Tuesday, 1 January 2013

Mid-Season EPL Review:

Hello everyone, and welcome to my latest blog post, with a twist. 
As the year 2012 draws to a close, I look back on the last few months this season in the EPL, and what is to come throughout the rest of the season, including transfer targets, goals of the season so far and predicted finishes.

August 2012:

  • Swansea hit QPR 5-0 on the opening day and Fulham thrash Norwich 5-0 also.
  • Michu scores a brace on his EPL debut
  • Gera scores a "goal of the month" volley against Liverpool, as West Brom beat them 3-0
  • Everton shock United with a 1-0 victory at home
  • Manchester City comeback twice to draw 2-2 with Liverpool

Pick of some of the goals:

September 2012:

  • Southampton lose 2-1 lead in last 5 minutes at home to Manchester United, thanks to Robin van Persie
  • Manchester City, Sunderland, Chelsea and Tottenham stay unbeaten throughout month
  • Arsenal thrash Southampton 6-1 at The Emirates
  • Manchester United dominate Wigan 4-0 at Old Trafford
  • Tottenham provide a shock by beating Manchester United 3-2 at Old Trafford.
Player and Manager of the Month:

David Moyes - Everton
Steven Fletcher - Sunderland

All I am going to say is watch Podolski's free-kick against Southampton..

And the drama at Old Trafford:

October 2012:

  • Chelsea thrash Norwich 4-1 at Stamford Bridge, West Ham win 4-1 against Southampton
  • Reading involved in 3-3 draw with Fulham
  • Chelsea beat London rivals Tottenham 4-2.
  • Merseyside derby between Everton and Liverpool ends 2-2
  • Chelsea lose 3-2 dramatically against Manchester United at Stamford Bridge 
Player and manager of the month:

Sir Alex Ferguson - Manchester United
Juan Mata - Chelsea 

November 2012: 
  • United beat Arsenal 2-1 at Old Trafford in a crunch match with striker Robin van Persie scoring against his old club
  • United come back from 2-0 down away from home at Aston Villa to win 3-2 thanks to a double by Javier Hernandez and an own goal
  • Arsenal draw 3-3 at home with Fulham
  • Stoke midfielder Charlie Adam scores his first goal for his new club against QPR
  • Norwich shock Manchester United with a 1-0 win at home thanks to Antony Pilkington
  • Arsenal come back from 1-0 down at home to beat Tottenham 5-2 in the traditional North London derby
  • City thrash Aston Villa 5-0 at home, with two goals each from Aguero and Tevez, and a goal from Silva
  • Chelsea draw 3 times throughout month against Swansea, Manchester City and Fulham, before losing 2-1 to West Brom. Roberto Di Matteo is sacked as Chelsea manager and is replaced by Rafael Benitez after a poor run of results
  • QPR manager Mark Hughes is sacked on the 24th of November after no wins throughout SEASON, and is replaced by Harry Redknapp.   
Player and manager of the month:

Steve Clarke - West Brom
Marouane Fellaini - Everton

Against the odds: West Brom manager Steve Clarke pulled his side into the top 4 in November.
Talisman: Everton midfielder Marouane Fellaini picked up the Player of The Month award.

December 2012: 
  • United beat Reading 4-3 away from home
  • West Ham give new manager Benitez more trouble after beating Chelsea 3-1 at home
  • Michu scores twice to win match for Swansea at The Emirates against a weak Arsenal side
  • Torres scores twice as Chelsea beat Sunderland 3-1 away from home for Benitez' first win as manager
  • Dramatic Manchester derby sees Manchester United striker Robin van Persie score a winning free-kick in the last minute in 3-2 win     
  • Benteke and Weimann partner up to give Aston Villa a shock 3-1 win over Liverpool
  • Arsenal smash Reading 5-2, and Liverpool thrash Fulham 4-0
  • Gareth Barry scores a last-minute winning header for Manchester City to sink Reading
  • Chelsea record the largest scoreline in the League with 8-0 win over Aston Villa   
  • Stoke beat Liverpool 3-1 at home, Tottenham outplay Villa with a 4-0 win
  • Winger Adam Johnson scores against his former club to win 1-0 for Sunderland against Manchester City
  • Arsenal thrash Newcastle 7-3, with Walcott scoring a hat-trick, Stoke comeback from 3-1 down to draw 3-3 with Southampton to keep unbeaten home run intact

Manchester derby highlights here:

And Arsenal's masterclass 7-3 victory against Newcastle:

As the transfer window officially has opened today, I talk about each team's transfer targets as they look to strengthen their sides for the rest of the season:

Starting with Arsenal:
Transfer targets:

Wilfried Zaha - Crystal Palace

Startlet: Arsenal want to sign Crystal Palace winger Wilfried Zaha this transfer window.

The young English startlet has been linked to many clubs including Arsenal, Manchester United and Tottenham. Arsene Wenger is ready to make a £11million bid to entice manager Ian Hollaway to give away his young star.

David Villa - Barcelona

Barcelona forward David Villa is interested in moving to England, and he isn't being played at Barca..

Liverpool have been linked to this wantaway Barcelona striker over the past couple of months, but Arsenal need more depth in attack and this man will be able to give it to them. 
The question is whether Wenger will be able to offer Barcelona £16million for a 31-year-old striker? A loan spell is still in the offing aswell.

Demba Ba - Newcastle

Demba Ba has scored 13 goals this season in the EPL, and is wanted by Arsenal and Chelsea.

Chelsea agreed a fee for the Senegalese striker, but wage demands broke down. This is Wenger's chance to make a bid for the player.
If anyone is going to sort out Arsenal's attacking options, surely it would be the 2nd highest goalscorer in the league? At less than £10million, Wenger should at least try and sign him.

Thierry Henry - New York Red Bulls

Back again? Henry is training with Arsenal, and Wenger may offer him a return back to The Gunners for his 3rd spell.

The former Arsenal striker. The "living legend". Henry has been back in England to train with The Gunners due to off-season in the U.S. and rumours suggest that Wenger is willing to bring Henry back to The Emirates for the third time after a successful two month loan spell this time last season. 

Potential Departures:

Marouane Chamakh, Andrey Arshavin, Andre Santos, Johan Djourou, Sebastien Squillaci, Bacary Sagna. 

Aston Villa:

Paul Lambert has to be smart during this transfer window, and he has to spend money. If he doesn't spend it right, Villa could be in the Championship next season.

John Guidetti - Manchester City (loan)

Aston Villa need more depth in attack, seeming as their defence is poor. Guidetti is a young player who can score goals. And Aston Villa need goals. To stay in this league. Simple as. 

Derek Boateng - Dnipro