Surprises all over the gaff at West Ham and Pochettino cares not for Fantasy Football

Premier League Roundup

You’re right of course, Alan. It isn’t fair. It isn’t fair at all. Those poor West Bromwich Albion fans who endured years of being moderately successful for their size under Pulisball now have to put up with you. Oh? That’s not what you meant? My mistake. West Ham United and West Bromwich Albion went head to head last night with both teams in the relegation zone. The game was full of surprises to be fair. Andy Carroll starting for West Ham. Andy Carroll scoring the opening goal for West Ham. Andy Carroll still being on the pitch after 90 minutes. Andy Carroll scoring an injury-time winner for West Ham. Bloody hell, did you see that Gareth? Get him on the plane now. WBA actually led (another surprise) and looked like they might actually win a game of football underneath Pardew’s “off the leash” style of management. I’ll say this though, could you imagine Oliver Burke crossing the ball into the box at 1-1 in injury-time away from home underneath Pulis? Hell no. He’d have been replaced with a centre-back. Footballing gods, please make it that Pardew and Pulis pass each other in the summer as Albion go down and the Boro come up. That would be lovely.

Maybe if Swansea stopped selling their best players to other Premier League teams they wouldn’t be in a relegation dogfight? Not just because they are much weaker without Fernando Llorente, Gylfi Sigurdsson and, er, Jack Cork but they wouldn’t have been able to score crucial goals in wins against their former clubs. Each of the aforementioned have scored (and not celebrated) goals against Swansea City this season, and this was Llorente’s first real goal for Tottenham. Mauricio Pochettino clearly cared not for people’s Fantasy Football teams as he left Harry Kane on the bench until 20 minutes were left and the official Fantasy League scorers cared even less as they ruled Dele Alli’s last second as being assistless, despite the fact Harry had pinged a wonder pass into Alli’s feet. OK, OK, Dele needed two chances to score it but some of us had triple-captained Kane and need the points, right? It was a job well done for Spurs as they remain in 5th place, four points behind Liverpool with a game in hand.

Last time out I suggested Roy Hodgson should be given the England job back. This time I am saying make him bloody Prime Minister. Having got a brilliant 0-0 draw against Manchester City, Palace looked like they were throwing it all away against Southampton who were actually leading a game a football. On the evening where Tales had pointed out that it was about time that Shane Long scored a goal, he went and scored a goal. Luka Milivojevic’s New Year resolution was clearly not to cost Palace any more points as he popped up in the 80th minute to net another winner for Crystal Palace who must be giggling their way to Premier League safety now.

That there team at the top won again. Kevin de Bruyne looked like he had been killed in the game against Palace but there he was taking the field for Manchester City at the Etihad. Watford will have a new manager by the end of the season, you mark my words as they went a goal down seconds into the match, Raheem Sterling netting. The only surprise in this one was that City only scored three (clearly having a rest) and Watford scored one (City had gone home by this point and had their feet up watching the rest of the match on TV).

Liverpool have been taking notes on how Southampton do transfers and are now giving it a whirl themselves. Having said NO to Barcelona in a very loud voice they sat back and waited for the bidding to kick in again and it is now believed that they’ve been able to drive the price of Philippe Coutinho up to £130m. Considering Coutinho is probably the George Harrison of the Fab Four (the one that they could probably get rid of and nothing would really be noticeably any different), this is great business by Liverpool but will be a stake into the heart of the Liverpool fans that have spent the last week banging on about how they do not need to balance the books on Virgil and Naby. Time to change those rose-tinted glasses folks. Business, innit.