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2010 Soccer Year In Review: The Highs and Lows

As yet another fantastic year of football comes to an end, I took a look at what made this year’s highlight reel.

Match Of The Year

Tottenham 3-1 Inter Milan

What a bloody match. As debutants of the world’s finest European competition, Spurs were paired with last years champions Inter Milan, FC Twente and Werder Bremen. They were not expected to progress from the group. But, as we have come to learn since September, Spurs can take on anyone on their day and they defied the odds to top their group, only losing once in the process.

This match was the return fixture of that fateful night at the San Siro, with the presence of a certain Mr Bale earning credibility for Spurs. Bale was again phenomenal in this match at White Hart Lane, setting up two and starring in a rather marvelous performance to beat Inter Milan.

Player Of The Year

Florent Malouda

I was forced to think long and hard about this one. On one hand we had the likes of Messi, Ronaldo, Xavi, etc. who perform superbly year in, year out. Then we have the players who have really come on as their own, and I decided to go with the latter, since the others have received huge amounts of praise over the years.

Malouda had not really established himself come 2009 and that was a big year for him. He proved to be a massive hit with the fans upon his arrival from Lyon. Last season he finished with a fine goal to assist ratio, netting 16 and assisting 14. Prior to January 2010 he had not been such a success, but hard work finally paid off when he helped Chelsea to a Premier League and FA Cup double, finally regaining what was rightfully theirs, following a tight campaign with arch rivals Manchester United.

Goal Of The Year

Matty Burrows – Glentoran

Irish football goes relatively unnoticed these days but one goal changed it all back in October. In a match between Glentoran and Portadown, the home side were continually pushing for an equaliser, and in the 92nd minute they scored what proved to be football’s goal of the year. The extent of the goal was exquisite. A cross was delivered for Matt Burrows and with his back to goal, he rather optimistically, attempted a back heel volley. Usually such an attempt would end up soaring high and wide but somehow he managed to perfect it and the video itself became a massive hit on YouTube, racking up more than 4 million hits.

Messi and Co. eat your hearts out:

Moment Of 2010

Year Of The Pigeon

It inevitably summed up England’s world cup campaign. In the dire match that was England vs Algeria, a pigeon seemed to have perched itself on top of the Algerian goal, as it sensed there it would be no sense of danger throughout the 90 minutes. England lacked any real venom going forward and in truth never looked like scoring. When the final whistle went, Algeria celebrated like they had won the World Cup, holding on for a famous 0-0 draw against a country in decline.

Best Signing Of 2010

Rafael Van Der Vaart – Real Madrid to Tottenham

Virtually a last minute signing for Harry Redknapp, Van Der Vaart proved imperious from the off. He quickly established himself as a fan favourite with 6 goals in as many games. Unfortunately, injuries have hurt his goalscoring record, for the time being and he returned to action on fine form, grabbing a double against a weak Aston Villa side taking his tally to 8 goals and 4 assists for this seasons campaign.

Worst Signing Of 2010

Joe Cole – Chelsea to Liverpool

Cole’s career took a turn for the worst after Chelsea declined to extend his contract. He was snapped up by Liverpool, which was labelled as the “bargain buy” of the season but a red card against Arsenal on his Premier League debut for the Merseysiders didn’t do his confidence a whole lot of good. As a result, Cole lost his place in the team, and he has resorted to taking up a spot on the bench, not what he had intended upon arriving at Anfield.

Worst Moment 2010

Mike Ashley Sacks Toon Manager Chris Hughton

Mike Ashley’s decision to sack Chris Hughton sparked outrage amongst the world of football after Hughton had guided the Magpies to a solid tenth in the league. Football fans worldwide were shocked as he was the one who guided Newcastle to Championship glory, directly after they had gone down. This was news to Hughton who recalled being called into chairman Daniel Levy’s office along with goalkeeping coach Paul Barron and was unexpectedly given the boot.

Ashley appointed Alan Pardrew as Hughton’s successor and has had a mixed spell since taking over, beating Liverpool but also losing to Tottenham and Manchester City.

