Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Oh, Cruel Fate: Round 18 in the BPL

photo by polandezevia PhotoRee

o Fate was more than a bit cruel to Reading on Saturday. At first we were convinced that the Royals had set out their defensive stall much too early  -- Who goes to Eastlands thinking they can play non-stop defense for the entire second half...?  But then we almost, just almost, began to believe that they were actually going to pull it off: the first shutout at Eastlands in quite some time. But up popped the unlikely head of Gareth Barry to seal what could be a vital three points at the end of the season for Manchester City.

o And because of that ultra-late winner, we'll name Gareth Barry our Player of the Week -- will wonders never cease?! -- but only because of the dramatic nature of the midfielder's stoppage time winner on Saturday. His play would be ruled a foul 99.99% of the time, but because newly inserted Reading man Nicky Shorey made no attempt whatsoever to play the ball, the goal appeared justly awarded to our eyes.

o We're not quite certain what Rafa is doing with Chelsea, but you have to like the results. That is, unless you're an Aston Villa fan....

o They may not be turning Japanese, but Chelsea turned up the heat on their Premier League rivals in Manchester with their outlandish victory on Sunday. Outdoing even their 7-1 defeat of the Villans from a couple of season ago, the Blues demolished Aston Villa, making the two point conversion for a remarkable 8-1 final on Sunday, in a game that could have seen 4 or 5 more goals -- and (amazingly so) one in which the Villa 'keeper was the best player on the pitch.  The end result was one of the more comprehensive beatings we've seen in several years:  When the names of Frank Lampard and Fernando Torres are both on the score sheet, you know you're in serious trouble....

o Chump of the Week Award goes to Anthony Taylor, who's never seen a foot higher than knee height that doesn't deserve a red card. Completely misjudging not only the intent but the spirit of the game, Referee Taylor was completely out of line issuing not one red card but two in the West Ham vs. Everton contest. The best you can say about AT is that he may have attempted to equalize things with his horrific calls....

o Philosophical question, just for kicks: If a tree falls in Sunderland, would Steven Fletcher have kicked it?!

o How bad is Fulham, you ask?  Let's put it his way, plin and simple: Even Stewart Downing scored against them this weekend. 

And that's saying A LOT for farlieonfootie for December 26.

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