Another Saturday passes and another edition of Pan The Pundits is alive and kicking. You may remember last week I felt like I was watching the old Football League Show and that was not exactly a good thing. This week though I’m happy to report that normal service was resumed. And Jermaine Jenas was there too.
It was to the Terminators at Stamford Bridge first where the distinctly un-Terminator like Cesc Fabregas managed to get a start. Swansea have seen an upturn in form since the arrival of Paul Clement in the dugout, despite all of the scepticism I threw at the appointment. In fairness, he was sacked by Derby. Wait, the favourite for the Leicester job was sacked by Derby too. Must be something in the water there.
And the Terminators roll on in spite of a pretty spirited Swansea performance. Although Swansea did seem to be trying to shoot themselves in the foot as shown by Tom Carroll’s shoddy Ronaldo impression in midfield at the first goal. Chelsea were in full flow despite a couple of nervy moments at the back with Fernando Llorente’s goal and a pretty clear handball from Azpila… Azpiti… Dave.
And it was post-game where we saw the real difference between the main guys (and Jermaine Jenas) as opposed to the likes of Trevor Sinclair and John Hartson. There was actual analysis, with a focus on where Chelsea played well rather than a run through of the goals with a bit of “nice pass then he scores”.
It was time for Moyesy’s Party Bus where they faced his old club Everton. It was good news for Moyes this time out though as he didn’t have to pick Vito Mannone in goal. The bad news is that he chose to play Darron Gibson. Everton are still sneaking their way through the tail end of the season too. Not much else to say really.
If you ever wanted a summation of how much of a joke Sunderland have become – Didier Ndong’s attempt at a pass back to Pickford went out for an Everton corner. Know little about football but want to make a topical joke? Just say “Sunderland’s defending” and wait for your comedy career to skyrocket. Everton were comfortable winners with Romelu Lukaku equalling Duncan Ferguson’s Premier League goal record for the club with distinctively less headbutts and anger.
“We’ve still got our time to run into form.” David Moyes really does enjoy providing me with ammo for PTP. And I’m not the only one ragging on Sunderland weekly. Jermaine Jenas joined in this week to point out that there is no Defoe in team.
Oh Match of the Day, how you treated me. We went from the Party Bus to West Wallich Albion. Tactics Tony time! The naked fighter has got his Wall moving along at a nice pace and they seem on course for a lovely little top half finish. They hosted Bournemouth who are as tough to break down as a wet cardboard box.
You may penetrate the Wall but you shall never truly defeat it! Tony’s tactical masterstroke this week was realising Artur Boruc is still a Premier League goalkeeper and allowing his defenders to try and shoot. Apart from Nyom. Never Nyom. He did manage to give away a penalty, surprising since Mark Clattenburg was phoning it in from his pile of money in the Middle East. Fun fact – Gareth McAuley is the top scorer at the Wall. Classic Tony!
It was time to get boring! The World’s Most Boring Team® travelled to London to face the Big Sam’s pints of wine brigade. Big Sam chose to finally give James Tomkins – Best Player in the World – a competent partner in lion tamer Mamadou Sakho. Middlesbrough are boring and have Rudy Gestede up front.
It’s kebabs for dinner at Sam’s house! Patrick van Aarnolt managed to score with his right foot and it was game over for Boro. Big Sam was delighted, Aitor Karanka was bored and I lost about five minutes of my life watching those highlights.
We got a cry over Claudio’s dismissal from during the week which was nice. Alan Shearer doesn’t like players it seems either.
We were off to Hull next where the foreign boy is doing some top-notch work with a rag tag bunch of imports and Oumar Niasse. They were hosting Onyx’s Burnley who are quietly sitting mid-table and looking pretty safe.
A draw. Not much else to say. Fairly even game by the highlights. Michael Keane’s volleyball attempt was not the smartest idea, Tom Heaton feebly kicked the post then Keane managed to equalise nicely. However, my real take from this game is that Hull’s Kamil Grosicki looks like he’s seen some things in his time. Maybe it’s just having seen that Hull is definitely not as nice as advertised.
We got a nice little thing for Children’s Mental Health Day with Leighton Baines. Emoji bingo and Scouse accents. Lovely stuff.
We finished off this week at the United Nations who were hosting West Ham at Vicarage Road. Watford had only the 63 different nationalities on the pitch while West Ham are still missing Andy Carroll. I assume that’s his season over then. At least the Algerian Steve Stone doesn’t get hurt since he’s probably made out of… ahem… stone.
Sharing is nice isn’t it? MaraDeeney scored a penalty, Michail Antonio got sent off and Andre Ayew scored to remind us still exists. A nice way to end the highlights. Big Slav wasn’t happy banging on about quality in what probably was a not-so-subtle dig at the UN. But you wouldn’t mess with Slav so let’s just ignore that.
So, what have we learned this week on PTP? Well, Middlesbrough are still boring, Big Sam probably treated Palace to kebabs round his gaff, sharing is nice, being bad at managing Derby doesn’t mean much and Andre Ayew exists.