2009 is here and the important Christmas period for the EPL has come and gone. This is how it is shaping up now.
Top Teams this Month
Manchester United – They have been playing badly, their strikers haven’t been scoring but they have took over the top spot of the EPL. The reason is their rock-solid defense. They say that the mark of champions is winning even when you are not playing well; if that is true, Man Utd will win the title this season. They have been plain awful but are on a 7 match unbeaten run because no one can score against them. Hey, a win is a win.
West Ham – When Gianfranco Zola was named manager of West Ham, there were a lot of doubts about his ability. Then the credit crisis hit the world and West Ham’s Icelandic owner had to file for bankruptcy. So with no money to buy new players and the club in financial difficulties; West Ham looked doomed. However we never counted on Zola coming through. He has made the most of the players available to him and West Ham is on a serious run at the moment. I mean Zola even has Charlton Cole scoring! Zola is proving that not only is he a great player, he may also have what it takes to be a great manager.
Fulham- With the run Fulham are on, it’s inevitable that some teams are looking at the players Roy Hodgson has right now. Jimmy Bullard is moving to Hull City for a big payday, but Hodgson has more than enough players to take over. Roy Hodgson has worked wonders for Fulham.
Surprise Team this month
Everton- Defensive boring Everton is at it again. Manager David Moyes’ hardworking side is proving to be very difficult to beat and a place in Europe beckons. For all the talk of Arsenal and Aston Villa, don’t be surprise if Everton make it a 3 horse race for that last spot in the Champions League.
Disappointing Teams this month
Tottenham Hotspur- After Juande Ramos was fired, Harry Redknapp was supposed to bring Spurs to safety and challange for Europe next season. After a honeymoon period, the magic has faded. Redknapp seem to have made up his mind on Darren Bent and Roman Pavlyuchenko and decided they are not good enough. Defoe is his main man upfront now and that is something I’m not too sure about. I think Defoe is vastly over-rated and Pavlyuchenko has been very good for them (I do agree that Bent seem like a bust). The big question mark on their strikers is causing Spurs to lose games they should not be losing.
Newcastle- Wow! I know Newcastle has an injury curse on it but this season take the cake. Every single striker in the club has been injured this season with Micheal Owen and Andy Carroll being the latest. Almost the whole of the first team is out right now. Wow!
Arsenal- Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger refusal to buy a defensive midfield player is perplexing. The Gunners may be able to pass the ball to death but it’s no good if you don’t have the ball. There’s no ball winner in the middle of the park and almost everyone can see the problem. Everyone but Arsene Wenger!