NOEL HUNT – The Ipswich Town forward chooses his favourite XI, made up from players he has played with in his football career.
Shay Given – Aston Villa He’s been at top clubs for so long and played in huge games. He’s a top quality keeper and someone who you can always rely on to pull off a crucial stop. On his day he was one of the best goalkeepers in the world.
Andy Griffin – Retired I played with Andy at Reading. He’s someone who is a lovely guy and a talented player. He was the type of player who got up and down all day long and was a tenacious defender. He’s a strong guy who was difficult to get past and hard to shrug off.
Michael Duberry – Retired Michael is a really nice guy, a good friend and someone who played in massive games. He was part of a very strong Leeds side that went far in the Champions League and was a reliable defender. He was the type of guy you would want in your defence if your backs were against the wall. John O’Shea – Sunderland I don’t think there are many Irish players who have accomplished as much as he has in his career. He’s a versatile player who maybe suffered because of that, but he’s also got great ability. He’s played in the biggest games on the biggest stages and just happens to be one of the nicest guys you could meet.
Ian Harte – Bournemouth Ian is a top-class player who can do it all. His ability from set-pieces is as good as anyone’s and he is such a well-rounded player. And I think he showed how good he is by the fact he went abroad to play at Levante in Spain and was not out of place. against the biggest teams. He’s skilful, sharp and got incredible pace. His delivery is brilliant and he has the ability to really shock defenders with his acceleration. And he also has the ability to score goals, which is so valuable from midfield.
Marek Mat jovský – Sparta Prague He was so good and I think we maybe did not get the chance to see him at his best in England, but in training at Reading he was sensational. When we went to the Championship he suffered a bit, but there’s no doubt that he was a class player. James Harper – Basingstoke Town He’s a really intelligent and commanding player who guides others through the match. If you’ve got the ball in the corner he’ll paint a picture of what is around you. He’s always talking and composing players on the pitch. I’ve never played with someone like that before or since.
Stephen Hunt – Ipswich Town Playing with my brother was great and I think maybe we had a better understanding than most. We knew what each other wanted and he knew how to deliver the kind of balls that would help me to score. He set up a lot of my goals.
Robbie Keane – LA Galaxy Robbie has scored goals for so many big clubs and he’s still scoring great goals now in America. He’s someone I definitely learned a thing or two from. A very talented footballer. Shane Long – Southampton Shane is a player with raw pace and power, a great asset in any team. He’s a guy who was a joy to play with at Reading. If I was tired he would run that extra yard for me and vice versa; we had a great understanding.