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Player Ratings for the Season

By John Cottee :  12/05/2008 :  Comments (51) :
As the dust begins to settle on another Premiership season we can now look back and assess who has pulled their weight and who has let us down.

Tim Howard: Solid and dependable only missing a handful of games due to injury. Howard narrowly missed out on Southall?s clean sheet season record but has confirmed himself as Everton?s best keeper since Big Nev. Great shot stopper and inspires confidence in his defence. The odd flap at a cross or miss-kick aside he?s been superb. Definitely played his part this season. Rating: 8

Stefan Wessels: The German was brought in as cover for Howard and did a solid job. Only made seven appearances but two of those were in tricky European fixtures. I think Moyes, the players and the fans all felt safer going into Euro games with Wessels in goal rather then the decidedly dodgy Iain Turner. Moyes has decided to let Wessels leave now but he did enough to warrant a big thank you. Rating: 6

Iain Turner: In his short Everton career Turner has been sent off after 12 minutes and conceded four goals in a single game twice. This season Turner kicked his heals injured or playing for the reserves behind Howard and Wessels. The poor lad didn?t make a single appearance for Everton and didn?t even get a lower league side offer him a loan. Turner turns 24 this summer and I don?t think he has a long-term Everton career in his future. Rating: 3

John Ruddy: 21-year-old keeper didn?t make an appearance for Everton this season but he did make a dozen on-loan at Stockport where he kept eight clean sheets and was named League Two?s player of the month. With Wessels departure and Turner looking like a turkey, Ruddy could find himself as Howard?s back-up next season. Rating: 5

Tony Hibbert: Fan favourite Tony Hibbert has found himself in and out of the side this season. At times Phil Neville (better distribution & Captain) has taken the right back position forcing Hibbert to the bench. Hibbert though never complains and has become something of a secret weapon for Moyes who uses the player mostly in difficult fixtures with dangerous attacking opposition. Hibbert has never been great at going forward and at this stage in his career we have to accept that he never will be but his basic defending and tackling are superb. Rarely does an opposing player get past Hibbert and when he was brought into the side to do a specific job against Ronaldo, Petrov or Walcott he didn?t disappoint. Pacy Theo Walcott didn?t get an inch on Hibbert and Martin Petrov got so frustrated that he got himself sent-off. Definitely has a part to play at Everton. Rating: 7

Leighton Baines: At the start of the season I thought Baines was Everton?s most exciting signing. Young, pacy and good going forward. I expected him to cement his place in Everton?s defence and maybe even start establishing himself for England. Unfortunately due to annoying injuries and the good form of other players (Jagielka) Baines has struggled to live up to expectations and looks miles away from justifying the £6 million transfer fee. In the few appearances he has made Baines showed enough to suggest he could have an Everton future but will definitely need to get started quickly next season so as to avoid another season as a substitute. Rating: 6

Jack Rodwell: Highly regarded 16-year-old made the step up to the first team with three substitute appearances. Although he didn?t stand out immediately there does appear to be a big future ahead of Rodwell. Lets hope its at Everton. Rating: 5

Nuno Valente: Made a handful of appearances and never let Everton down but continues to be a squad player. His experience and professionalism is valued by Moyes who is reportedly offering Valente a new contract. Rating: 6

Joleon Lescott: Everton?s player of the season. Lescott has been wonderful this season. Has played at Centre Back and Left Back. Lescott has strength , pace and never lets a player go past him. His 10 goals this season have been a major bonus. Eventually Moyes is going to have to let Lescott play regularly in his more natural Centre Back position. England caps and good reviews have rewarded Lescott for all his hard work. Superb season from an excellent player. Rating: 9

Joseph Yobo: Another season of solid dependable performances for Joey. Has proved that the careless mistakes really are a thing of the past and gone for good. Unfortunately Yobo spent six weeks participating in the African Nations and although we ultimately didn?t miss him too much (thanks to Jagielka) it did seem to disrupt his season a little. Definitely one of Everton?s most consistant players but its time he stepped up from being a very good defender and became a world-class player. He?s got it in him. Rating: 8

Phil Jagielka: At the start of the season Jagielka looked completely out of his depth. Moyes tried Jags in a variety of different roles and the player looked awful in all of them. Then towards the end of 2007 Jagielka found himself starting at Centre Back and having some good games. Yobo?s African Nations commitments meant Jagielka had a run of games which continued his improvement until he got so good that by the time Yobo returned it was unthinkable to drop Jagielka. The last half of the season Jagielka has been superb, winning many man of the match awards and keeping Lescott out of his natural position. His efforts have been rewarded by an England call-up and ?the new Alan Stubbs? looks set to have a long Everton career. Rating: 8

