Who was the Premier League's hard man in 2014?

Crystal Palace, Chelsea, Southampton, West Ham United, Manchester City, Everton, Stoke City and Hull City stars all feature.

It’s important for any team to have several players who can tackle effectively because it helps a side break up pressure, but also maintain it during key periods over their opposition.

Here are the top ten Premier League players for tackles won throughout 2014.

  PositionTeamWon TackleAppearancesMins Played
Mile Jedinak MF C. Palace 100 37 3,296
Nemanja Matic MF Chelsea 90 35 2,984
Joel Ward DF C. Palace 85 38 3,420
Morgan Schneiderlin MF Southampton 82 32 2,759
César Azpilicueta DF Chelsea 80 33 2,870
Mark Noble MF West Ham 79 31 2,640
Pablo Zabaleta DF Man City 77 32 2,856
Gareth Barry MF Everton 76 35 3,042
Erik Pieters DF Stoke 76 34 2,850
Jake Livermore MF Hull City 72 36 3,113

Crystal Palace midfielder Mile Jedinak won more tackles in 2014 than any other midfielder. He’s led by example as the club’s captain and they’re going to miss him in the coming weeks while he’s away representing Australia. He’s joined by teammate Joel Ward in the top ten.

It won’t surprise many to see Chelsea star Nemanja Matic second on the list. Matic has the ability to play as an ugly, gritty player who breaks up the play but he’s also got it in his locker to start attacks and move possession forward quickly for the Blues.

Southampton star Morgan Schneiderlin is again showing why the likes of Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur are being linked with him, with Tottenham having seen numerous bids turned down last summer. He’s not afraid to play ugly and get stuck in for the good of his team.

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