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Sunday, April 23, 2006

Arsenal v Spurs; Chelsea v Liverpool; Middlesbrough v West Ham

Arsenal v Spurs

Approaching this game was similar to a FA Cup semi-final. Arsenal are now aiming for the remaining Champions League place possible, currently occupied by Spurs. A home victory would mean Arsenal are one point behind with a game in hand. Spurs had only faltered with their home defeat to Man Utd, in which they gave a good second half, so one could feel if Spurs could have a second half like that against Man Utd, without captain and defensive rock Ledley King, they could be more of a match to Arsenal.

From the kick-off it was Arsenal who were the sharper, Emanuel Adebayor took the attack forward and gained a corner, possibly setting the tone for the game as an exciting one. Then after some 10mins or so Spurs came into the game and both sides shared good possession and passing, Spurs edging Arsenal in the first half. Thierry Henry, Emanuel Eboue, Cesc Fabregas and Aleksander Hleb were omitted from the starting side, while Spurs had to do without King, Jermaine Jenas and Calum Davenport, bringing in Antony Gardner and Teemu Tainio. I do not consider Gardner as a good defender and simply has height as a skilful trait. While Spurs took more of the attacking initiative, a number of passes went astray and this broke down their attack on occasion. I felt Michael Carrick was not settling in midfield, Jermaine Defoe seemed not as energetic and Robbie Keane spent a chunk of his time dropping back to aid the midfield. Edgar Davies seemed enterprising on the left wing. Defoe had carved a good chance for goal, the ball came over and he made space to receive and hook a shot that Jens Lehmann was just big enough to block. Later, Carrick picked up the ball on the left wing and went past three Arsenal players and Lehmann but stumbled a little when he drew to use his left foot. So Spurs edged the first half.

In the second half Arsenal started well again, a through ball to Robin Van Persie was just a tad too much and he made contact that just went wide of the goal, the Dutchman's contact with Paul Robinson's outcoming body made RVP look for a decision that did not come. After, the pace was shared by both sides, Philippe Senderos went to block Keane and slightly injured himself, Eboue came on for the Swiss on 54mins. Spurs still kept firm against Arsenal to the degree where Arsene Wenger felt compelled to introduce two final players, a double substitution of Henry and Fabregas for RVP and Diaby respectively. But four minutes after then, Carrick carried the ball forward and was met by the double effort of Gilberto Silva and Eboue, who both collided with each other. Carrick went on and gathered the ball by the touchline, fed Davids on the left, who in turn sent the ball across goal for Keane to tap in behind Lehmann, ironically in Arsenal-style.

With Eboue and Gilberto down, the Arsenal players felt Spurs would kick the ball out for treatment, but Spurs carried on. Robert Pires and Lehmann remonstrated with Davids and not Carrick, which makes me wonder if that was down to one's temperament. Lehmann sized up to the Dutchman, the height difference clear. Earlier in the first half, Lehmann gathered the ball which Defoe chased. The slightest of touches from Defoe and Lehmann got up and spoke out towards referee Steve Bennett, when simply getting on with the game was more necessary. At the moment when Eboue and Gilberto had gone down, Match Of The Day replays showed Wenger remained seated; Martin Jol was standing; Carrick on the ball; ref Bennett indicating to the grounded players a hand to say he will deal with them once play has stopped; and crucially, Fabregas and Pires were the nearest Arsenal players to Carrick. Because play had not stopped, Bennett was content to continue, so were Spurs, Pires and Fabregas made no call or indication for Carrick to kick the ball out. Gilberto got up, Eboue looked up and remained on the ground, Davids collected the ball, he was faced by Kolo Toure, Johan Djourou and Mathieu Flamini behind him in line, none of these players made any appeal or call for the ball to be kicked out.

Flamini had indicated that someone was coming up behind Djourou but Djourou was focused on Davids, so Flamini did not pick up the threat of Keane coming in, and instead aimed to cover if Davids pulled the ball back towards the edge of the box. Davids didn't, Djourou couldn't make the ball and Flamini wasn't there to cover Keane. Now, Arsenal were incensed but I feel this is because Spurs scored. Wenger was incensed enough to pass words in Jol's direction, which prompted the Spurs coach to walk up to Wenger and retort, with Rob Styles' arm in the middle. After that Jose Antonio Reyes aimed a sharp shot that was blocked by Robinson and Danny Murphy came on for Aaron Lennon, which I felt was a mistake as Spurs needed to keep Arsenal on their toes and Lennon's pace and tenacity had worried the home side. Funnily enough, I felt Murphy should have replaced Davids, because Davids was the only Spurs player on a booking, ideal for Murphy to replace in central midfield, and could have lost his head with Lehmann and Pires.

