2016 - 2017

2016 - 2017

Sunday, October 23, 2011



It seemed this afternoon that the old order had begun to change. From Manchester a result that made me, well, I’m not sure whether it should be happy or sad. Man U hammered 1 – 6 at home by neighbours Man City.QPR just about able to hold out for a 1 – 0 win against 9 man Chelsea, who for once faced a ref with the cojones to do the right thing.

Meanwhile life went on as always for our gallant Potters at the Arsenal. Now I had not been particularly impressed, up to now, with their new striker, Gervinho, who presents a puzzle every time I see him. He has this, to my eye, strange hair style where there seems to be no hair in a ‘v’ shape down the centre of his head. Is he prematurely balding? Is it an exaggerated parting? Is it a particularly poor quality ‘syrup’? These thoughts usually distract me from the actual quality of his play.

Today that changed. He seemed to be everywhere and making a difference. In the 27th minute he was onto a Ramsey dink over the Stoke defence in a flash to slip the ball past Begovic for the opening goal. Then in the 73rd and 82nd minutes he outpaced turning Stoke defenders on the left and on the right  to send dangerous balls into the Stoke area, for sub Van Persie to apply the goal finish. Perhaps Begovic could have done better with the last one.

Stoke for their part defended stoutly, until they seemed to tire and fade in the last 20 minutes. An excellently worked set piece goal in the 34th minute provided a deserved equaliser. Crouch won a free kick thirty yards out. Shawcross headed Whelan’s effort back across goal from the right. The ball reached Walters ,who headed back across goal to present Peter Crouch with a tap in.

So another points blank at the Emirates. Perhaps next year eh...?

Sunday, October 16, 2011



Murphy really isn't a number one favourite in Stoke.He was his usual annoying,niggling self in this game.Pushing,pulling,fouling,in the refs ear, but not in his book until late on,despite his various misdemeanors throughout.Others,on both sides,were booked for far less far sooner.

The first half was largely a stalemate,punctuated with a few bursts of of class football.Probably the best chance came just before halftime,when Pennant ran at the Fulham rearguard,played an exquisite one two with Crouch,shimmied past Hangeland,but unfortunately dinked the ball wide of  Schwarzer's left post.

The second half saw Stoke increase the pace and pressure,and Fulham show less and less ambition.Crucially Murphy's antics wound the home crowd up,and Stoke really went for it,riding the wave of noise.Fulham visibly wilted.

The last ten minutes saw Stoke secure the pointswith two fine goals.First a Pennant cross from the right was headed back by Crouch to Etherington.His shot was going wide until well placed Jon Walters stabbed the ball home.Three minutes from the end Etherington was fouled by Baird out on the left.His freekick was headed home majestically by Delap,coming in from the right.This put the result beyond doubt,the points lifting us to 7th in the Premiership table.

Our defence looked solid with Upson  and Shawcross at the centre.Begovic had virtually nothing to do,his biggest worry,watching Riise's freekick smack against the crossbar,before we scored our first goal.Pennant and Etherington looked much better than of late,though Crouch seemed a little quieter. 

Sunday, October 02, 2011


Stoke gave Swansea the edge in this game.An ill-considered Ryan Shawcross challenge conceded a penalty which was converted in the 9th minute by Sinclair.This gave the Welshmen the encouragement and confidence that they needed,as they fought for the ball,seeking to preserve their record of not having a goal scored against theme at home.

A rebound from a sloppy challenge by Woodgate six minutes from the end put Graham in on goal for his first goal for the club

In between Stoke hit the bar and a post,but crucially not the net!