The 20 Best Premier League Teams of the Last Decade

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English football has seen plenty of great sides throughout the country’s history, particularly in its top flight. From Arsenal’s teams of the early 2000s to Manchester City’s sparkling form of late, the Premier League boasts the name premier for a reason.

We’ve seen an evolution of proper football across the world, with money significantly upping the stakes for many of these well-established organizations. It’s created high drama in the transfer market, an ever-needed focus on the development of youth players in their academies and a global battle to develop relationships with new fans around the globe.

Although just two teams outside of the traditional top 6 have managed to hoist the Premier League title since the 1992/93 campaign, we’ve seen loads of excitement amongst those jockeying at the head of the table. 

Leicester City defied all odds in 2015/16 by hoisting their club’s first top-flight title in team history, while many other teams outside the top 6 have struggled to remain in the Premier League on a consistent basis.

Today, ONE37pm offers up a detailed list of the top 20 clubs in the Premier League era over the past 10 seasons. 

We’ll be using various criteria to determine the top teams, including top-four finishes, average finishing place, points per campaign, number of PL titles and most seasons avoiding relegation over the past 10 years.

20. Aston Villa

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Notable Players: Gabriel Agbonlahor, Jack Grealish, John McGinn

Villa managed to stay afloat in the Premier League a season ago on the final day of the season, and they’ve been rewarded with being a consistent top 10 club in 2020/21. Jack Grealish is one of the biggest stars in England, and his development at the club is a testament to what can be done when a young player is able to receive consistent minutes. 

The Claret and Blue Army will hope to hold onto Grealish for as long as possible because he is undoubtedly the face of the organization.

19. Fulham

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Notable Players: Aleksandar Mitrović, Tim Ream, Tom Cairney

A club that once boasted notable American attackers Brian McBride and Clint Dempsey, Fulham have had difficulty finding a steady stay in the Premier League and consistency when they are up. 

Fulham haven’t done much of late in England’s top flight, but did manage a top 10 finish in 2011/12. Recently, the club has spent big dollars to try and compete, and although it hasn’t worked to this point at least they’re making an effort.

18. Norwich City

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Notable Players: Teemu Pukki, Grant Hanley, Wes Hoolahan

It’s been a tumultuous time for the Canaries in the PL, bouncing back and forth between the top flight and the Championship on many occasions. This season, they’re well on pace to win the Championship and make another run at solidifying their place in the Premier League, but they’ll need to improve on their roster first.

17. West Bromwich Albion

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Notable Players: Kieran Gibbs, Jake Livermore, Ben Foster

Prior to the 2017/18 campaign, the Baggies were quite competitive for a number of seasons and even finished inside the top 10 three times.

This was largely due to their defensive shape and ability to keep opposition out of their goal thanks to goalkeeper Ben Foster, who was named the team’s Player of the Year four times in the last decade.

16. Watford

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Catherine Ivill / Getty Staff

Notable Players: Troy Deeney, Tom Cleverley, Nathaniel Chalobah

The Hornets had a spell of five straight seasons spent in the top flight come to an end this season while they’re currently playing in the Championship. However, they’ve had some exciting moments as a club recently, including their run to the FA Cup final during the 2018/19 campaign.

15. Burnley

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Notable Players: Ben Mee, Jay Rodriguez, Kieran Trippier

Sean Dyche has become one of the managers with the most recognition outside the top six teams over recent seasons because of the way Burnley has been able to compete against big clubs. Their defensive abilities have been elite and they’ve kept some of the best goalscorers at bay time and time again.

14. Newcastle United

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Notable Players: Andy Carroll, Miguel Almiron, Allan Saint-Maximin

The Magpies are one of England’s most historic brands, and although they aren’t a regular top 10 side their history keeps them in the conversation most seasons. 

At the moment, Miguel Almiron and Allan Saint-Maximin are two incredibly talented attacking forces and make this side very exciting to watch even when the team isn’t playing their best collectively.

13. Crystal Palace

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Notable Players: Wilfried Zaha, Andros Townsend, Jordan Ayew

The Eagles boast one of the historic logos in England football and don the patented vertical striped kits that cannot be mistaken for another team. They’ve spent eight consecutive seasons in the Premier League, and finished mid table most years. 

Wilfried Zaha has been a star since he stepped foot at the club, and although he hasn’t made a move to a bigger side yet, it would be surprising to see him spend his full career at Palace.

12. Stoke City

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Malcolm Couzens / Getty Contributor

Notable Players: Joe Allen, Robert Huth, Bojan Krkic

Like many teams that don’t spend big in the top flight, Stoke’s time came to end after the 2017/18 season and they haven’t found their way back just yet.

Prior to that though, Stoke had an unbelievable spell of form between 2013 and 2015 when the club finished inside the top 10 each season. A very strong feat for a team that most won’t associate among the PL’s upper echelon.

11. Swansea City

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Athena Pictures / Contributor

Notable Players: André Ayew, Kyle Naughton, Matt Grimes

The Swans have been missing from the Premier League for the past three seasons, but collectively they were a steady squad for the first seven seasons of the decade, averaging around 12th place in the top flight each season.

