Eighteen games have been played and with it we are into the festive season. As families and friends exchange gifts, we too at “The Football Addict” are in a festive mood and are giving away “Mid Season Awards”. We start off with the Premier League. Here are the winners …
Spain have won the last 3 major Championships, so the Spanish dominance is nothing to be surprised about. But little did people expect Michael Laudrup’s 2m pound summer signing to take the Premier League by storm. Miguel Pérez Cuesta, also known as Michu has 12 goals and 1 assist in his 17 games for the Swans. The versatile attacker who can either play as a striker or drop off the front man has also earned a call up to the Spain national team for his efforts and performances in the Premier League. The former Rayo Vallecano front man is our “Bargain Buy” of the summer.
Sir Alex had called Stoke City “The Jolly Green Giants” due to their aerial prowess, when the Potters visited Old Trafford. He had also joked that former United striker Michael Owen will not be allowed to play unless he brought a ladder because Stoke are the biggest team in Europe.
Michael Owen went to Stoke City on a free transfer last summer, so it would certainly be a shock to many fans to see him nominated by us, for the tag of “Expensive Flop”. But the 5ft 7inch striker was never going to be a hit considering the brand of football on display at the Britannia. Owen (currently sidelined win a hamstring injury) has played 57 mins of Premier League football this season (he has spent more time on MOTD than on the pitch) and earns an astonishing £8,000 a minute.
Manager of the season and Surprise Package:
One could take a pick from Everton and West Brom who are trying to qualify for Europe or Norwich City who went on an amazing 10 match unbeaten run defeating the likes of Manchester United and Arsenal on the way.
We always knew David Moyes’ credentials, but the only surprise at Goodison would have been that seasonal slow starters Everton came off the blocks running this season. With a little money to spend in January Everton will give themselves a chances to finish in the top 4.
Chris Hughton has done a magnificent job at Norwich City. His team plays with a great tempo and work hard for each other. Therefore with Norwich (who according to me were supposed to be in the relegation fight) in 10th position Cris Hughton gets our “Manager of the season award”.
Lukaku, Odemwingie and Long (15 goals and 9 assists between them) have formed a holy trinity at the Hawthorns. With the likes of Morrison, Brunt and Mulumbu West Brom have been a very good side that is able to keep the ball and play some attacking football. Level on points with Arsenal and Spurs on Christmas is enough for us to reward them with the tag of “Surprise package of the season”.
Things to look forward to in 2013:
With 5 points separating 13th place Fulham and 18th place Wigan, the relegation dogfight is going to be a scrappy one to watch. Arsenal (3rd place), Everton, Spurs and West Brom (6th place) are all stuck on 30 points each while Chelsea are in 7th place with 29 points (albeit having played 2 games less). Therefore the battle for the Champions League places is bound to heat up (unless Chelsea get Falcao to boost their title chances). With three points separating the Manchester Clubs at the top, the Manchester Derby at Old Trafford on 6th April could very well be the title decider.
This season we have already seen dives, wrong decisions, racist chants, coins thrown and some great football too. Therefore whatever happens, 2013 too is expected to be equally controversial and breathtaking and prove that the Premier League is the most entertaining League in the world.
– By Rohit Shankarmani