With that, 7mins passed and Spurs had another 10mins to hang out for, but Adebayor managed to keep the ball in play around Paul Stalteri, Stalteri claimed for a foul for Adebayor snapping at the back of his legs, Adebayor went on and touched a nice ball for Henry to run onto for a first touch forward and then an instant left foot that angled away from Robinson into the net. Replays showed Gardner was alone, ball watching and not keeping Henry in focus. Dawson came over to stop Adebayor, at which Gardner should have come across and possibly stall Henry if the ball got through. He didn't, and Henry needed nothing more than the ball to run onto, the space to run into, and hope something else would make it all count. And it did. A minute later, Davids lost possession and frustratingly stuck out a leg to trip Fabregas and received a second yellow. Fabregas consoled Davids and then pushed him, which added insult to injury. At the end, neither coach shook hands as Henry particularly shook hands and bowed as he did with all.

Jol said in post-interview he did not see when the two Arsenal players were on the ground, that he was concentrating on his players in attack, Wenger claimed Jol was lying. Again, in the replays, when Wenger and Jol came to, you could see Jol mouth the words 'I did not see it". It's an unwritten rule, a convention if you like, yet one that's universally accepted where serious injury is suspected. The referee would blow if it involves a clash of heads, certainly if, as in Alan Smith's case, it clearly looks very serious. Previously when a player went down and remained down, the ball would have to go out first before treatment could ensue. There is little difference with that and today, only that more sportsmanship has been encouraged. What supersedes is that players should play to the whistle. Arsenal were doing just that, they continued with no appeal and conceded. However, this point in the match added to Wenger's fury, for he did not look content during the first half.

Blame had been levelled at Wenger's omission of those four players from the start, and Arsenal had lost some of their attacking impetus. With Henry, Eboue and Fabregas on, it took some 30mins, and potentially an incident against them, to carve out an opening for their equaliser. This could have been different if those three players had started, with Djourou instead coming on for Senderos, but on the other hand one must understand why those players didn't start, the Arsenal starting line-up was still sharp enough to give Spurs problems.

Fourth place is still in the balance, Arsenal are on the move to Sunderland, to Man City, and finish at home with Wigan. With the draw, which from a neutral's point was a good entertaining one, the situation takes a slight turn. If Spurs win against Bolton, it would make Arsenal's next two matches immaterial. If Spurs were to win their remaining games against Bolton and West Ham, they hold onto fourth, a scenario which makes Arsenal's game in hand vital.




Chelsea v Liverpool

There were words from both teams about each other in the days counting down to Saturday. I read mostly those from Liverpool, I can only recount Jose Mourinho speaking from Chelsea. Nonetheless, Rafael Benitez made it clear for the second time before a semi-final that Liverpool were prepared for the challenge, as underdogs. The tenth time both sides meet in two seasons? If this was in a book or film, I couldn't take to it for lacking in some form of probability. But from the kick off Chelsea started the brighter, Drogba earned a corner, Hernan Crespo headed on Frank Lampard's ball, Drogba missed with a header. Later, Asier Del Horno passed to Lampard and Lampard aimed a sweet ball over the Liverpool defence for Drogba, who went on to miss with Pepe Reina coming out and making himself big. Replays showed Drogba was offside, another erroneous decision from the official on the line.

Harry Kewell was on good form, taking on both Del Horno and William Gallas before his left-foot shot went low and wide when it should have tested Cudicini. Then another decision of near influence occurred as Luis Garcia and John Terry both aimed a foot in mid-air for the ball near the edge of the Chelsea box, the Spaniard claimed for a infringement and one was granted by Graeme Poll. I felt there was nothing wrong with Terry's challenge, however the freekick had to be defended, which Chelsea are well capable of. Steven Gerrard and John Arne Riise plotted over the ball, Gerrard touched it for the Norwegian to hit, the wall where Lampard and Paulo Ferreira held opened up and the ball exploited the gap and went in unchallenged by Carlo Cudicini, who must have been unsighted. An advantage which Liverpool aimed well to hold onto, they could have added to it when Terry headed back for Cudicini but the ball was open to a challenge from Peter Crouch and the Chelsea keeper. Both came together and went down but got up and on with the game. Then Harry Kewell crossed for Gerrard to nudge the ball past Del Horno and pull back for Garcia to touch, up and high with Peter Crouch waiting by the penalty spot.