Phil Neville: Captain Neville proved once again that he?s a model professional and a pretty decent player. Rarely lets Everton down either as a midfielder or arguably in his better position as right back. Neville has more about him going forward then Hibbert and provided some great crosses for Everton goals. A real leader and very important to the team. Next season may find himself spending more time at right back as Moyes will undoubtedly improve the midfield. Rating: 7

Lee Carsley: Carsley was his usual no nonsense self and did the job asked of him very well. You can argue that he?s maybe not as good as he use to be but at his age that?s to be expected. He also looked lacking in quality against the better sides. He?s 34 now and maybe Moyes will be looking to find a younger player to do the Carsley job next season. Has been a great player for Everton and will be missed. Rating: 7

Tim Cahill: Started and ended the season injured. Still has his ability to score important goals and got a very impressive 10 for the season but hasn?t really improved as a player because of all the injuries. Cahill is a very important player for Everton but this season he?s struggled so much with injuries that it feels like he?s hardly contributed. Next season he?ll be 29 and I really hope he puts his injury problems behind him. Rating: 7

Steven Pienaar: Little Peanut took a few games to settle at Everton but soon emerged as a tidy and creative player. Moyes credits a lot of Everton?s better football this season to Pienaar who has now joined permanently. Seemed to lose form a bit after returning from the African Nations but is definitely one of Everton?s better players. Needs to score more goals next season. Rating: 8

Thomas Gravesen: It was a romantic idea to bring back Graveson but he?s not the same player who left for Real Madrid. Lacking in pace and seemed to be missing his old spark. Graveson has now gone for good and its better to remember the old Tommy G rather then this unfortunate loan spell. Rating: 5

Mikel Arteta: Has been Everton?s best player for the last few years but this season was not quite as good as we know he can be. Arteta started the season well but niggling injuries started to take their toll resulting in poor form. Don?t get me wrong still a wonderful player and on his day head easily Everton?s best and most important player but just struggled to maintain his form this season particularly away from home. Only scored four goals all season and just didn?t inspire as much as he usually does. Lets hope he stays with Everton and gets back on form next season. Rating: 7

Manuel Fernandes: Shook hands on a deal during the summer then signed for another club. Fernandes looked to have blown his chance at Everton but after failing to hold down a place at Valencia Moyes decided to give him a second chance and brought him back on loan. So many fans were disappointed to lose him during the summer but his first few games back on loan must have made Moyes glad he didn?t spend big on him. Those first few games Fernandes gave the ball away too easily and looked half the player he did on the first loan last season. Definitely improved over the last few games but I?m still not convinced that he?s worth £10 million plus. A permanent deal will no doubt depend on the price tag. I cannot imagine Moyes spending big on Fernandes who really didn?t impress as much as he should have. Rating: 6

Andy Van der Meyde: Complete waste of space. Started the season with big words, new haircut and promises of proving himself at Everton but failed to live up to any of it. Didn?t make a single appearance and will surely be shown the door this summer. What a waster. Rating: 3

Leon Osman: Another typical Leon Osman season, in some games he was fantastic but there were also times when Osman suffered poor form. Everton definitely look a better side when Osman is fit and in-form. He?s tidy, creative and dangerous in front of goal. Its testament of how far he?s come that he?s now considered one of Everton?s best players. His size is always going to be a problem but Osman is a really good player on his day he can win games. Rating: 8

Andy Johnson Managed to score ten goals this season including a memorable one against Fiorentina but still doesn?t have the ability to really worry opposing defences. AJ is full of running and grafting but just doesn?t have the cutting edge to get as many goals as he should. Missed two penalties against Metalist and his confidence suffered. Moyes wants Everton to break into the Top 4 something which will be difficult to do with AJ because he simply doesn?t get enough goals. Did enough to warrant his place this season but is proving a bit average and I wouldn?t mind Moyes selling him to bring in a better partner for Yakubu. Rating: 7

