So today was the final day of the 2010/2011 Premier League season and we finished it in style, beating Blackpool 4-2. It was a bittersweet result, because I personally wanted Blackpool to survive, but unfortunately they’ll be playing their football in the Championship next season alongside Birmingham (who have been shocking since their Carling Cup triumph) and West Ham (a disaster all season except for Scott Parker).
We’ve had a topsy-turvy season, but we’ve only lost 4 matches all season. What almost cost us the Premier League, undoubtedly, was our away form. We only won 5 away matches, and drew a whopping ten of nineteen. So I must admit, despite everything the media has said, we haven’t actually had that bad a season, we just had a few too many draws which allowed Chelsea and Arsenal to close the gap during certain moments of the season.
A lot has been levied at the team that we don’t play pretty football, and that the team is more workmanlike than usual, but I think everyone has had a difficult season with their own troubles, there hasn’t been one team that has played brilliant football all year so really to accuse us of not playing well is kind of wrong because, after all, we’re the Premier League champions this year. So we’ve obviously done something right. I must admit, back in October when Rooney said he wanted to leave, I thought we were stuffed. I didn’t think we would win the title, as at that point Chelsea were romping away with it but as soon as Rooney signed the new contract we were away. And we’ve never really looked back. We’ve had wobbles (the loss to Arsenal) but then we bounced back to beat Chelsea two weekends ago which really sealed the deal for us.
It has been a brilliant season of football. Spurs played in the Champions League and got all the way to the Quarter Finals, Blackpool blew everybody away with their attacking style of football, King Kenny returned to Liverpool after Roy Hodgson was sacked, Roy Hodgson then went to West Brom and kept them up with a stunning run of form that saw them lose only once (I think), Torres left Liverpool for Chelsea and took forever to score his first goal (and hasn’t scored since), Wolves and Wigan pulled off the Great Escape, Birmingham stunned Arsenal in the Carling Cup to win it 2-1, Manchester City not only got into the Champions League but also won the FA Cup, beating Stoke. And, of course, Manchester United won the title and will be in the Champions League final against Barcelona on Saturday. It has been one of the best seasons ever, and according to Sky Sports there’s a mere 83 days before we’ll do it all again.
It’ll be interesting to see the squad changes over the Summer. We need a new goalkeeper, which is a top priority. It’ll be interesting to see if we keep Owen and Berbatov, Scholes could possibly retire. I’ve got no idea what team we’ll have in 83 days. I love the final transfer day, and there’s no doubt this summer will be busy as Man City spend millions, Chelsea rebuild, Liverpool rebuild, Arsenal rebuild and to see which teams will raid the relegated teams. The Fabregas will-he-won’t-he story will be back, I’m sure.
I feel sorry for the relegated teams. West Ham deserved to go down, they’ve been horrific this season but it’s sad to see such a team in decline. Birmingham’s relegation was a huge surprise, and they will be a loss, and I hope McLeish stays on as manager. And Blackpool. My poor Blackpool. I have loved watching Blackpool this season, I’ve been sad when they’ve lost, thrilled when they won and Ian Holloway has become one of my favourite managers. They’ve been a total breath of fresh air, and it’s sad they didn’t get enough points to survive. With the greatest of respect for Wigan and Wolves, but they’re nowhere near close to being as entertaining as Blackpool. Wigan can’t even fill their stadium, and they are indeed punching above their weight, but kudos to both teams, they survived by the skin of their teeth.
So another season has come to an end, with just the Champions League final left to play along with all the play-off finals. Roll on 2011/2012… Let’s see if you can beat this season. Lemme tell you, it’ll be a hard thing to do!