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Player Focus: European Team of the Season

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Player Focus: European Team of the Season

 

The culmination of Sevilla-Elche brought an end to a season full of twists and turns in Europe’s top 5 leagues. Atlético Madrid surpassed all expectations with their La Liga title win, while Manchester City, Juventus, PSG and Bayern Munich secured domestic glory.

 

Nevertheless, of each champion in Europe’s big 5 divisions, only Juventus have representatives in WhoScored’s team of the season - Giorgio Chiellini and Paul Pogba. The Bianconeri swept aside all those before them and ended the season with 102 points, a new record in Italy’s top tier. Antonio Conte’s side won all 19 of their home games, the only team not to drop points on home turf on the continent, and the duo played a pivotal role in their title defence.

 

Big things were expected of Pogba this season and he did not disappoint with an impressive goals (7) and assists (7) return. Only Kwadwo Asamoah (2.2) averaged more successful dribbles per game than Pogba (2.1), a commendable haul from midfield, and his average WhoScored rating (7.64) this season was a marked improvement on the previous campaign (7.38).

 

However, the France international would not have been granted the license to showcase his attacking talents without a solid defensive base, and this is where Chiellini comes into the equation. The no nonsense centre-back averaged more interceptions per game (2.1) than any other Juventus player, while only Arturo Vidal (4.1) made more tackles per match than Chiellini (2.5), exhibiting his qualities in the backline once more.

 

Player Focus: European Team of the Season

 

The duo aren’t the only Serie A representatives in the team of the season, with Juan Guillermo Cuadrado also featuring in the XI. The Colombian was crucial in Fiorentina’s top 4 finish having completed the most dribbles (118) in Italy’s top tier. Only Giuseppe Rossi (16) netted more league goals for the Viola than Cuadrado (11), while only Borja Valero (9) registered more assists than the 25-year-old (5) in what was an impressive campaign for the winger.

 

In La Liga, while Real Madrid failed to land their 33rd title, Ballon d’Or winner Cristiano Ronaldo once again lit up Spain’s top tier, with no player scoring more goals than the Portuguese (31) in Europe. The 29-year-old was at his best despite an injury-hit campaign and could easily have netted more over the season having struck the woodwork the most times (9) in La Liga this term.

 

Unsurprisingly, Ballon d’Or runner up Lionel Messi also features, despite perhaps enduring a below par campaign by his extremely high standards. The Argentine could have capped off the season with the title had his second half goal against Atlético stood, but it wasn't to be for the attacker. Nonetheless, Messi won the most WhoScored man of the match awards (14) in Spain, while only Diego Costa (20) scored more clear-cut goalscoring opportunities than the Barcelona ace (17).

 

The Primera División's final representative comes in the form of Keylor Navas. The likes of Petr Cech, Manuel Neuer and Gianluigi Buffon are lauded as the best in their position, but the 27-year-old's performances exceeded the trio. No goalkeeper made more saves than Navas (160) in Europe’s top 5 leagues and England could struggle to find a way past the Costa Rican when they face their Central American counterparts at next month’s World Cup.

 

Player Focus: European Team of the Season

 

The only Bundesliga player to feature in the XI is Ricardo Rodriguez. The left-back was imperious for Wolfsburg, with no player winning more man of the match awards (9) in Germany’s top tier than the Swiss. Rodriguez had a direct contribution to 22.2% of Wolfsburg’s goals (5 goals, 9 assists) to cap off a splendid season in their back four. He saw only Kevin De Bruyne average more key passes per game (3.2 to 2.3) and only Luiz Gustavo (3.4 to 3) make more tackles per match of all teammates this season.

 

On the opposite side of defence is Newcastle’s Mathieu Debuchy. Though the Magpies lumbered towards the summer, losing 7 of their last 8 league matches, Debuchy performed above and beyond for the Tyneside outfit. Only Luis Suárez (14) and Wayne Rooney (7) were awarded more man of the match awards than the right-back (6) in the Premier League this term as Debuchy, individually, enjoyed a decent campaign.

 

Steven Gerrard is the first of two Liverpool players to feature in the team of the season having enjoyed something of a renaissance under Brendan Rodgers. Deployed in a deeper role, the England international performed admirably in the Liverpool midfield, with his average rating (7.74) at its highest in the last 5 seasons. Utilising his inventiveness, Gerrard ended the Premier League season with the most assists (13). 

