Coral’s alternative Premier League Team of the Season for 2015/16
Sam Barnard, Assistant Sports Editor | May 15, 2016
Rather than taking an obvious punt at a 2015/16 Premier League Team of the Season, Coral have decided to look back across all of our previous Teams of the Week and pick an XI based on consistency.
So, read on below to find out who made the side, where you’ll perhaps find one or two surprising inclusions…
Goalkeeper: Hugo Lloris (Tottenham)
All of Lloris, Costel Pantilimon and Ben Foster tied level, featuring three times apiece in our teams, but we have decided to go for the former due to being an ever-present in goal for Spurs.
It might be a surprise that David de Gea and Kasper Schmeichel were not in the top three choices, but they didn’t even make it into a Coral Team of the Week until matchweeks 22 and 29 respectively.
Multiple inclusions (goalkeepers)
David de Gea (Matchweek 22)
Kasper Schmeichel (matchweek 29)
Right back: Hector Bellerin (Arsenal)
Young Spaniard Bellerin is the standout winner at right back, having featured in five Coral Teams of the Week throughout the season, and has been a key player for the Gunners.
The likes of Branislav Ivanovic and Joel Ward were not too far behind, while Antonio Valencia threatened to oust Bellerin after being included in three of our teams towards the end of the campaign.
Multiple inclusions (right backs)
Centre back: Laurent Koscielny (Arsenal)
Like Arsenal teammate Bellerin, Koscielny makes our side after topping the Teams of the Week count for his position.
On top of helping his club to 14 clean sheets in the 2015/16 Premier League, the Frenchman scored four goals and was even captain for a number of matches.
Centre back: Virgil van Dijk (Southampton)
Four players battled it out for the other place at centre half, but we have gone for Van Dijk for his consistency this season ahead of Manchester United duo Chris Smalling and Daley Blind and Premier League-winning captain Wes Morgan.
Multiple inclusions (centre backs)
Virgil van Dijk
Left back: Patrick van Aanholt (Sunderland)
Van Aanholt managed to emerge as the winner for our place at left back, after being an integral part of yet another great escape for Sunderland.
A total of five goals and three assists is fantastic by anyone’s standards at full back. His strike against Everton in a 3-0 win helped confirm the Black Cats’ survival.
Multiple inclusions (left backs)
Patrick van Aanholt
Right wing: Riyad Mahrez (Leicester City)
Player of the Season Mahrez predictably gets into this XI, and the Algeria international has featured in the most amount of our Team of the Week this campaign, after gaining an incredible 17 goals and 10 assists.
Many are still scratching their heads trying to fathom how the Foxes won the title, but it was largely down to this man, and no doubt the fans will be desperately hoping that he lights up the King Power Stadium for at least another year.
Centre midfield: Dele Alli (Tottenham)
A suspension at the end of the campaign perhaps slightly tarnished Alli’s debut Premier League season, but the teenager has otherwise been a revelation and made a mockery of the leap from League One to the top flight.
The 20-year-old Alli’s rise has meant that he’s earned England caps already, and is a touted starter for Euro 2016.
Centre midfield: Dimitri Payet (West Ham United)
Few can argue with Payet’s inclusion in this line-up either, after becoming a fan favourite for West Ham United, though he just edged out Philippe Coutinho, who was picked the same amount of times in our teams.
Multiple inclusions (central midfielders)
Left wing: Andre Ayew (Swansea City)
Out on the left wing, is Swans star Ayew, who has consistently shown that he is one of the bargain buys of the season after his free transfer from Marseille last summer.
Stars such as Pedro Rodriguez, Alexis Sanchez, Roberto Firmino, Sadio Mane and Georginio Wijnaldum missed out on a place, but can still hold their heads up high.
Multiple inclusions (wingers)
Striker: Jamie Vardy (Leicester City)
Of course Vardy gets in, after a campaign that included winning the Premier League, scoring 24 goals and also going on a record goal run of 11 matches. He first featured in our Team of the Weeks after only Matchweek 9, though.
Will the former non-league player’s fairytale rise end up with success with England at the Euro 2016 finals this summer?
Striker: Odion Ighalo (Watford)
Perhaps quite controversially, Ighalo is the other striker that makes this side, after his magnificent first half to the season that saw him score 13 times in 15 games at one point.
Prolific superstars Sergio Aguero and Harry Kane just miss out. Maybe they just scored in weeks when others impressed more? Credit should also go to Graziano Pelle, Anthony Martial and Aleksandar Mitrovic too.
Multiple inclusions (strikers)