There was little surprise that it wasn’t a Premier League player who picked up the Ballon d’or on Monday but things go a lot deeper when you switch yourself off from the hype we are subjected to in this country.
As well as the main prize lifted by Cristiano Ronaldo, there was also a full team of the world’s best eleven players chosen by fifty thousand players worldwide.
Yes, the eleven chosen ply their trade in three different countries but England wasn’t one of them – the eleven below playing in Germany, France and Spain.
Manuel Neuer, Dani Alves, Thiago Silva, Sergio Ramos, Philipp Lahm, Andrew Iniesta, Xavi, Cristiano Ronaldo, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Franck Ribery, Lionel Messi
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You have to now go back to 2011 when any Premier League players (Rooney and Vidic) made it into the World eleven.
There are some good players and teams in the Premier League but unless you have some vested interest, are you honestly going to tell me that we see the best in this country week after week?
When Alan Pardew builds up every club Newcastle face (no easy games, very very good team etc etc) and then the top half dozen or so sound almost superhuman when the United manager is talking about them.
However, who are these superstars, who are these unstoppable talents that Newcastle should have no expectation of giving a game?
The truth is, I can’t think of a single player who fits the bill, if we were facing Messi or Ronaldo then fair enough, but Giroud, Wilshere, Dzeko, Nasri?
The last couple of home matches in the Premier League saw Newcastle face top two Arsenal and Manchester City, and arguably we deserved a draw and may well have got at least that, if Alan Pardew had sent his team out in a more positive formation and frame of mind. Rather than retreating behind the barricades and hoping to snatch a goal.
The only really outstanding things in the Premier League are player wages, ticket prices and the number of mad, sad and bad club owners.