In fact virtually all of the above 'teams of the noughties' included Gary Neville and Steven Gerrard. Call be a biased Gooner, but Gary Neville has never been anything but a solid player, he's never looked good against top wingers, he's never looked outstanding at an international level, he's a hard working pro who's made the most of limited ability, he is just in there by default, there haven't been that many outstanding right backs this decade. Now to Steven Gerrard, if ever there was an over-hyped Englishman whose bark is louder than his bite then it is this man, he can be outstanding on his day, but his day comes far too erratically and infrequently, fluking an undeserved European Cup is about the sum total of this lad's achievements, he's been consistently woeful for England, has gone missing in numerous games for Liverpool and is a utter scumbag.
In order to get around the problems that other people have had in naming their teams, I am going to have a big fat hole at right back to signify that there has not been one outstanding player in that position who has performed for long enough over the decade to deserve the slot, I will therefore have an extra slot in the midfield.
Goalkeeper - Brad Friedel is my pick. A fantastically consistent performer and I just can't think of anyone better. Cech is error prone and only had a couple of great years, Given is a very good keeper but has never maintained the consistency of Friedel, I'd love to give it to Jens but that wouldn't be fair.
Right Back - Not Gary Neville. Bacary Sagna is the best right back around but has simply not plied his trade here for long enough.
Centre Backs - Sol Campbell and Rio Ferdinand. Vidic came close while Terry is an unpleasant one-paced bully and would never get into any team of mine. Sol Campbell in his prime was simply a brick wall, Rio Ferdinand until his injury woes was an exceptional all round player.
Left Back - Ashley Cole. To select this man given his complete lack of class shows how good a footballer he is, enough said.
Central midfield - Patrick Vieira and Roy Keane. These two titans would make a fantastic pair, assuming they didn't try to eat each other. Gerrard is too erratic and has never done enough at a Premiership level, Lampard has never stood out as a great footballer to me despite his great goalscoring abilities, Scholes can't be far off selection in anyone's book.
Attacking midfielders - Ronaldo, Ryan Giggs and Robert Pires. Ronaldo was brilliant despite all the cheating. Giggs is a rather unique player, so silky and such a natural understanding of the game. Bobby was one of our best players ever, such a seamless worker, so much ability and so consistently a match winner, such a shame we didn't keep him longer.
Strikers - Thierry Henry and Didier Drogba. Henry's record speaks for itself, a player who could take apart the very best defenders without even looking like he was trying, also an incredible creator of goals. Drogba, like Ronaldo, is an idiot on the pitch but at the same time he routinely wins games on his own, simply an unstoppable juggernaut when on form. It is hard not to put Dennis Bergkamp in there but he peaked in the late nineties, he was outstanding in the early noughties but I just can't quite sneak him in there.
(Empty slot dedicated to the Gary Neville moustache) Ferdinand Campbell Cole
Ronaldo Vieira Keane Giggs Pires
So that's my team of the decade. What a pointless exercise it is compiling these imaginary teams, still it does pass the time. It's got me thinking about my Arsenal team of the decade. I'd probably go for: Lehmann; Sagna, Keown, Campbell, Cole; Ljungberg, Vieira, Cesc, Pires; Bergkamp, Henry. Let the debate begin.