James Vaughan: So many long term injuries its becoming silly. Once again our bright young striking prospect has spent most of the season on the sidelines injured. Everton had a Euro campaign and a fight for a Top 5 finish and needed every player to contribute, unfortunately Vaughan failed to do so again. Only two goals this season from a player who has failed to improve since he first burst onto the scene a couple of years ago. Everton need strikers who can change games and contribute goals, Vaughan through no fault of his own seems incapable of doing that. Getting to the stage where Moyes must be wondering how long Everton can carry passengers? Rating: 5

Victor Anichebe: Managed to score 5 goals this season and proved to be a useful squad player. In Europe Anichebe proved to be a talisman coming on as a substitute and grabbing a late goal. Unfortunately he still looks a little out of his depth when starting games but still improving and looks like he could mature into a decent player. Rating: 6

Aiyegbeny Yakubu: At nearly £12 million Yakubu had a lot to live up to. He started awful looking out of shape and lacking the effort you expect from a David Moyes type transfer. Then a month or so later no doubt benefiting from the Moyes training Yakubu started putting in more effort and the goals started flowing. Yakubu scored 21 goals in total for Everton including two-hatricks. At times Yakubu looked amazing using his size and strength to terrorise opposing defences. Unfortunately Yakubu?s form turned sour again when we needed his goals the most towards the end of the season (something which has always happened to him at all the clubs he?s played for). Its hard to moan about a striker who scores 21 goals a season but there were definitely times when Yakubu looked uninterested and there?s room for improvement next season. Rating: 8

David Moyes Everton finished 5th (best of the rest), had a great run in Europe, made a League Cup semi-final and at times played some great football. We also scored more goals this season with four of our players (Yakubu, AJ, Lescott & Cahill) getting into double figures. Everton?s 65 Premiership points is a club record and more European football is secured. Its not all been great, failing to beat a big four club was bad and the UEFA cup was definitely there to be won but overall Moyes has enjoyed another excellent season. Moyes took a lot of stick in the summer when other clubs were spending big and the likes of Koumas, Richardson, Fernandes and Nugent appeared to be slipping through our fingers but Moyes had the last laugh by guiding his side to finish above the big spending other clubs. Definitely needs a new contract. Rating: 9

Reader Comments

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Iain Latchford
1   Posted 12/05/2008 at 16:27:03

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What did VDM get 3 for ? Showing up at training ?
Nick Entwistle
2   Posted 12/05/2008 at 16:25:58

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Martyn was a better player than Howard!
colin smith
3   Posted 12/05/2008 at 16:29:41

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Iain, where did the "Getting to the stage where Moyes must be wondering how long Everton can carry passengers?" comment come from about Vaughan? Everything I’ve noticed from Moyes about Vaughan suggests he’s happy to be patient because he thinks Vaughan has what it takes to be a very important player. I think most of your other remarks are pretty fair with the exception of the Fernandez comments. To me Fernandez is a class act, who was Man Match of Match in most of the recent games I’ve watched.
Steve Ferns
4   Posted 12/05/2008 at 16:30:32

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I can only argue with you on a couple of points. Where I do think you are wrong is on James Vaughan. Yes he is injury prone and yes he keeps getting big injuries. But i think that he has improved laods as a player and when fit is just the guy to change games on contirubte goals. Just look how many goals he scored this season compared to Anichebe who played three times as many games. When Vaughan is fit he can turn a game from the bench and unlike Anichebe he can compete at the top level for 90 minutes.

I think you are very wrong to label him a passenger. Vaughan earns peanuts compared to Johnson or a quality replacement for him and so, we should let him see out his contract and prove he can put his injuries problems behind him. aughan is one of are few players who is capable of being world class, lets give him time, becuase, what have we to lose but a reserves salary?
Jay Wilson
5   Posted 12/05/2008 at 16:25:00

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I think your opinion of most of the squad is spot on...The only exceptions for me are Cahill and Vaughan.

Cahill brings so much to the side, especially against the so called big 4 and was missed a great deal at the beginning and end of the season.

Vaughan should and still could be something really special. Moyes should and I believe will persevere with Vaughan for as long as it takes as he could go on to be a world’s hoping
Peter Roberts
6   Posted 12/05/2008 at 16:37:05

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Nick, although I agree, Martyn was at a disadvantage because the defence was not as solid as it is now. Having said that, Howard breeds confidence in the back four which is great.

Overall I think it?s a fair assessment. While this season has been good, it has at times felt unfulfilled and you just wonder, if we beat everyone below us - would we win the title on the virtue of having 90 points, despite losing to all the sides above us?
Mark Cassin
7   Posted 12/05/2008 at 16:57:26

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How you can give good reviews on Neville or Hibbert (every time we lose he plays)...

