All posts by georgeclayton97

Vincent Kompany- A Once In A Blue Moon Player

Since being taken over by Sheikh Mansour in 2008 Manchester City have gone from strength to strength both on and off the pitch. The blue side of Manchester were used to anything from European nights to the third division of English football, arguably the darkest period of the club’s history. Fast forward to this week and the Citizens have just won the domestic treble, winning every competition available in English football, the first time it has ever been achieved in the men’s game. Under Guardiola, City have found another level and their brand of scintillating football along with guaranteed success have made them a driving force in global football.

There is one man who has been at the club before the investment came in and has witnessed every change that has led the club to being where it is today. Mr captain fantastic himself Vincent Kompany has embellished exactly what the club is about and although he has been one of the best defenders the Premier League has seen, his professionalism and leadership has taken his legacy to new heights. The day after City’s emphatic 6-0 FA Cup final win the Belgian defender announced he was leaving the club, after 11 seasons at The Etihad, to take over as player-manager at his boyhood club Anderlecht in Belgium.

As a player, Kompany has won a vast amount of trophies both with City and on a personal level as well. At the club, he has won 4 Premier League titles, 2 FA Cups, 4 League Cups and 2 Community shields. With the 2011 FA Cup win, the club ended a 35-year wait for a major trophy and the following year they ended a 44-year wait for a league title after Sergio Aguero’s goal against QPR in the 93rd minute sealed it in dramatic fashion, to say the least. All of this under the leadership of the Belgian who cost a cool six million.

The defender who performed on the big stages

Vincent Kompany will be remembered in Manchester as a fantastic defender who held the club at his heart but also for scoring some crucial goals during his time at the club.

2012: VS Manchester United

Manchester City were on the brink of the impossible after clawing the gap to bitter rivals United and they needed to win to put the title in their hands. Up stepped Mr Manchester himself as Kompany rose the highest from a corner to thunder a header past De Gea and send the Etihad into meltdown. You could tell he enjoyed that one as well.

2018: VS Arsenal at Wembley

Pep Guardiola hadn’t won a trophy with City before this day as he has endured a tough first season in Manchester. In the Carabao cup final City had a chance to put this right. After opening the scoring Arsenal were threatening an equaliser until Kompany prodded home and celebrated like an absolute mad man.

2019: VS Leicester

Probably the moment he decided to leave Man City and go out on a high! City had been involved in arguably the greatest title race in Premier League history and anything but a win would hand the title to Liverpool. After coming up against a stubborn and well drilled Leicester side again arise Sir Kompany. In the 70th minute, Kompany tried one from 30 yards out and only went and hit the shot of his life. The ball flew into the top right corner and couldn’t get any more top bins. Kompany managed to send the Etihad into pandemonium for one last time in his final competitive appearance at the ground.

The Belgian has endured many low moments during his career including a horrific injury record that severely limited his playing time over the last three years. And to his credit not once did he complain or throw in the towel, he just remained positive and helped the team as much as he could.

The word legend gets thrown about so much these days, But in this situation, there couldn’t be a man more deserving of the title. A once in a lifetime player for City and certainly one that will be very hard to replace. Time will tell whether Kompany will become a great manager but if his career has been anything to go by we wouldn’t bet against him.

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Who is Man City’s most important player?

Manchester City are arguably one of the best teams in Europe at the moment, if not the best. With Pep Guardiola at the club, the Spaniard has managed to create one of the greatest squads ever assembled and Fabian Delph still get’s the nod when fit. A squad filled an army of world-class talent that isn’t afraid to get down and got to war when needed to.

With players such as David Silva, Kevin De Bruyne, Sergio Aguero, Raheem Sterling and so many more it’s incredibly hard to single out one player as Manchester City’s most important player but for me, it can only be one man.

I nearly went for Fernandinho and I wouldn’t be wrong if I did as he is the anchor for The Cityzens and when he doesn’t play the club do suffer as his role is so hard to fill. When Fernandinho has been injured this season it has been very noticeable that he hasn’t played.

However, the player that I have opted for in terms of Manchester City’s most important player is Portuguese playmaker Bernardo Silva. Signed last season from Monaco for 42 million pounds not many knew what Pep was getting from the man nicknamed ‘Bubblegum’. Silva didn’t take to life instantly at the Etihad initially struggling to get into the team ahead of Kevin De Bruyne and David Silva. Towards the end of last season, we got glimpses of just how special he was but the 18/19 campaign was destined for Bernardo to officially announce himself.

Knee injuries for De Bruyne allowed Silva to establish himself in the starting XI in his preferred central position and it was evident he offered something different for City in terms of his work rate. This is highlighted perfectly is his performance against Liverpool in a 2-1 win at The Etihad. Bernardo covered a staggering 13.7 kilometres in the game which was the highest from any player so far this season and he probably still could’ve carried on.

Silva has eight goals and eight assists so far this season and his first touch is absolutely outstanding. Should Man City continue to fight on all fronts then Bernardo Silva will be at the centre of it all as he is for Man City’s most important player.

Who do you think Man City’s most important player is? Let us know below.