Chelsea brought on Arjen Robben for Del Horno and it was Robben's freekick from the Chelsea right over the defence that gained Chelsea a goal through Terry's downward header, but the skipper was judged to have held down Riise as he went for the ball. Work down the Chelsea right by Liverpool carved a chance for Garcia but to no avail, which left a sense of feeling that the Spaniard would prevail if allowed more chances. So what followed was a Liverpool throw that was headed backwards by Ferreira and then also by Gallas, in the running path of Garcia, and the former Barca player caught the ball on the bounce with a superb left foot half-volley that flew in past Cudicini. With the advantage doubled, Kewell took on Claude Makelele and then pulled back for Garcia to aim another half-volley that Cudicini touched away. Just over the hour, Mourinho decided for a final change and made a double substitution of Damien Duff and Joe Cole for Crespo and Geremi respectively, which turned the tide and led to a Chelsea onslaught.

Robben went on a mazy run past three players but shot low for Reina to gather comfortably. However, Chelsea broke through when a Makelele ball came over for Riise to head comfortably clear but he managed only to head the ball up, Drogba was free, Reina saw the threat and came out but Drogba had managed to head the ball into an unguarded net to pull Chelsea back. Riise should have head well clear, Reina could have remained near goal as Carragher was near enough to challenge Drogba. From then, as time ticked away, Liverpool aimed to deny with their defending, but Robben eventually gained another ball over the defence for Cole to pick up, onside through Steve Finnan, only for Cole to hit high.

At the final whistle, as jubilant Liverpool celebrated, the two coaches failed to shake hands, something that threatens to become a pandemic. OK, 'pandemic' is perhaps too strong but human emotions take over where old-fashion diplomacy and respect once reigned. Benitez has stated Mourinho would not have achieved but for the financial backing of Roman Abramovich, respects certain Chelsea players but couldn't extend that to the coach; Mourinho replies that Liverpool are nothing if not league champions, are nowhere near the quality to challenge Chelsea and that Liverpool may surprise him. Unsavoury at best. I have advocated for football to do the talking instead of mere words.

I mentioned to SKG that I felt Liverpool would win by a single goal and I was right, albeit I expected a 0-1 win. For the hour Liverpool earned the lead and potential win but Chelsea are a fighting bulldog breed, give them time to flow and they can hurt you, and then some. Once again Mourinho has claimed the better side lost, that decisions went against Chelsea, that Terry's goal should have stood, but obviously I am glad for the win which puts Benitez in his first FA Cup Final and potentially to another trophy in just his second season.




Middlesbrough v West Ham

I expected Middlesbrough, despite their UEFA match with Steaua Bucharest, would be to much for West Ham to handle. Despite not having Mark Viduka upfront, the choice of Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink and Aiyegbeni Yakubu leading gives strength, pace and a good eye for goals. A tribute was held before the game kicked off in respect of two former West Ham managers who had recently passed away. Ron Greenwood, who managed West Ham in 1961, led them to a FA Cup win three years later and a European Cup Winners' Cup in 1965, and took over England from 1977 until 1982, passed away in early February. John Lyall succeeded Greenwood in 1974, taking the Hammers to FA Cup victory in 1975 and 1980, the latter brought Trevor Brooking to produce a header for the only winning goal for a Second Division side over a top flight team. It was an unusual one, for as the whistle was blown to begin, silence gradually became cheers as some fans cheered in memory, while others showed their clear discontent towards the cheers in booing.

It was Middlesbrough who looked the sharpest from the beginning and kept West Ham on the back foot. Fabio Rochemback aimed a left-foot shot wide after Stuart Parnaby got round Paul Konchesky. Hasselbaink came close with two headers, Franck Queudrue came close with a header himself that went over, but a setback followed as Mark Schwarzer jumped to gather a ball and was met with a challenge by Dean Ashton. The keeper gathered, went down and stayed down, to be subsequently diagnosed with a broken cheekbone. Fellow Aussie Bradley Jones came on to replace.

West Ham attacked more in the second half, Ashton had a header go just over as Yossi Benayoun and Nigel Reo-Coker ran marathons to aid the cause against the more enterprising George Boateng and Rochemback. The Brazilian's touch on occasion let him down as Boro made it to West Ham's third in attack, and he was joined by Stewart Downing, whose efforts on goal were to be desired. All in all, West Ham fought to hold back Boro, Anton Ferdinand, Danny Gabbidon and James Collins having to head or kick out the numerous balls of danger that came their way. However, as Middlesbrough's stern defence of Gareth Southgate, Chris Riggott and Queudrue cleared most of any danger that came their way, a high ball from midfield was headed on by Ashton and Marlon Harewood, who at best had been niggling the defence, managed to step ahead of Southgate for a fierce left-foot shot past Jones. It was a sucker punch.

