James Collins names best ever XI and only one current West Ham teammate makes the cut

Current West Ham United and former Aston Villa defender James Collins has chosen his best ever team from players he has played alongside.

The Wales international, who started his career at Cardiff City, has barely featured for Slaven Bilic's Hammers this season.

He is behind the likes of Winston Reid, James Tomkins and summer signing Angelo Ogbonna in the queue for the centre-back spots although he may be restored to the side for the visit of Stoke City this weekend amid West Ham's injury crisis.

With his lack of playing time, the 'Ginger Pele' - as he is affectionately known to the Upton Park faithful - has had time to sit down with Sky Sports' Fantasy Football Club and choose his best ever one to 11.

The biggest surprise in his selection is the fact only one is a current West Ham teammate.

Here the 32-year-old gives a run down of his choices to Sky Sports' Fantasy Football Club which is broadcast on Friday night.

Goalkeeper - Shay Given (Aston Villa)

"Tough position for me. I've gone for Shay, top quality 'keeper. I've had to leave Brad Friedel out, Rob Green some tremendous goalkeepers but it was Shay for me."

Right back - Luke Young (Aston Villa)

"Tremendous player, quite an easy choice at right back and he trained as hard as anyone I've played with."

Centre back - Danny Gabbidon (Cardiff, West Ham and Wales)

"Spent a long time playing with Gabbs, known him 20 years, another tremendous player, we came to West Ham together and he won Hammer of the Year first year. I've left a few out again I could have named the lads I'm playing with at the minute like James Tomkins and Winston Reid, they've been close shouts but Gabbs is my good mate off the pitch as well so he had to go in."

Centre back - Richard Dunne (Aston Villa)

"I don't think he got the credit he deserved big Dunney for his career. Won Manchester City's player of the year I think five years on the bounce. I learned so much off him and I'm reaping the rewards of how I play my game now."

Left back - Gary Speed (Wales)

"To have someone of Gary Speed's quality and such a nice man off the pitch was an easy choice."

Midfield three

Mark Noble (West Ham)

"I think he was breaking into the team around the same time I signed and has played pretty much every game since then to be honest. He's top class and he's one of the best trainers. In my opinion he certainly should have played for England. He had to go in the team."

Aaron Ramsey (Wales)

"World class player, doing it week in week out for Arsenal, international level and Champions League. Great lad off the pitch and top drawer."

Stewart Downing (Aston Villa and West Ham)

"Played at top clubs and always performed. He's missed at West Ham it's a shame he left in the summer. It was a toss up to be honest, Stiliyan Petrov could have gone there as well."

Forward three

Ryan Giggs (Wales)

"I don't think I need to say too much. I only need to say his name, an obvious choice."

Gareth Bale (Wales)

"He's a top man on and off the pitch. He's the same lad that I was playing with when he made his debut for Wales which is a testament to him and how he is as a lad."

Carlos Tevez (West Ham)

"Through the middle was a tough one, I've played with so many good centre forwards. Bobby Zamora could have made it just for his training - and obviously his goals as well! I've gone for Carlos. World class, international level. He was instrumental in us staying up in 2007 so Carlos had to go in."

FIFA World Cup 2018FIFA 2018 World Cup Russia - click here for all of our coverage...

Register for ASTON VILLA team updates

Register for ARSENAL team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch