This weekend in Charlotte North Carolina, the very best the NBA has to offer will gather for the annual showcase that is the All-Star game.
A part of a full weekend of action which includes the Slam Dunk Contest, the Skills Challenge and the Rising Stars game, the All-Star break is one of the most exciting times in the basketball calendar.
But what if the Premier League had it’s own version of the All-Star game? Who would make each team, and more importantly who would come out on top?
In the NBA the squads are selected as players from the Eastern Conference and players from the Western Conference before the two team captains select from the pool of eligible players, meaning each team will have a mix.
For this exercise we will go with two starting XI’s, North vs South. Using the map below as a guide, everywhere from Wolves below, including the London teams are South and everyone from Liverpool above are North
The North will have three less teams to choose from than the South but they have players from both Manchester City and Liverpool so it evens itself out.
The Premier League Northern All-Stars
Manager – Pep Guardiola
Goalkeeper – David De Gea
Right-back – Kyle Walker
Centre-back – Virgil Van Dijk
Centre-back – Aymeric Laporte
Left-back – Andy Robertson
Centre-midfield – Fernandinho
Centre-midfield – Paul Pogba
Centre-midfield – David Silva
Forward – Mo Salah
Forward – Sergio Aguero
Forward – Raheem Sterling
Ederson, John Stones, Lucas Digne, Bernardo Silva, Marcus Rashford, Sadio Mane, Leroy Sane.
A team made up of just three sides for the North, but what a plethora of talent they have at their disposal. Five Manchester City players, four from Liverpool and two from Manchester United.
It’s difficult to find a flaw in the North, with marauding full-backs, solid centre-halves, Fernandinho providing a base for Pogba and Silva in the middle and a frightening front three.
A team unquestionably spoilt for choice.
The Premier League Southern All-Stars
Manager – Mauricio Pochettino
Goalkeeper – Hugo Lloris
Right-back – Matt Doherty
Centre- back – Toby Alderweireld
Centre-back – Cesar Azpilicueta
Left-back – Ben Chilwell
Centre-midfield – N’golo Kante
Centre-midfield – Lucas Torreira
Attacking-midfield – Eden Hazard
Forward – Pierre Emerick Aubameyang
Forward– Harry Kane
Forward – Heung Min Son
Ben Foster, Jan Vertonghen, Shane Duffy, Marcos Alonso, Christian Eriksen, Callum Wilson, Wilfried Zaha.
A wider array of teams represented in the South but it’s still an incredibly strong side on paper, especially in attack.
With two strong holding players and a scarily good front four, the South has talent in abundance. Four Spurs players, three Chelsea, two Arsenal, one Wolves and one Leicester.
Who Would Win?
The All-Star game is competitive but for the most part it is an exhibition. On paper the North look to have the stronger side, but the South have plenty of goals in their team also.
On first glance it looks as though the North would be the easy winners but we feel it would be a tight affair between the two. We predict goals though, and it is essentially an exhibition match so we’re going a 3-2 win for the North.