Cahill and Fernandes have been awesome and it’s hardly Vaughan’s fault he is injured. VDM and Turner should both be rated at zero.
Matty Kelly
8   Posted 12/05/2008 at 16:49:46

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I agree with most apart from Vaughan,when this player is fully fit he is going to be a superb partner for the Yak,your spot on with AJ,as much as i love him i don’t think he is good enough since the Wenger and Warnock comments and id be suprised if he is still here next season (he reminds me of Micheal Branch)
Alan Rodgers
9   Posted 12/05/2008 at 17:14:29

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I thought everyone had high hopes for James Vaughan ! When this lad is fit he will keep Johnson and Anichebe out of the side. An absolute diamond in my opinion.
VdM should have got a big fat zero .
Steve Flanagan
10   Posted 12/05/2008 at 17:12:58

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I can understand where you’re coming from with Vaughan - although the term passanger may be a bit harsh. On song, he looks a wonderful prospect, however, he does appear to get more injuries than would normally be expected.

Surprised at Van Der Meyde’s 3

On the back of recent performances, I think Manny might have derserved a 7 (let’s say a 6+/7-) and if we could get him for no more than £8m then I’d go for him. I said early on that he needed games (he only played a few times at Valencia), and now that he’s got some games under his belt it showed against Arsenal and the barcodes.
Jonathan Tasker
11   Posted 12/05/2008 at 17:13:36

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Vaughan is a superb player but I think that he won’t make it as he is always injured
Michael Hunt
12   Posted 12/05/2008 at 17:22:43

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Good review on the whole, with the exception of James Vaughan. The lad is CLASS he has just been very unlucky with injuries. If he is to blame at all, it is only because he puts super human aggression and effort into his performance. He is commitment personified, this sometimes means he gets injured where lazier players would not.
I hope next season he stays fit and rams any inappropriate criticism down detractors’ throats. The lad has got the lot.
John Lloyd
13   Posted 12/05/2008 at 17:38:28

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I’m with the general consencous on here in thinking that Hibbert is a 6 at best, I think that is generous. Just not good enough & should only ever be squad player if we wanna progress again.

Nick Entwhistle, Martyn done a cracking job for us & its a decent debate on whos the better keeper but your comment has no relevance on here, dont get what your getting at??

And again like everyone else, How did van de meyde warrant a 3??
Stephen Hale
14   Posted 12/05/2008 at 17:31:24

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That is a superb review of the year - I agree with 99% of it...

I think Lee Carsley should maybe have got an 8. I would like to see the stats but I know the year we finished 11th was the year he was injured and that is no surprise to me. He does a superb job and can’t remember his last bad game - and he’s 34. He definately deserves another year.
Also, Osman has put in some superb performances this year that have been stunning and Pienaar is absolute class (I agree about his lack of goals though!!)
Baines, Vaughan and Anichebe need time - I predict they will all be full internationals eventually.
15   Posted 12/05/2008 at 17:42:49

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chris did you not see manny run the show against newcastle?? ok his performaces when he first arrived were poor, but he hadnt played for 6 mounths at valencia and this shown, but the last few games of the season he was class.
And i caompletly disagree with the coments made about james vaughan, he is a league above victor who in my opinion we should get rid of as it has shown on a number of ocassions this season especially against newcastle that he can’t be beothered, well if he can’t be bothered at his age then he should never put the shirt back on! Back to james vaughan, it werent his fault he was out at the start of the season due to a dislocated shoulder, nor was it his fault the end of last season he was out due to a severed artery against bolton, and when he has played he has shown quality.
If you want to get on to talking about passengers then take a look at tony hibbert, fans favourite you must be joking, his distribution is awful his positioning is awful, ok he can make a good tackle but is that what everton want a player who can’t pass a ball a player who can’t go forward but some one who can tackle, the answer is no!
van der meyder a 3 is that another joke? how can a player deserve a 3 when he has not played and struggles to get him self to training sober?
Tim Cahill hardly contributed, some how i dont think so, ok hes been injured but in the games he has played hes scored 10 goals and been so influential during that time.
Matthew Lovekin
16   Posted 12/05/2008 at 18:36:32

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VDM should get a 0, and should be grateful for that!
Dominic B
17   Posted 12/05/2008 at 19:47:27

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Neville deserves no more than 6, and that not for his footballing skills, but for his leadership qualities. However, I want to see Cahill as our new skipper.

