Premier League: Every club's player who has 'ruined their career' in 2019/20

  • Kobe Tong

Premier League players across the country are taking the necessary precautions to stop the spread of coronavirus.

England’s top flight won’t resume until April 30 at the very earliest, but the latest government advice suggests that normal life, never mind sporting competition, will be on hold for much longer.

As a result, one thing we can all do in this difficult and uncertain time is look back on what the 2019/20 season has had to offer so far, especially as the campaign is due to resume one day.

And there are certain players who will be reflecting upon the previous seven months with a lot more pleasure than others, even if there’s still time for individuals to turn things around later in 2020.

Bearing that in mind, HITC Sport decided to focus on the players who will be hoping to forget the first three quarters of the season and return with a vengeance on their YouTube channel.

Player who have ‘ruined their career’

That’s because The Irish Guy counted down through each of the 20 Premier League clubs to identify a player from every side who he deemed to have ‘RUINED their career’.

If that doesn’t sound both dramatic and intriguing, we don’t know what does. Check out the full video down below, but keep scrolling for our breakdown of the 20 players in question below.

Arsenal – Kieran Tierney

Granit Xhaka has miraculously dodged this place for having turned things around under Mikel Arteta and instead it’s the injury-prone Tierney that gets thrown under the bus for his difficult first season.

Just three Premier League starts is quite the fall from being idolised at Celtic and, in the opinion of Scott Brown, being on course for transfers to Barcelona or Paris Saint-Germain.

It certainly doesn’t shine well on Arsenal for signing a player they knew was so regularly injured, but the Scot can easily get his career back on course when he gets a clean bill of health.

Aston Villa – Danny Drinkwater

Villa’s decision to sign Drinkwater on loan always seemed baffling when his only start during six months at Burnley saw him feature in a 3-1 Carabao Cup defeat to League One Sunderland.

However, things got even worse for the Chelsea man when he dropped a disasterclass in the 6-1 home defeat to Manchester City and has been constantly blighted by off-the-pitch controversies.

Bournemouth – Ryan Fraser

After a stunning season which saw him competing with Europe’s best for goal contributions and being constantly linked with an Arsenal move, Fraser seems to have flown off the rails.

The Scottish midfielder has just a single Premier League goal to his name this season, admitted that the transfer rumours went to his head and could face relegation in this struggling Bournemouth side.

Brighton & Hove Albion – Florin Andone

Scoring on the opening day against Watford seemed the perfect start for Andone under Graham Potter, but everything changed when he was sent off during the defeat to Southampton.

That brainless dismissal was enough for Potter to send him out on loan to Galatasaray and it’s doubtful that we’ll see the Romanian striker at the Amex Stadium again.

Burnley – Joe Hart

In all honesty, by the definition of ‘ruined their career’ that The Irish Guy is working with here, you could argue that Hart committed that crime either with Torino, West Ham or last season at least.

But it just seems as though the ex-England number one is digging himself a deeper hole by wasting away on the Turf Moor bench, making a measly three appearances this season.

Chelsea – Kepa Arrizabalaga

It’s staggering that Arrizabalaga is now reportedly on Chelsea’s transfer list when he enjoyed such a stunning debut season and had confidently dislodged David de Gea as Spain’s number one.

However, losing his place to Willy Caballero in Frank Lampard’s side after a constant string of errors has seen his value drop through the floor, even if his career being ruined is a gross overstatement.

Crystal Palace – Mamadou Sakho

Going from French international, PSG captain at 17 and Liverpool starter to struggling for game-time at Selhurst Park isn’t exactly the career path that Sakho would have been hoping for.

Just four starts for Palace this season shows that Sakho’s career is melting away far quicker than he would have hoped at 30 years old.

Everton – Jordan Pickford

The statistics don’t lie and Pickford is one of the Premier League’s most mistake-prone goalkeepers, even though every moment of madness seems to be quickly followed by a stunning save.

Everyone appears to be on the same page that Pickford should be dropped by England, particularly with the Euros delayed, although his career is by no means on the scrapheap at this stage.

Leicester City – Nampalys Mendy

The Irish Guy has openly admitted how hard it was to pick a player from Leicester, so we’ll let him off for making Mendy the martyr for essentially not living up to the foreboding hype around him.

To be fair, though, just two starts and being excluded from 31 match-day squads is pretty poor for a former club-record signing that was tipped to replace N’Golo Kante.

Liverpool – Adrian

Hmm, this is harsh. Liverpool fans were eulogising about Adrian for his penalty heroics in the UEFA Super Cup, but his flaws were exposed during the Champions League defeat to Atletico Madrid.

Those costly mistakes against Marcos Llorente, as well as a number of clangers in the league, haven’t exactly destroyed his career, but they haven’t done wonders for it either.

Manchester City – Scott Carson

At first, you might think fair play to Carson for following in the footsteps of Lee Grant and Rob Green for earning himself an unexpected pay cheque, but this move was completely unnecessary. 

