Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho has gone on record to lament the lack of “untouchable” players currently vying for starting spots in his underachieving squad and for once it’s difficult to disagree with the Under-Pressure One.
Gone, according to Mourinho, are the halcyon Chelsea days of penning names such as Petr Cech, John Terry, Frank Lampard and Didier Drogba on top-flight teamsheets without blinking – only JT still plays for a start.
The Portuguese’s second stint does undermine this theory slightly, though, with five players starting all seven Premier League matches this term.
But despite their status as integral members of the Blues’ 2014/15 title-winning squad a measly return of eight points also casts aspersions on the legitimacy of their claims for continued selection.
Chelsea have ballooned from iron-clad pre-season favourites to retain their Premier League crown to 9/1 outsiders with Branislav Ivanovic and Cesc Fabregas chief among those copping flak.
Eden Hazard’s magic wand needs a service, while stalwarts Nemanja Matic and Cesar Azpilicueta duplicate the theme of underachievement compared to last season’s consistently-high performance levels.
None of the quintet therefore make it into Ladbrokes News’ own version of the 2015/16 all-star “untouchables”.
This side was picked from those players who have started all seven games for their clubs in the top tier this season, or started every league game in which they were available for selection.
These players have been chosen on their perceived importance to their club after seven games and it’s no surprise that the sides they represent have generally been excelling more than failing too.
Tottenham don’t just get the largest representation for drubbing Manchester City either, it’s a spine which is as solid as any in the top flight and can leave Lilywhites with genuine hopes of a 6/1-rated top-four finish.
For a side synonymous with leaking goals in the past, Hugo Lloris and Jan Vertonghen are part of the joint-meanest defence so far this term and Harry Kane’s belated arrival in the scorer’s arena only increases his undroppability factor at White Hart Lane.
With 59 players playing every single one of the 630 minutes of Premier League action thus far and 101 notching all seven starts, this was clearly a tough side to pick.
We reckon this XI would definitely be the new title favourites however.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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