert, but the giant of a man did something remarkable himself. Quinn was a skillful soccer player and a capable goalkeeper. Any young Irishman who would have expected such an obstacle would not have been selected for the Arsenal.
He was an excellent partner for personality striker Kevin Phillips, and in the 1999/00 season Sunderland climbed to seventh place in the Premier League. Quinn scored 14 goals that season and played in all but one match. The following season, Sunderland again finished seventh, and Quinn was once again a major contributor. It is really no surprise that he is still respected in the Northeast.
For certain Manchester City fans, Quinn was even described as a reluctant saint when he left the club in 1996, six years after being promoted from Arsenal.
He left a lasting impression wherever he went. If you doubt Quinn’s ability, just search his name on YouTube and see if he has an impressive string of goals.
In 250 Premier League games, Quinn has scored 59 goals and scored another 37. When coaches tried to utilize two-way strikers, Quinn was always the best partner to follow.
Just ask any forward who played with him or any protector who played against the Irishman who scored 92 goals.
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