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Arsenal must bounce back

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

As most of you saw, Arsenal had a shocking defeat against West Brom at the weekend, losing 2-3 at home after going 0-3 down. This is not the Arsenal we all know, who usually trounce those kind of teams at home and unless they bounce back in their Champions League game tonight, their season could go down to drain.

I'm not sure what happened to Arsenal last weekend. You could blame it on injuries but frankly I'm sick of Arsenal using this excuse. Then again, they were missing Fabregas, Walcott, Van Persie and Vermaelen, four key players.

Is injuries injuries the real problem though? Even missing these four players Arsenal should have enough to put away a team like West Brom. They have a serious strength in depth and a serious lack of decent goalkeepers. Almunia, does not deserve to play in the Premier League. Enough said. Until they buy a new keepers, Arsenal will not be winning trophies any time soon.

Premier League Preview

Friday, September 24, 2010
Firstly, apologies for the lack of decent posts lately. Secondly, this is the 300th post on Football Streaker. Well, this was a nice way to start of the Premier League Preview. Without further delay, here is the fixtures and my predictions.

Fixtures and my predictions
Manchester City v Chelsea (12.45) - Chelsea win
Arsenal v West Brom (3.00) - Arsenal win
Birmingham v Wigan (3.00) - Birmingham win
Blackpool v Blackburn (3.00) - Draw
Fulham v Everton (3.00) - Fulham win
Liverpool v Sunderland (3.00) - Draw
West Ham v Tottenham (3.00) - Tottenham win

Bolton v Manchester United (12.00) - Manchester United win
Wolves v Aston Villa (2.05) - Aston Villa
Newcastle v Stoke (4.10) - Draw

Firstly, what is with the messed up kick off times on Sunday, must be something on I'm not aware of. Secondly, stick a tenner on all those results and you could win £46397.42, which in my opinion, is not a bad weekends work.

Chelsea, Liverpool and Tottenham all knocked out of the Carling Cup

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Normally the Carling Cup doesn't interest me at all, I just look at it as a way of getting a look of some young talent that the big clubs have to offer, and maybe even see one of those teams embarrassed by one of the smaller clubs. Over the past few days, I got all of this.

The Tottenham v Arsenal game really was a cracked. The 1-4 scoreline wasn't a fair results. True, Arsenal deserved to win but not by three goals. I was surprised Arsene Wenger fielded the side he did, which included several big names including Nasri and Rosicky. One man, or boy, however really stood out. You probably know who I'm talking about. Jack Wilshere had another stunning game to add to his growing reputation. He is definitely one for the future.

Tonight saw two pretty shocking results. The first being Chelsea's loss to Newcastle. OK some might argue that the Carling Cup means nothing to Chelsea and is probably a trophy Newcastle will be keen to compete for, but it was still surprising to see an understrength but still strong Chelsea team lose 3-4 at home.

Liverpool, as we all know, are not the side they once were. They proved that again tonight, losing on penalties to Northhampton. Yes, they had an understrength squad out, but still, even their second team should beat Northhampton. It shows a serious lack of strength in depth, but from a neutral point of view I was delighted. I would love to see Northhampton go on a cup run which sees them knock out all the big teams. There is one every year.

This years English Premier League top goalscorer will be....

Monday, September 20, 2010

Didier Drogba. That's according to you lot. You might remember I put up a poll a few weeks ago of who will be the top scorer in the EPL, well here are the results.

Didier Drogba = 13 votes (35%)

Wayne Rooney = 3 votes (8%)

Fernando Torres = 5 votes (13%)

Robin Van Persie = 5 votes (13%)

Jermaine Defoe = 1 vote (2%)

Dimitar Berbatov = 3 votes (8%)

Darren Bent = 0 votes (0%)

Nicolas Anelka = 0 votes (0%)

Carlos Tevez = 2 votes (5%)

Other = 5 votes (13%)

Total votes = 37

Thanks to all those who voted. We will see who's right at the end of the season. By the way, I voted for Fernando Torres.

Premier League Preview

Saturday, September 18, 2010
I know it's a bit late, apologies for that. Anyway, without further adieu, here is this weekends Premier League fixtures, and my predictions. Bold = Win

Fixtures and my predictions
Stoke v West Ham (Already underway)
Aston Villa v Bolton (3.00) - Aston Villa win
Blackburn v Fulham (3.00) - Draw
Everton v Newcastle (3.00) - Everton win
Tottenham v Wolves (3.00) - Tottenham win
West Brom v Birmingham (3.00) - Birmingham win
Sunderland v Arsenal (5.30) - Draw

Manchester United v Liverpool (1.30) - Manchester United win
Wigan v Manchester City (3.00) - Manchester City win
Chelsea v Blackpool (4.00) - Chelsea win 8-0

Few exciting fixtures in there, particularly the Man United v Liverpool one. Although I picked United to win, it really could go either way.

