Monday, January 16, 2006

Premiership Weekend Roundup: January 14-15

Manchester City 3 - 1 Manchester United
You know how I said that United are trying to make me crazy? Yeah. This didn't do much to disprove that theory. Credit to City, because they played hard, but United were simply terrible. Patrice Evra, the new left back, got caught out of position way too often. You could give him the benefit of the doubt, assume that he just needs time to adjust to the demands of the Premiership. But then maybe it's not the best idea to give him his debut in a derby game, eh? And then to compound that with Silvestre beside him! Sir Alex argued that it was because he speaks French and so could communicate with Evra. Personally, I think it'd be much less painful to teach Evra the basics -- "Mark up!" and "Man on!" aren't that hard, surely -- and leave The Mikael Silvestre Comedy Experience on the bench. United may have been unlucky not to get an offside call for one or two of the City goals, but it wouldn't have been an issue if they'd cleared their lines properly.

The midfield, meanwhile, was as ineffective as you'd expect with Fletcher (reverting to form) and O'Shea in the centre, and Ronaldo doing his best to make Wayne Rooney look mature and level-headed by comparison. I didn't think that challenge was a red card the first time I saw it -- yellow definitely, but not red -- but seeing the pictures and replays, yes, it was deserved. And utterly pointless. Up front, the strikers both looked slightly off their game -- I was surprised that Van Nistelrooy wasn't taken off when Louis Saha came on, but he redeemed himself with his goal, one of the few bright spots for United.

Liverpool 1 - 0 Tottenham
Will wonders never cease? Harry "two ponytails are twice as cool" Kewell, man of the match. He had a solid game, capped off with a beautiful finish for the goal. Unfortunately, although Liverpool's defence was back on track after the Luton game, their offence was misfiring once again. Xabi Alonso went missing for much of the first half, although he got stuck in more in the second half, helped by Steven Gerrard moving in towards the centre and Sissoko maurauding forward on the wing. Crouch and Morientes worked hard up front but couldn't seem to link up -- I think their styles just don't mesh naturally. Michael Owen, please come home!

Blackburn 0 - 0 Bolton
An ugly, ugly game. Neither team was able to string much possession together, but that's hardly surprising when the whistle's going constantly. I'm far from being a Bolton fan, but I have to say that it's kind of fun to watch Robbie Savage get knocked down every five minutes.

Sunderland 1 - 2 Chelsea
This would be where I'd point and laugh at Arjen Robben for picking up such a stupid red card -- if it weren't for the fact that Cristiano Ronaldo got sent off for something equally idiotic. Still, you have to wonder, if Arsenal can win 7-0, surely Chelsea ought to be able to beat lowly Sunderland by more than one goal?

Arsenal 7 - 0 Middlesbrough
Thierry Henry would just like to remind all y'all bitches that he is, in fact, cooler than you.

Other results
Wigan 0 - 1 West Brom
Portsmouth 0 - 1 Everton
Fulham 1 - 0 Newcastle
Charlton 2 - 0 Birmingham
Aston Villa 1 - 2 West Ham

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