My player of the year, and believe me when I say this: we would be on the bottom half of the table without him: LEE CARSLEY! I’ll give him 9. People should show greater appreciation for his contributions.
Ray Robinson
18   Posted 12/05/2008 at 20:09:02

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Loved the bit about Tony Hibbert - "something of a secret weapon"! I thought weapons were meant to be potentially threatening! Perhaps you meant like a newly discovered unexploded WW2 mine!
Alan Rodgers
19   Posted 12/05/2008 at 16:46:53

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Well done to Joleon on his 10th goal of the season ,a great acheivement for a full back,. Some of his goals have been taken in style too. Correct me if I'm wrong but I think yesterday he equalled the best season's tally of that mercurial striker James Beattie .
Ed Fitzgerald
20   Posted 12/05/2008 at 21:07:45

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You are a bit harsh on Cahill mate, look at the data when the man plays for us, he certainly has contributed this season even though injury has reduced the games he has played.
Richard Murray
21   Posted 12/05/2008 at 21:37:28

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Fernandes an 8 for the season?
He’s only had a couple of decent games and one good one (against Newcastle).

Remember Cahill only got a 7.

I agree with the original article, Fernandes: 6; he has potential.

As for the rest article, I agree with all of it, except Cahill maybe deserves an 8 and Vaughan’s looked very good when he’s played. He just needs to stay fit. Probably a 6.
Tony Part
22   Posted 12/05/2008 at 21:46:39

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Let's calm down a bit..Vaughan a potential world star? Just let the lad try and get some sort of fitness first and before making judgements on him we need to see him around the first team for a full season.
My only concern is that he could become like Ferguson was, the injuries that wrecked a career really.
Daniel Miller
23   Posted 12/05/2008 at 22:14:59

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Sorry to take issue over your evaluation of Tim Cahill - just how ordinary were we before his return from injury and, likewise, after he got another one. Can you remember how many games we lost with him in the side - TWO - the last minute penalty conceded at Man U, where we came as close to getting a point (remember only Man C on the emotional Munich anniversary and Reading on the opening day held them at OT) and Arsenal, after a scintillating first half performance - aided as it was by some dodgy refereeing (so, what’s new? Ed) Pre Larissa 6-2-5 Post Fulham (ignoring the first ten minutes of West Ham) 2-3-3

With Cahill available 22-4-3
Unavailable 8-5-8

I rest my case. Oh and yes, Leon Osman was superb this season.
Tom Davies
24   Posted 12/05/2008 at 23:06:44

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How did Hibbert and Neville get 7? How did Van Der Meyde even get a rating with out playing? And I never felt safe once with Wessels in goal, he looked edgy and looked as though he was lacking confidence.

This is a really poor article.
Michael Gill
25   Posted 12/05/2008 at 23:22:13

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Gold Coast Australia..
Overall a good assessment. perhaps true honest blues fans should allow every player a minimum of 3 points. Am I the only fan who thinks VDM did’nt get a fair crack of the whip? I know he certainly did’nt help himself there with his lifestyle. But hey! get out on that wing and just keep putting crosses into the box, The Yak would have scored more, and AJ’s pace could have been a bigger asset then also, instead of beating defenders to long balls towards the corner flag. So without harping on, VDM seemed to be Little Jack in the corner, only getting well paid... so how does frugal Moyes fathom that one out.. Would you have a couple of million pounds, and not do something with it? Big tall dominating midfielder for next season..
Cheers to all You Blues..
Jay Harris
26   Posted 13/05/2008 at 00:02:13

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"Am I the only fan who thinks VDM did?nt get a fair crack of the whip?"

I guess you are but its understandable living so far away you wouldnt have heard the stories about him regularly being seen out on the town.

Like all players you have to trust the manager?s judgement and he will get some calls wrong (Rooney maybe?)but overall I trust him in his treatment of players.
Arthur Jones
27   Posted 13/05/2008 at 06:38:44

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I agree with most of your assesment John except, to me Tim Cahill is so much more to us than he seems, his enthusiasm on the pitch brings the best out in those around him as our win record with him in the team will attest.

Manny needed time to get back to full fitness after his ill-feted sojourn to Valencia , and then picking up a knock early on. He has improved so much towards the end of season I bet he wished he had he benefit of a full season here. He may have got into Portugal's squad for the Euros and we may have finished closer to Liverpool?s 4th place.

