The Week in Football – Oh Captain My Captain
It’s the news that the England squad had feared, John Terry has ended his England career, meaning that while Roy Hodgson and his boys are away representing the nation, he could well be tiptoeing up their driveways and trying to have the odd liaison with an ex-team-mate’s wife or girlfriend.
Despite being a despicable human being off the pitch, Terry is often committed in an England shirt and there hasn’t been someone better in his position for a while now. JT may be in decline but no-one in an England shirt will offer the same level of commitment.
Hodgson will now have to pick who to replace the man twice stripped of the captaincy, and has a number of candidates. A recall for Rio Ferdinand has been mooted, and Phil Jagielka, Gary Cahill, Joleon Lescott, Phil Jones and Chris Smalling all have a chance to stake a claim.
On the plus side, Wayne Bridge will now feel comfortable enough to come back into the England squad.
Sent off in the clash between Liverpool and Manchester United, Shelvey ended what started as a good week for him by making a complete Wally of himself. Not with the red card, but the rant at Alex Ferguson as he left the field.
Despite not being on the pitch, Ferguson was apparently responsible for Shelvey’s departure and the former Charlton man let him know about it.
After the game he issued a heartfelt and emotional apology. Well, kind of…
“I’m sorry. I have also apologised to Sir Alex Ferguson. Where I come from people don’t grass people up to get someone sent off.”
Hmmm. Quite how Ferguson grassed him up for a tackle that happened right under the referee’s nose I don’t know.
They’ve started reasonably well this season carrying on their good work from last year, but boss Alan Pardew is in danger of upsetting all of his strikers. After Demba Ba had a bit of a strop about finding himself on the bench, Pards may have upset Papiss Cisse after his comments after the win over Norwich which saw the Senegal man sky a penalty.
“It shows the spirit of the team that they wanted Papiss to take it because he hadn’t scored this year – they invited him to step up. It was not really what I wanted to see because he missed one in pre-season. “
Great way to build a player’s confidence Alan. Just leave Shola alone, ok? He’s done nothing wrong.
It’s been a hard start to the season for the Saints who have just had seven years away from the top flight. A tough start in which they have played last season’s top three saw them rock bottom and a defence with more holes than Swiss cheese.
However, against Aston Villa on Saturday they finally clicked. The promise in attack that saw score two against both City and United saw them stick four past Aston Villa who flopped after their first win last week.
The defence looked a lot more solid, partly due to new defender Maya Yoshida and the removal of the terrible Danny Fox at half time.
Going forward Uruguayan Gaston Ramirez looked like he’d been playing with Rickie Lambert, Adam Lallana et al for years. He was involved in much of Saints good play and if he keeps that up he won’t be at St. Mary’s for long.
We all love a bit of irony, and this weeks ‘Ironic Moment in Football of the Week’ (It’s a working title. Anyone think of something better fax it over, there may be a prize) came from Stoke’s manager Tony Pulis.
Get this, he complained about a bad tackle. The tackle in question came from David Luiz (I’d criticise the hair more than the tackle but that’s just me) and reduced Jon Walters to a writhing wreck on the floor.
Now it was a bad tackle, reckless even, and did warrant further punishment but the fact the Pulis has gone off on one over this tackle and failed to do so over so many of his side’s infamous lunges and attempted limb removals certainly can be defined as irony.
Walcott and Wenger
Just a brief one. Arsene Wenger has threatened to sell Theo Walcott in January unless he signs a new contract at Arsenal. Surely that just means Walcott will get what he wants, a bigger contract elsewhere or a bigger contract at Arsenal.