As the stars were aligned perfectly in Zurich for the Annual FIFA Ballon D’or Gala I could not help but notice the lack of English Premier League representation at the event. The League has over the years been touted as the best league in the world because of the excitement and suspense it weaves over the course of a season but is that the only criteria for establishing a League as the best in the world?
One would think the best league in the world should have the best players, play the best football or at least have one player in the best squad for the FIFA FifPro XI. But, no the Premier is the best because Leicester City who were battling relegation last season sit second two points behind the leaders. No disrespect to Leicester though.
There was not a single representation of the English Premier League in the world XI as has been the case for some time now. But however of five top leagues in Europe (England included) each had at least one representative.
This is quite disappointing considering the amount of media hype and coverage that this League receives. It was reported that even Stoke City had more TV rights than some of the elite clubs in Europe. Ridiculous right.
Anyway it was not all gloom for the Premier League though with Eden Hazard coming in at 8th in the final ranking of the 23 players. Sanchez (Arsenal), Toure (Man City), Aguero (Man City) and Kevin De Bruyne (Man City) all came in at 10th, 12th, 13th and 18th respectively.
That though is not good enough. The days when Nemanja Vidic, John Terry and Rio Ferdinand used to dominate Europe look a distant memory now. The last player to win the Ballon D’or was Cristiano Ronaldo and that was 7 years ago. No Premier League player has been nominated ever since. Really poor. Meanwhile, La Liga boasts all three nominees and eight players in the FifPro XI. Are they not much more suited to be called the best league on the world?
The debate will definitely continue. But one thing we can all agree on right now is that the Premier is not the best in Europe not to even talk of the world.