© Pranav Desai and Collin Davis (Sportz Interactive), Oct 18, 2010

Peek of the Week: October 16 and 17

© AP Images
Moment of the Week: A goalkeeping blunder at Old Trafford handed West Bromwich Albion a well earned draw on Saturday making it our top moment of the week. The Red Devils were two goals up in the first half thanks to some brilliant finishes from Javier Hernandez and Nani. However, the Baggies fought back and pulled one back in the 50th minute as the assistant flagged for a goal during a scramble. Five minutes later lack of conviction and a dreadful error from Van der Saar handed West Brom the much deserved equalizer. The United keeper got two hands on the ball but failed to collect it and Tchoyi placed the ball past the Dutchman to level the scores. The visitors took the game to the opposition and were rewarded with a well earned point from the game. Once again Ferguson’s side has let a two goal lead slip and it looks like there are some serious issues that the Scot needs to tackle as early as possible if they are to stay in the title race.

Player of the Week: After a lot of drama over the past week Liverpool finally managed to seal the deal to sell the club to the owners of Boston Red Sox. The new owners, John Henry and Tom Werner were present as the Reds started a new era in its history with the 214th Merseyside Derby on Sunday. However things did not go as planned for Roy Hodgson’s side as they were beaten 2-0 by Everton. A certain Tim Cahill scored the opener to help his side achieve the feat making him our player of the week. The Australian has a knack of coming up with the goods in the big games and as expected he did not disappoint. David Moyes’ side started the game at high tempo and took the lead in the 34th minute as Seamus Coleman teed up Tim Cahill to score his fifth goal against Liverpool. Mikel Arteta put the game beyond doubt as he doubled the lead with fiercely struck swerving shot in the 50th minute. Fernando Torres forced a save from Tim Howard late in the game but by then the game was already out of hand and Roy Hodgson has some serious work to do to lift his side that is very low on confidence and seems to be falling apart like a pack of cards.

Story of the Week: Our top story of the week comes from the Serie A where Cagliari hosted Inter Milan on Sunday. The match was stopped after three minutes after some racial chants from fans targeting Samuel Eto’o everytime he kicked the ball. The Cameroon star is no stranger to such behaviour and once even threatened to walk out of the match in Spain following racist chanting by Real Zaragoza’s supporters while his stint at Barcelona. The referee wasted no time in intervening and stopping the match. The crowd was then issued a warning and the game resumed shortly thereafter. However these disruptions seemed to have no effect on the Inter striker and he responded to the insults with a sublime left-footed strike to silence the home fans and collect three points for his team.

© AP Images

Match of the Week: Defending champions Barcelona came from behind at the Camp Nou on Saturday to beat league leaders Valencia 2-1 thanks to a second-half surge from Andres Iniesta and Carles Puyol. Pablo Hernandez put Valencia the lead in the 38th minute off a Jeremy Mathieu pass. The home side were trailing by a solitary goal at the halfway mark. However, the Catalan giants responded after the break as Iniesta led the fightback as he swapped masses with teammate Xavi before slotting home the equaliser in the 47th minute. Xavi who returned from an injury in this game was inspirational and it was his cross to Puyol that led to the winner in the 63rd minute as Barcelona defeated rivals Valencia to go second in the standings, one point behind Real Madrid.

Everton 2 – 0 Liverpool
Peek-o-meter: 9/10

One of the most anticipated fixtures in the Premier League calendar, the Merseyside derby, took all the more proportion as Liverpool and Everton were batting at the bottom of the table. An extended court room drama, followed by the arrival of new owners was expected to raise the gloom surrounding the Kops but no such thing was in evidence when the two teams faced off at Goodison Park.

© AP Images

Liverpool already battling with injuries was dealt another blow when Glen Johnson was ruled out before the game forcing Carragher to fill in at right back. From the very start, Liverpool lacked inventiveness going forward with Everton’s pressing game ensuring that the attacks were arrested even before they could be stitched together. The Toffees hunger and persistence to play the ball higher up the field finally paid dividends in the 34th minute when the Liverpool defence allowed Coleman too much space outside the penalty area and his resulting pass was brilliantly right footed past Reina by Tim Cahill. Five minutes after the break, a poor corner clearance found Arteta whose volley was past the keeper even before he could react. With a two goal cushion, Everton were quite happy to sit deep and defend while waiting for Liverpool to surge forward and then kill off the game in a counter attack.

Hodgson rung in the changes; bringing on Babel, Jovanovic and Ngog but the Reds still struggled to find a way past the Everton defence with Tim Howard having to make only a single decent save in the game summing up Liverpool’s woes. They are now 19th in the table; a territory unknown to them and Liverpool will have to ring in quick changes if they are to stay afloat.

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