Happy Monday everyone, and welcome back to regularly scheduled blogging. Over the last fortnight or so, the STT staff have been taking a well earned break, getting caught up in the excitement of international football, the rugby World Cup and the deciding race in this year’s Formula 1 season. To be honest, the less said about all of these flops, the better, but still huge big ups go out to the rugby lads for a great tournament, and to Lewis Hamilton for a cracking debut season. On the other hand, a large sad face to the whole
Anyways…this weekend saw the first Merseyside derby of the year, a game that sizzled with tension as ever with the red half of the city taking the plaudits due to some slightly suspect refereeing. Elsewhere, Manchester United seem to have found their scoring boots at last, putting 4 past a 9-man Villa side, while Arsenal notched up their eleventh straight win this season to keep them top of the pile.
Premier League Team of the Week (based on OPTA stats, Fantasypremierleague.com ratings and my own expert eye):
Keeper – Antti Niemi (superhuman performance to give the Craven Cottage something to almost get slightly excited about)
Defence –Joleon Lescott (Roberto Carlos-esque levels of rampaging forward to help him put Wednesday’s nightmare performance behind him), Alex (commanding defensive effort and a wondergoal to prove that he’s a real Brazilian), Glen Johnson (continuing his excellent start to the season with a lovely individual goal, his first in over 3 years), George McCartney (great performance from yet another promising young British Hammer)
Midfield – Gabriel Agbonlahor (was this week’s pick from the ever-impressive and depressingly young Villa front six), Alexander Hleb (confident performance full of beautiful dribbling skills), Elano (another game, another goal, and again, by far the best player on the pitch)
Up Top – Kenwyne Jones (once again a constant threat, and superb in the air), Wayne Rooney (realistically should’ve bagged four), Benni McCarthy (oozed class in an all-round superlative display from the vastly underrated
Goal of the Week – Too close to call between Tugay’s thunderbolt and Alex’s super sweet freekick, so joint-kudos.
Save of the Week – Rob Green goes full length to deny a great snapshot from Leadbitter.
Skill of the Week – Gary O’Neil sliding the ball past one side on Ferreira and collecting it on the other, a feat so devious that the Portuguese international panicked and just fell over.
Attempt of the Week – The Yak lashes an exocet missle from 25 yards just wide of Pepe Reina’s post in the Merseyside derby.
Wrestling Move of the Week – Attempted flying dropkick from Dirk Kuyt on the least good looking of the Neville brothers. Shame he didn’t connect.
Shin of the Week – Rio Ferdinand almost fails to hit the target from 5 yards for Man United’s third at
Quote of the Week – “It was a true connection, the keeper had no chance”…
Gaffe of the Week – Sami Hyypia expertly slots the ball into the top corner, unfortunately at the wrong end.
Nearest Lampard came to Contributing…er, of the Week – In a display was exuded quality, the midfield maestro delivered an inch perfect 4 yard pass to tee up Alex’s cracking freekick at the Riverside.
Best Tag Team/Potential-Rap-Duo-If-Their-Careers-Go-Down-the-Pan-Anytime-Soon of the Week – Benni McCarthy and Roque Santa Cruz; I can see Roque dropping some clichéd Latino raps while Benni does a dope Flavor Flav thing in the background.
Biblical Sacrifice of the Week – Phil Neville falls on his sword in the last minute at Goodison to give Torrette-tastic Tim Howard a chance to save a draw. Jesus/Abraham would’ve been proud. His brother Gary, not so much.
Nickname of the Week – Robbie Savage having the audacity to call Tugay ‘Worzel Gummidge’…presumably mirrors don’t exist in the Savage household…
Bribe of the Week – Stevie Gerrard offers Mark Clattenburg a quick squeeze of his girlfriend’s norks in exchange for changing Hibbert’s yellow card into a red at
Spaz of the Week – Adebayor reminds everyone that intrinsically he is actually pretty rubbish, by rounding the keeper and instead of slotting into the open goal, deciding to fall over and produce some truly bizarre break-dancing moves.
ASBO of the Week – Housewives favourite Paul Koncheskey destroys Craig Fagan with a elbow to the face that even a bouncer at Yates’ would be proud of.
Most amusing contribution of the Week – Looking for his first goal for the club, Julius Aghahowa jogs on as a late substitute for Wigan, and then before he actually touches the ball, manages to get booked and cracked full in the face by a freekick. Bet he’s glad he broke into the team.
Hero of the Week – Robbie Savage. Just generally.
Zero of the Week – Mark Clattenburg for getting almost every big decision in the Merseyside derby wrong. And for permanently looking like a pubescent boy that’s just been caught by his parents ‘massaging’ himself.
Personal Highlight of the Week – Not football I know, but I simply have to go for seeing those two BMW pit mechanics being accidently run over by their driver in the Brazilian GP. You can’t buy that.