Merson's dream team
Soccer Saturday expert Paul Merson names his Premier League team of 2011/12
Last Updated: August 9, 2012 2:29pm
Merson: named his Premier League XI
It's all very well picking the same-old-same-old, but my team includes a few players that have punched well above their weight. So because of that I have to put Tim Krul in goal. He has been outstanding and has saved Newcastle umpteen points this season.
At left-back Leighton Baines has been a Steady Eddie all season and has chipped in with goals as well. At right-back I'm going for Kyle Walker. We are blessed with good right-backs in this country with Glen Johnson, Micah Richards and Walker and it's a shame one of them will miss out at the Euros. I hope it's not Walker because he's been outstanding. At centre-half I'm going for Fabricio Coloccini, who was a bit rash when he first came into the Premier League but has got better and better as time has gone on. I wondered if he'd struggle when Steven Taylor wasn't there, but that hasn't been the case one bit. My other choice is Vincent Kompany; Man City missed him badly when he got injured and, for me, he's been the best centre-half in the Premier League this year.
I haven't gone for positions here, I've just picked four midfield players. Yaya Toure has been outstanding and when he went to the African Cup of Nations, Man City, despite all their star players, struggled to replace him and that speaks volumes for how good he is. I'm also picking Alex Song, who has been outstanding. If Robin van Persie hadn't done what he's done then we'd all be raving about Song, who is no longer just a holding midfield player; some of his balls to Van Persie this season have been outstanding and he's been an unsung hero.
Clint Dempsey isn't an out-and-out centre-forward so I'm including him in midfield. To get that many goals for a team like Fulham is phenomenal because he's playing for a team that doesn't beat everybody every week like the top teams do. Finally, I'm picking a lad who has been a phenomenon when you consider the league he's come from. Leon Britton has come from the Championship and his passing ratio is as good as anybody in the league. You might sit there and ask how many killer balls he plays, but that's not the point. People think it's easy to not give the ball away, but not many people can and you need to be disciplined to do what he does. He hasn't looked out of place and other teams target him now and try to stop him playing. He's got to get in my team.
I've got to go for Robin van Persie, who has single-handedly carried Arsenal this season. They're a big football club and he's carried them alone for a long time. If he hadn't scored the goals he has then I dread to think where they'd be. Alongside him I could have gone for Wayne Rooney, but he's been playing well in this league for a long time and I expect it of him. Instead I've gone for Sergio Aguero because he's settled quicker than snow. He's come over from another country at a young age and people forget that; he didn't win Young Player of the Year because people don't realise how young he is!
Reckon you can do better than our experts? Name your Premier League team of the season in the comments box below...