The EPLs Top 10 Imports!

Martin HillCorrespondent IMay 16, 2008

With this current premiership now done and dusted, let the transfer window open!

Since the close of the window in January there has been four months of speculation of who will be moving too and from the premier league.

With home grown talent seemingly failing to make the grade and managers turning their attentions elsewhere we look forward to our next batch of imports who will add more continental flair and style to the league.

Many overseas players have graced these shores, some far better than others.

Now is the time to determine who the best 10 imports are... (in my opinion anyway)


10. Paolo Di Canio (Sheff Wed, West Ham, Charlton)

Di Canio made a name for himself at Celtic before his move south of the border, where at Sheffield Wednesday he famously shoved the referee (who took a dive). Flair, grit determination, moments of pure magic and his ability to make players around him give that little bit extra and look that little bit better warrants his place in my list. 75 premiership goals in 190 appearances.

9. Ruud Van Nistelrooy (Man Utd)

If you don't support Man Utd, then quite simply you do not like this man. An awesome scoring record in both league and Europe and all this after a serious knee injury that prevented his move to United at an earlier time. 110 goals in 150 games pretty much says it all!

8. Jurgen Klinsmann (Spurs)

Joined Spurs on the back of superb records at Inter Milan, Monaco and in his native Germany. Although disliked when he first joined for being part of the German side that beat England in the 1990 World Cup and considered a diver, he soon warmed the hearts of fans with his signature diving goal celebration. 30 goals in 56 games for Spurs including a second coming on loan.

7. Dwight Yorke (Aston Villa, Man Utd, Blackburn, Birmingham, Sunderland)

Discovered by Graham Taylor during a trip to the West Indies he was soon on these shores becoming a fan favourite and Villa legend. The inevitable move to a big club soon arrived as Man Utd came knocking. He was a key contributor to the treble winning side in 1999. 136 goals, 420 apps.

6. Peter Schmiechel (Man Utd, Aston Villa, Man City)

Many argue he is the best goalkeeper to play football. Certainly the best to pull on a United jersey. A massive contributor to the successes of Manchester United and not just in between the sticks but scoring once in his 296 appearences for United and another during his season at Aston Villa. 354 appearances, 2 goals, probably 200 clean sheets???

5. Cristiano Ronaldo (Man Utd)

Johan Cryuff said in an April 2, 2008 interview, "Ronaldo is better than George Best and Denis Law, who were two brilliant and great players in the history of United." On the back of his goalscoring exploits this season and hopefully many more to come there's no reason why he won't be number 1 on this list in the very near future. The best player in the world, and this is coming from a Newcastle fan! 66 goals, 163 apps.

4. Gianfranco Zola (Chelsea)

Standing at a mear 5'5'' how did the 'little one' score so many headers? Very rarely with the ball at his feet did normal things happen and i as a fan i have never heard a player, chairman, another fan make a complaint against him. An incredible talent, who everyone at one point has wished had playing in their team! 59 in 229 games and probably somewhere near 1 million assists.

3. Eric Cantona (Leeds Utd, Man Utd)

First man to ever wear his collar up and not just in football, the first man ever in the history or the world. Well first time i ever saw it. An instant legend at United his arrival lifted the whole team. Leeds fans were upset at the tiny fee paid for him but manager Howard Wilkinson was glad to see the back of him. Constantly surrounded by controversy his 'kung fu' kick on Palace fan Matt Simmons will never be forgotten. But all in all one of the most passionate and intelligent players to ever play the game. 73 goals, 172 apps.

2. Thierry Henry (Arsenal)

Wouldn't have a sniff at the top 10 Spanish imports list. Thierry Henry's time at Arsenal will always be remembered because he always seemed to score. A turn of pace Linford Christie would be proud of and a deadlier finish than Scorpion on Mortal Kombat. The biggest factor to the success of Arsenal under Arsene Wenger and a snip at £10.5 million! 174 goals in 254 games eclipsing gunner legend Ian Wright's goal scoring record.

1. Dennis Bergkamp (Arsenal)

Now for the possible surprise, but i have never been so entertained by an individual on a football pitch ever. Nothing he couldn't do, other than invoke his BA Baracus attitude towards flying! I had never seen a better player in the premier league until Ronaldo came along, but will he be round long enough to succeed to the level Bergkamp reached. Scorer of great goals, still love watching his goal against Newcastle where he spins the defender one way, the ball does the other and he slots it under the keeper and his quarter final goal at the 98' world cup arguably the best goal of all time. I'm likely to go with this assumption of best goal because it came against Argentina and of course knocked them out, always music to my ears! 87 goals in 315 apps and minus the odd penalty 80 or so 'great' goals!

So there it is, not one Newcastle player but a few close to the top 10 list must get a mention...

Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink, Patrick Vieira, Bruce Grobelaar, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, David Ginola (and there's the former magpie), Juninho, Jay Jay Okocha, Ossie Ardilles, Jaap Stam, Ruud Gullit (as a player)

I look forward to your comments regarding this as i'm sure we all have many different opinions on the matter?


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