Right, just a quick one in this busy Christmas period. As a follow up to my best XI of this season's Premiership signings a couple of weeks ago, I thought that I would go to the other end of the spectrum and compile a side of the season's worst XI from signings in the 2010 summer transfer window. So here it is in all its glory (playing in a 4-4-2 formation):
GK: Brad Jones (Middlesbrough - Liverpool)
DR: James Perch (Nottingham Forest - Newcastle)
DC: Jerome Boateng (Hamburg - Manchester City)
DC: Winston Reid (Midtylland – West Ham)
DL: Paul Konchesky (Fulham - Liverpool)
MR: Stephen Ireland (Manchester City – Aston Villa)
MC: Ranieri Sandro (Internacional – Tottenham)
MC: Christian Poulsen (Juventus - Liverpool)
ML: Joe Cole (Chelsea – Liverpool)
ST: Mario Balotelli (Inter – Manchester City)
ST: Mauro Boselli (Estudiantes – Wigan)
So let's have a quick run through the team and see why each of the players had the displeasure of making such an elite squad.
Goalkeeper. Brad Jones was chosen by default really. He is the only goalkeeper that was signed who has failed to impress at his new club, obviously through a lack of playing time, so he got the gloves. Not too much to read into there though.
Defence. James Perch, on the several occasions I have seen him, has looked a quite terrible player in the Premiership. He is an example of a player who belongs in second tier football. Boateng has, in my eyes, been relatively disappointing since going to Eastlands. He has failed to live up to the hype but, to be fair, he is yet to have an extended run in the team and he may well prove to be a good signing in the future. But so far he has not seemed worth his hefty price tag. Winston Reid may be a name you don't recognise and with good reason. He has played just three times for the Hammers this season and looked largely out-of-sorts. Konchesky, despite being foolishly mentioned for my 'best signings of 2010 team', has received huge amounts of criticism from Liverpool fans since his transfer from Fulham. Maybe a disproportionate amount of blame. Nevertheless he has been the poorest left back signed.
Midfield. The midfield foursome was quite straight forward. Ireland has been in dreadful form after moving to Villa as part of the James Milner transfer. Sandro received a large price tag and has not looked worth a fraction of it. The Brazilian has struggled with the frantic pace that comes with being a central-midfielder in the Premiership. Poulsen and Cole make up the rest of the Liverpool quartet in the team. When the season was about to kick-off I said these were both good signings for the Merseysiders but how wrong I was. Both have been impressively poor in the disturbingly below-par Liverpool team.
Strikers. Boselli came from Argentina with a good reputation. He had scored 32 goals in 56 games for Estudiantes but has failed to score in eight for Wigan. His partner up top, Mario Balotelli. Big transfer fee, huge wages and even bigger ego. He may have masses of talent but his attitude and constant need to take long-range pot shots have not impressed many. His bad boy reputation has only been enhanced at Eastlands and despite his superstar attitude, his selfish play has been anything but.
So there it is. Some big-money-flops, some has-beens and some never-will-bes. What do people think of the team? Who doesn't deserve to be there? Who should have been there? Let me know what you think.
Thoughts, comments and opinions...