Best Moment 2010

Spain Win World Cup

It was delight for Vincente Del Bosque and Spain as they won their first ever World Cup this past June. They also broke a few more records in the process, being the only side to win the World Cup after losing their first match. They also posted the record by winning the World Cup with the least amount of goals, only managing 8 goals, with hitman David Villa netting 5.

Iniesta became a hero in the eyes of the Spaniards after he sent the fans into jubilation following his 116th minute winner. It was ecstasy for Spain and agony for Holland as they also were competing for a first World Cup.

You can follow me on twitter or you can visit my blog as I give updates on what’s going on around the footballing world.

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  1. Football Souvenirs

    January 2, 2011 at 11:39 am

    i agree wth the match of the year that was sensational. The first leg wasn’t bad either. I can’t wait to watch the rest of Spurs CL games as they go on the attac in style

  2. SoccerLimey

    January 1, 2011 at 1:58 am

    Great,great post. I do have some suggestions though: Worst
    Moment – Defeat to Germany. A gut wrencher if for no other reason
    the effort. Give me a team that fought like Lions in 2006 with 10
    men and lost. Don’t give me a bunch of Sally’s that promise a win
    and give up at the first hurdle. Player of The Year – Check out
    this 17 yr old from Plymouth – Dale Jennings. If I was Pearce, he’d
    be in my starting XI every week. However, back to
    reality. Player of the Year has to be Gareth Bale. A storming
    outing against Inter puts him in Giggs territory doesn’t it ?
    Again, love the post,dude.

  3. Andrew Puopolo

    December 31, 2010 at 7:53 pm

    Player of the Year by your criteria… Gareth Bale.
    Do I need to explain this?

  4. Smokey Bacon

    December 31, 2010 at 4:21 pm

    Player of the year …Diego Forlan. Carried Uruguay to the semis.

    Worst moment of the year….FIFA scum and their 2018 & 2022 world cup “votes”

  5. Red20

    December 31, 2010 at 3:12 pm

    “Player Of The Year

    Florent Malouda

    I was forced to think long and hard about this one. On one hand we had the likes of Messi, Ronaldo, Xavi, etc”

    you over thought this one and I have no idea why. He ‘came into his own’? Ok, but so what? That doesn’t make him player of the year. Hell, Elmander has come into his own, but no one is gonna throw his name into the ring for a title like this. Should’ve gone for ‘unsung player of the year’ or something.

    • Joe

      December 31, 2010 at 3:38 pm

      Agreed. Malouda was pulled from the Arsenal game for poor play. That shouldn’t happen to the player of the year.

      There’s a reason the NBA has one award for MVP and another for Most Improved Player.

  6. King Eric

    December 31, 2010 at 2:10 pm

    player of the year, malouda?! what a joke! has to be sneijder if you’re picking someone who doesn’t get the same praise like messi/ronaldo/xavi for european/world player of the year, but had a fantastic year nonetheless and won everything minus the world cup, which he was fantastic in as well. don’t get me wrong malouda is a good player and has definitely come into his own, but being mentioned as player of the year even w/this criteria is perplexing.

  7. Joe Chen

    December 31, 2010 at 12:09 pm

    A forgotten great match is when Bayern came from down 3-0 to get two goals and knock out United. That was some exciting stuff, giving us the “Typical Germans” from Sir Alex.

  8. brn442

    December 31, 2010 at 10:43 am

    Most disappointing match – the world cup final

    Team of the year – Internazionale

    • not a fan

      January 1, 2011 at 4:38 pm

      i stopped reading after i seen the word soccer pretty much told me the rest was gonna be crap too

      • SoccerLimey

        January 1, 2011 at 4:52 pm

        Yea but the good part is you can read. Congratulations….!!!

        • Joe

          January 2, 2011 at 2:17 pm

          Maybe he’ll learn to write some day too. And after that, maybe he’ll find a hobby other than searching out websites on topics he has no interest in! Maybe that’s too much to ask…

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