All together now… Booooooo! Warning, learning opportunity ahead. Not all DGW’s are created equal. It feels like there was an over exuberance to chase the points haul that the last DGW presented to the select few that went for it. Those were good times weren’t they? Seriously though, who’d have thought that Liverpool would’ve been kept to two clean sheets?!?
* Self indulgence… *
Fresh meat. Don’t know why but I always get a little excited seeing who the newly promoted clubs are going to be! Next season will see us blessed with the presence of two clubs who took very different routes to the promised land. Bournemouth, who were teetering on the edge of oblivion not long ago and Watford, who’s ownership model and transfer policy is largely foreign to English clubs. We’ll start with potentially everyone’s second team next season Bournemouth. Before we go ahead and fall in love with them, they are owned by a super rich Russian. Just this one didn’t fork out mountains of rubles to get ahead. That’s not to say he won’t now they’ve made it… The gaffer Eddie Howe is his own story. Read up on him over the break, cracker. Not going to spend a heap of time on their squad just yet but you get a Burnley type feel about them as opposed a bigger spending Leicester or QPR of this season. Unless the Russian flashes the cash! Watford eh… There’s a new trend starting to infiltrate world football with owners owning multiple clubs and moving playing commodities around to where they are needed. Watford are one of those with their owners also laying claim to Udinese and Granada. It’s worked to get them this far well, but the EPL is a different beast and it’ll be interesting to see if they keep playing this game. Udinese have some very, very good players and if they see the EPL as their money maker, they may well move some stars from Serie A over to England?!? There’s little stopping them… They’ve proven so far to be a high scoring team with their best player and goalscorer being Troy Deeney, who could easily be next seasons Charlie Austin. Keep an eye on him. Their other 2 star forwards Ighalo and Vydra are both from their owners other toys, Ighalo from Granada for an unknown transfer fee and Vydra from Udinese on loan. Both are decent shouts if still around next season. Others include ex-Spurs goalie Gomes and Cathcart who should be known by seasoned EPL watchers but the rest are lesser known foreigners that will need more research than I have time for right now! Oh yeah, their current gaffer was their fourth this season. And is no certainty to be around for when the next season starts… Watford should be fun to watch from afar… I can see a lot of research being required and a little guesswork into Watford’s team next season, but a heap of goals and a heap of stories!
Honourable mentions. Everton 3 – 0 Man Utd. Jose’s top shelf banter. Hull turning it around just in time.
Liverpool. Come on!!! Really? In truth, we really shouldn’t have been surprised and in hindsight our faith in their DGW wasn’t based on any sort of recent form.
Transfer Speculation. It’s been slowly building for a month or so now but this offseason will be the worst on record. Clubs have record amounts of money being poured into them from Sky and with an absolute requirement to stay in the EPL, clubs will be buying up more than they ever have. Offseason tips. Try not to get your hopes up when your club has been linked to some super dooper star, and on the flipside don’t get downhearted or angry when your star gets linked to Man City. Hell, I’m an Evertonian I’m used to both occuring. Probably more the latter…
Honourable mentions. Newcastle again. Wigan relegated… Moreno not playing at all after I traded him in for a hit 🙂
Ryan Bennett Award – Definitely not Wes Morgan… Let’s go with Reece Burke. 18 years old. First EPL game. Clean sheet. Job done. Move on.
Jonjo Shelvey Award – Erik Lamela. If there ever was a trophy presentation for these, I wouldn’t be handing it to him with an obligatory handshake as much as throwing it at him from the stage such is my disdain for Erik Lamela. He was supposed to be my boy this season… He was my big POD all preseason and for much of the first third of the season proper. Done nothing. Never again. Go back to Italy.
Jamie Vardy Award – Nelson Miguel Castro Oliveira. Is one of the most journeyed footballers to never get a cut of a transfer or signing on fee! He belongs to Benfica but has nearly played more games for Portugal than them… 5 out of the past 6 seasons have been on loan! Take a hint Nelson. Time to get paid.
Did anyone actually enjoy this DGW?