Despite being 34 years old, the ex-England international was still getting regular game time at Derby County and should be savouring minutes at this stage of his career, not saying goodbye to them.

Manchester United – Tahith Chong

Despite being handed a solid 11 appearances this season, Chong just hasn’t looked like the player that collected every youth award under the sun with his daring goals, assists and skills.

Rather, his mediocre performances were such that his new contract at Old Trafford came as something of a surprise and The Irish Guy is convinced that it was the wrong move.

He feels as though Chong should have followed in the footsteps of Paul Pogba and grabbed a move to Italy while it was available as opposed to gradually stagnating with the Red Devils at age 20.

Newcastle United – Rob Elliot

‘Has he just given up on football?’ is the question that The Irish Guy has for Eliot and it’s certainly bizarre that the competent shot-stopper is settling for his place as Toon’s number three ‘keeper.

Not a single appearance in two years suggests Eliot should really be showing more ambition and moving on, which could easily see him start to change for Darren Randolph’s Irish jersey.

Norwich City – Max Aarons

Yes, The Irish Guy, this is harsh. It’s another case of a player having so much hype around them coming up from the Championship and simply looking bang average in the Premier League.

In Aarons’ defence, though, it’s hard to look too spectacular in a Norwich team that has been nailed to the bottom of the table and there’s plenty of time for improvements at the tender age of 20.

Sheffield United – Leon Clarke

Again, you’d think that at 35 years old you’d be looking for regular game-time before you hang up your boots, not settling for just a single Premier League appearance and four in all competitions.

Fair play to him for ticking ‘appearing in the top tier of English football’ off his bucket list after so many years in the lower leagues, but we low-key hope that Clarke moves on in the summer.

Southampton – Angus Gunn

Gunn stood an outside chance of making England’s Euro 2020 squad at the start of the season, but his inclusion in the Saints team coincided with some of their worst form under Ralph Hasenhüttl.

Shipping nine goals against Leicester put him in the history books for all the wrong reasons and Southampton have come on leaps and bounds since Alex McCarthy became number one.

Tottenham Hotspur – Ryan Sessegnon

The air seemed to have been let out of the Sessegnon balloon by the time he first played in the Premier League with Fulham, so it appeared as though Spurs were late to the party last summer.

And with his goal against Bayern Munich looking more anomalous by the day, just six league appearances suggests Sessegnon has ruined the hype around him as opposed to his career.

Watford – Danny Welbeck

You could have argued that Welbeck’s career had stagnated beyond belief during his final years at Arsenal, but failing to turn things around at a team lower down the league has really driven it home.

In Welbeck’s defence, injuries have once again proven costly. However, that doesn’t mean that starting just three games has done anything but underline his post-Manchester United decline. 

West Ham United – Roberto Jimenez

One of the worst ‘keepers to ever grace the Premier League, it seemed as though Manuel Pellegrini couldn’t get the Spaniard out the back door quick enough during the January transfer window.

Jimenez was as useful as a chocolate teapot during Jose Mourinho’s first game as Tottenham boss and inexplicably bundled the ball into his own net during a disastrous defeat to Burnley.

Wolverhampton Wanderers – John Ruddy

A bit like Leicester, there’s not too many Wolves players you can possibly criticise, but this seems like a fair selection when you consider how many teams’ starting XI that Ruddy would walk into.

A shot-stopper that was once linked with a move to Chelsea and was a broken finger away from going to Euro 2012 with England should be doing more than collecting dust on the Molineux bench.

GIVEMESPORT’s Kobe Tong says

From the off, we have to accept that ‘ruined their career’ is something of a hyperbolic statement because, well, few careers are truly unsalvageable.

Of all the players on the list, Drinkwater has probably seen his stock drop the most by proving that not only is he not good enough for Chelsea, but he doesn’t seem to be for mid-table sides either.

Problems both on and off the pitch have seriously derailed his loan spells with Burnley and Aston Villa, so I fully expect him to leave Stamford Bridge for the Championship as soon as possible.

Adrian is certainly an interesting case because, although the abuse he received on social media was out of water, people shouldn’t be too surprised by his suspect performances recently.

Anyone who saw him near the backend of his West Ham career will know that he was never the ‘best backup goalkeeper in the world’ that overexcited Liverpool fans thought he was going to be.

But as for Chong and Sessegnon, we need to hold our tongues for now because we’re making them out to be older than they are just because they’ve had an anomalous amount of first-team action.

Just because they’re not producing the freakish numbers that Erling Haaland and Kylian Mbappe do it doesn’t mean they should only be given a couple of seasons’ chance to prove themselves at a top club. 

But, anyway, I digress. Besides, football is a world full of comeback stories that prove nobody’s career is beyond rescue if it’s only on-pitch matters in question, even for these 20 players.

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