Ranking all 20 Premier League clubs by their best five-a-side team

We all love a bit of five-a-side!

Anyone who loves football will most likely have many fond - and a few not so great - memories of playing five-a-side.

The game is a far cry from the demands of an 11-a-side match and it allows players with different skill sets to thrive.

Players with exceptional close dribbling and fancy tricks are like gold dust, while terrier-like defenders and midfielders often prove to be the difference.

So with that in mind, we've decided to rank all 20 Premier League clubs by their best available five-a-side team.

Bare in mind these teams will not always contain each team's five best players, rather a quintet of stars built to excel in the cage - yes, that means a lot of attack-heavy sides.

Also, this isn't how we believe the Premier League's 11-a-side table should look either...

20. Burnley

Team: Nick Pope, James Tarkowski, Ashley Westwood, Dwight McNeill, Jay Rodriguez

Sorry Burnley, but we just don't believe you have the personal for five-a-side football. McNeill would be the major threat and Rodriguez would be handy in front of goal, but there's a distinct lack of flair.

19. Sheffield United

Team: Dean Henderson, Chris Basham, John Lundstram, John Fleck, Lys Mousset

The same can be said about Sheffield United. There's industry in abundance with Lundstram and Fleck, but the team would be crying out for an elite-level dribbler in a five-a-side tournament.

18. Norwich City

Team: Tim Krul, Max Aarons, Emi Buendia, Todd Cantwell, Teemu Pukki

Buendia and Cantwell would certainly provide some creativity and Pukki's eye for goal is unquestioned, but that's just not enough to boost the Canaries higher up the five-a-side table.

17. Brighton

Team: Mat Ryan, Lewis Dunk, Pascal Gross, Leandro Trossard, Neal Maupay

Gross creating, Trossard dribbling and Maupay finishing. It could be a winning formula, however, it just doesn't look as appetising on paper as other options higher up on the list.

Trossard in action

16. Watford

Team: Ben Foster, Abdoulaye Doucoure, Will Hughes, Ismaila Sarr, Gerard Deulofeu

Sarr and Deulofeu's acceleration and dribbling would be a nightmare to defend against. Add in the composure of Hughes and the robust Doucoure holding it together and you've got a fairly decent team.

15. Bournemouth

Team: Aaron Ramsdale, Nathan Ake, Harry Wilson, Josh King, Callum Wilson

Ake's combination of defensive awareness and the ability to pass is key to this team. King and the two Wilsons all possess a serious eye for goal as well.

14. Aston Villa

Team: Tom Heaton, Tyrone Mings, Jack Grealish, Anwar El Ghazi, Trezeguet

When you've got a player like Grealish, who is tailor-made for five-a-side football, you're going to be a threat in the cage. El Ghazi is also a fine dribbler and Trezeguet also brings skills and a goal threat to the table.

13. West Ham

Team: Lukasz Fabianski, Declan Rice, Pablo Fornals, Felipe Anderson, Manuel Lanzini

Rice holding down the fort with the diminutive and skilful trio of Fornals, Anderson and Lanzini toying with opposing defences in front of him; what's not to like?

Rice and Anderson

12. Southampton

Team: Alex McCarthy, James Ward-Prowse, Sofiane Boufal, Nathan Redmond, Danny Ings

Boufal is one of the most eye-catching dribblers in the Premier League and we'd bet Redmond and Ings would score goals for fun as a five-a-side strike partnership. Ward-Prowse would probably contribute a few from distance as well.

11. Everton

Team: Jordan Pickford, Lucas Digne, Alex Iwobi, Bernard, Richarlison

Iwobi may struggle with 11-a-side games, but his low centre of gravity and skills would be perfect in the smaller format. Add in the Brazilian flair of Bernard and Richarlison and you've got a pretty tasty team.

10. Crystal Palace

Team: Vicente Guaita, Cheikou Kouyate, Max Meyer, Wilfried Zaha, Jordan Ayew

Imagine trying to tackle Zaha in five-a-side?! The thought of it alone is enough to instigate nightmares and Ayew isn't bad with his feet either - just look at his solo goal versus West Ham a few weeks back.

9. Newcastle

Team: Martin Dubravka, Fabian Schar, Jonjo Shelvey, Allan Saint-Maximin, Miguel Almiron

If you think Zaha would be difficult to play against, Saint-Maximin would be a different kettle of fish. Him and Almiron would be the deadliest of duos, with Shelvey and Schar scoring screamers from deep.

Saint Maximin in action

8. Leicester

Team: Kasper Schmeichel, Ricardo Pereira, James Maddison, Demarai Gray, Jamie Vardy

Gray is obviously the surprise inclusion here, but the winger's dribbling ability is unrivalled in the Foxes squad. Maddison offers a bit of everything and Vardy is, well, Vardy.

7. Tottenham

Team: Hugo Lloris, Tanguy Ndombele, Lucas Moura, Heung-min Son, Harry Kane

Ndombele at the base rouletting past defenders and teeing up Moura, Son and Kane to finish it all off? We like the sound of that, which made it incredibly difficult to leave Spurs out of the top six. 

6. Chelsea

Team: Kepa, N'Golo Kante, Mateo Kovacic, Willian, Christian Pulisic

Remember when we said terrier-like midfielders are the go-to men in five-a-side? Well, Kante would be the pinnacle of just that. Kovacic is impossible to dispossess at the best of time and Pulisic would bag goals for fun.

5. Wolves

Team: Rui Patricio, Joao Moutinho, Diogo Jota, Adama Traore, Raul Jimenez

Just imagine Traore playing five-a-side?! A scary thought. Jota and Jimenez would be a seriously potent goal threat, while Moutinho would be the elegant rock at the back - just ahead of Ruben Neves.

Traore and Jimenez

4. Arsenal

Team: Bernd Leno, David Luiz, Mesut Ozil, Nicolas Pepe, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang

Luiz is a five-a-side defender if we've ever seen one and Pepe's lightning-quick feet would be a death sentence for opposing defenders. As for Aubameyang, there probably isn't a footballing environment in which he wouldn't score goals.

3. Liverpool

Team: Alisson, Virgil van Dijk, Roberto Firmino, Sadio Mane, Mohamed Salah

Van Dijk holding down the fort at the back and letting the famous front three do their thing, a recipe for success anywhere. It was mighty hard putting two teams ahead of this quintet!

2. Man City

Team: Ederson, Bernardo Silva, David Silva, Kevin De Bruyne, Raheem Sterling

The two Silvas would pass you to death, De Bruyne could play world-class football in a telephone box and Sterling could dribble past an entire team at any given moment - what a team!

1. Man Utd

Team: David de Gea, Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Paul Pogba, Anthony Martial, Marcus Rashford

Controversial, we know. But Pogba, Martial and Rashford are atypical street footballers and their skills would light up ant five-a-side team, with Wan-Bissaka doing all the dirty work at the back. Maybe Ole Gunnar Solskjaer should enter his team into a Goals tournament to boost their confidence...

Pogba, Martial and Rashford

So there you have it and yes, some choices are certainly dubious at first glance.

In any 11-a-side football setting, Liverpool and Man City's stars would easily outrank their opposition, with the former at the top by a distance right now.

But five-a-side is a different ball game altogether and maybe, just maybe, United would come out on top.

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