Steve McClaren brought on Massimo Maccarone for Andrew Taylor, making for three strikers, and with the clock ticking West Ham faced the inevitable onslaught. Queudrue took on a Hasselbaink-earned freekick which had more accuracy than power and produced a punch-out from Shaka Hislop. In the closing stages Downing took on another Hasselbaink-earned freekick from almost the same spot as last time, this time Downing stepped up for what could produce a good chance to equalise, but it was spurned over everyone and wide.

At the final whistle, the West Ham players and staff celebrated a FA Cup final appearance for the first time since 1980. Though I felt Middlesbrough had enough to win, and with the amount of chances and possession they had they could have, it was ironic for the Hammers to go through for the first time for 26 years in the memory of one manager who last took them there.


RedsMan.

13 Comments:

Blogger Paxton Road said...

If Spurs win the last two games they will finish fourth making Arsenal's game in hand immaterial.

I think you were watching a different game as Spurs were bar far the better side for the first 70 minutes.

4/23/2006 9:08 pm

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your review of the Spurs game was poor, did you review it from Match of the Day, Tottenham dominated until the last 15-20 minutes, their ball work until that point was far superior !

4/23/2006 9:23 pm

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What match where you watching it certainly wasnt Tottenham v scum. What a bad review Carrick domianted the game was the best player on the pitch by a mile. I smell a rat, are you a gooner in disguise...lol

4/23/2006 10:05 pm

 
Blogger RedsMan said...

Sorry chaps, didn't I get that across?

"So Spurs edged the first half."

"Spurs still kept firm against Arsenal to the degree where Arsene Wenger felt compelled to introduce two final players, a double substitution of Henry and Fabregas for RVP and Diaby respectively."

I watched it live on Sky Sports, and the highlights on MOTD. I was more impressed with Matt Dawson, as I felt Carrick made a number of good passes and also a number of bad touches in the first half, and played better in the second, while Dawson made a number of timed interceptions and headers overall. The introduction of Henry and Fabregas, two key players kept back with Villarreal in mind, was an indication Wenger needed to introduce more flair into Arsenal's game. This is all contained in my review.

These words from the BBC review:

"[Spurs] continued to press after the break, but when Emmanuel Eboue came on for the injured Philippe Senderos, Arsenal improved. Robin Van Persie should have given Arsenal the lead on the hour when he easily beat the offside trap but lifted his shot over Robinson and wide. That was the cue for Wenger to introduce Henry and Cesc Fabregas, but with Arsenal now looking the more likely to score, Spurs attacked on the break and got the goal their earlier superiority deserved. Arsenal would have eased their frustration even sooner had Jose Reyes' volley not been brilliantly saved by Robinson, but Henry had Highbury rocking for one final north London derby with a fabulous finish. It could have been much worse for Spurs after Davids' rash tackle on Fabregas earned him a second yellow card, but they held on and go into their final two games with a four-point lead over their rivals, who have a game in hand."

More from Sky Sports:

"Substitute Thierry Henry salvaged a point for Arsenal as Tottenham Hotspur clung on for a 1-1 draw after Edgar Davids' late sending off. Spurs were much brighter, with Aaron Lennon teasing the home defence on the wing, while Teemu Tainio, replacing the injured Jermaine Jenas, popped up in a couple of dangerous positions to head half-chances at Jens Lehmann. Defoe showed much more intent with his next opportunity, lashing a volley straight at Lehmann following a wonderful pass from Michael Carrick. Just before half time, Tottenham should have taken a deserved lead, only for a breathtaking run from Carrick to merely lack a finish.

"Early in the second half, Arsenal were pressed into a change when Senderos limped off to be replaced by Emmanuel Eboue, who immediately injected pace into the hosts' play. The Gunners gradually came into the contest, with van Persie twisting quickly in the box before forcing Robinson to push away his shot. The Dutchman should have put Arsenal ahead on the hour mark when he escaped the offside trap to meet an incisive pass from Gilberto, but van Persie dinked his shot over Robinson and wide of the upright. That was van Persie's last contribution as Henry was introduced, while Cesc Fabregas was brought on to pep up the midfield in place of Abou Diaby.

