By 90Min
April 16, 2019

Let's not beat around the bush, 'worst player of the season' lists are boring. If you're honest, it's just three Fulham players, four Huddersfield players, a couple of Cardiff players and Marcos Alonso. 

Football's about expectations. Sometimes players live up to them (Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Felipe Anderson), some players fall short of them (Eric Bailly, Kelechi Iheanacho, everyone Fulham have signed) and some players exceed them (you know who they are). 

This is about the second group. These are the players who should've been better this season, but...well, weren't. 

GK: Jordan Pickford

Clive Rose/GettyImages

England's World Cup penalty shootout hero. Former Carlisle United glovesman. One of the most hyped English goalkeepers in a generation. 

He's not been good this season. The stubby cornerstone of an average defence, his shotstopping his been bang average. His decision-making? Poor. His long passing, the thing that sets him apart from a lot of keepers at his level? Well, he's outside the top ten keepers in the league for accurate long balls per 90 minutes this season. 

He's in the top ten for inaccurate ones though. Oops. 

RB: Kieran Trippier

England's World Cup free kick hero...etc. 

Mike Hewitt/GettyImages

It's possible that Trippier wasn't that good in the first place and Spurs' centre-backs covered for his flaws – but even his crossing, the one thing he's really good at, has completely fallen apart since the World Cup. As for his defending...let's not even go there. He certainly doesn't. 

CB: Davinson Sanchez

Put your pens down, this isn't a 'bad players XI', this is for the underwhelming. For the way Sanchez finished last season, looking like a top-five Premier League centre-back, 2018/19 has been a huge comedown.

If Spurs play a back four, he probably doesn't start. It's not a disaster – he's young, careers are long, he's still good – but the Sanchez hype train has stopped pretty abruptly. 

CB: Alfie Mawson

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This always happens! An English centre-back heads away a lot of balls in a relegation-threatened team and suddenly he's the next coming of John Terry! Then he gets his big move and it turns out he's actually not very good at all! That's Alfie Mawson! That's Steven Caulker after Cardiff! It! Always! Happens!

LB: Marcos Alonso

Alright, we knew Marcos Alonso was trash, but this season he's been really trash. The man defends like a runaway train (that is to say, has absolutely no awareness of the concept of defending, like how trains don't) and...well, he's just absolutely no good at anything. 

He's the prime example of the Fantasy Premier League Makes Me Think He's Good effect (see also: Luka Milivojevic, who even got a solitary Team of the Season vote here at 90min). Points galore! He'll be a top five defensive scorer again this season, but he's not actually good. 

CM: Jorginho

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*points at horde of Chelsea fans with torches and pitchforks*

CM: N'Golo Kante

You could make a very good case that N'Golo Kante was one of the three best players in the league in each of his first three seasons in England. This cannot make that case. Not even a little bit. 

This isn't about apportioning blame, but Kante has become a slightly better than average midfielder this season, playing in a more advanced role with Jorginho or Mateo Kovacic or whoever behind him. 

Thomas Eisenhuth/GettyImages

Relative to past performances and expectations, Kante has been underwhelming this season. Sorry. 

CM: André-Frank Zambo Anguissa

Fulham signed André-Frank Zambo Anguissa for the best part of £30m this summer to make him their record transfer. 

Do you remember anything he's done this season? Once? Forgotten who he is? Same. 

RW: Willian

Just sell him to Barcelona, for the love of god. 

ST: Cenk Tosun

Shaun Botterill/GettyImages

One goal every 470 minutes this season. He's being kept out of Everton's team by Dominic Calvert-Lewin, who's basically okay? He's fine? He shouldn't be keeping a £27m striker out of the team though. 

Dishonourable mention for Marko Arnautovic, who has done absolutely nothing since Unnamed Chinese Club came in with an offer in January. His last league goal? 2nd January. 

LW: Anthony Martial

Bit of a split for this one. Martial wins it for sheer lack of improvement (yes, fine, ten league goals in 24 appearances/17 starts), because he should be really good now and he's just decent. 

However. There's an argument to be made that Eden Hazard could have made this slot his own. More goals and assists combined than any other player in the league so far, you say? Fine, but that shouldn't be news. He's the consensus pick for 'most talented player in the league' and it's hardly close – he should be there. 

Michael Regan/GettyImages

And that's the thing. He should be there. Always. He's disappeared in a dozen games this season, more often than not when Chelsea need him. He's not underwhelming because he's been bad, he's underwhelming because everyone knows he can be so much more. 

Last weekend's game at Anfield summed up his season. Big occasion. Big pressure. The time when a great player puts his team on his back and does something. He came up short, again. 

Oh, and a dishonourable mention for Ryan Sessegnon. Three managers and 15,258 different positions are mitigating factors though, and he'll be back. 

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