The Premier League have announced plans for a Hall of Fame.
England’s top division have described the accolade as the ‘highest individual honour awarded to players by the League’ and the first two inductees will be revealed on March 19.
Alongside that process, the Premier League will draw up a shortlist that football fans can vote on to decide any further additions to the Hall of Fame throughout 2020.
Premier League Chief Executive Richard Masters explained: “A place in the Premier League Hall of Fame is reserved for the very best.
“It will be an occasion for our fans around the world to look back over the years and help us celebrate some truly exceptional playing careers.”
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The regulations for inclusion
Naturally, there are a few regulations: the player must be retired at the time of their instalment and only their careers in the Premier League will considered in the selection process.
If you’re thinking of a few worthy candidates at this point, then you aren’t alone and here at GIVEMESPORT, we’ve decided to cast our opinion on which 10 players should be added first.
We’ve not necessarily based our decisions on which players were the best, rather who deserve to have their achievements in the competition acknowledged the swiftest.
Predicting the first 10 inductees
Plus, yes, the regulations mean that players like Wayne Rooney and Cristiano Ronaldo are currently ineligible. Nevertheless, you can check out our final picks down below:
1. Ryan Giggs
Duh. Giggs will surely be the first player in the Hall of Fame after racking up more appearances (632) and assists (162) than any other player, scoring in 21 consecutive seasons and lifting the title on 13 occasions.
2. Alan Shearer
Next, it would be brainless not to laud the Premier League’s greatest ever goal-scorer with 260 strikes, 52 more than his closest rival, and all from clubs that largely didn’t challenge for the title.
He still managed to bag the main piece of silverware with Blackburn Rovers, though…
3. Thierry Henry
Arguably the most talented footballer to play in the Premier League as well as the jewel in the crown of its only ever ‘invincible’ team, Henry strolls into the Hall of Fame for sheer ability and pomp alone.
4. Roy Keane
Now on to the league’s greatest ever captain. Keane was an absolute colossus in the midfield of a United team that won the treble in 1999, while also capturing the title across six additional seasons.
5. Frank Lampard
Scoring 177 Premier League goals from deep is the stuff of legend, not to mention the fact Lampard marshalled the midfield of its greatest ever defensive team (2004-05) and arguably its freest-scoring side (2009-10).
6. Peter Schmeichel
We’ve got to have a goalkeeper and Schmeichel edges out Petr Cech by the skin of his teeth. The ‘Great Dane’ was the world’s best shot-stopper for much of his eight seasons in England, winning the title in five of them.
7. John Terry
Terry was the cornerstone of the Chelsea team that conceded just 15(!!!) goals in 2004-05 and 10 years later, having won two more titles along the way, he played every single minute of the similarly superb 2014/15 campaign.
Oh, and he even won another title in his final season to confirm his status as the league’s greatest ever defender.
8. Paul Scholes
One of the best players of his generation with 11 Premier League titles in his pocket, there’s no way we can’t induct the man Zinedine Zidane called his toughest opponent into the Hall of Fame as soon as possible.
9. Steven Gerrard
Yes, yes, he might not have won the Premier League, but he’s got a good case for being its finest ever midfielder with 504 galvanising appearances as well as 120 goals and 92 assists to boot.
10. Matt Le Tissier
We’ve gone rogue with this one. In the interest of commemorating teams traditionally lower down the league, we could look no further than the majestic Le Tissier and his 100 strikes, many of which were absolute belters.
So many contenders
So, there you have it, the first ten portraits on our version of the Premier League’s Hall of Fame.
But it goes without saying that the likes of Eric Cantona, Dennis Bergkamp, Rio Ferdinand, Ashley Cole and many more are unquestionably worthy of places, too, when the time comes.
That, and the fact Rooney and Ronaldo as well as others like David Silva and Sergio Aguero can expect a phone call as soon as they hang up their boots.
For now, though, we’ll have to wait and see who the Premier League choose as their first inductees and we’re buzzing to monitor the debate that will inevitably unfold…