With the Southampton vs Manchester united “top four clash” on Monday night, the gameweek 15 came to its conclusion, and the main point of the weekend was Chelsea finally losing a game ending all speculations on whether they could do “an Arsenal” and go an entire season undefeated. Newcastle got the honors of stopping the Unstoppables, adding to a fine streak of results lately.
Let’s move on to what caught our attention this weekend:
1. The ponytail is back!
With Diafra Sakho and Enner Valencia being more or less out of action lately, West Ham didn’t really produce tons of goals. We’re pretty sure many out there had forgot who the long Geordian with the characteristic ponytail even was, but he really re-introduced himself this weekend, in his fourth start after his injury nightmare. 2 brilliant goals, and the assist for substitute Sakho, and if Carroll keeps his form, it would be like West Ham got a brand new player – and it’s still a month till January!
Big Sam and his Hammers had a great start to the season, but had a form dip in November. Now they have three straight wins and are – like us – on the rebound! Who would think West Ham should be holding the fourth Champions League spot after almost half the season is played?
2. The unlikely end to the Unstoppable’s run
Let’s go back in time a bit. It’s October 4th, and Newcastle is on their way back from Swansea after yet another match without a win. Seven matches into the new season, and Newcastle is dead last with four points and no wins. The pressure on manager Pardew is growing bigger every week, and no one believes he will celebrate Christmas as Newcastle boss.
One day later, October 6th. The Chelsea fans are ecstatic after Costa and Hazard have made sure rivals Arsenal is beat 2-0 at the Bridge. They top the league with six wins in the first seven.
The reality of the two teams seems like two different worlds. The Chelsea machinery is running like a clock whilst the Newcastle one, on the other hand, looks in need of a serious overhaul. Suggesting the scenario that is going to unfold exactly two months later would probably result in nothing but derisive laughter and branding as a football idiot.
Fast forward to December 6. Chelsea is still unbeaten, but not for long. Newcastle has turned things around in a remarkable way, and is now one of the Premier League form teams. The unthinkable scenario from two months ago is no longer that far-fetched. A brilliant display at St. James’ Park, and Newcastle is now officially the only member of the exclusive club of teams that has beaten Chelsea this season. We’re impressed, but we’re also unsure whether Newcastle has the necessary quality to keep the momentum going, and challenge for a top spot.
3. Sergio Agüero’s knee
What an individual Sergio Agüero is! We knew he was good, but the way he’s performed the last weeks is just world class. But as most god-like beings, he has his weak spot as well. The greek hero Achilles is the origin of the Achilles heel, from the later legends stating he was invulnerable except for his heel.
Well, Agüero has his Achilles heel as well, actually two: his knee and his hamstring. The last three seasons, he has been out injured a total of 162 days according to Transfermarkt.com, most of these knee- and hamstring injuries. This was before he left the pitch this weekend after just 7 minutes with what you might have guessed: a ligament injury.
It was painful to see the Argentinian magician leaving Etihad in tears, and painful for lots of fantasy managers as well, being the most selected captain last gameweek. We’re not too happy either, advising fantasy managers to choose Agüero no matter what in the latest edition of Pick of the week. We’re pretty sure Pellegrini and Man City fans have bigger concerns than us though, having their most important player out injured for at least a month.
We watch football because we love the game, and because we want to be entertained. Some players are just born to entertain with their excellent technique, and we saw some examples of this this weekend. Especially at Selhurst Park where Yannick Bolasie was in the playful corner, alongside a couple others. Although the match ending goalless, let’s take a moment to relive the brilliant details we saw in this match.
This is Yannick Bolasie embarrasses Christian Eriksen:
Eriksen, though, wouldn’t be any worse:
And finally, let’s see how Peter Crouch celebrated his goal after just 15 seconds against Arsenal:
— Peter Crouch (@petercrouch) December 6, 2014
Is the film on Crouch also in the making? We prefer the robot dance, though..
That concludes On the Rebound for this week. Be sure to take part of the prize giveaways at FantasyBet this weekend. By the way, have you seen our Boxing Day special, where you can win a Playstation 4 for only £5.5?
Feel free to leave a comment below. See you next time!