We dedicate this one to Carragher and Redknapp…

The Greatest XI

As I watched the two Jamies lay into each other on Sky at the weekend, my choice for the letter J became clear. With his exceptionally poor punditry and general knowledge of the game, Jamie Redknapp had me wondering how he had ever played Premier League football, and then it occurred to me that there was another Premier League Jamie sitting right next to him in Mr. Carragher. Before I knew it I was trying to come up with an XI without even doing any research. So folks, this what I have come up with.

#1 David James (Liverpool, Aston Villa, West Ham United, Manchester City and Portsmouth)

I am certainly not cheating at the first opportunity. James is the formal version of Jamie and James is in his name, is it not? Calamity played 572 Premier League games so you tell me he shouldn’t be in this side. He made his first appearance in the big league all the way back in 1992/93 (and probably let a silly one in) before making his final appearance in 2009/10 (where he almost certainly let a silly one in). As much as he had a ricket in him, David James was one of the best English goalkeepers of his era, which tells us a lot about how far English goalkeeping has fallen over the years. Great and varied hair though.

#2 James Perch (Newcastle United)

He is definitely only in the team because his surname is a fish. Perch is yet another product of the Nottingham Forest youth system and played plenty of Championship football for them before being snapped up by Newcastle. He had a solid three years in the North East before heading to Wigan and then Queens Park Rangers, never to be seen in the top flight again.

#3 James Milner (Leeds United, Newcastle United, Aston Villa, Manchester City and Liverpool)

He’s been around bloody ages has Milner. Properly ages. At one point he was the Premier League’s youngest goalscorer, his goal against Sunderland in 2002, before that was broken by James Vaughan of Everton (who does not make this team). I’ve never actually heard Milner speak, which probably means my life is incomplete, but to date he has 454 Premier League appearances and is still not a left back, ever.

#4 Jamie Carragher (Liverpool)

I have heard this guy speak though. I’ve not understood a word of it, but I have heard him. Jamie Carragher played 508 times in the Premier League for Liverpool and still didn’t win it. Mind you, he was the guy that won the Champions League for Liverpool, not Stevie G in my opinion, so there. Carragher will skipper this very experienced side and probably get cramp.

#5 Jay McEveley (Derby County and Blackburn Rovers)

Hey, I am told James is his actual name. I’ve picked this lad because he was supposed to be brilliant when he was a kid at Blackburn. In fact, he was so brilliant he made about ten appearances at Ewood Park before they flogged him to Derby County who got relegated that season. He is now at Sheffield United so, yeah, brilliant.

#6 Jamie Pollock (Middlesbrough and Bolton Wanderers)

Jamie Pollock might well be the first of a generation or three of English footballers that never fulfilled their potential because some bloody foreigners kept getting picked ahead of them. Pollock was very, very decent yet couldn’t quite convince Bryan Robson that he was a better bet than Emerson or Juninho in the Boro midfield. Pollock needed to play 120 minutes every match just to keep his weight down, and ended up going to Bolton Wanderers.

#7 James Coppinger (Newcastle United)

James Coppinger has been included as a reminder to all the players out there who don’t quite make it at the top and then give up. Sure, Coppinger only made one appearance in the Premier League for Newcastle United. Did he give up? Hell no. Coppinger is still going strong at the age of 36 having played nearly 500 times for Doncaster Rovers at a variety of levels. Good work Copps.

#8 Jamie Redknapp (Liverpool, Tottenham Hotspur and Southampton)

Ah, the reason I went with Jamies. Redknapp, signed for Liverpool by Graeme Souness because he could pass a ball nicely. However, Liverpool didn’t really win much (or maybe even anything) when Redknapp played for the club. For me, he was always a poor man’s David Beckham. Not quite as good looking, not quite as good on the missus front, didn’t take free kicks quite as well, and didn’t play for a club winning much at any point. That said, his mum must have been a looker in the day because there is no chance Harry Redknapp spawned a boy that pretty on his own.

#9 Jamie Vardy (Leicester City)

I think enough has been said about Jamie Vardy in recent seasons. Came from non-league, banged in some goals, won a title with Leciester. Job done.

#10 James Beattie (Blackburn Rovers, Southampton, Everton, Stoke City and Blackpool)

Beattie is almost certainly the only lad in the side to have been headbutted by a naked Tony Pulis. Four great seasons at Southampton, after two very slow starting ones, saw him get in the England squad and earn a big money move to Everton where it never really happened for him. That’s right, Everton have form on overpaying for a player that has done well at a smaller club and then fails when he heads to Merseyside. Take note Gylfi.

#11 James McFadden (Everton, Birmingham City and Sunderland)

The brother of ex-Westlife singer Bryan, James had a decent Premier League career for an average Scottish player. Some might say he blazed the trail for Steven Naismith.

Manager: Unknown

Incredibly, after Messrs Carragher and Redknapp were so close to leading the way, nobody names James, Jamie or Jimmy has been trusted with managing a team in the Premier League. So, we will just leave this lot to Carrager and Redknapp to organise – I don’t think we’ll be too organised on defending corners though, there’s already a difference of opinion.