Stick a tenner on all my predictons to come true, including Chelsea's 8-0 victory, and you stand to win £345101.41. Good luck..

If you have the time, please vote on the poll to the right of who will be the top scorer in the Premier League this season. Thanks.

With the squad Liverpool have, they should be challenging strongly this year

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

As everyone knows, Liverpool had one of their poorest seasons in a decade last season, not qualifying for the Champions and just over all really poor. The board obviously recognised something needed to be done, so Rafa Benitez was sacked and Roy Hodgson took over, thus a new era begun.

Liverpool needed to strengthen, and over the transfer window, they did just that. It's fair to say Roy Hodgson did a good job. Bringing in Joe Cole was a huge signing. He is the extra quality player in midfield they have been missing. Also the signings of Poulsen and Meireles have added a strength in depth in the Liverpool midfield.

Hodgson's most important role as Liverpool manager so far has been holding onto Fernando Torres. With Torres and Gerrard in the squad, Liverpool always have a chance of being there or there abouts. By keeping Torres and giving him the opportunity to link up with the new players in midfield, Liverpool should challenge this season.

Defence is an issue though, especially at left-back. Hodgson will need to seriously consider adding a defender in January or Liverpool are in danger of spending another season playing Champions League on the Xbox 360.

If you have the time, please vote on the poll to the right of who will be the top scorer in the Premier League this season. Thanks.

A landmark day to be forgotten

Saturday, September 11, 2010

By Dominic Pollard

Today saw Sir Alex Ferguson take charge of his 700th Premiership game, a phenomenal record. Only seven clubs have been in the top flight for every season since the creation of the Premiership and Fergie is the only manager to remain at the helm for every one of those years.

His trip to Goodison Park, however, was a far from ideal way to celebrate the landmark. United led 3-1 as the two sides entered stoppage time, but two goals in three minutes salvaged the most unlikely of draws for Everton.

Through all the drama at lunchtime one story will inevitably dominate the back pages - Rooney's absence. With all his years of wisdom, I was surprised to see Ferguson leave Rooney out of the match-day squad. The problems in the striker's personal life have been all too well documented and Fergie stated before the game, “We are not going to subject him to the abuse he gets here.”

Rooney receiving grief from the fans at the Merseyside club would be nothing new, though. By hiding him away, Fergie was, in my opinion, only going to exacerbate the problems. Let Rooney focus on his football rather than drawing more attention to his troublesome 'private' life by trying to protect him.

His absence will now probably cause more headlines than if he had just played. He was always going to receive a hostile reception but Rooney showed for England that he has not let his personal problems effect his performances on-the-pitch.

Rooney will not be able to out run the chants and taunts of away fans. The sooner he can return to the normality of playing regular football, the sooner the stories of his affair can be swept under the rug and into the archive of quickly forgotten misdemeanours by English footballers.

The United manager's decision had looked to be vindicated as his team were cruising to victory and it would be unfair to say that if Rooney had been playing that the result would be any different. Nevertheless, had they won, pundits and fans alike would be praising his decision to keep Rooney out of the limelight.

United played well without Rooney and should have taken all three points back to Manchester. Moreover, Fergie has shown through his dealings with the likes of Keane and Beckham that he is the ideal man to help the England striker through this dark patch of his professional career.

Ferguson's landmark game proved problematic before it began and disheartening once it ended. The team, and Berbatov especially, may have performed in a convincing manner without Rooney but the drama surrounding their number ten was a distraction that Fergie and his side could have done without.

A Champions League tie at home to Rangers on Tuesday night is probably just what the club, and more importantly Wayne Rooney, need as they will no doubt be keen to try and get back to business as usual.

Check out my regular blog – Polly's Pause for Sport

Walcott not spending too long on the sidelines

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

The International break has never been kind to Arsenal, has it. It seems like every time there is International fixtures played, Arsenal seem to lose a player to injury. Last season it was Robin Van Persie, this season it was Theo Walcott.

Fortunately for Arsenal, Walcott shouldn't spend more than two weeks on the sidelines, as the injury is only a slight knock to his ankle. This softens the blow of losing Van Persie for six weeks, after he injured himself in the game against Blackburn.

Now, things could be a lot worse for Arsenal. At least Van Persie is only out for six weeks, it was a lot worse around this time last year when he was facing six months on the sidelines. Walcott's injury was a huge scare for Arsenal at first, but he will only miss one game, two at most. If Arsenal were to lose him for a large chunk of the season it would be devastating, especially considering the blistering form he is in at the moment.

