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How Many Appearances are Needed to get a Premier League Winners Medal?

Pep Guardiola

How Many Appearances are Needed to get a Premier League Winners Medal?

Since the start of the Premier League era, five outfield players have played every single minute of the season as their team has gone on to win the English top-flight, with these being Gary Pallister in 1992/93, John Terry (2014/15), Wes Morgan (2015/16), Cesar Azpilicueta (2016/17) and Virgil van Dijk (2019/20).

Pallister’s record of 3,780 minutes will never be beaten unless the league changes its format, as the legendary Manchester United defender played all 42 matches, as the Red Devils went on to win the inaugural competition.

Here we take a look at the rulings of how many appearances you have to make in order to earn a Premier League winners medal, as well as taking a look at some examples of players that have received a medal for winning the top flight whilst playing a small number of minutes throughout a campaign, and those that have missed out due to a lack of appearances.

The Rules

According to the official website of the Premier League, a player must play five Premier League appearances during a title-winning season to receive one, however, the champions are given 40 commemorative medals made of silver to distribute around their squad and staff members that they see fit to deserving one.

The current ruling states that 23 players will be guaranteed to earn a winners medal though.

Additional medals may be granted by the Premier League, however, the ruling is fairly strict, as it would require 39 players to have made more than five appearances for the champions, something which is unlikely to happen.

Some Notable Players That Missed Out on Winners Medals

Gary Neville - Manchester United

Gary Neville twice missed out on Premier League winners medals due to a lack of games played in campaigns at the opposite ends of his career.

Neville’s debut campaign in 1993/94 saw him make just one Premier League appearance, whilst in 2010/11 he played just three times, including that final appearance against West Brom on New Year's Day of 2011 which he was so disappointed by, he retired just one month later.

Neville did, however, win eight Premier League titles across an outstanding career for his boyhood club.

Micah Richards - Manchester City

Another Sky Sports pundit in Micah Richards also missed out on a Premier League medal, doing so in the 2013/14 campaign after an injury-hit season that saw him play just two league games for Manchester City under Manuel Pellegrini.

Prior to this, the City right-back had won the Premier League, playing 29 matches for the Sky Blues as they won the title for the first time since 1968 via that famous 93:20 Sergio Aguero goal against QPR on the final day of the 2011/12 campaign.

Mohamed Salah - Chelsea

Mohamed Salah famously won the Premier League with Liverpool in the 2019/20 season and also holds the record for most goals by a player in a single campaign under the 20-team format back in 2017/18 with 32, but, the Egyptian missed out back in 2014/15 when playing for Chelsea under Jose Mourinho.

Salah featured just three times for Chelsea in 2014/15 before being sent out on loan to Fiorentina as part of a deal that saw Juan Cuadrado go the other way. Ironically, Cuadrado would go on to make 12 appearances for the Stamford Bridge club in the Premier League that campaign and earn himself a winners medal.

Players That Have won the Premier League Despite Barely Featuring

Jack Rodwell - Manchester City

Jack Rodwell managed to win the Premier League with Manchester City in 2013/14, making the minimum amount of appearances required by the league’s rule system with five to his name, accumulating just 108 minutes of football, 53 less than Micah Richards who we previously mentioned had missed out due to a lack of appearances.

To add to this, 90 minutes of Rodwell’s Premier League appearances that campaign was in a 0-0 draw with Stoke City.

Jeremie Aliadiere - Arsenal

Back in 2003/04 the rules stated that you needed to play 10 league matches to earn a Premier League winners medal, of which Jeremie Aliadiere managed to do this in just 257 minutes worth of first-team football as the Gunners famously finished the season as 'The Invincibles'.

Gokhan Inler & Daniel Amartey - Leicester City

Gokhan Inler and Daniel Amartey made just five appearances each for Leicester City during their incredible 2015/16 Premier League title win.

Swiss international Inler managed just 195 minutes that season, with his final appearance being in a 0-0 home draw with Manchester City in late December 2015.

Meanwhile, Amartey who made 28 appearances for Leicester last season, played just 101 minutes worth of football for the Foxes when they won the title, having joined in January 2016 from FC Copenhagen for £6m.