Posts Tagged ‘Defensive Midfielder’

Aren’t you happy he’s ours?

September 24, 2011

Fickle man. That’s what you may think of me as you read through this post. Why you ask? Two words:

Scott Parker.

Like many of my white and blue brethren, at the opening and closing of each window over the past few years, I would pray to the transfer heavens that we’d pass on the signing of Monsieur Parker. I mean, did we really need any more F’ing midfielders?

Well, I would now like to take this moment to admit that I was certainly, absolutely, positively mistaken. Put aside the fact that he’s been solid from the first day he donned our shirt, could you possibly imagine him with any other team? My point exactly.

There were concerns that he wouldn’t mix well with the type of midfield we have: quick, creative and attack-minded. Okay, let me rephrase that: I didn’t think he would mix well with the type of midfield we have. Till date, none of his performances in a Spurs shirt prove my previous opinion right. He links up quite well with Modric, and it seems like he’s unfazed whether there are 3 or 4 other midfielders lining up beside him. He just wants to keep it clean, and by clean I mean wiping the floor with our opponents, throwing a body at them at all times, even if it isn’t his own.

His approach is somewhat different than what we’re used to at Tottenham. In Sandro, we have a direct replacement for Wilson Palacios (the aggressive version of Wilson, that is). Parker’s pretty much the player we haven’t had in ages but always wanted needed.

Having seen him play in person, he reminds me of a mafioso… short, stalky and by no means a pushover. Joe Pesci comes to mind. Convert any color image of Scott Parker into black & white and you’d be forgiven for thinking it was from the 1960s. Classic looks with a straightforward, hardworking classic footballer’s approach. Me likey!

With Parker comes a very simple form of football. “I play in the CM position, so I will destroy anything that crosses the center line”. His strength is what I admire most. Chances are if he decides to put a foot in, he’s coming out with the ball 90% of the time.

Like me, I’m sure many of you doubted the Football Writers Association decision to select Parker as their 2011 player of the year, but could they have been spot on? It seems his biggest champion, Harry Redknapp, could have been right all along too.

Would I be writing this post if Parker was mediocre? Nope. Would I bash him if from this point onwards if he doesn’t live up to my expectations? Yes.

Does that make me fickle?

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Sandro is our Essien?

March 11, 2011

Too early to tell. I know. But with all fairness, if there is any midfielder I would love for this towering 21-year old to model his career after, it’s Michael Essien. I have yet to find somebody who thinks Essien is a diva, lazy, incompetent or has any other negative character trait… other than the fact he plays for Chelsea, of course.

Now, as I type this post, I’m sure many of you will be thinking that I’m speaking a bit too prematurely. And you’re right, I am. However, I’m not getting ahead of myself and predicting legendary status for the kid. I’m simply saying that he has shown some great qualities in recent matches for someone who is so young, someone who is playing in the most competitive league in the world, and battling teams such as the league leaders from Italy. At least give me that much.

Playing in the CDM role, his size and stamina are enough to intimidate most players (ahem… Zlatan). During the Milan match, he covered every inch of the pitch, while positioning himself at the right place – right time almost 90% of the game. He has obviously had to adapt quite quickly with all the injuries mounting ahead of him. Has he taken his chance thus far? Yes. Will he continue to do so? I don’t know, but I hope he does. To impress ‘Arry in both Champions League fixtures against Milan (home & away) in the manner that he has, means the boy is doing something right.

What does concern me at this point is how reliable he will be in the Premier League. The sheer pace of the game, whether it be a fixture against West Brom or the Arse, could mean that he won’t have as much time to cover as much ground as he could against an aging Milan squad. The English game is light speed in comparison.

But for now, I’m glad he’s ours. I’m also impressed that our scouts were able to pick him up on their radars. By the looks of it, the boy Sandro is the real deal. ‘Arry and his partners in crime will need to keep on eye on this gem and make sure that he develops efficiently.