Archive for the ‘Derby County’ Category

It is always argued that the gulf in talent between the Championship and the Premier League is the biggest in the world of football, with regards to the top two tiers in each country. Scoring consistently in the Championship, although impressive, doesn’t necessarily mean a player can maintain his scoring ability in the Premier League, and over the years’ numerous players have single handedly got their teams promoted to the top tier of English football, only to disappoint when there. Steve Morrision, Danny Graham and Shane Long all have had impressive seasons with their respective clubs and are all expected to be subject to bids from several Premier League clubs, but will they join such lists as these ones as success stories or failures? Only time will tell, but until then here are my top five players who either failed to make the grade or excelled in the Premier League.

Shefki Kuqi

The big Finnish striker formed a formidable partnership with Darren Bent in the 2004-2005 season for Ipswich Town, netting an impressive twenty league goals. The striker’s excellent season earnt him a move to Blackburn Rovers, were he failed to continue his goal scoring form netting a measly seven goals in thirty four appearances. Kuqi also went on to have an uninspiring spell at Newcastle United this season, with six substitute appearances bringing no goals.

Michael Chopra

Spent six years with Newcastle United, managing only one goal in less than 25 appearances, however after making the drop down to the Championship with Cardiff City Chopra scored a goal every two games for Welsh side, earning him a move back up to the top flight with Sunderland. In 38 games the former Newcastle player managed only eight goals, which resulted in several loan moves back to Cardiff before he returned permanently after a less than successful stint in the Premier League.

Robert Earnshaw

Made a name for himself playing for Cardiff City scoring nearly eighty goals in 178 competitive appearances, and earnt a reputation as a ‘fox in the box’ type player. In his two Premier League stints, the Welsh forward was anything but a ‘fox in the box’, for West Brom he managed only twelve Premier League goals in two seasons and Earnshaw managed only one goal in 22 appearances for Derby County.

David Nugent

Over two Championship season’s the, then Preston North End striker scored 25 goals in 75 appearances earning him England recognition as well as a move to Premier League side Portsmouth, and that’s about as good as it got for the Bury striker. It took the Englishman eighteen months to score his first Premier League goal, and much like buses his second one came along just two matches later, however these would be his only top flight goals for the club. Nugent joined Burnley on a season long loan for 2009-10 season and tripled his goal tally from the season before, scoring a poor six goals in thirty games.

But there is always one exception

Tim Cahill

The Australian international earnt a reputation as Millwall’s ‘workhorse’ during his time at the club, arguably the main driving force by The Lions run to the 2004 FA Cup final. The former Sydney United player managed an impressive 56 goals in 249 appearances for the club before sealing a move to Everton for £1.5 million, which is now viewed as one of the bargains of the last decade. Cahill has gone on to become The Toffee’s main attacking outlet and all round ‘star’ player since his move from Millwall, winning Everton’s player of the season and player’s player in the process.

Yeah you’re right, I probably should have included Darren Bent, have a go at me for not doing so at http://www.facebook.com/pages/Daniel-T-Blazer/185495024836102

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The Premier League has given us Cantona, Ginola and Beckham who ultimately we all love no matter who they kicked in World Cup ’98. It has also thrown up the likes of Kevin Davies, Duncan Ferguson and Vinnie Jones, not loathed as much as the ones who made my ‘Dirty XI’ but would certainly make another football fans.

I have ignored the ones with silly haircuts, poor fashion sense or the ones who wouldn’t look out of place in a boy band. What’s left is the not very good, the bad and the ugly.

Disagree with me? Follow me on Twitter and tell me who would make your ‘Most hated eleven’

Craig Bellamy

Dubbed ‘The Nutter with the Putter’ by the media, after allegedly beating up, then, Liverpool team-mate John Arne Riise with a golf club, is one of many reasons for Craig Bellamy being on the list. The Welsh international lack of popularity in the game stems from his confrontational style of play, which may be the reason that Bellamy finds himself at his 8th club in the last decade.

