The 2023-24 Premier League season has been a treat so far, with plenty of intriguing storylines throughout the division.
At the top, Liverpool, Arsenal and surprise package Aston Villa look well-placed to challenge Manchester City for the title, with all three teams hoping to capitalise on some uncharacteristically poor form from Pep Guardiola’s side.
Manchester United and Chelsea have both endured tricky starts to the campaign, although the former still has a realistic chance of European football, while the latter may even be lucky to finish inside the top half.
Finally, the relegation battle is set to be as exciting as ever, with Luton Town clawing their way towards safety with some impressive performances in recent weeks.
Below, FootballTransfers runs through the Worst Premier League Team of the Season so far, taking into account the expectations of each player before the campaign began.
GK: Mark Flekken (Brentford)
David Raya has been notably poor for Arsenal, but his replacement at Brentford – Mark Flekken – has been even worse. A senior Dutch international, he arrived with a great reputation from the Bundesliga, but Flekken has not lived up to expectations at all.
The Dutch ‘keeper has the worst post-shot Expected Goals tally in the entire Premier League, with xG suggesting he has conceded 6.7 more goals than he should have. Brentford are hovering just above the drop zone and Flekken is one of the reasons for that.
RB: Vitinho (Burnley)
Burnley have arguably been one of the Premier League’s biggest disappointments so far this season. After storming to the Championship title last season, while playing scintillating football under Vincent Kompany, many thought they would be able to carry their swashbuckling style into the Premier League.
Things haven’t panned out that way, however, and Burnley are in the relegation zone. There are many players who could be mentioned here, but we decided to choose right-back Vitinho. The former Brazil youth international has been shaky in defence and ineffectual going forward.
CB: Calvin Bassey (Fulham)
Signed for €22.5 million in the summer, Calvin Bassey was supposed to help solidify Fulham‘s defence but he has, for the most part, done the opposite. The former Rangers and Ajax has, at times, looked incapable of matching the level required to play in the Premier League.
At 23, the Nigeria international still has room to grow and he certainly has the potential to become a solid Premier League defender, but some of his performances this season have been problematic, to say the least.
CB: Nathan Collins (Brentford)
It’s a theme this season that the Premier League’s B-clubs (get it, bee-clubs?) have been major disappointments. In addition to Burnley, Brentford have also underwhelmed this term and big-money arrival Nathan Collins is a player who has left many people scratching their heads.
The Bees shelled out almost €27m on the defender, but the Ireland international has struggled to live up to his price tag. He put on a particularly shocking display in a recent game against his former employer Wolves. That performance alone could warrant inclusion on this list.
LB: Jonny (Wolves)
Usually, you need to have played a certain number of games to make it into a Team of the Season, be it the worst or best, but we are willing to make an exception for Wolves left-back Jonny Otto.
Though he has only played once in the Premier League this season, he deserves to be mentioned as he has just been suspended by his club for allegedly elbowing a youth player and spitting at a staff member.
CM: Moises Caicedo (Chelsea)
Moises Caicedo has been far from atrocious this season, but when you are the Premier League’s record transfer, there are certain expectations that you need to match. So far, the Ecuador star has failed to live up to the hype.
In fairness, the €134m arrival did not have a proper pre-season which has certainly influenced his performances this term, but when even your coach admits to being worried about you, it is clear that there is a problem. Caicedo has underwhelmed so far and is one of the reasons why Chelsea languish in mid-table.
CM: Enzo Fernandez (Chelsea)
We could copy and paste our Caicedo paragraph here and simply replace his name with Enzo Fernandez. Though much improved in recent weeks, Chelsea’s erstwhile record signing has also failed to match the expectations so far.
Like Caicedo, Mauricio Pochettino also said that he is worried about the Argentine. Particularly earlier in the season, Fernandez was ineffectual and did little to aid Chelsea’s ailing form. His recent performances have been encouraging, however.
CM: Mason Mount (Man Utd)
Eyebrows were raised when Man Utd shelled out €64m on a player they could have signed a year later for free and Mason Mount‘s performances this term have certainly done little to make this deal look less questionable.
Though perhaps slightly harsh to include him given that he has had two injuries since arriving at Old Trafford, we feel that he has played enough to warrant a mention. In the games he has featured in, the England international was ineffectual and the matches often passed him by. He has certainly been a far cry from the game changer he was brought in to be.
RW: Antony (Man Utd)
Unequivocally much worse than Mount has been Antony. The Brazilian has not scored a competitive goal since April and is increasingly looking like one of the Premier League’s biggest flop signings given that Man Utd spent a whopping €95m on him.
The 23-year-old has looked out of his depth for most of the season, being unable to do the one thing he is supposedly good at – dribbling past players – and his body language has been dreadful as a result.
ST: Rasmus Hojlund (Man Utd)
The duality of Rasmus Hojlund. One would struggle to think of a player who would simultaneously get into the best Champions League Team of the Season, while also making it into the worst eleven of his domestic league.
One of Europe’s top scorers, it took Hojlund until December to find the back of the net for the first time in the Premier League. One goal in 15 Premier League appearances is simply not good enough for a player who was signed for €74m.
LW: Mykhailo Mudryk (Chelsea)
After a solid pre-season, many thought that this would be Mykhailo Mudryk‘s breakout campaign. Having looked unfit for English football during his first half-season in the Premier League, hopes for the Ukrainian were high heading into 2023/24.
The 22-year-old has actually scored some goals this term – three to be precise – which is a marked improvement on last season, but Mudryk still has not been consistently good enough to justify Chelsea’s potential €100m outlay on him.