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Bobby McMahon

Bobby McMahon

You can see me on Soccer Central most Mondays and Thursdays on Rogers Sportsnet in Canada. I write a regular column for Forbes.com and Soccerly.com and frequently guest on various podcasts and radio shows.


TANGENTS

Ten Premier League Questions To Be Answered On Saturday

Written by on September 16, 2011 | 15 Comments »
Posted in General

1.    Thirty-nine games and we have only had one goal scored directly from a free kick in the Premier League. Will we see another on Saturday? (correction made after original post)

2.    Robin Van Persie has scored 8 goals in 10 appearances for Arsenal against Blackburn in the Premier League. Can he add to his total?

3.    Blackburn had only lost twice at home in 2011 going into this season but that number has already doubled. Can Blackburn get their first win at home this season and their first overall?

4.    Will Aston Villa manager Alex McLeish stick with a tried and tested line-up against Newcastle? He has started the same team in four straight matches with the one exception of three players used at right-back.

5.    We have yet to see a goal scored in the first half of a Premier League match featuring Newcastle this season. Will Villa or Newcastle get on the score-sheet before the half time cuppa?

6.    Between them Bolton and Norwich have garnered only one win between them in eight matches this season. Can Bolton double their output, Norwich collect their first or will it be a split of the points?

7.    The respective centre backs could be in for a bruising day with Norwich’s Grant Holt (15 fouls) and Kevin Davies (11 fouls) leading their attacks. Can Davies close the gap or is Holt a legitimate challenger to Davies long-standing run as the biggest fouler in the Premier League?

8.    Wigan lost their unbeaten record last week to Manchester City. This week they travel to play Everton. Can they record their first win at Goodison since the fall of 2005?

9.    Can Swansea score their first goal of the season or will West Brom keep a clean-sheet away from home for the second straight match after going all last season without shutting-out the opposition?

10.    Wolves have made a best-ever start to a Premier League season. One reason might be that they have yet to concede a goal in the final 10 minutes of a match. Last season they allowed a dozen while scoring 8. So far in 4 matches – no goals scored, no goals allowed in the last ten minutes. Can they continue to their run when they play host to QPR?

Answers to each can be posted in the comments section.

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15 responses to “Ten Premier League Questions To Be Answered On Saturday”

  1. Soccerlogical says:
    September 16, 2011 at 11:31 am (Edit)
    Watch out for…
    Ally McCoist to make a complete prat outta himself during the Old Firm.

  2. Starting a major revamp of Fox Fantasy Football team that I estimate is going to take 5 weeks. #649 is not good enough!

    Move #1 – drop Ashley Cole and buy Ryan Shawcross – frees up $3m for future moves.

  3. Soccerlogical says:

    Bobby – Fellaini and still sticking with Bent eh? I’ll be surpassing you shortly! 🙂

  4. Long term strategy – need to get some money freed up in order to make the needed changes. Shawcross the first of probably five moves.

    Bent is not on the hit list – he has received my vote of confidence.

  5. Patrick says:

    bobby – Ryan Taylor v 5under1and scored from a direct free kick.

  6. simon says:

    didn’t rooney score 2 free kicks against arsenal

  7. Simon – Both free kicks were first played to Young who stopped them and then Rooney shot.

    Patrick – you are correct. Change will be made.

  8. Darren Bent – vote of confidence withdrawn

  9. Gus Keri says:

    Putting Liverpool’s results so far in perspective:

    They have only two wins.
    They came against Arsenal (4 points in 5 games) and Bolton (3 points in 5 games).
    Both teams were dismantled by Man Utd, conceding 8 and 5 goals.
    Both have only one win so far and it was against a promoted side.

    It might not indicate that Liverpool is having good season after all.

    Talking about Liverpool turning the corner might be premature.

  10. Soccerlogical says:

    @ Bobby

    “Darren Bent – vote of confidence withdrawn”

    As is my vote of confidence on Kocielny who I have thrown into the crap Djourou/Squillaci/Traore bin.

