Kewell, Emerton not in PFA's best XI

March 28, 2012

They were the star recruits of the A-League this season but Socceroos duo Harry Kewell and Brett Emerton were absent from the starting side of Professional Footballers Australia's (PFA) team of the season announced on Wednesday.

Victory midfielder Kewell was named on the bench of the squad, voted on by A-League players, while Emerton missed out altogether in his first season with Sydney FC.

A-League heavyweights Central Coast and Brisbane had three players each in the starting line-up while Melbourne Heart had four players selected for the overall squad.

The Mariners' Matt Ryan continued his remarkable rise by being named as starting goalkeeper, while Wellington's Paul Ifill earned a spot up front alongside Brisbane's Besart Berisha and Melbourne Victory's Archie Thompson.

Kewell was joined on the bench by fellow Victory midfielder Carlos Hernandez but there was no spot for prolific Perth striker Shane Smeltz.

PFA chief executive officer Brendan Schwab said: "The PFA A-League Team of the Season has a strong balance of clubs and players who have lit up the league, and more than half of the team are from the two clubs who fought out the premiership."

PFA A-League Team of the Season

Goalkeeper: Matt Ryan (Central Coast Mariners)

Defenders: Michael Marrone (Melbourne Heart FC), Patrick Zwaansijk (Central Coast Mariners), Josh Rose (Central Coast Mariners)

Midfielders: Thomas Broich (Brisbane Roar), Fred (Melbourne Heart FC), Mitch Nichols (Brisbane Roar), Aziz Behich (Melbourne Heart FC)

Forwards: Paul Ifill (Wellington Phoenix), Besart Berisha (Brisbane Roar), Archie Thompson (Melbourne Victory)

Subs: Clint Bolton (Melbourne Heart FC), Andrew Durante (Wellington Phoenix), Nicky Carle (Sydney FC), Carlos Hernandez (Melbourne Victory), Harry Kewell (Melbourne Victory)