- Trying Something New, & A Brace For Your Thoughts?
Authors Note: Due to the fact that I’m not as much of an ego maniac as some might think, this week on the Footballer of the Week, I’m going to let you (the fine readers) decide who gets the award. Simply read through the list of mentions and vote in the poll below. Check back throughout the day as voting will close in the very near future.
If readers enjoy this new format or if I remain too confused to pick someone myself, we’ll stick with it. So VOTE!
Gameweek 11 will be mentioned in the same sentence with words the likes of ‘entertaining’, ‘enthralling’, ‘exciting’, and maybe even a little bit ‘exhausting’. Manchester United fans will be pleased with their three points while teams either side of them, Chelsea and Arsenal, both lost on Sunday. Manchester City won away to a tough West Brom while City new boy Mario Balotelli looks to prove this author correct in his prediction that Balotelli will be sent off at least three times this season.
Aston Villa finally scored a goal in a Premier League match after close to 400 minutes without one only for Fulham to equalize late on to snatch a point. Newcastle kept alive a dream week where they destroyed their fiercest rivals only to travel to London to dispose of Arsenal. While a front two of Shola Ameobi and Andy Carroll continue to work well together, a midfield led by Joey Barton and Cheick Tiote continues to impress.
Fernando Torres, Liverpool – Easily the weekend’s biggest and most talked about match, Chelsea’s visit to Liverpool lived up to all the pre match hype when Howard Webb blew the whistle. Fernando Torres was the star man for the winning side as his brace secured an important three points for Liverpool who seem to have shed any remaining ideas that the club are in decline.
Torres opened the scoring in the 11th minute when he was released in on goal by a brilliant pass from Dirk Kuyt. Torres’ first touch was magical while his finish was clinical. John Terry was left in the dust and Liverpool had a deserved lead. If his first was good, his second was great. Torres doubled Liverpool’s lead in the 44th when he received the ball in a wide position towards the left side of the box. His cut towards the center of the box gave him just enough room to curl a right footed shot past Branislav Ivanovic, John Terry and finally Petr Cech.
Sunday’s performance was nothing short of exactly what Torres and Liverpool fans needed to right the ship that is Liverpool’s season. As new owner John Henry looked on from the directors box, the win moved Liverpool to 9th in the table while more importantly it proved that Liverpool can compete with the league’s best.
Kevin Davies, Bolton – Hi, My name is Kevin Davies. I’m running for Premier League Footballer of the Week. I do nothing but win important headers, create space for others and score important goals for my club. In my team’s recent 4-2 win over Tottenham, I bagged a brace and brilliantly set up Martin Petrov for our fourth goal of the match by flicking a back-header directly into his path to goal. It was a brilliant piece of skill that I must admit impressed even me. Petrov finished with a cheeky side footed strike and the three points were ours. I’d appreciate your vote.
Ji-Sung Park, Manchester United – Like the other players listed, Park too scored an important brace for his club on Saturday. United were far from their best but beat a determined Wolves side due to a few moments of quality from Park. His first half strike was neatly taken when he was found by a brilliant Darren Fletcher ball into the box. Park produced a good first touch to settle and slotted home past Marcus Hahnemann.
Park’s second came incredibly late on for United but settled the affair when again the South Korean was found by Darren Fletcher from a central position. For the winner, Park had plenty to do by cutting in towards goal and beating three Wolves players to again beat the American keeper. The three points gained by United put them second in the league now three points ahead of third place Arsenal and only two behind leaders Chelsea.
Mario Balotelli, Manchester City – While I don’t believe Balotelli to be a finished product, the raw, unpolished version of him sure is good. The fourth player on this list to score a brace, and the only one to see red, Balotelli, in his match v West Brom, perfectly illustrated the exact type of player he is: a brilliant but frustrating player lacking the discipline needed to thrive in the Premier League.
Balotelli’s first was slightly fortunate. The now 20 year old striker was the benefactor of some fine Carlos Tevez work when the Argentine’s ball into the box was sort of bundled over the line by Balotelli. A scrappy way to enter into the Premier League scoring books, but an opener City will take.
If Balotelli’s first was the result of being at the right place at the right time, his second was pure class. Silva’s long ball into the box reached Balotelli who found himself with plenty of work left to do. Although his first touch wasn’t the best, Balotelli was able to use his strength to fight off Gabriel Tamas, take another touch and finish across the face of Scott Carson’s goal.