Will Jack Rodwell’s injuries ruin his career?

Jack Rodwell has picked up another injury in Manchester City’s victory over Aston Villa and things just keep going from bad to worse for him.
Jack Rodwell
Rodwell signed for City in the summer for £12 million with it potentially rising to £17 million and he just has not been able to prove himself on the pitch and this partly down to the fact that he may not quite be good enough for a team challenging for the title and partly down to the fact that he cannot stay fit. It should not be that surprising that he has been getting injured as he spent a lot of time in the treatement room at his former club Everton.

He is still only 21 and I personally hope he does get over these injury problems because he can become one of the best players in the Premier Leaguen either as a holding midfielder or a centre back and will surely add to his two England caps which he has already won. It is sad to see a player with such potential struggling with injuries but a lot of players have came through these bad injury spells in the past and have gone onto have successful careers. The most noticeable being Ryan Giggs at Manchester United, who struggled a little early on his career with injuries and is now going to play in his 1000th career game.

Rodwell though does need to get it right next season or he may not have the career that everyone expected of him and it would be yet another player that could not live up to their potential because of injuries.

Newcastle United sign Romain Amalfitano

Newcastle United have signed French midfielder Romain Amalfitano as they look to add depth to their squad for next season.

Amalfitano scored six goals for Reims in the league

The club are obviously wanting to get their squad together for next year as they will be competing in Europe and will be hoping to progress quite far in the Europa League while still being competitive in the Premier League. The signing of a midfielder suggests that some players are going to be leaving later in the summer. Danny Guthrie’s contract is up and although I think he should get a new contract, the player himself probably wants to leave to get more first team chances as he is behind Cheick Tiote and Yohan Cabaye in the pecking order. With this news, he will most certainly be going and I’m sure he would have been a very good squad player which another team can take advantage of and he is currently being linked with Sunderland. The signing also adds to the speculation that Dan Gosling could be leaving as he has been continually frustrated that he hasn’t played that often and been restricted to substitute appearances. Since signing in 2010 he has only played 13 league games due to the fact he has had a lot of injuries and has been overlooked by Pardew many times when he has decided to play James Perch in the middle of midfield.

So onto Amalfitano himself, he is yet another player that has signed for the club that nobody knows and will be hoping to emulate the performances of players like Cabaye and Tiote. He is regarded as player with a lot of potential and now that he is 22 he also has enough experience to be able to cope with the move to England. The attacking midfielder will join the club on the 1st July after his contract expires at Reims. He has previously played for Evian and looked as though he was going to make an impact in the French leagues with some impressive early performances. He managed to score three goals 22 appearances.

Looking at his abilities and he is definitely a confident player that can change a game as he has a very good first touch and can see a pass. He also has a good strike on him and likes to try long ranged efforts. But his best attribute is his ability to break into the box at the right time and finish off chances, he is a similar player to Frank Lampard and if he can adapt to the Premier League quickly he could become a vital part of the team and could be crucial in coming off the bench and grabbing an equaliser or a winner.

This season he helped Reims get promoted back to the top French division and he will obviously join Newcastle with a lot of confidence and will be helped by Hatem Ben Arfa, Yohan Cabaye and Demba Ba who will all help him settle in. Hopefully this will be a signing to add to squad depth rather than replace one of their starters because their current first 11 have been linked away from the club.

 

Exeter City are relegated to League 2

Exeter City have been relegated to League 2 but as their manager Paul Tisdale has said it is time to look towards the future and forget about this season.

They were beaten 4-1 by Carlisle United in their previous game and the manager knows it will be tough to return straight to League 1 next season but in Tisdale they have a very good manager who has done remarkably well for the club as they have a really small budget and have competed as well as they could for a number of years now. He has won 120 of his 312 games in charge and has led the club to one of their highest positions ever when they finished the 2010-11 season in 8th place just missing out on the playoffs. But this season is not done yet for them and they have a big say in who gets promoted automatically with them playing Sheffield United at home on the last day of the season so they will want to cause a bit of an upset and let the fans go home happy.

