The Easter weekend kicks in with matches in the Premier League and elsewhere affecting promotion and relegation matters. No Arsenal today and no musings on Everton’s game as they take on United once The final whistle has blown at the KC Stadium.
Cardiff City’s attempts to survive include complaints to the authorities that the Cockney wide boys from Crystal Palace indulged in the footballing equivalent of industrial espionage. Not for them a network of scouts to watch their opponents and divine tactics or strategies from those reports. No, they went to straight to the horses mouth. Allegedly. Whether foul play was afoot will become clear in coming weeks. Whether the footballing authorities will decide this can of worms is worth opening is another matter. If true, it’s nice to see that Arsenal aren’t the kinky team who don’t bother watching the opposition beforehand. Boom, boom; it’s never too early in a post for a cheap gag.
There is a point to mentioning The Bluebirds or did their maniacal owner dispense with the colour from that? Are they now just The Birds? No wonder Tippi Hedren didn’t want anything to do with the Cardiff Tourist Board. Anyway, their favourite son has been nominated for the PFA Young Player of the Year and, sort if, rightly so. The hesitancy cones from the fact that Aaron Ramsey, for it is he, missed three months of so of the season. Which in fact is a testament to how well he played up to that point.
No-one can dispute that before god injury he was in the form of his career, leading the way in front of goal for the club for a while but generally giving energy to the performances. What difference he would have made had he not bee injured is debatable. He wouldn’t have stopped the collapses at Anfield and Stamford Bridge; even Superman would have struggled with saving those days but other matches would, I am sure, have yielded more points.
The attacking aspect of his play was eye-catching but it is his all-round game which impressed most this season and that pushed others on. It’s that attitude which was most missed in his absence. Injuries have hurt Arsenal this season, there is no doubt of that, and Ramsey’s was as crucial as Walcott’s. With the Lee flamboyant approach this season, those goals were missed as the squad did not have a natural replacement for either in that respect. In the end, it all comes back to that, doesn’t it?
Nonetheless, well done to the lad for his nomination. Should he win it? He has as good a case as any of the others. The nomination is reward in itself, recognition of the journey he has followed since returning from his broken leg, of the improvements in his game as he matures as a player. Winning would, in a romanticised version of football, be the flip-side of that injury. Just reward, you might say.
That’s it for today, back with a preview of the Hull game in the morning.