Chelsea

My 5 Most Hated Premier League Players – Who Are Yours?

Those of you who appreciate classics from the world of music will no doubt be familiar with the dulcet tones of Kelis in her 2000 hit ‘Caught Out There’.

For those of you in need of a refresher,  in the chorus she melodically sings the following gentle lyric: ‘I HATE YOU SO MUCH RIGHT NOW! ARRGGHHHH!’ Now, that line was aimed at a cheating lover, but for our purposes we’ll be concentrating similarly explosive hatred on the annoying, arrogant, downright  abominable divs, the players who wind us up no end with their spitting, cheating, punching, moaning, and general, all-round nastiness.

So here is my 5 Most Hated Premier League Players.

1. El-Hadj Diouf

When he’s not too busy driving around in very expensive but eye-meltingly ugly ‘personalised’ cars, the Senegalese striker/winger enjoys his other favourite pass-time of riling players and fans alike with his disgraceful behaviour.  Telling a ball boy to ‘F*ck off, white boy’ is just, well, I have to say it Jeff, unbelievable.  His party trick though, is spitting.

Players, fans and a child have all been on the end of this odious character’s unwelcome expectoration.  The latest showing of Diouf’s famous friendly side was his taunting of QPR player Jamie Mackie, as the striker lay on the pitch with a broken leg.  When even Neil Warnock himself is referring to you as ‘Lower than a sewer rat’, you know for sure you’re hated.

Lowest Low: Gobbing a load of phlegm into the crowd at Celtic Park.  Utterly disgusting, yet that green wad of mucous and spit perfectly represents the regard in which Diouf is held by football fans across the country.

2. Joey Barton

Thug.  Barton comes from the brawler’s favourite, ‘punch/poke in the eye with a cigar now, ask questions later’ school of interpersonal communication.  The Scouser with the face of a 40s spiv has left a trail of destruction wherever he’s been.  If you’re young watch out, Joey’s gonna getcha; from assaulting a 15 year-old to stubbing a cigar out in a youth teamer’s eye, Barton won’t take any lip from whippersnappers.

Although, to be fair, it doesn’t really matter what age you are, Joey’ll have a go, be you a member of the public, an opposition player who’s just brushed past him, or an argumentative team-mate .  The seemingly uncontrollable violence and constant offences of Barton raise him to a position as one of the least liked players in the Prem.

Lowest Low: Having to be held back from attacking a 15 year-old any further.

3. John Terry

The former England and current Chelsea captain is an unpleasant individual.  His early career was tainted by his harassment of American tourists just after 9/11, since then he’s been an ever-present thorn in referees’ sides with his constant berating of refs on the pitch going pretty much totally against his backing of the Respect campaign.

His ‘Chelsea through and through’ image was rocked by his flirting with a move to Manchester City last season, and, speaking of flirting, he apparently did a whole lot more than that with former team-mate Wayne Bridge’s ex-girlfriend, behind his wife’s back (not literally).

Lowest Low: Cheating on his wife with the ex of a team-mate. A double-whammy of a dastardly deed.

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4. Craig Bellamy

The arch-moaner, Craig Bellamy, it is often said, could start a fight in an empty room.  Not only would he start a fight, he’d beat himself up, blame himself, calm down and then get stuck in again with another fight.

To see how little he is liked, just take a look at Bellamy’s clubs, he’s played for 9 clubs in the last 10 years – hardly a sign of a settled individual.  Ever the transient outsider, Bellamy has a habit of speaking his mind at the worst time and his many arrests don’t paint a pretty picture either.

Lowest Low: Saying, ‘I know what JT’s like and nothing surprises me about him’, following the Wayne Bridge’s ex affair. Yes, Craig, we know what he’s like too… an arse, like you.

5. Lee Bowyer

The Londoner’s first taste of notoriety came with his involvement on a particularly unedifying night out in 1996.  Bowyer was charged with affray after throwing chairs and hurling racial abuse at a staff member in a McDonald’s.

Having been in and out of court, the fractious midfielder was in the news again at Newcastle United for engaging in a fist-fight, on the pitch, against his own team-mate, Kieran Dyer.  Such intra-club boxing hadn’t been seen since the classic bout of Graeme ‘having a laugh’ Le Saux vs. David ‘knock yer block off’ Batty with Blackburn in 1995.

It’s not just actions but words that get lovable Lee into trouble though, he was once forced to apologise to a West Brom fan for calling the grandmother a ‘f***ing c***’. This kind of behaviour, along with frequent cases of dirty play, including the old faithful ‘studs down the back of the achilles’, give Lee Bowyer a thoroughly deserved place in my 5.

Lowest Low: Getting into a fight with his own team-mate on the pitch for Newcastle United. Insane.

So there we are, my select five of the many, many hated players in the Premier League.  Please comment below on who would be in your list.  All-time Premier League lists welcome too; Robbie Savage, anyone?

What do you think? National Hero or Public Enemy No.1?  Let me know, follow me on Twitter: @stuartcfootball

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