The top 10 most overrated football players!

Good morning, afternoon, evening ladies and gentlemen. Welcome to possibly the most subjective piece of writing I’ve ever done (except maybe last week’s blog post, the top 10 most underrated players of all time!). We all know that football players are constantly evaluated over the course of their careers and they are judged on many things from how many league medals they have won to how many goals/assists they have racked up. Sometimes though, these evaluations don’t often match up to their on-pitch performances, which leads to said player being labelled as ‘overrated.’ This brings me on to today’s lesson: who are my top 10 most overrated footballers?

10) Iker Casillas – Starting off controversial already I know, because at one point the Spanish stopper was quite rightly labelled as the best goalkeeper in the world. The Real Madrid and Spain captain’s acrobatics were second-to-none and the success that his teams experienced were largely down to his influence. However, it is obvious that he’s no longer seen as an essential part of Real Madrid’s team and he seems to have been relegated to role of cup player and at the World Cup last year he was a shadow of his former self. All of this points to the fact that the once great Spanish stopper’s abilities have deserted him.

9) Nicolas Anelka – Scorer of 123 Premier League goals throughout his glittering, yet turbulent career, and he’s one of the most overrated players of all time in my book. Last season, Anelka was a massive distraction while playing at West Bromwich Albion. During the early stages of the season he publicly stirred up rumours of his retirement and when he returned to the Premier League it took him until December 28th to score his first goal (he then celebrated with the ‘Quenelle’ gesture, you may remember). He served a 5 match ban and his contract was terminated by the Baggies. He is a disruptive influence on any team, effectively causing mutiny in the France squad at the 2010 World Cup. He’s never been, in my eyes, a top class standard striker and his fading skills coupled with his distracting nature means that Anelka should not be signed by any self-respecting football team.

8) Adam Lallana – I’ve no doubt that Adam Lallana is a very good player and was superb for Southampton all of last season. However, I just don’t believe in all the hype about Lallana being the next big English talent. In 38 appearances for Southampton last season, Lallana scored 9 goals and contributed 8 assists. Now this is fairly good for someone who’s not a striker, but then again not very good for someone who is an attacking midfielder. When you consider that his team-mate Jay Rodriguez scored 15 in 33 on the flank, not to mention the vast array of talent on the continent that play in the same position as Lallana, and post up much better numbers than the Englishman, you can’t fail to see how overrated he is.

7) Sebastian Giovinco – Now you must think I’ve really lost the plot. Giovinco’s second spell at Juventus has seen the Italian giants claim 2 Serie A titles, including last season where they set a record for the most points in any top tier European league ever. Yet he’s not really had much contribution towards these titles and he’s only managed to bag 8 goals in the past 2 seasons. He finished the 2013/14 season with just 2 goals in 19 matches. Shocking. Now some players struggle for their club but excel at international level and vice versa, but Giovinco is shocking for both. In his 19 games for the Italian national side, he’s only managed to net himself just a single goal. What’s more, he failed to score in the Champions and Europa League last season. An attacking player with such technical ability as Giovinco should be scoring at a much higher rate than that.

6) Hulk – With a name like that, you’d expect the man to be an absolute beast. To be fair, he certainly has the physique of the green Marvel character and by his performances over the past few seasons, he’s got about as much footballing ability. To say that he was disappointing at the 2014 World Cup is an understatement. In the 6 games he played, he failed to register a goal. In the Second Round game against Chile, he had the ball in the net but it was chalked off for handball. Later in the same match, he missed a penalty. His team-mates managed to bail him out but the disappointment of a nation was undeniable. You only have to look at the fact Hulk has still not played club football in one of Europe’s top 5 major leagues to see how overrated he is.

5) Jesus Navas – Manchester City seemed to have been playing FIFA 13 when they bought Jesus Navas from Sevilla. They saw a pacey Spanish winger and thought “Yes! He will tear defences apart in the Premier League!” Oh how wrong they were, in his debut season despite playing the majority of games he managed to chalk up an outstanding zero goals and zero assists – the Stewart Downing of Manchester City. This season he hasn’t exactly set the Premier League on fire either, just look at the game at home to Chelsea where he put in roughly a billion crosses into the box and all of them failed. There seems to be a lot of huff and puff with Navas and yet no end product, almost similar to most English players.

4) Jack Wilshere – Got a cigarette on you pal? Jack ‘Wheelchair’ Wilshere as he’s more affectionately known, is widely regarded as a future England captain and for me, I just cannot fathom why. He is undoubtedly a very talented player or he wouldn’t be playing consistently for a top 4 Premier League team, but he is far from the saviour of England’s national team as he’s claimed to be. Having spent more times on the sidelines and in the headlines than actually doing his business on the pitch, he often struggles against opponents who can easily outmuscle the 5 foot 7 Englishman. Last season he spent most of his time on the deck looking at the referee rather than getting on with his game, so he only managed to notch 3 goals in the entire campaign. Compare that to his Welsh team-mate Aaron Ramsay who had his best season ever, playing in the same position.

3) Mesut Ozil – There was a point when the German midfield dynamo had more assists than Iniesta and Xavi combined in one year, but then it all went pear-shaped when he went to Arsenal for upwards of £40 million. No matter who you are, there is always expectation when your transfer fee is that high and to some extent Ozil delivered, scoring five and grabbing nine assists in 26 Premier League games. However, in the Champions League, he fell well short of expectations. Remember that penalty at home to Bayern Munich? The one that he walked up to strike without a care in the world and struck it right into the arms of Manuel Neuer? That could have been the turning point of the tie, but the Germans then went on to decimate Arsenal. He’s just never been the world class player he was during his first 2 seasons at Real Madrid, which is all down to the way Arsenal seem to always systematically destroy careers of great players.

2) David Luiz – The man with arguably the best haircut world football has seen since Carlos Valderrama graced us with that magnificent perm. But with great hair, comes great responsibilty. With this, does not come great footballing ability though. Now the Brazilian has obviously got a lot going for him, he’s a very popular figure amongst team-mates and fans alike, he is versatile and possesses a rocket free kick. Is he worth £50 million though? No chance. This was particularly highlighted at the 2014 World Cup where he was one of the key reasons for Brazil’s demise, notably in the host nation’s humiliating defensive display where the hosts were truly humbled by the Germans in a 7-1 semi-final mauling. He has a lot to do to prove he’s worth just half of that transfer fee.

1) James Rodriguez – If you know me, you will know that I absolutely cannot fathom how this man is worth over £60 million because he had three or four good matches at the World Cup. He may have won the Puskas Award for the best goal of the year in 2014, but that doesn’t take away the fact he’s the most overrated player out there. Now you might say “oh but he won the golden boot at the World Cup!” Yes he may have, but look at the teams he scored against: Japan, Greece, Ivory Coast, a weakened Uruguay team and a penalty against Brazil. Even I could score a penalty against Brazil. To command a transfer fee of that kind, you have to be one of the best in the world in that position and for me, he isn’t. He’s not even the best in that position for his club. There are definitely a lot better players out there than Rodriguez, I just wish everyone would realise it.

So that’s my list of the top 10 most overrated footballers, what do you think? Tweet us @SevernSport or on Facebook (just search for SevernSport).

Kelsey De Maria

@kjdemaria

Next week I’ll be taking a look at 5 of the best young talents in world football currently!