The fact here is, I don't feel sorry for Arsenal, because it is their own fault. Arsene Wenger should have brought in a lot more players during the transfer window. Every body knew Van Persie would get injured at some stage, Bendtner was already facing a spell on the sidelines so that leaves Chamakh to play up front, and if he got injured they would be forced to play the likes of Arshavin up top on his own, who although is effective, lacks presence and has a tendency to drift in and out of games.

There is a serious lack of depth in the Arsenal squad that I guarantee will come back to haunt them come March/April when players are tired and getting injured easier. They have no one to blame but themselves.

If you have the time, please vote on the poll to the right of who will be top scorer in the Premier League this season. Thanks.

What is it with English footballers

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

All you all probably know, Wayne Rooney has been a regular in the papers over the last few days after his antics got him in trouble with his missus. Apparently, Rooney had an affair on wife Coleen, adding him to a growing list of English footballers who have broken their marriage vows.

Rooney had a wonderful season last season, showing his full potential and he is now regarded as one of the best strikers in the world. However, ever since the World Cup started, something has gone wrong. His World Cup performance was disappointing to say the least, and he has carried that poor form into the new season.

However, its his private life that is making the headlines. I don't know what it is with English footballers. That's four in the past year. Ashley Cole, John Terry, Peter Crouch and now Wayne Rooney. What kind of example are they setting? Most of them had kids for god sake. It's an absolute disgrace and you have to admit it hasn't helped things for under fire manager Fabio Capello.

Rooney certainly needs to sort himself out, and fast. He must sort out his 'private' life before he has a chance of recapturing the form he showed last season.

If you have the time, please vote on the poll to the right of who will be the top scorer in the Premier League this season. Thanks.

Adebayor claims Man City are bigger than Arsenal

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Emmanuel Adebayor certainly hasn't a great relationship with his former club Arsenal since his move to Manchester City last summer. First he kicks Robin Van Persie in the face, then he runs the length of the pitch to celebrate in front of the Arsenal fans after scoring for Man City, and now he is having a go at his old club, stating that his new club are bigger.

There was a time when I had respect for Adebayor. When he came to Arsenal he was relatively unknown but managed to make a name for himself and at one point was recognised as one of the best strikers in the Premier League. However, since his move to Manchester City, the big Togo international has changed for the worse.

First of all, we all know he moved for money, why else would anyone move to Manchester City. Secondly, his performance against Arsenal where he celebrated in front of his former fans and kick Van Persie in the face was disgraceful. Now, he is taunting the Arsenal staff and fans saying ''people will class Manchester City as bigger than Arsenal''. This shows massive disrespect towards Arsene Wenger, who made him the player he is today. It also makes him looks like a fool, because he can barely make the starting 11 at Man City, and will probably move if not in January, then the summer of 2011.

In saying all of this, there is a very realistic chance that Man City will someday, in the distant future, be a bigger club than Arsenal, purely because of their financial power. They have some way to go yet though. Buying players who only go for money will not bring success.

If you have the time, please vote on the poll to the right of who will be the top scorer in the Premier League this season. Thanks.

Who will be the top scorer English Premier League this season

Saturday, September 4, 2010

With all the action that happens in the Premier League, people always keep an eye on who is top scorer. Last season it was a race between Wayne Rooney and Didier Drogba, with the Ivorian coming out on top in the end.

Drobga has already bagged 4 goals this season, including a hat-trick on opening day. Rooney has been a bit quieter, only scoring once so far, but its only early days yet.

Personally I can see someone else getting it this year. I think that if Fernando Torres can keep injury free, he has a great chance, especially now with Joe Cole in the squad, who should be able to link up well with the Spanish striker.

I've pretty much ruled out Van Persie, who is injured far to often, and I can't see Fabregas being as effective this season after his summer of speculation.

There is a poll on the right hand side, if you could take some time out of your day to vote, that would be great. If you have any suggestions of someone who should be added to the poll, please let me know in the comments section.

Villa target Curbishley as new manager

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Managerless Aston Villa are apparently interested in bringing former West Ham boss Alan Curbishley to Villa Park as a replacement for Martin O'Niel, who left the club before the start of the new season.

Curbishley has been unemployed for two years now but apparently is interested in the Villa job. Villa are currently holding interviews, with USA boss Bob Bradley also linked in what would be his debut as manager in the Premier League. Villa are apparently after a manager with Premier League experience and Curbishley is certainly qualified for the job, having impressed at both Charlton and West Ham.

Villa will of course be looking to bring in a new chief as soon as possible. After a stuttering start to the season they will be keen to bring in an experienced manager who can settle the nerves and hopefully start up a winning streak and get their Champions League spot aspirations back on track. Personally I can see Curbishley getting the job. He has Premier League experience, and the fans will have a soft spot for the former Aston Villa player.