|photo by rick||via PhotoRee|
o Fernando Torres, Raul Meireles and David Luiz on Wednesday; Didier Drogba, Ramires, and Gary Cahill on Saturday. Does anyone get the sense that RDM hasn't solved the problem that plagued AVB: i.e., that Chelsea's coaches this season have no idea who their best eleven players are...?
o Chelsea vs. Spurs on Saturday could have been useful as Exhibit A in the case of Quality v. The BPL. Anyone who suffered through the weekend's first match would have a tough time trying to convince a jury that the BPL this season is as good as ever. The match featured so much passing sideways and backwards that I kept expecting Gareth Barry to appear on the pitch.
o Hauled off the pitch after 60 minutes on Saturday, David Silva is learning a hard lesson: it's a very long season in England, and Stoke is a tough place to go and get a result. The pint-sized Spaniard is well off his early season form, played into the ground through over-use by his Manager, Roberto Mancini. He looked like a dark haired Bjorn Borg after getting his first half headband, courtesy of a stray Stoke elbow. Bjorn Borg after playing John McEnroe in the 1980 Wimbledon final -- the one with the 18-16 fifth set.
o After Wayne Rooney's bicycle kick winner last season, you'd think City would be used to dropping points on incredible goals. But there's no way that they could have expected Peter Crouch to score the way he did. Hell, even Crouch could not have meant to score on that shot. Or did he...?! Making our Player of the Week's stunning goal even more remarkable, the ball never touched the ground from the time it left Asmir Begovitch's foot from a goal kick until it hit the back of Joe Hart's net. A certain contender for goal of the year....
o Carlos Tevez looked like an overstuffed sausage in his extra-large City kit -- as if the Argentine spent the last five months becoming very familiar with the dessert aisle of his local bodega.... No wonder he was brought on for only a twenty minute cameo at Stoke on Saturday: his kit wouldn't have lasted the full ninety.
o Sight of the week: Stoke City fans doing the Poznan.
o Aston Villa is awful, just plain awful. Alex McLeish should be relegated.
o Arsenal 'keeper Wojciech Sczcesny is good for at least one poor clearance a game. It didn't hurt him against a terrible Villa side, but I still can't figure out why people rate the big Pole. He wouldn't even be in my Premier League top ten list.
o Luis Suarez continues to find innovative new ways to commit egregious fouls. Saturday's latest was a goal line knee in the back of a Wigan defender -- a knee that denied the Uruguayan's over the top goal celebration. A goal he scored by knocking the ball into the net with his hand. Apparently, among the things Suarez still doesn't understand in the English culture are the words "fair play."
o It seemed as if more than half of the corners I saw this weekend failed to beat the first man. Can no one in this League take a legitimate corner kick..?
o What a game on Sunday for Newcastle's Hatem Ben Arfa. Architect of the Magpies first and third goals, and scorer of their second -- a play that highlighted his drive and direction as much as anything -- the French Tunisian ran roughshod over Roy Hodgson's Baggies at the Hawthornes.
o Do you think the Beach Boys had any idea of the influence they would have over English football songs when they wrote Sloop John B...?
This is farlieonfootie for March 26.
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