Old Men of the Premier League

Youth is often the watchword in the modern Premier League, with scouts, managers, and fans alike on the lookout for the next bright young thing. Teenagers Alejandro Garnacho at Manchester United, Lewis Hall at Chelsea, and Brighton’s Evan Ferguson are amongst those to have exploded onto the scene in the 2022/23 season, hitting the football news headlines and attracting the attention of punters assessing the latest football betting offers.

Some teenage talents will go on to greatness, whilst just as many will slip down the divisions, and it is not all about the youngsters. No doubt any up-and-coming player would be delighted to still be plying their trade at the highest level on the wrong side of their 35th birthday.

Not too many manage that feat, but there are a total of ten players aged 35 or older currently strutting their stuff in the biggest league in the world, with the following five being the oldest of them all.

5. João Moutinho – Wolverhampton Wanderers: 36 years old (DOB 08/09/86)

The Portuguese midfield maestro joined Wolves from Monaco in 2018 for an undisclosed fee believed to be in the region of £5million. By today’s standards that sum represents exceptional value for money.

Now into his fifth season at Molineux, Moutinho has missed only 10 Premier League outings as of January 2023, with his astute passing and reading of the game making him a mainstay in the centre of the park. A classy operator, the highlight of Moutinho’s career to date came when winning the European Championship with Portugal in 2016.

4. James Milner – Liverpool: 37 years old (DOB 04/01/86)

It was way back in November 2002 that James Milner made his Premier League debut for Leeds United – becoming the second youngest player in the history of the league at 16 years and 309 days.

Over 20 years on, Milner is still here, with his Premier League journey taking in stints at Newcastle United, Aston Villa, Manchester City and now Liverpool.

Mr Versatility, Milner’s work ethic and quality have been a boon to every manager he has worked under. Capped 61 times by England, Milner is a three-time Premier League winner and lifted the Champions League with Liverpool in 2018/19.

3. Ashley Young – Aston Villa: 37 years old (DOB 09/07/85)

Progressing through the junior ranks at Watford, Young’s breakthrough season came in 2005/06 when playing a key role in the club’s promotion to the Premier League. Quickly catching the eye in the top flight, Young was soon on his way to Aston Villa for an £8m fee which was a record for the club at that time.

Then followed a nine-season stint at Manchester United where Young enjoyed the most successful years of his career – winning the Premier League, FA Cup, League Cup, Community Shield and Europa League.

Stopping off in Italy to win Serie A with Inter, Young is now back at Villa and in the process of adding to his 400+ Premier League appearances.

2.Lukasz Fabianski – West Ham United: 37 years old (DOB 18/04/85)

Of all the playing positions, it is goalkeepers who are most renowned for their longevity. As such, it is a little surprising that just the one keeper makes this top five – although Wayne Hennessey, Vicente Guaita, and Hugo Lloris make the top ten.

However, the honour of being the second oldest player in the Premier League belongs to the West Ham United stopper, Lukasz Fabianski.

Capped 57 times by Poland, Fabianski was a league winner with Legia Warsaw in his homeland before making the switch to Arsenal in 2007.

Unable to claim the number one jersey in North London, a switch to Swansea City followed. First choice in four seasons at the Liberty Stadium, he has now been West Ham United’s number 1 since 2018. 

1. Thiago Silva – Chelsea: 38 years old (DOB 22/09/84)

Brazilian Thiago Silva may be an old one, but he undoubtedly remains a good one. A classy presence at the heart of the Chelsea defence, his tactical awareness and ability to read the game instils confidence in those around him.

A league winner in Italy with AC Milan, Silva picked up the Ligue 1 title seven times with PSG, before making the switch to Stamford Bridge in 2020. The years seem to have done little to diminish his talents, with reports suggesting Silva may be in line for a new deal at Chelsea which would take him past his 39th Birthday.