BE PART OF THE TEAM

Access exclusive podcasts, interviews and analysis with a monthly or annual membership

Become A Member
Dublin: 7°C Wednesday 28 October 2020
Advertisement

Do you agree with our flop of the Premier League season?

Who has disappointed you this season?

Danny Drinkwater and Daniel Levy.
Danny Drinkwater and Daniel Levy.

WITH THE 19/20 Premier League season in limbo, we are taking the time this week to look back at the season we have seen thus far. 

We have already picked our player and signing of the season, but who/what have been the big disappointments? 

The Contenders

 VAR 

VAR’s pledge to eliminate confusion, end arguing about decisions and make referees’ lives easier was so hollow it was likely first written on the other side of the Vote Leave bus. 

The pedantry of offside decisions has been exasperating, it has worsened the match-going experience, the arguing about refereeing decisions has been worse than ever, and the bewildering exceptionalism of the Premier League and their refusal to use the pitchside monitors has exacerbated the whole thing. 

It hasn’t been entirely without merit, but it poses a moral question that many of us ti which many of us are reassessing our answers: is it important that all refereeing calls are right, or do we accept their error to keep the rhythm of the game? 

It may have been a worthy experiment and it may improve over time, but the Premier League’s use of it has been ham-fisted and inconsistent. 

That said, all the wailing and gnashing of teeth in response that “the game’s gone” looks hollow now that the game is, literally, gone. 

west-ham-united-v-crystal-palace-premier-league-london-stadium Roberto. Source: EMPICS Sport

Roberto (West Ham goalkeeper) 

That Darren Randolph didn’t return to the club until January and Lukasz Fabianski missed months with a hip issue pushed West Ham to rely on the Spanish goalkeeper, who was sadly nowhere close to being good enough. A series of dreadful errors pushed the Hammers toward the relegation zone and Manuel Pelligrini out of a job. 

He was eventually ditched for 33-year-old David Martin, who kept a clean sheet in a win at Stamford Bridge in one of the feel-good stories of the season. 

Every cloud. 

Be part
of the team

Access exclusive podcasts, interviews and analysis with a monthly or annual membership.

Become a Member

Danny Drinkwater  (Aston Villa midfielder) 

Danny Drinkwater has as many Premier League medals as wins in the competition since August 2018: one. 

His move from Leicester to Chelsea proved to be a disaster, and he has bounced around since. Here is some more great statting from Richard Jolly: 

His career has completely stalled, and has become enmeshed with a host of off-field issues: a drink-driving charge, a damaged ankle ligament in an attack outside a nightclub, and a training ground altercation with an Aston Villa team-mate. 

Drinkwater began the season on loan at Burnley and was then loaned to Villa, but he is quickly becoming an irrelevance. You hope he can get his career back on track soon. 

The Winner 

Daniel Levy (Tottenham Chairman)

From Champions League finalists last year under the greatest manager in their modern history to scrapping for re-entry to the competition under a sour manager who is a pale, pale shadow of the manager he once was, Spurs’ decline has been stark. 

The warning signs were probably papered over by last season’s European run, with the squad going stale as a result of a lack of transfer activity. That caught up with them this time around, and rather than back Pochettino, Levy sacked him and signed the Faustian pack with Jose Mourinho. 

Now Levy must spend to satisfy a transfer-hungry manager who has already brought his unique blend of sourness and self-pity to Tottenham without any tangible improvement in performance or the kind of Pochettino-style trust in youth that might make a fortune in future transfer markets. 

Meanwhile, Levy has used the UK government’s welfare system for those most in need to cut the wages of non-playing staff by 20%. This, at a club whose owner has a net worth of £4.358bn. Oh, and Levy himself earned £7 million, £3 million of which was a bonus for completing a stadium project that finished eight months late and came in over-budget. 

That Levy is taking the same percentage pay-cut as the low earners at the club is not sufficient mitigation to take him from this list. 

Daniel Levy: a man who knows the price of everything, and the value of nothing. 

About the author:

Gavin Cooney

Read next:

COMMENTS (23)

This is YOUR comments community. Stay civil, stay constructive, stay on topic. Please familiarise yourself with our comments policy here before taking part.
write a comment

    Leave a commentcancel