 

Luis Suárez is the other Reds star to feature, with his WhoScored rating (8.43) making him the best rated player in Europe this season. No player scored more league goals (31) or won more man of the match awards (14) than the Uruguayan in Europe, while only Gerrard (13) provided more assists than Suárez (12) in England’s top tier, displaying both his goalscoring and creative ability. 

 

Ligue 1 is represented by only Loic Perrin in the XI, with the centre-back crucial for Saint Etienne and their fourth-placed finish this term. Only Martin Skrtel (410) made more clearances than Perrin (364) in Europe, though the Frenchman made the most headed clearances (250) on the continent. His performances in the heart of defence ensured only PSG (23), Lille (26) and Monaco (31) conceded fewer goals than Saint Etienne (34) in France’s top tier this term.

 

Though only Pogba and Chiellini won their respective domestic title in the European team of the season, that says more about the collective efforts of Atlético, Manchester City, PSG and Bayern Munich rather than individual quality shining through. The players in the XI all performed exceptionally for their team in what has been a memorable 2013/14 campaign in Europe.

 

Who would make your European team of the season? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below


Comments (13)

 
  • Mats Hummels had the highest rating of all centre backs this season but didn't make the team?

  • Cuadrado has a 7.7 Rating on Serie A. Bale has a 7.75 Rating on La Liga. I thought that this article was about the best players (With your Rating). Don't get wrong, Guadrado made a great season, but Bale made a better one.

  • @aggugo i guess it's because Bale don't play in the right Midfield in a 4-4-2... CR7 and both strikers were better

  • @aggugo Cuadrado 8x MoM Bale 4x MoM ..its not only rating thing...

  • @dujeska I think it's a lot harder to get MoM while Cristiano Ronaldo is in your team. Like I said, Cuadrado had a great season, but Bale had a better one.

  • @dujeska Gareth Bale 15 Goals and 12 Assists. Cuadrado 11 Goals and 5 Assists.

  • @dujeska In Serie A! La Liga is a different level. I think 9/10 couches would want Bale over Cuadrado after this season ,he won the Copa del Rey for them and if he play like that in the CL final this comparasation going to be a joke ,not more! United fan

  • Yaya Touré's absence is a surprise. If there's a team that has won due to the performance of a great player and not to the collective, that team would be man city. Without Touré they're lost.

  • Somehow, who scored should ponder giving a certain weight for champions league appearances. Don't get me wrong, I love this no nonsense, statistics driven best eleven, but it should take into account that players are bound to face tougher opposition in the champions league.

  • Lionel Messi? Really? He is critisized by everyone, except WhoScored. This was one of his bad seasons.

  • @Capitano LOL. You have made a fool out of yourself, Einstein.

  • @Capitano 28 goals in 29 games and 11 assist, yeah he's had a crap year... Sarcasm.

  • @Capitano Obviously statistics show differently :) Even in his first season he is the best rated player in the world. Think about it hater, just think about it ;)