Finally Vaughany WILL be a top class forward , he?s only 19 and been very unfortunate with injuries but then Ossie never made his debut ?til he was 23 and Vaughany?s a far better player.

I totally agree with your assessment of Hibbo, he does a great job when he?s told to keep a player out of a game. I remember him doing it to thierry Henry a couple of seasons ago!!!! Overall, a fair perspective.

Jonny Abrams
28   Posted 13/05/2008 at 07:48:58

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I disagree about Yakubu. To my eyes, he was still playing pretty well towards the end of the season but was starved of service due to missing midfielders. I can?t recall a recent game where I thought he?d played badly. And against Newcastle he was simply maginificent.

As stated by others, Carsley deserves at least an 8, Cahill did contribute significantly to our season given that he was central to the run of form which launched it, and Vaughan doesn?t deserve to be labelled a passenger. Other than that, I generally agree.
Chad Schofield
29   Posted 13/05/2008 at 08:48:45

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Cor, had to say I agreed pretty much all the way through but felt it was a bit harsh on Cahill and Cars. It was nice to see some nice things said about Phil, and then I got to the strikers... Christ! I think you’re being harsh on them all and especially Vaughn... though I appreciate what you say about injuries, but I think he must be seriously cursing his luck. Just think about how Lescott must have felt when Wolves came up and he couldn’t play! I think when Vaughn’s been fit, he’s showed flashes of greatness - remember that overhead kick?! I’d be gutted to see him go, especially as we’d get nothing for him.
I’d also be sad if AJ went. I also think that the Yak just has that sort of disinterested look about him, in the same way as Berbatov or Le Tissier. Like when you see F1 drivers being interviewed (ZZZZzzzz). He’s really only interested in scoring goals and comes to life when he does.

Whilst I want DM to stay and would be classified as and apologist, I can’t say I’d have given him a 9.

Good work though John.
Norman Ludgate
30   Posted 13/05/2008 at 08:58:36

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A good article. However I’d question Tim Howard’s 8... when it comes to penalties he’s got to be the worst keeper in the prem, never gets near one.. case in point last Sat v. Newcastle. I don’t think he comes near Nev or Martyn in quality.
Simon Muter
31   Posted 13/05/2008 at 11:51:51

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Your comments on Vaughan are well out of order.. A fit Vaughan would have been starting ahead of both Yakubu and Victor throughout March and April.

The lad is class and if he keeps his aggression and pace will prove me right by displacing Yakubu. You underate Carsleys contribution to the side. Whilst I am at it, too many times this season Johnson was holding the line with no support, crap long balls thumped over his head and having to hold the play from non threatening positions, your judgement is overly harsh.
Dominic Duerden
32   Posted 13/05/2008 at 11:58:53

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I think giving 7 to Arteta is silly - he is our best creative player by a mile. 8 or 9 is more like it.

Piennar is over rated at 8. Started off ok but towards end of season was playing more like hibbert.. i would give the pair of them 5.
Darrel Pugh
33   Posted 13/05/2008 at 12:43:35

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The two things that stand out as being wrong in this otherwise very good assesment are -

Yak stopped scoring because we stopped creatng chances, he doesnt lose confidence and if you give him the ball in decent areas I firmly beleive there isnt a better one on one finisher.

Baines is going to be absolute quality, potentially the best I have seen in years, we should be doing everything we can to make sure he is happy and wants to stay and he should start, he is a specialist top notch modern day full back.
Robbie Muldoon
34   Posted 13/05/2008 at 12:47:16

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James Vaughan wont go any further than he already has I imagine.
Dominic Duerden
35   Posted 13/05/2008 at 13:08:48

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I would say Lescott is a top notch left back even though he is really a centre half.

Who cares if Baines is happy - the current back four PN , PJ , Yobo and JL are the players we should want to stay.
Mac Donalds
36   Posted 13/05/2008 at 14:17:33

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I would pay £10 million for manny, cos he’s young, with pure quality and can be great for years to come
Tony Part
37   Posted 13/05/2008 at 15:33:05

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Vaughan is not going to displace Yakubu mate..
I can see your belief in the lad but whats he done so far to recieve such over the top praise?
Yes he has had outragious luck but just because he is a full blooded type of player it doesnt mean is he going to be a world beater..
i remember when Cadamarteri burst onto the scene and to be fair he looked better than Vaughan in his first six months but then died off completely.
I think Vaughan has a better mentality than Cadamarteri but there is no logical way you can say he will displace Yakubu who has been one of the Premierships leading most deadly goalscorers over the last four years.
If Vaughan plays a full season or two and scores double figures regularly then perhaps then we will have some justification in backing up that point but lets not get carried away.
We have seen nothing of him yet because of injuries and whilst he has looked a decent player I havent seen enough of him to say he will be a outstanding player.
Leave the crazy judgements until further viewings I would say.
John Sheron
38   Posted 13/05/2008 at 16:43:11

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Arteta has had a poor season by his own standards and Cahill has been sorely missed through injury.

