Football 3 years ago

EPL Week 9 Review: The Good, Bad and Ugly

  • EPL Week 9 Review: The Good, Bad and Ugly
  • EPL Week 9 Review: The Good, Bad and Ugly
  • EPL Week 9 Review: The Good, Bad and Ugly
  • EPL Week 9 Review: The Good, Bad and Ugly

After an international break that felt as if it lasted an eternity, the Barclays Premier League returned over the weekend. Stoke's 1-0 victory over Swansea City rounded out what has been an intriguing ninth round. Here is my take on the Good, Bad and Ugly from the weekend:

Good

Jamie Vardy.

Perhaps a long overdue nomination but he cannot be overlooked anymore. After nine rounds of the 2015/16 EPL season there would not have been many people who predicted Jamie Vardy would be leading the goal-scoring table. Vardy sits ahead of all challengers with nine league goals (three more than second best Sergio Aguero). 

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While some unsavory off-field behaviour means Vardy has his critics, you cannot deny his impressive performances on the pitch. The two goals the English international scored in Leicester's 2-2 draw with Southampton means the Foxes sit in fifth place and have just lost the one match. 

If Vardy can maintain his impressive goal-scoring touch it is possible that Leicester may end up finishing around the Europa League spots. While there is still a long way to go this season at the current point in time Vardy is arguably the Player of the Season.


Bad

Sam Allardyce and Sunderland.

Sunderland fans were hoping that the renewed energy that often comes after appointing a new manager would help their team get a win against West Brom. However Sam Allardyce's first match in charge ended badly, being condemned to a 1-0 loss thanks to a goal from Sadio Berahino.



The defeat makes it nine matches and zero wins the Black Cats who sit dead last on the EPL table. Focus will have to shift quickly to next week where Sunderland meets fierce rivals Newcastle in the Tyne-Wear derby. Sunderland has won the previous five meetings against the Magpies and desperately need the win to kick-start their campaign before it is too late.

Ugly

Brad Guzan.

When your manager is under pressure, your team is yet to win since the opening day of the season, and you have your own form questioned; the last thing you want to do is gift a struggling Chelsea a victory. However that is exactly what Aston Villa goalkeeper Brad Guzan did on the weekend.

With Chelsea under huge pressure to win matches, and playing in front of a nervy home crowd, the best thing Aston Villa could have done was go to Stamford Bridge and keep it tight, give nothing away. They started well too, and may have even been able to snatch a point or a win if they had been able to maintain that level.

Unfortunately for the Villans they were not given that opportunity as Brad Guzan committed an absolute howler in the 34th minute. Guzan attempted to pass the ball across the face of goals to Joleon Lescott, but failed to spot that the defender was under pressure from Willian. Lescott mis-controlled the subsequent pass and Willian pounced to eventually slide the ball to Costa who side-footed the ball into an empty net. 

Many Aston Villa fans took to Twitter to vent their frustrations at the out-of-form goalkeeper.



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