Every Premier League club’s three longest-serving players

Date published: Saturday 10th July 2021 8:00 - Sarah Winterburn


We are talking longest-serving players and the point at which a player signed a professional contract and became a first-team squad member is used. So Mark Noble is counted from 2004 instead of 2000 (when he joined West Ham’s academy), for example.



1) Hector Bellerin (July 2012)
Still only 26, apparently. Which is mental. Last season the Spaniard took the longest-serving crown from this rather good Argentine.

2) Calum Chambers (July 2014)
Another right-back. Another player possibly for sale this summer.

3) Mo Elneny (January 2016)
The 11th most-used Arsenal player last season. That feels apt.


1) Jack Grealish (July 2012)
Will he remain forever (claret and) blue? Or will he join Manchester City this summer?

2) Jed Steer (July 2013)
He’s played more games for Huddersfield Town than Aston Villa.

3) Conor Hourihane (January 2017)
Ended the season at Swansea, which feels like his level.


1) Rico Henry (August 2016)
A £1.6m bargain left-back.

2) Sergi Canos (January 2017)
A £2.6m bargain winger.

3) Mads Bech Sørensen and Marcus Forss (July 2018)
A pair of bargain Scandinavians who cost pennies.


1) Lewis Dunk (April 2010)
Captain, leader, now probably p***ed off that he has been usurped by Ben White as England man and potential big-money exit.

2) Solly March (December 2011)
In it for the long, long haul.

3) Christian Walton (July 2014)
Has enjoyed more loan spells (8) than games played for Brighton (6).



1) Kevin Long (January 2010)
He was even allowed to play a bit this season; it takes that long to earn Sean Dyche’s trust.

2) Ben Mee (July 2011)
Ben Mee, shape me, anyway you want me. Long as he’s Burnley’s second longest-serving player, it’s all right.

3) Ashley Barnes (January 2014)
Sean Dyche’s first cash signing as Burnley manager was a £750,000 bargain.


1) Lewis Baker (July 2012)
He is 26 and he played three minutes for Chelsea in January 2014.

2)  Cesar Azpilicueta (August 2012)
Captain, leader, winner of seven major trophies with Chelsea.

West Ham Chelsea F365

3) Kurt Zouma (January 2014)
Fourth-choice Chelsea centre-half? Fifth-choice? Astonishingly still made France’s Euro 2020 squad.


1) Martin Kelly (August 2014)
Appears to have signed a contract extension, though it’s hard to be sure with this skeleton squad.

2) James McArthur (September 2014)
The Scottish one. Missed the second half of last season through injury.

3) Wilfried Zaha (February 2015)
Has spent much of the last six years trying to get back out again.


1) Seamus Coleman (January 2009)
That’s officially a lifetime and a whole bunch of managers ago.

2) Mason Holgate (August 2015)
It’s a big old gap.

3) Dominic Calvert-Lewin (August 2016)
53 goals in 173 games for Everton is a fine return on less than £2m.


1) Kalvin Phillips (July 2014)
He is proper. For Leeds and for England. We should never have worried.

Kalvin Phillips England

2) Liam Cooper (August 2014)
The captain who has played under nine different Leeds managers. He probably likes this one best.

3) Stuart Dallas (August 2015)
He missed only nine minutes of Premier League football last season and played in about seven positions.


1) Kasper Schmeichel (June 2011)
Kasper Schmeichel has been at Leicester far longer than Peter Schmeichel was at Manchester United. Weird.

2) Jamie Vardy (July 2012)
The exits of Wes Morgan (retired) and Matty James (Bristol City) shoots Vardy up this list.

3) Marc Albrighton (July 2014)
It’s at this point that we are contractually obliged to use the phrase ‘loyal servant’.


1) Jordan Henderson (June 2011)

2) Divock Origi (July 2014)
Still there. Still sodding there.

3) James Milner (June 2015)
The second-best free transfer in Premier League history.


1) Fernandinho (July 2013)
He has come a long way since having to choose a different squad number because James Milner was already wearing the No. 7 shirt when he signed. A one-year contract extension was always inevitable.

2) Raheem Sterling (July 2015)
And still only 26. The gossip is that he would be open to leaving this summer after his most difficult season.

3) Patrick Roberts (July 2015)
Five days after the signing of Sterling came the rather-less-heralded arrival of Roberts. He has since played 54 minutes of football for City.


1) Phil Jones (June 2011)
A protect-his-value contract extension in 2019 did nothing of the sort. Injury kept him out of the entirety of last season.

2) David De Gea (June 2011)
The last pre-Woodward signing still at the club. Is he Manchester United’s No.1? F*** knows.

3) Juan Mata (January 2014)
A one-year contract extension was thankfully signed. He is one of the few success stories.

Juan Mata Man Utd


1) Paul Dummett (July 2010)
“I don’t think you’ve what it takes to play in my team,” Paul Dummett recalls hearing from Alan Pardew upon his return from a loan at St Mirren in summer 2013. He is still there; Pardew is not.

2) Freddie Woodman (July 2014)
Six loan spells down and his best chance of playing in the Premier League remains getting promoted there with a Championship club.

3) Karl Darlow and Jamaal Lascelles (August 2014)
They arrived on the same day full of hope. Poor sods.


1) Louis Thompson (September 2014)
An injury-hit loan spell at MK Dons ends with the Welshman back at Norwich, for whom he last played in October 2018.

2) Timm Klose (January 2016)
Very tall man who spent last season on loan back in Switzerland.

3) Michael McGovern (July 2016)
He has played almost as many times for Northern Ireland (33) as Norwich (41).


1) Jack Stephens (April 2011)
A £150,000 signing from Plymouth, centre-back Stephens is established though rarely convincing for Saints.

2) James Ward-Prowse (October 2011)
Over 320 games for Saints and he is still only 26. He has played every Premier League minute over the last two seasons.

3) Fraser Forster (August 2014)
He earns an awful lot of money to be Southampton’s second-choice goalkeeper.


1) Harry Kane (July 2010)
He really did not want to take the mantle from Danny Rose. He wants to be the newest boy somewhere else.

2) Hugo Lloris (August 2012)
That’s a f*** of a long time to play behind a Spurs defence.

3) Erik Lamela (August 2013)
The last remaining member of the Bale Money brigade.


1) Troy Deeney (September 2012)
Missed half of last season through injury but still weighed in with seven goals to aid a promotion charge.

2) Craig Cathcart (July 2014)
By our reckoning, he has played under 13 different Watford managers.

3) Adalberto Peñaranda (February 2016)
A Venezuelan striker who spent last season on loan in Bulgaria. Two goals in two EFL Cup games for Watford, mind.


1) Mark Noble (August 2004)
Mark Noble is the Premier League’s current longest-serving player. He is the hero none of us deserve.

2) Winston Reid (August 2010)
The scorer of the last ever goal at Upton Park has not played for West Ham since March 2018. He ended last season on the bench at Brentford.

3) Aaron Cresswell (July 2014)
He has three (too many) England caps.


1) Conor Coady (July 2015)
Missed two league games in four years.

2) Romain Saiss (August 2016)
Started 27 Premier League games last season despite being largely forgettable.

3) Morgan Gibbs-White (January 2017)
The last of the pre-Portuguese era players, Gibbs-White ended the season back at Wolves as they limped to the finish line.

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