If both were available and playimg to their maximum then 4th would have been a closer run thing.

Arteta for me has only been worth a 6 this season wheras Cahill is an easy 8 because when he played he made a difference.
Jonny A
39   Posted 13/05/2008 at 18:50:46

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Dominic Duerden - your assertion that Arteta had a better season than Pienaar is an absolutely baffling one. Pienaar’s impact should have been obvious to even the most myopic of supporters and, although his form tailed off a little post-ACN, he has been right back to his vital best over the last few weeks.

Meanwhile, Arteta, by his own standards, has had a season which by no stretch of the imagination should be marked 8 out of 10.

Next time you attempt to summarise a whole season for us, I suggest that you try actually watching some of it first.
Connor Rohrer
40   Posted 13/05/2008 at 22:19:39

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No way has Arteta been better than Pienaar. Better player yes but he hasn’t had a better season at all. To be fair to Arteta though he created 10 goals and scored four despite having an average season. If he gets rid of the injury he’ll be class again. 6 out of 10 season for me.

Pienaar only went of the boil when we stopped playing football. He also had a few niggling injuries. When we started playing again (Arsenal and Newcaslte) he got back to his best and was excellent in both games. 8.5 out of 10.

Cahill although very important when we play 4-5-1 hasn’t been as good as people make out. His goals have masked some very average performances in my opinion. Saying that though around the Portsmouth and Man city games we where starting to see the real Cahill. Sadly he got injured again. 7 out of 10 season.

Hibbert has been better than Neville. He’s had some outstanding games against the likes of Arsenal, Utd and Man city and has definatly stood out. Neville although a better player hasn’t had any consistency to his game this season. I don’t get this bollocks about him in midfield. He’s played the majoirty of the season at right back and has been average. I want better next season Phil.

Victor is not a player we should be looking to get rid of. He’s not the finised article by any means but where trying to build a squad and he is a useful 5th choice striker. Definatly needs to improve his fitness though.

I’d give Carsley a 7. He doesn’t deserve anything like a 8 or 9. He’s been steady all season in my opinion but nothing more. I’d give him more if he’d have actually had any competition for his place but I don’t think he has. Only Neville who isn’t a defensive midfielder. Hopefully we can keep hold of him though as he’d be a useful squad player.
Mark Scarratt
41   Posted 14/05/2008 at 09:22:45

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A pretty good assessment.
Like everyone else, I think you have been harsh on Vaughan. Not his fault he got injured. Once fully fit he will prove his worth.
We all know that Hibbert is limited, but be fair to the lad, after all his job is to defend and he very rarely if ever lets us down. He is a solid tackler and when we have our backs to the wall he is usually one of our better players. He is exposed when we play the supposed lesser teams and have to dictate the play. He doesn’t have the quality when going forward. However we have enough good midfielders to do that.

I like Fernandes but agree the price might be a bit steep. How about a further loan period. With a good pre season behind him he could prove a good addition.

We need more height in midfield and I expect that Moyes knows that and will look to strengthen that area.

Carsley has been great but can’t go on forever. He has played a lot of games this year and was left out a bit at the start of the season when Moyes experimented with the Jag in midfield. I would keep him but as stated above we need to strengthen centre mid.

I also agree about AJ. I don’t think he has quite got it. Mind you he has been denied some blatant penalties and I think his confidence took a dive when wingeing Wenger had a go at him in the press. Maybe we need to add another striker.

Anyway this is mainly nit picking because we have had a great season and should go from strength to strength. Heres to a top 4 finish next season and a UEFA cup final
Steve Pendleton
42   Posted 14/05/2008 at 09:40:44

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Too generous evaluation for mine Tony. To have Hibbert and Cahill both on 7 is a way off the mark. How can you rate Cahill?s contribution on par with Hibbert?s??
Mark Scarratt
43   Posted 14/05/2008 at 10:06:17

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How can anyone doubt Cahill.
He is effective. He averages a goal every 3 games.
He is great in the air.
He is a nuisance to the opposition and is our only player he gets under the skin of the other team.
He scores in big games.
Over the years he has scored in derby games home and away.
This season last minute overhead kick at Chelsea, header at Man Utd, scored at home vs Arsenal.
Last season scored at Arsenal.

