Two Liverpool stars and a Conte favourite – The 2021/22 Unsung heroes XI


The 2021/22 season is almost over, and what a season it has been.

We’ve had some unbelievable individual performances from the likes of Mohamed Salah, Kevin De Bruyne and Heung-Min Son, and all three men will surely get the credit they deserve when the end of season award ceremonies come around.

However, aside from the superstars, there are plenty of players who quietly go about their business without ever getting the credit they deserve, and with that in mind, we’re going to have a go at putting together our XI of unsung heroes from the 2021/22 Premier League season.

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GK – Alisson Becker

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Alisson Becker is universally recognised as one of the best goalkeepers in the Premier League, but in our view, he still doesn’t get the credit he deserves.

Alisson is not only one of the best goalies in England, he’s one of the best players in the country too.

The fact that he wasn’t nominated for the Premier League Player of the Year award was borderline scandalous, and it’s about time he’s recognised as one of the Premier League’s best players.

RB – Takehiro Tomiyasu

Photo by David Price/Arsenal FC via Getty Images

Arsenal have struggled to find any sort of consistency for the past decade, but Takehiro Tomiyasu is as steady as they come at the back.

The Japan international is a no-nonsense defender who rarely ever puts a foot wrong, and the fact that Arsenal missed him so much when he was injured is a testament to his quality.

CB – Joel Matip

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The second Liverpool player on this list, Joel Matip is underrated by virtue of his name not being Virgil van Dijk.

It’s tough to shine when you’re playing next to arguably the greatest centre-back of all-time, but somehow, Matip still manages to wow fans and pundits alike.

Sadly, he’s in a Liverpool team filled with superstars, so he rarely gets the credit he deserves, but regardless of the lack of fanfare, Matip is one of the best defenders in the league.

CB – Ben Davies

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Cristian Romero has been making the headlines in the Spurs defence in recent months, but Ben Davies has been doing a remarkable job on the left of that back three.

Transformed from a shaky full-back into a sturdy centre-half by Antonio Conte, Davies has enjoyed a real resurgence since the Italian’s arrival in north London.

LB – Marcos Alonso

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Ben Chilwell’s injury handed Chelsea a number of problems at the beginning of the season, but Marcos Alonso has filled in amicably at left-back this term.

As ever, the Spaniard has provided a constant attacking threat down that left side, and he’s often turned up in the biggest of games for the Blues this season.

If it weren’t for an unfortunate handball against Real Madrid, the Spaniard would also have been hailed as the hero of another memorable Chelsea Champions League run.

CM – Joao Moutinho

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At the age of 35, Joao Moutinho is showing no signs of slowing down.

To be honest, Moutinho could have made this team for each of the last four seasons. The Portuguese ace has been both brilliant and underrated for the last decade, and even still, many don’t appreciate the value he brings to this Wolves team.

CM – Rodri

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Kevin De Bruyne and Bernardo Silva rightly receive a lot of praise for the work they do in the Manchester City midfield, but Rodri is arguably City’s most important player.

Positionally impeccable, technically excellent and tactically adept, Rodri has, once again, been the beating heart of a potentially title-winning Manchester City side.

CM – Pablo Fornals

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Whether he plays on the wing or in midfield, West Ham can always rely on Pablo Fornals to put a shift in.

The Spaniard has well and truly found his feet in English football, and now, he’s one of the Hammers’ most important players.

Declan Rice, Jarrod Bowen and Michail Antonio may get the most praise, but make no mistake about it, Fornals is a vital component of this side.

RW – Bryan Mbeumo

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Another player who is somewhat overshadowed by one of his teammates, Bryan Mbeumo has been brilliant this season.

Of course, Ivan Toney is the main man in the Brentford attack, but he wouldn’t have scored half as many goals if it weren’t for Mbeumo.

A willing runner who can occupy multiple defenders at once, Mbeumo has taken to the Premier League like a duck to water.

LW – Leandro Trossard

Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images

Brighton have a number of unsung heroes in their squad, but perhaps none have gone under the radar more than Leandro Trossard.

The Belgian has been a thorn in the side of almost every Premier League team at one point this season, and his return of eight goals really doesn’t do him justice.

Trossard has found his shooting boots in recent weeks to increase his tally, and if he keeps that up next season, he could easily hit double figures.

ST – Jamie Vardy

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Almost a decade on from his Premier League debut, Jamie Vardy is somehow still underrated.

When you think of the Premier League’s best strikers this season, you probably don’t think of Vardy, but with the Englishman averaging 117 minutes per goal this term, he has a better scoring ratio than any of Mohamed Salah, Heung-Min Son or Cristiano Ronaldo.

If Vardy had stayed fit, we may well have been talking about another Golden Boot-winning campaign.

The striker remains one of the Premier League’s best, but after an injury-plagued season, many had begun to write him off.

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