"Irked by the goal, Arsenal pressed on in search of an equaliser and a controlled shot from the edge of the area by a previously lifeless Jose Antonio Reyes prompted Robinson into a fine sprawling save. With six minutes left, Arsenal drew level and it was Spurs' turn to complain as Paul Stalteri appeared to be fouled by Emmanuel Adebayor in the build-up. The Togo ace carried on regardless and supplied a killer pass for Henry to cleverly turn a shot beyond Robinson. Tottenham were then left with their backs against the wall when Davids was sent off five minutes from time for a second yellow card after bringing down Fabregas."

Not being biased, I would say those reviews corroborate my own.

Referring to Paxton's comments, when I mentioned the scenario of Spurs winning their remaining two matches, it is very much that at the moment, a scenario. As in a sequence of events especially when imagined, or an account or synopsis of a possible course of action or events. Such a scenario therefore hasn't yet turned into reality, and is such that it now pushes Arsenal into having to keep up the pressure by winning their games, possibly right up to and including their last match, whereas before that game in hand was considered by others as a good advantage.


RedsMan.

4/23/2006 11:44 pm

 
Blogger BlindJak said...

It looks a racing certainty that Spurs will win a least the last game of the season as West Ham are now highly likely to field a virtual reserve team, resting players ahead of the cup final.

Absolutely gutted about Chelsea going out but, unlike Mourinho, have to say the better team won. Jose got his line up and tactics wrong and Benitez capitalised magnificently.

4/24/2006 9:50 am

 
Anonymous Nturtle said...

Well...as much as I like tight races for an important place for the Champions league....this is getting a bit too close for comfort!

Redsman has done a BIG post on not only the Arsenal Spurs games...so pls. give hime some credit and acknowledge that. Having less literary ambitions...I cannot manage that at any stage in my posting "career" so far.

I think we all could get a feel that Spurs were playing their hearts out...and by far had the greater chances. If Redsman didn't say it completely, as an Arsenal fan I can put it to the sword and say that Spurs probably dominated most of the play and had most chances. However, if not for a Robinson on form, it could have been Arsenal taking their chances...in particular VP's attempted lob...right before Keane scored! Redsman has also skillfully found sources to back his views so he should be credited for that effort also. Not all forums/blogs have this degree of feedback...and we welcome all views - just put a long reply down and I am sure it can be better discussed, as Redsman has done.

As for finishing 4th...well...hopefully Bolton do us a favour...and West Ham as well...but it's looking tight.

4/24/2006 2:57 pm

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Liverpool deserved to win not only because they had more chances but because they played as a team.. They attacked as a team and defended as a team. Totally outplayed Chelsea till the last quater and Mourinho is being a sour goat as ussual, nothing new about his antics.

I hope in the coming season, even if Liverpool aren't able to get the title, I really wouldn't mind anyone else win it other than Chelsea @ Chelski. The've become as arrogant as you can get with all the russian drug money.

4/24/2006 3:21 pm

 
Blogger T said...

Redsman, my thanks again for your weekend review and your take on the action. First I offer my congratulations to you and the rest of the Pool fans on this site for your win on Saturday (plus for Steven Gerrard winning the PFA player of the year award last night). Equally my commiserations to you BlindJak.

I agree with the consensus view that Mourinho's got it very wrong with his starting line up and formation which Liverpool did excellently well to take full advantage of.

I also like Redsman's description of Chelsea as having the bulldog mentality- they just don't give up and gave a great effort to nearly scrape themselves into extra time (Cole's miss in the 93rd min was reminiscent of Gudjohnsen's injury time miss in the Champs league semi last season!).

I ditto Nturtle's comments on both the derby match and the response to Redsman's review. For me, Spurs definitely dominated in the first half and I counted my team lucky to be level entering the break. Arsenal lacked cohesion- and in Diaby and Reyes we had two midfielders who really did not get into the game at all. On the other hand, Lennon was doing another great impression of Marc Overmars, and Carrick totally took control of the midfield area.

Second half I felt we progressively got more into the game - helped by the intro of our subs and Spurs taking a more defensive approach after their goal. Re the Spurs goal: I agree with the view by Redsman that teams should always play to the whistle- so although I thought it was unlucky that we had a collision leaving our defence exposed, I didn't feel as wronged as Wenger and some of the Asenal players. Another goal for Keane- a player I really rate.

Simply, we needed an equaliser to give us any chance of getting fourth- and a piece of magic play by Adebayor and Henry keeps us in the race... just!

