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Newcastle United season preview: A talented squad but always close to self destruction

Analysing the Transfer Gossip 4th August: Schweinsteiger, Rooney, Suarez and more

Analysing the Transfer Gossip – 21th July Part Two: Arsenal, Liverpool, Spurs and more

The Weekend Awards

Held every week in glamorous Watford, this weekend’s prize winners are;

Highlight of the Weekend

Papiss Cisse’s volleyed goal against Southampton

This narrowly squeaks out Rafael’s purely struck rasper against QPR for a couple of reasons. Firstly, there something magical about Newcastle number 9s that causes them to score these kind of goals. Secondly, there was something uniquely Premier League to it. The goalkeeper smashes it forwards, the defenders let it bounce and then the striker puts his foot through it. You could hear Peter Kay shouting ‘Have It’ even above the Geordie roars.

Lowlight of the Weekend

Fulham v Stoke

I mean, it just was wasn’t it? When the highlights package is a great volley, three acts of violent conduct and a penalty miss it doesn’t scream ‘Sky Plus me’

Hissy Fit of the Weekend

Steven N’Zonzi

Was he berating the crowd? Was he trying to elbow the physio? Was he showing the referee what had just happened to him? Who knows, but it was football pantomine at it’s best. The wronged hero has no witness for his injustice so seeks vigilante justice. Except, he punched Bryan Ruiz, not Berbatov. Woops.

Best Punditry of the Weekend

Alan Hansen & Alan Shearer

Hang on, best punditry of the weekend? On Match of the Day? Some mistake surely? Well, no. Messers Hansen and Shearer come in for a lot of criticism, often rightly, but they were on form on Saturday. Firstly, Shearer gave an illuminating and genuinely insightful piece of analysis on Adel Taarabt. He highlighted the fact that Taarabt doesn’t move in to space, preferring the Aaron Ramsey trick of running towards the ball possessor who is in oceans of speace in order to slow & narrow everything down. He may well have magic in his boots, but as Shearer showed us, he can’t do that from the halfway line.

Following this, Hansen gave an excellent demonstration of how Everton’s defence drops deeper and deeper towards the end of games and how this costs them points. The casual fan may well have watched thinking, ‘how does this keep happening to them?’, and Hansen gave a good explanation of just how they do. Well done lads.

Worst Punditry of the Week

Alan Hansen & Alan Shearer

Huh? Now I’m confused?! Yeah, it couldn’t last. After the Norwich summary, the lads were asked their opinion on Norwich. The consensus was ‘they’ll be all right’, ‘they’re having a great season’. The same Norwich who have just won for the first time in the league for the first time since December 15th? A time period that includes them becoming the first ever Premier League team to lose to a team in the 5th tier at home in the FA Cup? D’oh!

Anti-climax of the Weekend

Sunday’s televised games

Sky trailed the City v Chelsea game and Capitol One Cup Final with an arty slow mo filled piece to Elbow’s ‘One Day Like This’. Well, let’s hope there is only day like this. City Chelsea didn’t really get going. If I ask you next week, or even tomorrow, to tell me something that happened what would you say? Well?…Exactly. As for the Cup final, that the commentators spent the entire game reminding us how historic Bradford’s efforts to even get to it were showed what a non event the game was. All credit to Swansea who did what Villa and Arsenal couldn’t and won at a canter but it wasn’t much of a watch.

Is this a Premier League game? Moment of the weekend

Wigan’s 2nd goal at Reading

The entire defence is in the Wigan half, why? The ball is then lost easily and poor Adrian Mariappa is then faced with 3 attackers. Unsurprisingly, Wigan sweep through to score. Any standard of professional team shouldn’t be conceding like that, never mind a Premier League one.

Easily deployed cliche alert of the weekend

ALL mentions of Wigan’s win

Well, it IS late season, and Wigan have just won again. So, all and sundry get the opportunity to wheel out the ‘they always do it’, ‘they’ve been there and done that’, ‘Wigan always leave it late and then escape’ type sentiments. Anyone want to offer any reasons as to why that might be? No? Thought not.

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