Back from the brink, Portsmouth’s journey to Wembley

Just eleven years ago Portsmouth were flying under the management of Harry Redknapp and had just won the 2008 FA Cup at Wembley beating Cardiff 1-0 with Kanu getting the goal. In 2010 the club had racked up debts of over 100 million pounds and we subsequently placed into administration by then owner Balram Chainrai. Then started the huge fall from grace that ultimately saw Portsmouth face liquidation after plummeting to League Two in 2013. The club never seemed to die as even in their first season in English footballs last professional league they sold over 10,000 season tickets which is still a record to this day. 

Throughout the whole disaster that was the running of Portsmouth Football Club the fans never went away and they in fact saved the club as the supporter’s trust purchased the club and put it into the control of the fans. They may not have known what was about to happen but they would lead Portsmouth back into relevancy charging back up the English Leagues. 

Last night saw another significant step on their journey as Portsmouth beat Bury 3-0 at Gigg Lane to secure their place in the Checkatrade Trophy final. The result see’s Kenny Jacket’s men head to Wembley as Evans put Portsmouth ahead just after the hour at Gigg Lane before goals from Oliver Hawkins and Ronan Curtis ensured the club’s first trip to the stadium since the 2010 FA Cup final defeat to Chelsea. 

A moment surely to savour for the Pompey faithful as there really is light at the end of what’s been a long tunnel. A cup final appearance and a very strong chance of promotion to The Championship as well as Portsmouth sit in fourth place just five points off the automatic promotion places. And with the club drawing their last five league games a trip to Wembley could fire up Fratton Park for the business end of the season. 

One things for sure though after all that the club has been through it’s the fans that have saved the club and brought them back to where they are. And with Portsmouth back out of the shadows the Pompey fans deserve every bit of success that comes their way.

Should Steve McClaren be shown the door at Loftus Road?

Go back to end of last season and QPR had just announced that English hero Steve McClaren would be taking over as manager at Loftus Road. I wasn’t too impressed with the decision and thought that the club were asking for trouble by appointing the former England manager. 

QPR started this season in dismal form by losing their opening five matches in the league including a 7-1 thrashing at home to West Brom. Many called for McClarens head but to be fair to the boss he turned things around with a run of fine performances that saw the London side in 7thplace at the end of October just one point off the play-off places. 

That’s about as good as it got for the Loftus Road faithful this season as they have only picked up 13 points since then and find themselves just nine points off the relegation places. To make matters worse they have failed to win since boxing day and have beaten a club record with a run of seven league losses in a row following their defeat at Middlesbrough at the weekend. Questions are being asked of Steve McClaren.

Should QPR sack Steve McClaren

At this moment in time I would have to say no. QPR for me are too good to go down and Steve is more than capable of keeping them up regardless of the current run of form. However, do I think that McClaren should be kept on for next season? The short answer again is no. Steve McClaren has had limited success since his ill-fated tenure as England manager and has struggled to shake off the stigma surrounding that and it’s been eleven years since we crashed out of the Euro qualifying to Croatia. 

For stability the club could stick with their gaffer until the end of the season and then opt to get rid and start again in order to lay fresh foundations and have a summer of planning. To get in a new manager now without a transfer window could have the wrong effect on the club and with QPR relatively safe from relegation they are in no rush to jump into an appointment. 

That being said who could QPR go for if they were to sack Steve McClaren and do you think they should? Let us know in the comments below.

Bury VS Oldham| Who needs the win more?

Tomorrow sees a huge clash not just in the League Two promotion race but for the bragging rights in Lancashire. The game between Bury and Oldham is a fiercely contested fixture which brings huge crowds and big tackles. Both sides have adapted qute well to life in League Two with Bury sitting pretty in second place just two points behind Lincoln and Oldham in 11thjust six points off the play offs but they now have Manchester United legend Paul Scholes at the wheel.

The home side have not lost in 2019 with The Shakers winning eight out of a possible ten since the turn of the year. An impressive feat for manager Ryan Lowe as he must be feeling that promotion is a very real possibility. However, with this being their third game in just eight days he may have to rotate his squad. To make rotation harder Bury could be without Scott Wharton after he picked up a groin strain against Exeter, this on top of being without Stephen Dawson (foot) and forward Jermaine Beckford (knee). 

Paul Scholes has tasted every result possible on paper from his first three games in charge of The Latics as he has a win, a draw and a loss. This will be the new managers first taste of a derby from the dugout and from both his supporting and playing days he will know exactly what this means for the fans. 

Bury and Oldham have played forty-eight times, with both sides being deadlocked at fifteen wins each. Meaning the remaining eighteen games have ended all square.

In the last three meetings between Bury and Oldham, there has been thirteen goals scored.

A loss wouldn’t be a disaster for Bury who can’t fall out of the automatic promotion places with a defeat but The Shakers will surely want to keep momentum going heading into the crunch end of the season. A draw would definitely be something that Ryan Lowe may secretly settle for considering anything can happen in such a big derby.

Paul Scholes will know that a defeat could leave Oldham nine points off the play-offs with only twelve games to play so you can bet he will demand a big performance from his players. Callum Lang and Tom Hamer are both doubtful for Oldham coming into the game with Lang in particular a huge miss. This blow could be offset with Oldham set to take nearly 3000 fans to Gigg Lane it could be an atmosphere to remember and if the game is half as good as the crowd we are in for a cracker. 

Its certain to be a great game at Gigg Lane with Oldham possibly needing the three points more than their hosts Bury. Who do you think will win this huge derby?