We did this last season too and it was interesting to see peoples’ thoughts across different sports. In some cases, the media hype might not reflect what supporters of particular teams think and it was also interesting to watch out for the selected players in the second half of the season.
So, if people want to select their players of the season for their favoured teams for sports like soccer and rugby that have more or less reached the halfway point of the season then go ahead on this thread. We can do it for GAA after the League to see if form holds true to the championship.
Maybe pick a young player of the season (U-23) and most improved player too.
Celtic: Player - Gary Caldwell; Young - Scott Brown; Most Improved - Scott Brown.
Roma: Player - Matteo Brighi; Young - Jrmy Menez; Most Improved - Nobody.
Wexford Youths FC: Player - Conor Sinnott; Young - Danny Furlong; Most Improved - Gavin Doyle.
Ireland: Player - William Porterfield; Young - Eoin Morgan; Most Improved - Gary Wilson.
India: Player - Zaheer Khan; Young - Ishant Sharma; Most Improved - Gautam Gambhir.
Leinster: Player - Jamie Heaslip / None; Young - Sean O’Brien; Most Improved - Devin Toner.
Player - Ashley Young
Young player - Gabby Agbonlahor
Most improved - Gabby
Biggest disapointment - Nicky Shorey. I expected far more from Friedel too
Best summer signing - Luke Young by a distance. Top class player
Player - Xabi Alonso
Young player - Insua. Can’t think of anyone else.
Most improved - Xabi Alonso
Biggest disapointment - Dossena. He is almost as bad as Riise. That says it all really.
Best summer signing - Albert Riera
Player: Nobody really standing out. Ill go for Vidic at a push.
Young Player: Rafael. Has been keeping the club captain out of the team all season and hes only 18 so plenty of time to get better. Scored a cracker at the Emirates in a losing effort.
Most Improved: Probbably Darren Fletcher. Has got a run in the side and scored a few goals.
Biggest disappointment Probabbly Rooney. Plays in patches. Not consisent enough for my liking.
Summer Signing: Emm Berbatov.
Xabi Alonso has been anonymous in almost every game I’ve seen him in this season farmer. I suppose “staying fit” counts for your “improved” award though.
Chelsea’s best player this season thus far has been Frank Lampard, unfashionable as it seems to be to praise either himself or Gerrard, who are both the main reasons their teams are the top 2 in the Premiership.
Biggest disappointment: Lee Naylor. Having played for a decade or whatever at Wolves, I realised he was playing well above himself in his first season. But his demise has been even more dramatic. Last season he was rubbish and he’s been worse so far this term. Mention to Massimo Donati too. A promising start but fell out of the team in the second half of last season and has barely featured this term.
Best signing: Samaras was on loan in the second half of last season so not really counting him even though his transfer was only made permanent in the summer. 12 goals is a good return so far.
I’m going for Marc Crosas, who looked the part in late September and throughout October before he tore his hamstring in Inverness the weekend before Old Trafford. He’s only back into the thick of things now but he looks a really good ballplaying midfielder. He should complement Scott Brown’s combative and dynamic style as they develop their partnership.
Shaun Maloney’s scored some nice goals but has been a little inconsistent and is now injured, while Paddy McCourt’s barely played. Glenn Loovens has been quite poor.
Bossed the game against Chelsea. The other one that stood out for me was the game against Bolton where he just ran the whole show.[/quote]
He played well against Chelsea alright. Never seems to be around when the chips are down though, so to speak. Gerrard had to single handedly drag them back into the game agsinst Hull, for example. I seem to remember the Bolton game being a decent all round performance by Liverpool, but if it was a man of the match performance from him, then fair enough. I think you are trying too hard not to praise Gerrard though, who has been head and shoulders Liverpool’s best player this season. Gerrard wasn’t great against West Ham though, which is where you would expect Alonso’s passes to have a bit of joy, but no. He just doesn’t impose himself on games enough IMO. Like he always has the look of someone who is afraid of getting injured or something.
He is constantly getting stuck in. I remember him against Juve in 2005 launching into a tackle with him only back from being out for three months.
I think he has been superb this season. Gerrard has been decent - no better than last year but Alonso’s form has been the reason for Liverpool being further up the table than they were this time last year.
2005? Super. That’s year ago farmer. We’ll agree to disagree, I’ll keep an eye on him in the near future, but I just think that there is no way that his passing or tackling ability can be said to have been a bigger influence on Liverpool’s season than the overall physical and goalscoring influence Gerrard has had.
From what I’ve seen of Liverpool this season I think Alonso’s passing and control of a game from midfield has been absolutely central to their improvement. Gerrard has done very well with driving play and goals etc and has contributed consistently for Liverpool in that regard in recent seasons. But there’s a more measured and controlling style of play from Liverpool this season and Alonso is at the heart of it.
Bandage’s Celtic opinions are entirely derivative of my own so I won’t add anything to them.
[quote=“Sledgehammer”]Xabi Alonso has been anonymous in almost every game I’ve seen him in this season farmer. I suppose “staying fit” counts for your “improved” award though.
Chelsea’s best player this season thus far has been Frank Lampard, unfashionable as it seems to be to praise either himself or Gerrard, who are both the main reasons their teams are the top 2 in the Premiership.[/quote]
and of course it’s a total coincidence tht 4 of the red cards given for teams playing against liverpool have been for fouls on xabi ?
We may agree to disagree to it appears you have come a long way from saying that Alonso was virtually anomynous in every game you have seen him so far.
That comment was IOTM worthy.[/quote]
I have always found him hesitant in the tackle, right from even before the time Lampard put him out with a clumsy tackle years ago.
He was virtually anonymous against Hull and West Ham at home, and Spurs away. I haven’t watched many of their European games (I should think he thrives on the slower pace of European games). He was no better than someone with his reputation should be, against Chelsea, Bolton and Arsenal away. Can’t think of many more games where he impressed me that I would have watched live.
Obviously not including Adebayor for Arsenal, who was sent off for an incident in which Alonso was clearly not involved? Against another team from inside the top 5, that was probably the most important red card that was awarded to any team against Liverpool this season.
I didn’t see the City game, although I am aware they came from behind to win. City have been a shambles this season, Liverpool may have won that game anyway if it weren’t for the sending off, although obviously we’ll never know. I remember watching the Wigan game and Wigan went 1-0 up, and then 2-1 up with that great Zaki goal before HT. At what stage did the sending off happen in that game?