    *Vote of confidence for Wenger.
    It’s a good thing Wenger didn’t buy Samba or Cahill and saved a few million on Mertesecker (who is as slow as molasses) and needs a player like Vermaelen at his side. Obviously an unproven 18 yr old winger (Chamerlain) who Wenger purchased for 18M is the missing ingredient to compete with the top teams in the foreseeable future!

    Wenger better do something to buttress the defense in January or I can see Roberto Martinez, Klopp, Garcia or even Pep coming in next season and actually addressing the problems as opposed to denying club progression due to hubris and stubbornness.

  11. J Rob says:

    Still early doors. Arsenal have a quality team and squad on paper. Yet they will fail to make the Champion’s League for the first-time in 15 years if they continue to be so poor at the back.

    Today’s game was on a par with the 4-4 draw in February against Newcastle at St James Park for diabolical defending. Maybe worse. Outside of injuries – the lack of organisation especially on set-pieces remains hideously poor.

    A healthy Vermaelen is going to be critical for the remainder of the season. Perhaps a Gooner with a love of stats could tell us how many goals they concede on average when he is playing.

    Re: Liverpool and Gus Keri’s concerns – we’ll find out tomorrow if Parker and Adebayor are more likely to get you a Champion’s League spot than Henderson and Carroll. I think the former pair are very astute signings for Spurs. Expect a great game.

    Re: Liverpool in general – their squad is now far superior to the one that Dalglish inherited and the new owners infinitely more superior than the previous ones. In contrast to Arsenal they have really improved their defense since January. With the exception of the aging Carragher they look rock solid. Notice how Agger, Skertel and Johnson (when he is fit) look a lot better. Enrique might turn out to be the their best buy after Suarez in the last nine-months.

    I think they’ll be there or thereabouts for the 4th spot in May. I am losing faith in Arsenal rapidly.

    Bookies are currently giving Spurs 7/2 odds for making the top 4. Anyone else think they are worth a punt with odds like that?

  12. Gus Keri says:

    J Rob:

    “we’ll find out tomorrow if Parker and Adebayor are more likely to get you a Champion’s League spot than Henderson and Carroll. I think the former pair are very astute signings for Spurs.”

    It’s interesting how you put it.
    You compared the two strongest Tottenham’s signings with the weakest of Liverpool’s.

    Suarez was much better signing than Carroll. And in the summer, Adam, Downing and Enrique were better than Henderson. But unlike Parker and Adebayor, both Carroll and Henderson are very young and will feature very strongly in the future.

    Any way, I agree that Liverpool had improved significantly since the arrival of Dalglish but they might need some more time to gel together, and here where Tottenham have advantage over Liverpool. they have been together for a while and they feature Modric who is, in my opinion, one of the best midfielder in the EPL.

    The fight for the 4th spot is going to be tough this season. I am just keeping my fingers crossed.

  13. J Rob says:

    Gus:

    I am a LFC Fan too. Wasn’t too concerned about Spurs until their purchases of Adebayor and Parker.

    The former is very capable of revisiting his form of 2007/2008 with Arsenal when he scored 24 goals in 36 games. Something similar for Spurs would solve their long-standing striker problems and make their feeble draws against weaker teams a thing of the past.

    As for Parker I remember Liverpool’s worst-performance under Dalglish against West Ham away last season when they got beat 3-1. Parker absolutely bossed the midfield. I can’t see Kenny playing anything but a 4-5-1 tomorrow.

    Should be a cracking game. Thankfully the better half is working so she won’t mind me waking up at 5 to watch the game 🙂

  14. Gus Keri says:

    J Rob:

    I remember that West Ham game. I think it was the game that sealed the player of the year award for Parker.

    I feel sorry for all of you who live on the West Coast. I can’t imagine myself waking up that early on a weekend.

  15. In Canada we are getting the Old Firm game live as well tomorrow at 6:30 CT.

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