Monday, October 7, 2013

Toppled: Week 7 in the BPL

Photo by Tup Wanders

We spent a great deal of this weekend on the road, and managed to catch only bits and pieces of mutliple Barclay's Premier League matches.  Still, that won't come near stopping us from having opinions about what we saw and heard -- otherwise what would be the point...?

o Norwich City threw virtually everything they had at Chelsea on Sunday afternoon, and the Blues still emerged with three points intact.  The comfortable final scoreline belied how tight the match actually was, with Norwich threatening to burst into a 2-1 lead late before being pegged back in the dying minutes of the contest by late Eden Hazard and Willian goals.  These are the kind of gritty, grind-'em-out results we were writing about when we referred to Mourinho's presence in our pre-season prediction column, and his team will derive a very certain sense of confidence from pulling a victory out as the clock ticked down with the game on the line.

o And that's exactly the kind of confidence that Manchester United seem to be lacking under David Moyes right now.  Barely scraping by against the League's worst team has temporarily silenced the critics, but won't have done much for the team's morale.  Although the adulation was rightly heaped on young Adnan Januzaj, lurking uncomfortably close to the surface was the fact that United -- with the sole exception of the young Belgian -- created almost no offensive opportunities, and looked limp and lifeless for much of the match.  An immediate crisis may have been averted, but the many questions about the team's near-term prospects remain.

o Manchester City was the fortunate recipient of several benificent decisions by referee Jon Moss at the Etihad on Saturday, the result of which spelled out a 3-1 win over previously undefeated Everton.  While Moss turned a blind eye toward a rash City challenge in the first half, his eyesight improved enough to spot a foul in the box against Alexander Kolarov, who appearas if he also would have been toppled over by a two mile per hour cross wind.

o Oft-troubled former Manchester United Academy product Ravel Morrison scored a peach of a goal to add insult to injury to West Ham's 3-0 victory over Spurs at White Hart Lane on Sunday.  Taking the ball in his own half and beating two defenders before chipping the ball over Hugo Lloris showed the rest of the League the world-class potential that many United fans knew was there all along.

o But if Morrison is finally displaying the talent that so many predicted, so is our Player of the Week: Adnan Januzaj.  Now if only his last name were more pronounceable....

This is farlieonfootie for October 7.

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