The Worst Players Ever To Have Graced The Premier League
The Premier League's 10 Worst Players
Since its inception in 1992, the Premier League has been graced by some of the most magnificent players ever to pull on a pair of soccer boots. Players such as Eric Cantona, Thierry Henry, Cristiano Ronaldo and Dennis Bergkamp are but a handful of the elite individuals in question that we have been lucky enough to witness plying their trades week after week.
Unfortunately, for every sublimely skillful Andy Cole or Gianfranco Zola, there's a ridiculously inept Titus Bramble or Djimi Traore waiting in the wings for an opportunity to miss an open goal or make a rash tackle inside the penalty area.
It's a staggering achievement for a player who possesses zero visible talent and the co-ordination of a blind giraffe to actually make it to the top division in the first place, let alone make the team every week. I can only assume these awful players have caught the manager in a compromising position or have threatened to tweet naked pictures of his wife in order to get a game.
The blame for exposing us to these kings of calamity has to lie squarely at the feet of the managers and it's absolutely astounding that the men who are charged with buying new players actually consider these clowns in the first place!
However, perhaps the biggest surprise is that the following players were actually paid for their ineptitude and paid very well, I might add. Premier League soccer players are exceptionally well rewarded for their services but in return they are expected to perform to an acceptable level. Should those players not live up to the hype, they are resigned to finding themselves on lists like this and being forever remembered for their soccer catastrophes.
So, without further ado, I give to you the worst players ever to have graced the hallowed grounds of the Premier League. Sit back, relax and marvel at these titans of ineptitude as I count down the list of absolute shockers.
James Hilton is a soccer writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter , Facebook or add him to your network on Google
10. Ramon Vega
Ramon Vega was signed as a partner for Sol Campbell in the center of the Spurs defense and on paper, the tall, strong Swiss international looked a great buy. Unfortunately, Vega's touch deserted him time after time and it was clear he was good in the air, yet had the grace of a refrigerator falling down the stairs every time he was on the ball.
9. Eric Djemba-Djemba
Manchester United signed Eric Djemba-Djemba in 2003 for £3.5 million on the back of a successful season for Nantes. Unfortunately, a prerequisite to be a player in the Premier League is the ability to pass the ball, something Djemba-Djemba never mastered. The bungling Cameroonian was sold to Aston Villa in 2005.
8. David Bentley
The man once touted (by himself) as the long-term replacement for David Beckham, David Bentley's arrival was met with with lofty expectations. However, rather than fulfill his supposed destiny, Bentley became mired in a swamp of underachievement and scandal. There's too many indiscretions to list but suffice it to say, anyone who wraps his new Porsche round a lamp post deserves a place on this list
7. Bosko Balaban
A perfect example of money not well spent. Bosko Balaban was signed by Aston Villa in 2001 to a £20,000 per week contract. Considering Balaban only played 11 games in 18 months and scored just three goals, to say he was a shocking buy would be an under statement. The Croat never settled at Villa and was kicked out in 2003.
6. Bruno Cheyrou
The curse of giving a player a preemptive nickname struck again here with Bruno Cheyrou being unfortunately named "The New Zidane." The French supposed-starlet was purchased by Gerard Houllier in 2002 but struggled with the Premier League pace from day one and always looked overwhelmed. Unflatteringly referred to by the fans as Bambi on ice, Cheyrou was sold by Rafa Benitez in 2004.
5. Steve Marlet
2001 was supposed to be a year of optimism for Fulham fans, with Mohammed Al Fayed flashing the cash in a bid to get into the Champions League. The problem was he flashed said cash totaling £11.5 million on a French striker called Steve Marlet, who turned out to have the accuracy of the Da Vinci Code. Marlet managed only 10 goals in two whole seasons before being swiftly sold to Marseille.
4. Marco Boogers
Regardless of the credit Harry Redknapp gets for his achievements as a manager, he was guilty of the most enormous misjudgment of character by signing Marco Boogers from Rotterdam in 1995. Boogers was known as a tough tackler when he was bought, but a chest-high horror tackle on Gary Neville prompted a media frenzy claiming Boogers was hired to personally injure Neville. After being sent off, Boogers vanished without trace only to turn up months later, a quivering wreck in a Dutch trailer park.
Alex Ferguson doesn't get potential signings wrong very often, but the Glaswegian dropped an absolute clanger by signing Portuguese striker Bebe in 2010 without ever having seen him play. Ferguson was persuaded by his "advisers" to part with £7.4 million for Bebe and it has haunted him ever since. Bebe was so out of his depth when playing that he blamed Ferguson's strong accent for him not understanding instructions, but in reality it was simply because, after his performance in the Wolves game, he was about as welcome as a letter from the IRS.
2. Sean Dundee
Oh dear. If there wasn't one player worse than Sean Dundee, he would top this list easily. However, he makes it to No. 2 as a result of someone else's ineptitude. Dundee was signed in 1998 for £2 million and immediately became a cult figure, yet not in a good way. Dundee was described as a pacy, powerful forward with attacking qualities in abundance. In reality, Dundee had neither pace nor prowess and was more accurately described by fans as having the speed of an asthmatic snail. Sean Dundee was so bad at Liverpool the reds may actually have been better off signing Crocodile Dundee instead
1. Ali Dia
Where to start with this disaster of a player that, in terms of the actual definition, isn't a player at all? Ali Dia was the friend of a so called "agent" who managed to call up Graeme Souness at Southampton and claimed Dia was world player of the year George Weah's cousin. The "agent" then attempted to convince Souness that signing Dia was a good idea. Unbelievably, Souness then amazed everybody by falling for the ruse and actually signed Dia. Well, what followed was a debacle of gargantuan proportions in which Dia came on as a sub and proceeded to run around like a headless chicken, chasing the ball everywhere. Souness realized his mistake and promptly subbed the sub. It is still to this day the only example of a non-professional soccer player making it legally onto a pitch.