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League Analysis Queens Park Rangers Walter Samuel Christian Chivu AS Roma Stephen Warnock Martin Kelly Gary Caldwell Karl Henry Kevin Doyle England National Football Team Charlie Adam Javi Venta Vicente Iborra Sergio Ballesteros Bobby Zamora Jonas Gutierrez Dariusz Dudka Youssouf Hadji Christian Abbiati Alvaro Dominguez Phil Neville Senad Lulic Gabriel Obertan Filip Daems Ezequiel Schelotto Victor Ruiz Jonathan Pereira Anthony Reveillere Santiago Gentiletti Cheikh Diabate Nicolas Spolli Luciano Fabian Monzon Mauricio Isla Ignazio Abate Titus Bramble Ritchie De Laet Leroy Lita Christian Lell Philipp Wollscheid Milivoje Novakovic Tottenhman Hotspur Johan Cavalli Eliseu Serdar Tasci Ryan Babel Aleksandar Ignjovski Chechu Dorado Djamel Mesbah Arsenal Swansea Ashely Williams Piscu Eden Dzeko Emmerson Boyce Auxerre Phil Bardsley Jose Bosingwa Gretar Steinsson Mattia Cassani Jonathan Woodgate Germany National Football Team Gasperini Mauro Zarate Diego Forlan Estaban Cambiasso Juraj Kucka Marco Faraoni Joel Obi Benedikt Howedes Clemens Fritz Chris Lowe Daniel van Buyten Albania Yann M’Vila Baptiste Reynet Raul Meireles Angelo Palombo Eric Tie Bi Faouzi Ghoulam Chris Mavinga Anderson Aaron Hughes Chris Baird Raul Aly Cissokho Alessandro Del Piero Samir Handanovic France National Football Team Marc Tierney Bundelsiga Raul Bobadilla Michael Dawson Loric Remy Jean Pascal Mignot Mainz 05 Schalke 04 Marcel Risse Steven Reid Danny Gabbidon Michal Kadlec Paulo Machado Ben Watson Spain National Football Team German National Football Team Bundeslgia Ricardo Carvalho Ivan Ramis Diego Colotto Sergio Fernandez Sere A Cesare Bovo Miguel Britos Bostjan Cesar Jose Angel Gabriel Heinze Chris Samba Charles N'Zogbia Yohan Demont Rod Fanni Rudy Mater Georgios Tzavellas Javier Pinola Dennis Aogo Daniel Schwaab Attacking Full-Backs Defensive Wingers 2010/11 Attacking Wingers Nicolas Douchez Jeremy Menez Under-21 Team of Season 2010-11 Maxi Rodriguez Scott Dann Crossing Wingers Under-21 Team of Season All-Round Midfielders Benoit Pedretti Rising Stars Kyle Walker Gaetano D'Agostino Centre Backs Paulo Da Silva Ivan Hernandez Eric Abidal Weligton Borja Ekiza Alassane Toure Stephane Grichting Jordan Loties Kader Mangane Adama Coulibaly Martin Stranzl Pedro Geromel Neven Subotic Christian Zapata James Tomkins Roger Johnson Stephan Lichsteiner Reto Ziegler David Vaughan Seb Larsson Asamoah Gyan Benoit Pedretti Anthony Mounier Mehmet Ekici Simao Duda Alvaro Cejudo Xabi Prieto Alexsandar Kolarov Guiseppe Mascara Simone Bentivoglio Fernando Marques Gian Piero Gasperin Thomas Hitzlsperger Rafael Van der Vaart Theofanis Gekas Gerard Asamoah Youssef Al Arabi Lisandro Loric Remy Victor Hugo Montano Edison Cavani Sergio Pellissier David Di Michele Steward Downing Spain Under 21 Felipe Caicedo Pierre Webo Youssef El-Arabi Brown Ideye Mobido Maiga Chu-Young Robin Van Persie Kevin Gamerio England U21 Udinese. Alexis Sanchez Pedro Sami Allagui Frédéric Kanouté Renato Augusto Jonathan Pitropia Eljero Elia Ivo Llicevic Fernando Muslera Diego Perez Alvaro González Abel Hernandez David VIlla Marcel Schmelzer Danijel Pranjic Holger Badstuber Sven Bender Johan Djourou Darren Fletcher Carlos Kameni Thiago Silve Antonia Di Natale Cristiano Zapata Domenico Criscito Luis Jimenez Josep Ilicic Samuel Eto’o Alexis Thébaux Ludovic Sané Mamouda Sakho Boukary Dramé Daniel Alves Nikolay Mihaylov Charles Puyol Ji-Sung Park Edwin van der Sar Dani Alves John O’Shea Park Ji-Jung Gabi Fernandez Jonathan de Guzman Michael Owen Gary Taylor-Fletcher Ian Evatt DJ Campbell Charles N’Zogbia Wolverhampton Robinho Rudi Garcia Avram Grant Conor Sammon Wayne Bridge Rob Green Victor Obinna Mike Hanke Borussia Munchengladbach VfL Bochum Tomasz Kuszczak Martin Olsson Brett Emerton Steven N’Zonzi Muset Ozil Gianpaolo Pazzini Leonardo Seydou Keita Miguel Pallardo Ibrahim Afellay Valdo Pallardo Damien Perquis Luka Modrid David SIlva Roberto Mancini Benoit Assou-Ekotto Vedran Corluka Carlo Ancelotti Saloman Kalou Clarence Seedorf Matteo Brighi Fabio Simplicio Rodrigo Taddei Mark Van Bommel Gennaro Gattuso Kevin Prince-Boateng Nicolas Burdisso Elkin Soto Pep Gaurdiola Lassana Diarra Lucas Barrios Antonio da Silva Robert Mak Heurelho Gomes Andre Marriner Pinto Alavro Arbeloa Alexander Hleb

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