Premier League Review – Gameweek 12
Game of the weekend
Only one place to begin – the North London Derby as Arsenal hosted Tottenham in the early Saturday kick off.
As customary with these two clubs, self destruct was on red alert and it took just 19 minutes for self destruct to strike again. Emmanuel Adebayor the sinner, as after scoring a goal and doing a weird dance, then attempted to decapitate Santi Cazorla. This decapitation attempt failed, Adebayor was sent off and Santi Cazorla inspired Arsenal to a comeback. Arsenal being Arsenal attempted to throw it all away. Firstly, by allowing Cristiano Ronaldo impressionist – Gareth Bale to score a Cristiano Ronaldo like goal. This was then followed by some dreadful defending which should have resulted in Jermaine Defoe scoring a tap in from a Bale cross. However Gareth Bale, continuing in his Cristiano Ronaldo impressionist mode, instead went for the glory, took a shot and dragged the ball wide.
Despite some odd time wasting from Wojciech Szczesny and a few more glaring misses by Oliver Giroud, Theo Walcott eventually settled the nerves by scoring his 100th career goal against Spurs.
The real Aston Villa returned this week, just seven days after impersonating a half decent side, they were back to their woeful best as they were beaten 5-0 by Manchester City. The game however, will be mostly remembered for one of the strangest things to ever happen during a football match.
At 1-0 to Manchester City with 50 minutes gone, assistant referee – Adrian Holmes, randomly brought the game to a halt and seemingly awarded Manchester City a penalty for no apparent reason. When asked about why he had awarded the penalty, Adrian Holmes simply replied “ Was bored and I needed fantasy football points for Aguero”. The lack of media hysteria in light of such a decision can be attributed to the fact it didn’t involve Manchester United.
Moving onto the red half of Manchester, United suffered their third league defeat of the campaign as they went down to Norwich at Carrow Road.
In truth neither side deserved to win what was an incredibly poor game, of course Norwich will take plaudits as the underdog but their win consisted largely of just ‘trying really hard’. A simple tactic, that seems to be the key to beating a modern day United side, a side which nowadays think by merely walking onto the field, the three points will automatically present themselves.
This however does not apply when United face either Chelsea or Arsenal or fall 2-0 behind, when either of these three things happen United suddenly remember to start playing again.
West Brom 2-1 Chelsea. As it goes with every single Chelsea season. Chelsea start the campaign with ten straight victories, these victories largely consist of 4-0 home wins over Reading , Wigan and Accrington Stanley. This then leads to every bookmaker in the country declaring Chelsea as Champions. Around mid-October when Chelsea suddenly start facing the half decent teams, poor results follow and thus begins a slide down the table. This is followed by the realisation that Chelsea will in actual fact, not end the season as Champions. That being said, credit to Steve Clarke and West Brom who continued their terrific start to the season.
Q.P.R have developed a terrific habit of never winning, so as expected – failed to win this weekends relegation crunch match. Southampton took the three points and Nigel Adkins pulled clear of Mark Hughes in the Premier League sack race.
On the final day of last season Q.P.R failed to maintain the dignity of the Premier League by surrendering two injury time goals to Manchester City, which led to City winning the league title. This failure to maintain dignity can be attributed to the fact QPR had found out they were safe from relegation, just moments before they’d lay down for Manchester City. What followed was Mark Hughes declaring that Q.P.R would “never be in that situation under him again”. With zero wins from twelve games and a trip to Old Trafford next weekend, Mark Hughes’s curtain call may come in the most ironic manner.
Best of the rest
Luis Suarez was in the goals again as Liverpool won for only the fourth time at home in 2012. A welcomed victory over Wigan for a side who’ve managed to go seven league games unbeaten yet somehow remain in the exact same league position.
Reading got their first win of the season as they surprised everyone, including themselves, with a 2-1 win over Everton.
Newcastle’s slide continued as they were beaten at home by Swansea whilst Sunderland scored more than a goal in a game for the first time this century as they beat 10 man Fulham 3-1. West Ham and Stoke played out a passing exhibition on Monday night. Not really of course, what really happened was that someone took a throw in, someone headed it on and someone really tall tapped the ball in. It ended 1-1.
Too Good Too Bad
Mikel Arteta Invincibility watch
At some point in August after selling Alex Song the holding midfielder, Arsene Wenger decided the perfect replacement for Song, would be a player (Mikel Arteta) incapable of playing as a holding midfielder. Mikel Arteta lacks the required abilities to efficiently play in the role and what has followed is three months of invincible Mikel Arteta performances.
This has led to a bizarre case where most people now watch an Arsenal game forgetting Arteta plays for Arsenal…whilst he’s playing for Arsenal. They then spend the rest of the week remembering Arteta plays for Arsenal…whilst not watching him play for Arsenal.
This however did change last week, when Arteta took a break from his invincibility by attempting and successfully sabotaging Arsenal in their home game with Fulham.
It seems that when taking time out from diving, cheating, and being racist, Luis Suarez is quite unplayable and almost, I said almost, likeable. When I say unplayable, I don’t mean Andy Carroll-win headers- hold up ball- not score any goals – unplayable. I mean unplayable as in –score lots of goals-show off lots of skills-win games for your team – unplayable. He’s also taken a month off from furiously appealing for penalties. For those unaware of this phenomenon, back in the old days, Luis Suarez would appeal for a penalty by furiously using his right hand to slap his left forearm in reference to an imaginary handball that the opposition had committed in their penalty area.
Ashley Young has developed a special power, this special power is known as Undroppable. This power largely consists of continually putting in poor performances for both club and country, yet miraculously still being picked by both club and country. I can only imagine how frustrating this must be for anyone whose allegiances lie with both England and Manchester United.
Pointless International friendlies watch
On Wednesday night England and Sweden played out their yearly pointless friendly fixture, the game will be remembered for a sensational Zlatan Ibrahimovic goal. What has followed however (judging by the all round hysterical reaction) is a world where Zlatan Ibrahimovic in actual fact not only scored four against England but also scored several Champions League Final winning goals.
According to many Zlatan is now a big game player, should win the Ballon d’Or and will most likely cure cancer.