Football

All of the big teams have struggled this season, but why is that?.

Lack of leadership is behind the downfall of the big Premier League teams

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If you look back at the Champions League between 2005 and 2012, you would be hard pushed to find anyone who said that English teams were not dominating the competition. Only one final in those eight years didn't contain an English team, which was the 2010 final between Serie A side Inter Milan and Bundesliga giants Bayern Munich.

Fast forward to 2016 and it's a much different story. No finalist in the last three years, and unless there is a minor miracle at Manchester City, it looks set to be the fourth year without a Premier League club.

The dominant forces over those eight years look set to struggle to even qualify for next season's competition. Only Arsenal have made a Champions League final in the past and are in the top four now.

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Manchester City have dominated the Premier League in recent seasons, but are yet to really prove themselves in Europe, and are only three points away from dropping out of a Champions League spot.

Chelsea, Liverpool and Manchester United have all won the competition but look set to miss out on Champions League football next year with a top-four finish in the Premier League looking unlikely for the trio. But why is that?

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If you look at the Chelsea teams of the late 00s early 10s, they were blessed with leaders. Players like John Terry, Frank Lampard, Michael Ballack, Michael Essien and Didier Drogba were all motivators on the pitch.

United had Nemanja Vidic, Rio Ferdinand, Ryan Giggs, Paul Scholes, Edwin van der Sar and Wayne Rooney, who all brought out more from the players that played with them.

The Liverpool teams had Xabi Alonso, Jamie Carragher, Steven Gerrard and Sami Hyypia; whilst Arsenal had Sol Campbell, Kolo Toure, Robert Pires, Cesc Fabregas and Thierry Henry.

All of these players were the loud voices on the pitch, helping out their team mates in any way they could. Organisation was key to the fast pace that the English teams used to use so effectively against even the mightiest of European opponents and having key leaders on the pitch helped the teams work as one. But look at the teams now.

Of the names above, Terry and Fabregas are still playing, now together at Chelsea with a squad of players who look more concerned about where the next big pay cheque is coming from than their on-field performance.

Chelsea v Arsenal - Premier League

Rooney is sat in a United team with no other natural leaders and is a shadow of his former self. Even Manchester City seem to have a problem with motivation. Yaya Toure is arguably the best central midfielder in the country but goes missing for months at a time over petty disputes about not getting a birthday cake.

With Terry set to leave Chelsea at the end of the season, there will be no more of the dying breed of hard-core leaders left in the Premier League.

Without players of his ilk, the big teams are a group of talented players with nobody on-field to guide them.

Do the Premier League big-boys all lack natural leaders? Let us know YOUR thoughts in the comment section below!

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Topics:
Chelsea
Manchester United
Football
Liverpool
Premier League
Arsenal
Manchester City

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