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Ball of Shame Decathlon #5: The top Premier League stars who spend the least amount of time on the pitch

Today’s fast-paced Premier League leaves little room for the genuinely fat footballers of old, but when our Ball of Shame team took a look at official Premier League stats for the first half of the season, it was clear that fatness of mind persists in the English top flight...

by Josh Powell | January 8, 2014

Our fifth #BallofShame Decathlon event takes a look at those players who’ve most successfully limited the amount of time they spend on the pitch.

We’ve looked at every player with 10 or more appearances in the first half of the Premier League season. Below are the ones who’ve averaged the least time on the pitch after they’ve been prodded across the touchline.

The bronze medal goes to Steven Naismith of Everton, with just 3 of his 12 Premier League appearances lasting longer than 45 minutes. Earlier this season he was spotted driving to training in a Mini – looking conspicuous next to Kevin Mirallas’ personalised gold Bentley – so perhaps he’s getting paid by the minute?

In second place is his team mate Gerard Deulofeu, who’s also gotten pitch time in 12 matches but completed only one of these. Like Naismith, 3 of his appearances have lasted under 10 minutes, but the Spaniard has dodged an extra 39 minutes of work so far.

Out in front however is Arsenal’s Nacho Monreal. He’s only lasted the full distance in 2 of the 11 games he’s featured in during the first half of the season, with the remaining 9 seeing him exert himself for 23 minutes or less.

Two medals for Everton and a second for Arsenal are keeping our little tournament interesting.

  • Join us tomorrow when we’ll be identifying the Premier League clubs who take their foot off the gas as soon as they get in front.

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