We’re Number Un! Ligue 1 Team of the Year 2012/13


Now that the Ligue 1 season has finally finished up it’s time to determine just who belongs in the We’re Number Un! team of the season. There were a number of top performers, but these are the players that I thought were consistently the best this season. The team will be playing a 4-2-3-1 formation.

In goal, is Bastia’s Michael Landreau. He only spent half the season with the Corsican side, but what a performance he put on. The former Lille shot-stopper started 19 games for Bastia and made an astounding 71 saves in those matches. The French international consistently stole the show and often single-handedly kept Bastia in contention for victories.

The fullback positions are manned by Christope Jallet and Serge Aurier. Aurier, the Toulouse right/left back averaged more than 3 tackles and 3 interceptions per game this season. Jallet, meanwhile, made an excellent contribution on the right flank for PSG, averaging almost 1 key pass per game.

In the heart of the defense are Montpelier defender Hilton and Bordeaux’s Lamine Sane. Hilton, despite his age, had an excellent season for Montpelier. The Brazilian’s passing out of defense was a great asset to an MHSC side that lost several key players from last years Ligue 1 winning team. Sane, who also spent time in defensive midfield this season,  played much more of an enforcer role than Hilton. The towering defender lead the league in aerial duels won per game with 4.5.

The center of midfield is patrolled by two excellent midfielders: Etienne Capoue and Blaise Matuidi. Not only was Toulouse’s Capoue excellent defensively, but he also chipped in with seven goals and three assists for TFC. Matuidi managed five goals in Ligue 1 play this year, but his role in the team was secured because of his amazing passing. His 88.6 completion percentage was in the top 10 in Ligue 1 this season.

To go with a defensively stout midfield you need a strong group of attackers. On the right wing, the choice is obvious. It’s Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. The Gabon international fell just short of the 20 goal mark, but also managed to chip in 9 assists for St. Etienne. His passing and crossing overall could have been a bit better, but he was consistently a threat to opposing defenses.

On the opposite wing, Lille’s Dimitri Payet easily deserves inclusion. His twelve goals and 13 assists helped propel Lille to a 4th place finish. Payet made a number of key passes this season and delivery from set pieces was always superb.

Playing in the hole behind the striker is Marseille’s Mathieu Valbuena. His twelve assists were second only to Payet’s 13 on the season. Valbuena was a key cog in l’OM’s attack this season and without his passing the club would have scored far fewer goals than seventh-worst total of 42 that they managed.

The final member of the squad is a no-brainer. No player other than Zlatan Ibrahimovic even deserves consideration for inclusion at the forward position. The Big Swede managed an astounding 30 goals and 8 assists in Ligue 1 play. PSG needed his goals because it seemed like all the rest of the attacking talent in the squad was averse to scoring at times.

There’s my team of the season. Who would you have included in your team?

Bryan is the editor of We're Number Un! He's been a football fan for years. His first love was Tottenham Hotspur, but when he was struggling with French courses in college he turned to watching Ligue 1 to help him improve his language skills and has been watching the league ever since.