If he stays fit next season he should play 45 to 50 games, which means he will score at least 15 goals.

We all know he won’t be dribbling past 8 players or drilling 70 yard crossfield passes. Lets praise him for his strengths and the balance he brings to the team.

Invaluable and a real horrible little so and so

I love him.
Monty Carlo
44   Posted 14/05/2008 at 12:00:25

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I think Vic needs to start 10-15 consecutive games so we can see his impact and potential for improvemnt. Getting 15 minutes every 2 weeks isn’t doing him any favours. Obviously we can’t afford this luxury so maybe he would benefit from a loan in another division.

And how does VDM get a 3? Did Robert Mugabe send that result in?
Andrew Lin
45   Posted 14/05/2008 at 14:25:46

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How can you justify Tim Cahill’s meagre 7? ..... the only reason we went on that undefeated run was because he came back from injury. Also, his last injury was what sparked our shit form at the end of the season.
Rob Baker
46   Posted 15/05/2008 at 10:01:25

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Damming though the article was on Vaughany, it’s true our squad is based on a numbers game and he simply is too injury prone to just take up just squad space. Same goes for Cahill, thats 2 seasos on the trot he’s failed to finish due to broken metetarssal’s. AJ should be sold as he’s half the player he was in the first few months he joined. Manny for £5M maybe but no more. When does VdM’s contract expire? he’s up there with Per Kroldrup as our worst signing under Moyes.
Martin Anderson
47   Posted 15/05/2008 at 12:18:13

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A great season, no doubt! At times we played the best for many a long year, particularly around Christmas. The squad has some good quality-sound defence, but got to have Baines in to left back and maybe rotate Jags and Joey. Replacing Carsely - or giving him another season is the key decision for me. I think Fernandes could be that man, with bags of skill and technique, but a bit young and reckless.

Ossie can't be left out of the side for me, but sorry ? Hibbo has to take a big back seat - just not good enough at this level, I wood say the same for Neville except that he is clearly a good captain ? so carry him at right back and sign a couple of big strong midfielders, including someone good in the air up front?! Owen woud be a great signing ? I think top 4 next year if we can sign these sort of players. Exciting times!!

Joe Wightman
48   Posted 15/05/2008 at 14:56:42

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Daniel Miller - your stat’s confirm my belief. Cahill may not always score, but his presence in the team is good enough. 22 games won and 3 lost with him in the team, versus 8 won and 8 lost without is testament to that.

Vaughan will be fantastic, give him time.

It is so reassuring to see our defence and realise how strong and pacy it is. Compare this to a back for of Pistone, Stubbs Weir and Naysmith and think how far we’ve come.

A great article to sum up a great season.
Jon Martin
49   Posted 16/05/2008 at 01:22:26

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Right back is a problem, a huge one. For all the Hibbo fan club have mobilised here, he’s crap, he’s a liability. Can’t support a winger, can’t pass, can’t cross, can’t do zone coverage, is slow, is scared out of his wits every game, and gets found out by every single forward you’d expect to do him. Every game. It’s embarrassing.

Phil Neville isn’t the long term answer, but way better than Hibbert. So get Fernandes in to do the Carsley/Neville thing (only with more skill), and buy a proper right back please, DM.

And don’t be going anywhere near that current-skunk, ex-RS little creep, I beg of you.

Pete Jones
50   Posted 16/05/2008 at 07:17:34

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Can’t believe some of the negative comments on Hibbert!
He’s an excellent defender, full stop! Sure, his distribution’s mediocre, but name all the right-backs in the league who can defend like that and also cross like Arteta at the same time?
Get off his back, and find another way to vent your personal frustrations, like having a go at the opposition instead!
Also, how about a 9 for Blue Bill - took the club from being a laughing stock on the brink of bankruptcy to being the biggest outfit outside the ’boring 4’, and we ddin’t need to sell out to egomaniac yanks to do it!
Paul Olsen
51   Posted 16/05/2008 at 09:11:03

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Good job, although I think you fared a little too nicely on some players.

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