Johnny Cantor: Lewis Dunk was in my team of the decade but can he resist possible lure of Chelsea?
By Johnny Cantor
It was a pleasure to select my own personal Albion team of the decade this week.
The results of the poll from various people for the official club website, including those of us in the media have been released.
No one ever agrees and there are always arguments to support any of those picked to choose from.
I actually had six of the final team in my eleven. I may have favoured a few players from the League One title winners but how else would I get them to come on the Albion Unlimited podcast!?
One thing that was not settled was who would be the captain.
Now I know the idea isn’t to highlight individuals but I think it is worth a mention. There is of course a strong case for the iconic Bruno whose calm approach epitomised so much of the attitude around the club in the final years of the decade. There is now however a new man with the armband around his biceps, Lewis Dunk.
His predecessor always played down the role of the skipper highlighting the leadership qualities of others players in the team.
That was true but now Dunk (right) has become a pivotal figure in so many ways. He has continued to improve as a player but also organises those around him, just like a good captain should.
He is also the club’s biggest financial asset in terms of the playing squad. He also now has an international cap and there may be more to come. It is inevitable then he is linked to a move to a bigger club.
Chelsea is the side currently reported to be interested in the 28 year old. He is a ball playing centre back so would probably fit into the Blues’ side but he also has those leadership qualities I mentioned that perhaps are currently lacking in Frank Lampard’s squad.
Only time will tell whether the Seagulls’ local hero will stay but if an exceptional offer comes in it could be one of the biggest decisions the board has had to make since being in the Premier League.
Of course the player has to want to go too. Dunk has admitted he grew up supporting Chelsea and is an admirer of John Terry. They can offer European football, oh and a few more shekels. However, will he be the mainstay of the defence in the future?
For every player who has seamlessly moved up into the highest echelons of the game there are countless tales of those who were left out and forced to rebuild their career.
As he approaches his 300th appearance for his home town club he may have a big call to make himself but he seems comfortable in his role in blue and white stripes.
That is something we may not have predicted at the start of the decade just after he made his debut in a nil nil draw at MK Dons on the last day of the League One season in 2010.
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