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Who are the best Polish players to ever grace the premier league?

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Poland has a history of producing some of the best football players in the game’s history, and superstar Robert Lewandowski is the country’s leading talisman.

Although few Polish players have graced the Premier League in recent years, some standout players have broken out of their domestic league in the Ekstraklasa table and made a name for themselves among England’s top sides. We look at the best-ever Polish players to feature in the English top-flight of football.

Jerzy Dudek

After making a name for himself at Feyenoord in the late 1990s and early 2000s, goalkeeper Jerzy Dudek moved across the North Sea to join English giants Liverpool in 2001. Few expected the Polish stopper to cement himself as the Reds’ number one for six consecutive seasons.

Dudek enjoyed many years of success in Merseyside and won the FA Cup, League Cup, and a Champions League. He also notched up nearly 186 appearances and kept an impressive 78 clean sheets during this time with the club.

The eccentric Pole is well remembered for his penalty heroics in the Champions League final win against AC Milan in 2005. In the Miracle of Istanbul, Liverpool came back from three goals down to stun Milan and Dudek, famously putting off Andrea Pirlo and Andriy Shevchenko with his wobbly leg routine, saved the decisive penalties to help the Reds win the Champions League.

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After falling down the pecking order at Liverpool in his final two years, making just 12 league appearances in his final two seasons, Dudek left Anfield and played for four more seasons at Real Madrid.

Jan Bednarak

Towering centre back Jan Bednarak has become a central figure for Southampton in the Premier League. Bednarak arrived at St Mary’s as a fresh-faced 21-year-old in 2017 after impressing for Lech Poznan in the Ekstraklasa during his breakthrough season.

Now 25, Bednarak is a staple of the Premier League, and he has racked up over 100 appearances for Southampton. He initially struggled with the step up to England’s top-flight in the 2017/18 season, making just five appearances. However, Ralph Hasenhüttl has entrusted a more experienced Bednarak to lead his defensive line in recent years, and he featured in all 36 Premier League matches during the 2020/21 season.

Mateusz Klich

Leeds midfielder Mateusz Klich had a troubled start to his career in English football. Klick moved to Elland Road from FC Twente in 2018 but struggled to break into the Whites first team and made five league appearances all season. He was subsequently loaned to Eredivise side FC Utrecht and returned to Yorkshire a new and improved player.

Klich has since been a central cog to Marcelo Bielsa’s hard-working Leeds side. The Polish international played in 91 of 92 Championship matches over two seasons, and he was a star player for Leeds’, helping them return to the Premier League in 2020.

The tenacious midfielder proved his quality again last season, his first in the English top-flight. Klich made 35 appearances for Leeds, scored four goals, and made five assists, fitting in seamlessly in the Premier League.

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