If they keep together the squad they have now they have a good chance of getting promoted next season and in goalkeeper Artur Krysiak they have someone with a lot of potential and at the age of 22 he has played over 100 games which is a good achievement for a goalkeeper. He has produced some good performances this season and could be in contention for goalkeeper of the year next season if he produces the form fans know he is capable of. In defence they have a young defender in Scott Bennett who has also impressed when given the chance this season and can also be an attacking threat with him scoring two goals in limited appearances so far. The fans will be happy to know that he has signed a new contract and will hopefully continue to develop at the club.

Liam Sercombe is a midfielder that has a lot of talent and has played a lot of games for the club already and is he is given the confidence to just go out and play he can be very effective and it could be quite difficult to keep hold of him in the summer as he has scored seven goals in 32 league appearances this year which isn’t bad for a midfielder especially in a struggling side. Also in the midfield they have David Noble who came through the Arsenal youth team so must have had some ability but now at the age of 30 he hasn’t quite lived up to these expectations but could be vital for Exeter next season if he stays.

In attack is where they have struggled this season as their top scorer only has 11 goals and they have come from Daniel Nardiello who like Noble, was a promising player as a youngster but hasn’t been able to do it in the football league consistently enough. He has shown glimpses of talent with some very good movement and some good goals but he has also been booked nine times and sent off once which shows another side to his game. In fairness to him though his strike partners haven’t really been up to it and he will be hoping for more success next season. Richard Logan only has five goals in 28 games but in his defence he has only started 11 of those games and Guillem Bauza only has two goals in 26 games so that just shows how difficult it has been for the club this season.

But looking on the bright side, they have a lot of talented youngsters and if they keep hold of them they should have enough quality to challenge for the playoffs at least next season. The only thing is that Exeter aren’t the richest club and if they get a decent offer for one of their players they will have to accept but it would be good to see them progress and play first team football and help Exeter City get back to League 1.

Young guns save Arsene Wenger and Arsenal

When you go 2-0 down at home, you look towards your experienced players to get you back into the game but not at Arsenal, although Robin Van Persie, Tomas Rosicky and Theo Walcott all played in part in rescuing the game, all the plaudits should go to a young Englishman and a Young Welshman.

Aaron Ramsey and Alex Oxlade Chamberlain may have saved Arsene Wenger’s job and kept Arsenal in the FA Cup because they both played brilliantly in the second half to get Arsenal a victory that looked very unlikely at halftime. I have been praising Ramsey all season as one of Arsenal’s best players this season and if it wasn’t for the incredible form of Van Persie he would have easily won the Player of the Year trophy at the club. He plays with football in the right way always wanting the ball to feet and most of the time plays it simple and just gives it to a teammate but he also has the quality to unlock defences with his driving runs and precise through balls. The Welsh captain has so much energy and covers the whole pitch in a game, he is a proper box to box midfielder and although he may not be the best at defending he is always prepared to get back and help out his defence. The goal that got Arsenal back into the game was from the penalty spot which Ramsey won after a clumsy challenge from Villa centre back Richard Dunne who was lucky to stay on the pitch. However, it was fortunate that Dunne flung himself into the tackle because Ramsey had taken a loose touch and the ball was trickling through to the goalkeeper.

On the wing Alex Oxlade Chamberlain impressed me yet again after a good performance against Manchester United. His willingness to take players on and commit defenders shows that he is not scared of taking on the Premier League and maybe Wenger waited too long to put him into the action as Andrei Arshavin has had a horrendous season. In my opinion he has an outside chance of making Fabio Capello’s squad for the Euro 2012 because he would give England some additional pace and seems quite powerful especially for someone quite young. Although the problem is he will have to get past Aaron Lennon, Theo Walcott, Ashley Young and Adam Johnson just to have a chance of getting in the squad. In my opinion he actually looks better than Walcott, it would be fantastic to see them in a straight race as they both have exceptional pace but I believe that Oxlade Chamberlain may possess a better final ball and in time will create more chances for teammates and score more goals.

Yes Van Persie needed to stay calm and composed to score the two penalties and Walcott did show some great skill for his goal even though it did just end up deflecting off him but the two young guns deserve more praise as even in the first half they looked the best players on the pitch. Wenger deserves credit too as his team talk must have inspired his troops and maybe even Thierry Henry had a role to play in the dressing room. This is the type of heart and desire Arsenal fans were expecting all season and they have got to hope that the players show this type of commitment for the rest of the season so they can end their long run without a trophy