Football Friends Online – When 90 Mins Is Not EnoughTop 5 Germans in Premier League history (Video) - Football Friends Online - When 90 Mins Is Not Enough Top 5 Germans in Premier League history (Video) - Football Friends Online - When 90 Mins Is Not Enough

Top 5 Germans in Premier League history (Video)

With a Bayern Munich, Borussia Dortmund Champions League final played out last weekend at Wembley, German football has taken centre stage again. With a young national team full of exciting talents, the Deutsch Fussball Manschaft may well prove the team to beat in Brazil in 2014. Many of Germany’s greatest players have graced our shores, and to celebrate their domestic dominance I have picked out my top-five Germans to have played in England.

5. Thomas Hitzlsperger

Known as Der Hammer, it was appropriate that the midfield maestro had his most successful spell in England playing for West Ham. Known for his fierce shot and passing ability, Hitzlsperger nearly single-handedly saved the hammers from relegation in 2011. Prior to a successful spell for Stuttgart, where he won the Bundesliga in 2007, Hitzlsperger made nearly 100 appearances for Aston Villa where he was a key part of their midfield for years. Now 31, Hitzlsperger has returned to England to play for Everton, after a spell at Wolfsburg.

4. Michael Ballack

Ballack arrived at Chelsea in 2006 with perhaps his best days behind him.  The box-to-box midfielder had been the captain and engine for Germany for many years, and won honours at Bayern Munich and Bayer Leverkusen. Playing a more defensive role for Chelsea, Ballack was still effective and after a slow start, established himself as a lynchpin in the blues midfield.

3. Jürgen Klinsmann

Klinsmann was prolific wherever he played and remains the third all-time German goal scorer with 47 goals. His reputation in England has always been somewhat frosty, as he was the man who eliminated us from the 1990 World Cup, and established a reputation for diving. His £3m move to Tottenham in 1994, was therefore rather surprising. However Klinsmann quickly won over fans and critics, partly by making fun of himself by celebrating with a dive after his first Tottenham goal. He was voted player of the year for the 1995 season, and moved back to Germany that summer. However Klinsmann returned in 1998, and finished his club career with Spurs and his goals largely saved the club from relegation.

2. Jens Lehmann

After the retirement of the legendry David Seaman, the new Arsenal goalkeeper Jens Lehmann had some very big gloves to fill. However after a troubled beginning, the German went on to establish himself as one of the best in the Premier League. His penalty save against Juan Riquelme led Arsenal into the 2006 Champions League final, where he was unfortunately sent off. Lehmann’s performances at Arsenal were so strong, that he usurped the long-time number one Oliver Kahn for the German national team gloves. He made 148 appearances for Arsenal, before moving back to Stuttgart in 2008. In 2011 the 41-year-old Lehmann returned to Arsenal to work on coaching badges, but a goalkeeper injury crisis led to Lehmann being forced to come out of retirement during the 3-1 home victory against Blackpool.

1. Dietmar Hamann

Compared to Liverpool midfield partner Steven Gerrard, Hamann looked and played like something more like a maths teacher. His passes, tackles and runs were made with textbook German efficiency, and were very useful throughout his time in England, where he played for Newcastle and Manchester City- but is best known for his stellar performances during his 200 appearances for Liverpool. Hamann helped the Reds to a FA Cup and Champions league during his seven year stay on Merseyside, before leaving to play in Manchester for three seasons. ‘Didi’s thundering volley against Portsmouth in the 2003/04 season was a rare goal for the German, but judged to be the goal of the season.

Will Mata