10. Southampton

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Notable Players: Virgil van Dijk, Danny Ings, James Ward-Prowse

Southampton’s tenure in the PL has been steady over the last decade, and a good spell of form in the mid-2010s helped propel them into the top 10 on this list.

The Saints likely won’t be in the title mix any time soon, but they’ve shown that they can be competitive against the top clubs and even pick up a result or two on occasion.

9. West Ham United

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Notable Players: Dimitri Payet, Declan Rice, Scott Parker

The Hammers have been as consistent as any of the mid table clubs could be in the Premier League for the past 10 years, but are currently in the midst of their best run yet in 2020/21.

West Ham is vying for a chance to play in next season’s Champions League, although they’ll certainly face a challenge from Chelsea if they are to qualify for the first time in club history.

8. Everton

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Notable Players: Seamus Coleman, Romelu Lukaku, Tim Howard

Similar to West Ham, the Toffees have been in that next tier of Premier League sides for many years, but haven’t quite been able to overcome England’s big six clubs despite having a number of incredibly talented players. 

Their current squad boasts two of the best attacking players in the PL with Richarlison and Dominic Calvert-Lewin leading the way up front, as well as James Rodriguez creating in the midfield.

7. Leicester City

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Notable Players: Jamie Vardy, N’Golo Kante, Riyad Mahrez

The Foxes have something that very few non-top six clubs can say they own; a Premier League title. The 2015/16 season is something that will forever live as one of the greatest feats in sports when Leicester overcame 5000-1 odds and hoisted their only PL crown in the club’s 137-year existence.

6. Tottenham Hotspur

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Julian Finney / Getty Staff

Notable Players: Harry Kane, Gareth Bale, Heung-min Son

In a lot of ways, Tottenham is deserving of being higher on this list, but unfortunately they’ve never been capable of winning the big one in the Premier League. The club has been loaded with talent for years, most recently with one of the top strikers in the world in Harry Kane.

And yet it's been a very bumpy road for Spurs fans, who have been eager to witness their first top-flight crown since 1961 when the old First Division featured 22 clubs instead of the current 20-team structure.

5. Arsenal

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Notable Players: Mesut Ozil, Alexis Sanchez, Olivier Giroud

The Gunners often face the brunt of jokes in the Premier League because of their lack of titles of late, but they manage to finish in the top 10 nearly every year despite spending much less than their competition.

Arsenal boasts an exciting, young attack which is headed up by Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Bukayo Saka. With some more defensive reinforcements, the London-based side could be in the mix for heightened success moving forward.

4. Manchester United

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Notable Players: Robin Van Persie, David De Gea, Wayne Rooney

The Red Devils are historic as it gets in English football, and Manchester United deservedly finish high on this list despite having gone eight years without a Premier League title. Man United continues to find its way back to the top of the league, and finds itself second in the PL this season.

Man United has been forced to reinvent itself after Sir Alex Ferguson retired as the club’s longtime manager. They’ve done so through the development of several academy stars like Marcus Rashford and Mason Greenwood. Expect this team to be one of the top clubs in England for many years to come.

3. Liverpool

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Notable Players: Mohamed Salah, Jordan Henderson, Luis Suarez

Liverpool finally relieved the burden of missing out on winning a PL title last season when they overcame their demons and won England’s top flight in dominating fashion, nearly breaking Man City’s record of 100 points in a season.

Manager Jurgen Klopp has revitalized the club, solidifying their place among the PL’s elite with one of the most-lethal attacking groups in the world led by Salah, Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino. 

They aren’t on pace to repeat again in 2020/21 with a number of key injuries hindering the team defensively, but the Reds will surely be a team to be reckoned with going forward under Klopp.

2. Chelsea

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Notable Players: Didier Drogba, Eden Hazard, Cezar Azpilicueta

Chelsea really began to hit their stride in the mid-2000s under Jose Mourinho, but their talent and rise as a club under owner Roman Abramovich has continued over the last decade. 

The Blues have secured two PL titles in the span, as well as the highly-coveted UEFA Champions League during the 2011/12 season after beating Bayern Munich in the final. 

Although the club has opted to bounce around between managers often, they have still found a way to stay near the top of the league almost every season thanks to various star acquisitions like Hazard, Diego Costa and more recently Kai Havertz, Hakim Ziyech and Timo Werner.

1. Manchester City

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Michael Regan / Getty Staff

Notable Players: Vincent Kompany, Sergio Aguero, Yaya Toure

The Citizens had gone a long time without a title prior to winning the Premier League in 2011/12, but Manchester City have been by far the most consistent side in England over the past decade.

With a number of high-profile managers like Roberto Mancini and Pep Guardiola, City has managed to rack up four PL titles, the same number Chelsea, Liverpool and Man United have combined over that span. 

City’s success has been highlighted by their numerous records set in the Premier League, including becoming the first club to break 100 points in a single-season during the 2017-18 campaign. Quite the accomplishment for a club that had been overshadowed by Man United for so long.

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