Five footballers you forgot played in the Premier League including Barcelona icon | Football | Sport
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Five footballers you forgot played in the Premier League including Barcelona icon | Football | Sport

An eclectic mix of talent has featured in the Premier League since its inception over 30 years ago. Fans of top-flight football in England are all aware of the likes of Thierry Henry, Sergio Aguero, Wayne Rooney and Frank Lampard, who had their most successful spells of their respective careers on these shores.

But there are other former world-class stars who only briefly touched down in England and are far better known for playing in other countries. Here are five Players who you might have forgotten played in the Premier League. 

Victor Valdes

Goalkeeper Victor Valdes is best known for his iconic spell with Barcelona. The Spaniard made a mammoth 536 appearances for the La Liga giants, winning six league titles and three Champions Leagues. 

But with younger shot-stoppers coming through in the mid-2010s, Valdes decided he wanted a fresh challenge. He first moved to Manchester United, where he made just two Premier League appearances. 

After his release, the now-41-year-old rocked up at newly-promoted and big-spending Middlesbrough in 2016. Former Real Madrid assistant Aitor Karanka had earned a reputation as one of the most promising young coaches in England, becoming the first foreign boss to win the Championship. 

It seemed an enticing move for the veteran Valdes, but he was unable to help Boro survive relegation. They were comfortably relegated with just five wins all season and have not returned to the top flight since. Valdes retired at the end of the campaign. 

George Weah

English football fans might be forgiven for thinking they saw more of Ali Dia than George Weah. Dia, a Senegalese striker who had appeared in the non-leagues, fooled Graeme Souness by convincing the then-Southampton manager that he was Weah’s cousin - and remarkably managed a Premier League appearance. 

But former Ballon d’Or winner Weah himself did enjoy a brief spell in England. The Liberian football legend scored three goals in a short loan spell at Chelsea in 2000 - where he had signed temporarily from AC Milan. He then played for Manchester City but only managed seven league appearances. 

Weah - who is now the president of Liberia - is far better known for his incredibly prolific spells at Monaco, Paris Saint-Germain and Milan. 

Ricardo Quaresma

Famous for scoring a couple of trivella-style goals throughout his career, Portugal international Ricardo Quaresma was certainly less known for his time in England. A former Barcelona playmaker, Quaresma was sent on loan to Chelsea by Inter Milan in January 2009. 

But the midfielder made just four appearances for the West Londoners. They decided against signing him on a permanent deal and he returned to Inter before joining Besiktas a year later. 

At one point Quaresma’s career appeared to follow an all-too-familiar tale of a former wonderkid who did not come close to realising his potential. However, he enjoyed a late revival in his 30s, with an excellent spell at Besiktas reviving his international career. 

Quaresma was part of the Portugal team that won Euro 2016. He has not played competitive football since leaving Portuguese side Vitoria Guimaraes at the end of last season.


Another Portuguese former Barca star who rocked up at Chelsea was Deco. In fact, he moved to Barca from Porto in 2004 as part of a part-exchange deal with Quaresma. 

After four years in Spain, Deco was part of a big-money summer splurge at Chelsea in 2008. He arrived at Stamford Bridge alongside Portugal team-mate Jose Bosingwa. 

The midfielder played 53 times for Chelsea across two seasons and scored a couple of memorable goals. But having only featured sporadically as the Blues won the Premier League in 2009-10, he joined Fluminense at the end of the season. 


Before Pep Guardiola turned up at Man City, the club had a habit of signing veteran former world-class stars as their careers waned. And there are fewer better examples than wing-back Maicon. 

Having been a key player for Inter for six years, City brought him to England in 2012 but his spell on these shores never took off. He made just nine Premier League appearances in 2012-13 and departed for Roma after just a year. 

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