Jens Lehmann

Reminds me of that kid in the playground trying to be cool and ‘hard’;when you’re 6 years old it is cute but when your German, old and slightly eccentric its not. Lehmann had a comical run in with Didier Drogba that wouldn’t have looked out of place with the Benny Hill theme tune playing in the background. Lehmann always seemed to take offence to anyone who felt they could be in ‘his’ box and for that reason he just generally antagonised anyone that was brave enough to enter.

John Terry

Doesn’t he know the guy code? ‘Bro’s before Ho’s.’ Cheating on your wife with your friend’s ex girlfriend doesn’t exactly do a lot for team moral. Ignoring Terry’s off the field issues, don’t you just think the guy is *enter any word you feel appropriate.*

Emmanuel Adebayor

Enjoyed a successful beginning with the Arsenal faithful, with many believing the Togolese international was heir to Thierry Henry’s throne. However following pay-rise demands, ‘hit and miss performances’ and then joining ‘top four’ rivals Manchester City, it is safe to say that Arsenal fans now despise Adebayor but this wasn’t enough for the striker. To guarantee he wouldn’t receive a Christmas card from his former employers, the Togo captain stamped on Robin Van Persie and ran the entire length of the Eastlands pitch to celebrate his goal for new club Manchester City, in front of the Arsenal away fans. I think they call that excessive banter.

Gary Neville

Spent his entire career at Manchester United, a club fans love to hate and seeing as Neville captained the Red Devils it doesn’t help him stay out of lists like this, but his arrogance and strong opinions combined with running 40 yards across the Old Trafford pitch to celebrate a Manchester United winner against Liverpool right in front of the visiting fans probably has a lot to do with his appearance.

El Haji Diouf

El Hadji Diouf feeds off his reputation as the villain of the Premier League. Diouf constantly seems to rile up opposition fans for his own amusement. The Senegalese forward does have one absolutely disgusting habit that warrants his place on this list in its own right, sending phlegm bombs at whomever he sees fit, most notably Celtic fans.

Cristiano Ronaldo

The 2008 World and European Footballer of the Year but that doesn’t stop him being total ‘winker.’ Unanimously hated by the English faithful for his part in Rooney’s sending off in the 2006 World Cup. I feel however the reason he warrants such a high place on the list is because of his tendency for going to ground like a ‘fairy’ and his sarcastic clapping of referees when decisions don’t go his way, such behaviour easily warrants three yellow cards of Graham Poll.

Joey Barton

Cannot escape controversy no matter what team he moves to. A one-man controversy magnet who finds enemies in team-mates, opposition and fans alike. Barton’s style of play numerously over steps the mark, resulting in countless disciplinary issues but Barton’s standout discrepancy has to be the moment of pure madness when he lit a cigar in the eye of Manchester City youth player Jamie Tandy.

Lee Bowyer

The man who holds the title of most Premier League bookings was always going to be here but just in case Bowyer was worried he would miss out, he decided to fight a team-mate during a game. Ok Mr Bowyer your wish is granted, Number 3. Happy?

Robbie Savage

You all knew he would be here; you just kept waiting to see how high. No explanation needed.

Ashley Cole

Moved to Chelsea from Arsenal surrounded by a huge ‘tapping up’ scandal and although the England international doubled his bank account, his reputation took a battering. Cole didn’t help matters though was a now infamous excerpt from his autobiography, in which he admits he “almost crashed [his] car” after being told Arsenal would only be paying him £55,000 per week. This line of pure greed earnt Cole the nickname ‘Cashley.’ The man is a walking PR disaster and after cheating on the ‘national treasure’ that is Cheryl Tweedy, Cole well an truly deserves his place on the list.

Substitutes: Martin Keown (one of those faces), Roy Keane (the list is endless), Didier Drogba (has an A level in moaning), Dennis Wise (dirty little…) and William Gallas (cry baby)