Six Premier League icons including Matt Le Tissier and Patrice Evra have been cut from this year’s Hall of Fame nominees shortlist despite being named in last year’s list.
The Premier League announced a group of 15 legends who could be selected to join its exclusive Hall of Fame club. But a group of notable names were absent following the reveal of a smaller line-up than usual from the Premier League.
Le Tissier, Evra, Teddy Sheringham, Edwin van der Sar, Robin van Persie, and Ruud van Nistelrooy were taken off the shortlist, having made the cut in 2022.
The six players being cut from the shortlist comes despite every player on the 2021 shortlist being nominated for the 2022 edition, when there were 25 nominees.
Southampton legend Le Tissier has come under fire for his controversial views and conspiracy theories. The former Sky Sports pundit, who was axed by the broadcaster in 2020, has consistently peddled theories about Covid and vaccines, claiming PCR tests were ‘the biggest fraud ever perpetuated on mankind’.
He also said images of destruction in Ukraine were ‘falsified’ and reposted a Tweet claiming the media had ‘lied’ about a number of stories.
Also missing out is Man United icon Patrice Evra, who was convicted by a Paris court for making homophobic statements in 2019, when he called PSG ‘queers’. He has since apologised and admitted he has ‘so much to learn’.
The absence of Dutch trio of Van der Sar, Van Nistelrooy, and Van Persie will come as a particular shock after their glittering success in the Premier League and with Man United. Former goalkeeper Van der Sar played 186 top-flight games and won the title four times, while Van Nistelrooy netted 95 goals in 150 league appearances.
Van Persie scored 144 goals across his spells with Arsenal and United and won the title in his first season with the Red Devils in 2012-13.
This year, Jermain Defoe, Yaya Toure, John Terry, Rio Ferdinand and Michael Carrick among others were nominated for the first time as part of 15 players who have been recognised for their ‘exceptional’ record of success.
A total of 16 English top-flight icons have been inducted into the Premier League’s Hall of Fame since its inception in 2021, including the likes of Thierry Henry, Alan Shearer, and David Beckham