There were a few draws this week and they were not really what anyone wanted. The winners were Sunderland, who defied the odds of having no strikers as well as other injuries, to win at Bolton. Everton, who showed great spirit and character to come from behind to beat Manchester City. Newcastle, who overcame very little to beat a poor Birmingham side other than trying to get past an inspired goalkeeper. Wolves who had a massive win and Stoke who saw off a tired and dispirited Arsenal. Above all of that though must come Manchester United who produced the best forty-five minutes of football any English team has produced this season.
Bolton are having a rotten end to what has been a pretty good season for them. They have failed to get over their FA Cup semi-final humiliation by Stoke and now want the season to end. Manchester City were great in the first half at Everton but got out thought, out fought and out played after the break. That shouldn’t happen to them. West Brom had the look of a team who wanted to go on holiday, as did Arsenal. Chelsea were totally out played, but the worst team were Birmingham. Without Ben Foster they could and should have lost five, six or seven. The only thing you can say about them is that they might just be lucky enough to have three teams who are worse than them below them.
It is rare that I pick a goalkeeper who concedes two goals and it is rare that I select I keeper who finishes on the losing side, but this week I must fly in the face of tradition! Birmingham’s Ben Foster was astonishingly good in their defeat at Newcastle. He made four or five saves that I would genuinely describe as ‘world class’ and four or five others that were pretty good as well. If only he was consistent…
I don’t understand why Harry Redknapp doesn’t put Heurelho Gomes out of his misery. I don’t mean he should shoot him, I just mean he should leave him out of the team! The man made a couple of decent saves on Saturday and then saved a penalty. He was a hero. The resulting corner then comes in and he tries to catch it. The next ten seconds are pure football comedy as he chases the ball around trying and failing to catch it before clumsily rugby tackling a Blackpool player in his ridiculous attempts to gather the ball. He might be a top keeper, but at the moment he is simply a liability. Harry should send him on an early Summer holiday.
I am really not a fan of very much about Blackburn Rovers. From the owners to the manager and some of the players, I have little time for them. Having said that, I am a massive admirer of Chistopher Samba in the centre of their defence. He is a colossus and man mountain. He heads and tackles anything and everything. On Saturday at West Ham it was, at times, West Ham v Chris Samba. The point he earned might keep Blackburn up.
He has made an instant impression on the game in England but David Luiz had a forty-five minutes to forget yesterday. Not only did her make costly mistakes, he argued back when his manager told him. He’s young and I’m sure he will learn from it, but yesterday was not his finest hour.
He is one of the unsung heroes of the Premier League and this week I give this award to Everton’s Leon Osman. He has been a great servant to the club and is one of those rare ‘one club men’. He put in a great performance on Saturday, inspiring the players and the crowd as Everton came back from a goal down and a poor first half performance. He then scored a cracking header to win the game. Osman is a top professional.
I could have given this to Park, Giggs or Valencia who were all outstanding. As I am sometimes accused of United bias, which is rubbish as I don’t support United, I thought I’d look elsewhere!
It has to be said that Mikel, Lampard and Essien were played off the park by the United midfield. They were totally out classed and Jon Obi Mikel, in particular, contributed absolutely nothing. He simply doesn’t hit a forward pass of any note what so ever.
You have to be a top quality player to get a chance in the first minute in a huge game and take it with accuracy, calmness and class. OK, he missed a couple later on, but Javier Hernandez is the real deal.
With his size, power and strength Emile Heskey should have been a frightening striker in a similar mould to Didier Drogba. Instead, although always doing a decent job, he has always been too soft and too lightweight. Oh, and of course, he doesn’t actually get any goals either. On Saturday he got a rare start for Aston Villa and looked to be up for the game. He missed a chance, but that goes with the territory when you are Emile Heskey. Then he feels he gets fouled from behind and the referee doesn’t give it. Heskey then ran at the referee and barged into him. He continued to argue whilst he was being given a yellow card and then had to be restrained by team-mates as they left the field at half-time. His manager decided to substitute him at half-time to avoid further trouble. Where did all that come from, and why hasn’t he ever shown any of that sort of passion in his football?
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haha I was about to tell you Park was probably my pick for hot player as he stood out as the best player over the full 90 minutes in my book against Chelsea in my eyes. Kudos for mentioning the trio though!