24 September, 2007

Gameweek 7 – ‘Five! What you waiting four?’

Happy Monday, hope everyone is feeling nicely rested after the weekend. Couple of absolute thrillers this weekend from perhaps unlikely sources, as Fulham and Middlesbrough hosted great advertisements for the Premier League. Similarly Arsenal put on a pretty good display against struggling Derby, scoring five but it genuinely could’ve been a cricket score. Elsewhere, Benitez’s tinkering once again baffled everyone, with Torres starting on the bench for the second Saturday running, meaning they dropped points at home to a resolute Birmingham side. Meanwhile, Everton continue their fall from grace and looked like they couldn’t hit sand from a camal on Sunday, against an excellent Villa side who are slowly working their way up to the business end of the table. Finally, Manchester United comfortably beat Chelsea in a fairly underwhelming game which saw the ‘new look’ Blues play flop miserably in front of their owner and his special guest Marco van Basten. Don’t get too comfortable Avram, your “long-term” appointment might get cut short if things don’t dramatically change soon.

Premier League Team of the Week (based on OPTA stats, Fantasypremierleague.com ratings and my own expert eye):

Keeper – Steve Harper (another superb all round display)

Defence – Matthew Upson (despite the result, he was excellent at the back and a constant threat from set pieces), Charles N’Zogbia (basically a perfect performance from the winger turned left back), Steve Kelly (dealt with everything and kept Babel very quiet down the flank), Ivar Ingimarsson (another confident display from the underrated Icelander)

Midfield – Cesc Fabregas (it’s getting boring saying how good he is), Martin Petrov (two sweet goals capped off another flawless performance from the Bulgarian maestro), Gary O’Neil (quality showing from the ex-Pompey man on his home debut for Boro), Gabriel Agbonlahor (pick of the bunch in another great display from the young Villa midfield)

Up Top – Mark Viduka (the big Aussie legend oozed class and reminded everyone that when he’s in the mood, he’s still up there with the best), Emmanuel Adebayor (Thierry who?)

Weekly Awards:

Nutmeg of the Week – Shevchenko gets Evra so bad that the French wing-back fell over and even took Vidic down with him.

Goal of the Week – Abou Diaby for skipping past two Derby men effortlessly and rocketing it into the top corner.

Save of the Week – Petr Cech for clawing out Rooney’s early effort / Brad Friedel for his immense double save from Kanu.

Skill of the Week – Ryan Giggs for his delightful outside of the foot cross for Tevez’s opener at Old Trafford.

Effort of the Week – Fernando Torres for his incredibly athletic bicycle kick. If it had been a foot lower, we’re talking goal of the season.

Nearest Lampard came to Contributing…er, of the Week – Supposedly Frank hasn’t stopped crying since Jose’s departure so unfortunately couldn’t make the game this week. Would’ve made all the difference though I’m sure.

Horror Movie Extra Audition of the WeekBorja Oubina bellowed in agony after twisting awkwardly and rupturing his cruciate ligament. No-one needs that.

Haircut of the Week – Charles N’Zogbia for a shaved pattern that can only have been produced a child’s Etch-a-Sketch.

If-Ronaldinho-Can-Do-It-So-Can-I Moment of the Week – Dave Kitson gives the Wigan defence the eyes, and slips a beautiful disguised pass the other way through to Harper for Reading’s winner.

Fight of the Week – Young skinheads Grant Leadbitter and Lee Cattermole get stuck into each other, Northern-council-estate stylee

Miss of the Week – Obafemi Martins dances round Rob Green only to hit the side netting. He’ll be grateful Newcastle were already well over the finishing line.

Sniper in the Crowd of the Week – Louis Saga takes one in the spinal chord to buy Manchester United a last minute penalty.

It’s-A-Long-Drive-Home-For…of the WeekDerby fans, management and players. Thanks for turning up guys!

Vampire of the Week – Once again the excellent shot-stopper Kaspar Schmiechel proves how terrified he is of crosses.

Quote of the Week – Former Chelsea captain Ray Wilkins tries to win the competition of saying ‘win’ as many times as possible in one sentence: "I'm absolutely astounded at what's happened…Winning football matches is what the game's about and (Jose) is a winning manager who puts a winning mentality in players' heads and they go and win things."

Hero of the Week – Arsene Wenger for handling the departure of a certain Mr. Henry so impressively as Arsenal look out of this world at the moment.

Zero of the Week – Avram Grant unfortunately; Chelsea were pretty dire yesterday, but the clincher is that his wife once drank her own piss live on Israeli TV. Not even for a bet or anything.

Personal Highlight of the Week – Wes Brown whiting himself up after sliding face first across an apparently very freshly painted dead ball line at Old Trafford.