My sense after the match was relief that we scrambled a point when looking like Spurs were going to take all three, but also a feeling that it will be extraordinary if we end up finishing in fourth place. But at least as it stands now we still have a chance.

4/24/2006 9:40 pm

 
Blogger BlindJak said...

Anonymous (2:21) I agree that Liverpool deserved to win because they played a better game and more effectively as a team but disagree that they had more chances and “totally outplayed” Chelsea. All the stats show show Chelsea as having had more shots on and off target and greater possession.

4/25/2006 9:08 am

 
Blogger RedsMan said...

People, all your comments are so on the ball, nturtle, blindjak, of course T, and partly Anon (2.21PM). Thanks for the congrats, T. Nturtle, quite succinctly put about my comments, and I have to say, for the first three comments to state my review was poor must be viewed as a strong accusation. My review showed Spurs edged the first half, in both halves Arsenal started well, and in the second half as Eboue came on and came down well down the right, it gave more initiative to Arsenal's attack. Spurs held well and gained the lead after Henry and Fabregas came on and added more flair to the home side. As a result, perhaps through the goal and how it came about, Arsenal took to the helm, through which Henry scored.

Of course I don't expect for total agreement but the reasonable should be able to read my review as that above, and I included the excerpts from the BBC and Sky Sports. To say it was poor and an indication of Arsenal's dominance had to come from zealous Spurs' fans. I would have preferred a contrasting view and perhaps added criticism why my review was poor, so those three first commentors, the floor is open to you all to reply.

BJ, again you are sporting with your comments, the stats showed exactly that. We played very well in the first hour, well documented, and with Mourinho introducing the three terrors of Duff, Cole and Robben, Chelsea retaliated, and even Benitez said they have the players who can and will very much come at you. It seemed so bizarre for a simple header, one we have made countless of times to our benefit during the season, to turn into danger and the goal for Chelsea.

Congrats to West Ham, for they too weathered a Middlesbrough storm before emerging with the winner, and I have commented on their attacking pace through Etherington, Reo-Coker and Harewood, and now the addition of height of Ashton. Ironically, with Middlesbrough playing West Ham in the league before Sunday, we face West Ham away tomorrow!


RedsMan.

4/25/2006 1:48 pm

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I saw the Arsenal-Spurs game on Sky and thought Spurs were just unlucky not to win it. But Henry is a special player who can make chances from nothing and the Spurs defenders went to sleep just then. Overall, it was a good match. As for not kicking the ball out, it is down to the players, Arsenal didn't do it back when they played against Sheffield United in the Cup, and Wenger called Jol a liar about not seeing things and it was Wenger before who always said he never saw when his players were bad on the pitch. Pot and kettle.
Mourinho played Ferreira in midfield and Geremi in defence, didnt he, and left out Duff, Robben, Cole so I wonder why. He probaly tried to surprise Liverpool and it didnt work and he should have made a change at half time. But maybe he didnt want to make a change and it all falls apart like it did against Newcastle last year.

Middlesbrough should have won the semi final because they had the most possession and chances but such is football, you play so well and then the other side win it. I hope West Ham win it (Im a Eagles fan) because they deserve it for what Pardew has done. They wanted to kick him out when they werent winning so he has done well and in the league.I hope we can join the EPL soon and play the likes of Arsenal Chelsea and Man Utd again. Good site, really intereting to read over a cuppa!! redsman goes into detail about matches so its like reading another paper! Cheers

4/25/2006 6:12 pm

 
Blogger RedsMan said...

Thanks Anon (5.12PM), I write on the matches with impartiality, depth and with as much accuracy as I can recall.

It would be good for Crystal Palace to reach promotion, I've an interest of revenge as they have been something of a bogey side for us, but also to see Andy Johnson be rewarded for his loyalty to Palace when he could have walked into a Premiership club. If he were to display the form he had when last in the top flight, he should be up amongst the best fighting it out for top scorer.


RedsMan.

4/25/2006 10:35 pm

 
Blogger RedsMan said...

[This comment was posted on another article and I felt it was more appropriate here, so I have copied and pasted it here. To the person who did send in this comment, there was no need to print the story behind the link if the link itself is there. Also, the link contained a match report which was not needed on EFT as my very own one exists. People want to read another match report, they can visit through the relevant link or site.]

The day fair play died - According to Arsene Wenger
http://soccernet.espn.go.com/columns/story?id=365637&root=england&cc=4716

5/01/2006 3:47 pm

 

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