The best XI from another weekend of football, including two particularly eye catching performances from a couple of much derided strikers.
Might have just about saved his sides bacon with a great save in the final moments of their crucial game against the Baggies. And it’s not the first time the Irishman’s come to McLeish’s aid after making a variety of top draw stops throughout a torrid season for the Villains. Must be as frustrated as he was in his latter days with Newcastle in being forced to watch his side serve up the dross they have done in recent times.
Killed off Blackburn once and for all with an absolute gem of a free kick. I certainly had no idea he could do that, and you’d think that goal might just have cemented a starting place for the national side this summer. Was offered the freedom of the right flank all afternoon by the cowardice of Blackburn’s play, and took the opportunity with both hands.
STAR OF THE WEEKEND – Monster. That’s the only way to describe the man. How this guy didn’t make the short list for player of the year is anybodies guess, although it’s pretty obvious it’s because he’s a defender. In the biggest game of the season Kompany put in his biggest showing of the season, reducing Wayne Rooney to a mere footnote of an impelling encounter. Deserves to lift the trophy more than anybody.
Frequently identified by teams these days as a weak link in the Liverpool back line, but dealt with Steve Morison and then Grant Holt flawlessly. Won everything in the air, and his experience could be key at Wembley next month.
Before his big move to City, Clichy seemed to be declining rapidly in a faltering Arsenal back line. But since the turn of the year the Frenchman has looked more like the player who initially filled the shoes of Ashley Cole so well, and on Monday night epitomised everything about City’s play. He was tenacious, pacey and above all incredibly disciplined.
Terry Connor must have been thinking some very dark thoughts after watching his side get battered for 20 minutes at Swansea, but somehow his doomed side managed to drag themselves up from rock bottom to fight back for a point. Matt Jarvis was instrumental in that, scoring two goals and consistently driving at an uncertain Swans rearguard. Wolves could have used more of this when it actually mattered.
Has been a revelation since his move back to Goodison, and continued his fine form by setting up three of Evertons four goals against an inconsistent Fulham outfit. Never got his chance at Spurs, but has proved once again what a skillful and enterprising individual he can be. Should look to make his move permanent for the sake of his career.
Ya Ya Toure
Much like Captain Kompany, Toure has somehow managed to continue his incredible form throughout a grueling season. Against the pretenders, Toure exposed the weaknesses in Utd’s midfield which have been glaringly obvious for some time. Carrick and Scholes didn’t know where to run at times, as the imperious Toure consistently drove at them to devastating effect.
One of the in-form players in the league, it seems Moses is coming of age at just the right time for the Latics. Typifies his sides attacking threat with his purpose and pace on the flanks, and even scored a headed goal in the 4-0 mauling of Champions League wannabies Newcastle. Will have made a lot of scouts sit up and take note.
Finally reached the heights he should be for Liverpool against Paul Lambert’s weary looking men. Scored one of the best hat-tricks you’re ever likely to see, capped by easily one of the goals of the season – and there’s been a lot of goodens this year. Runs his socks of and has the potential to be one of the league’s greatest if he continues to find the back of the net more often than the woodwork.
Oh how important could this day be in the career of Chelsea’s number 9? Lovers of the game have waited patently to witness the best of this world class striker, and against QPR Torres looked every bit like the man who demanded a £50 million fee only a year and a half ago. His form could be absolutely crucial for Chelsea in their monumental run in this month.
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