Picking a Premier League XI of European Championship Winners

Euro 2020 won’t be played until 2021, denying us an amazing summer of continental football.

But instead of dwelling on what is not happening, cast your mind back to the European Championships of yesteryear, and which Premier League stars enjoyed success.

Here’s a select XI of the players who have won the Euros while at a Premier League club…

Fabien Barthez (GK)

Premier League Club: Manchester United

Fabien Barthez secured a high profile move from Monaco to Manchester United less than two weeks before France’s first game at Euro 2000.

The unmistakable goalkeeper already had a World Cup medal from two years earlier and went on to win two Premier League titles in his three seasons as a starter at Old Trafford.

Cedric Soares (RB)

Premier League Club: Southampton

At the end of his debut season with Southampton, full-back Cedric Soares was part of the Portugal team that won, perhaps surprisingly in the eyes of many, Euro 2016.

Cedric, who cost the Saints just under £5m, didn’t feature in the group stage of the tournament but went on to start every knockout game, including the final against hosts France.

Jose Fonte (CB)

Premier League Club: Southampton

Jose Fonte lined up alongside clubmate Soares in those Euro 2016 knockout games. He was another not to feature in the group that went on to start every knockout clash.

The veteran centre-back was 32 at the time and had only made his international debut in 2014, having very much played his way into contention with his Premier League form.

Marcel Desailly (CB)

Premier League Club: Chelsea

Marcel Desailly linked up with an ambitious Chelsea in the summer of 1998, agreeing a move from AC Milan just as the World Cup tournament was kicking off.

The Frenchman was an ever-present for Les Bleus as they won Euro 2000 and became only the second country in history to hold both world and European titles at the same time.

Alvaro Arbeloa (LB)

Premier League Club: Liverpool

Prior to winning the 2010 World Cup and Euro 2012 as a Real Madrid player, versatile full-back Alvaro Arbeloa tasted Euro 2008 glory with Spain while at Liverpool.

Although he was a starter for La Roja in 2012, Arbeloa didn’t actually see much action in 2008, or indeed 2010. His only appearance in 2008 was the dead rubber against Greece.

Didier Deschamps (CM)

Premier League Club: Chelsea

A two-time Champions League winner with Marseille and Juventus, as well as France’s World Cup winning captain, Didier Deschamps moved to Chelsea in the summer of 1999.

A year later, the player once dubbed the ‘water carrier’ by Eric Cantona lifted his second consecutive international trophy, before then spending the final season of his career in Spain.

Patrick Vieira (CM)

Premier League Club: Arsenal

Patrick Vieira, already a World Cup at 22, added Euro 2000 glory to his medal collection at the age of 24. But where he had been a back-up player in 1998, the Arsenal started every game in 2000.

Vieira partnered the aforementioned Deschamps in France’s midfield, striking the perfect balance between maturity and youth, experience and exuberance.

Xabi Alonso (CM)

Premier League Club: Liverpool

Xabi Alonso remains fondly remembered at Liverpool for his achievements during five years with the club and it was during his time at Anfield that he established himself as a world class player.

Alonso was predominantly second fiddle to Marcos Senna at Euro 2008, although he did captain the side against Greece in his only start. He also appeared off the bench in both the semi-final and final.

David Silva (AM)

Premier League Club: Manchester City

Having joined Manchester City in 2010, still in the relative infancy of the Abu Dhabi revolution, David Silva started every game for Spain at Euro 2012, even scoring the opener in the final against Italy.

Silva had previously also played a major role for Spain at Euro 2008 as well, starting five out of six games. That was still during his time as a Valencia player.

Thierry Henry (FW)

Premier League Club: Arsenal

Thierry Henry moved to Juventus six months after starring at the 1998 World Cup, but his struggles to adapt paved the way for a transfer to Arsenal just a few more months later.

Even though he didn’t find the net for eight games for the Gunners, Henry went on to score 26 times in his first season and ended it wore glory for France at Euro 2000.

Fernando Torres (FW)

Premier League Club(s): Liverpool & Chelsea

Fernando Torres holds the unique distinction of having won two European Championship titles while at two different Premier League clubs.

His first came off the back of a stunning debut season at Liverpool in 2008, scoring the winner in the final, while his second in 2012 was as a Chelsea player.

The others that have been part of a European Championship winning squad while contracted to a Premier League club are Pepe Reina (Liverpool), Frank Leboeuf (Chelsea), Nikos Dabizas (Leicester), Cesc Fabregas (Arsenal), Juan Mata (Chelsea), Stelios Giannakopoulos (Bolton) and Eder (Swansea).

Dabizas had just been relegated with Leicester, while Eder was actually on loan at Lille.

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