The player reviews have reached the midfielders today. Let’s have a look how they got on this term.
Nearly every campaign in south Wales has been a success for Leon since he arrived at the club in December 2002 but there’s no way he will look back on this one with any real fondness. Injury prevented him from appearing in the side until November and after another couple of injuries he sustained in the New Year he has been restricted to single figure appearances. When he has featured he’s looked as composed as ever but with Jack Cork’s excellent performances since his arrival in January the Swans legend faces the biggest battle of his career to regain his place in the starting eleven on a regular basis.
Best moment – Hero’s welcome on his return from injury against Arsenal
Worst moment – Every game missed through injury
One of Garry Monk’s long term targets who arrived in the transfer window and it’s easy to see why. He’s essentially a younger more physical version of Leon Britton. Composed with the ball, excellent positional play and good at tackling and interceptions he’s been a revelation since his arrival from Southampton. He was a key part of the new diamond system which yielded a few wins during February ,March and April and should be even better next year after his first pre-season with the club.
Best moment – First goal for the club in the win at Newcastle
Worst moment – Failing to track Yaya Toure for his first goal in Man City’s recent win at the Liberty.
Ki Sung Yeung
Not many tears were shed in SA1 When the South Korean international joined Sunderland on loan in August 2013 but if the same move were to occur now then then they’d be streaming down the faces of the Jack Army. He broke his goal duck in the season opening victory at Old Trafford and has added another seven goals during the campaign to become an automatic starter. His very rarely gives the ball away and he’s now gambling more going forward which is a key reason why he’s one of our top scorers You only had to see how our fortunes slumped in January when he was away at the Asia Cup to see how influential he had become. More of the same next season please!
Best moment – Goal at Old Trafford on the opening day
Worst moment – Knee injury in the closing weeks of the season
One of the players who continually divides the fanbase has continued to do the same this term. In the opening half of the season he collected too many bookings and seemed to tire in games too often but since the turn of the year he has improved significantly and become more consistent. His long range shooting and Hollywood passes have been as glorious as ever when they come off and he’s showing a new found maturity as he displayed in the win against Stoke when his selfless play set up both of our goals. Hopefully Shelvey has now finally got rid of the bad assets of his game and will become a key man in 2015/6.
Best moment – Scoring the winner at Southampton
Worst moment – An all-round bad night at Liverpool in the league
The most exciting purchase of last summer was undoubtedly the return of the Iceman and he hasn’t disappointed. Seven league goals and ten assists in that time have proved it was money well spent (or a swap well done depending on how you look at it) and if Wilfried Bony had stayed he probably would have been even more effective as his understanding with the Ivorian was brilliant. His long range shooting and free kick taking ability are every bit as good as his previous spell and it’s easy to see why he was in the running for player of the year. The only negative would be the 4-4-2 diamond didn’t suit him and his impact was more limited in those games.
Best moment – Winner at Old Trafford/ free kick v Arsenal
Worst moment – Foolish red card at Blackburn in the cup
The on loan Spurs midfielder looked out of his depth to start with but he slowly and surely started to impose himself more and more on games although the signing of Jack Cork has pushed him down the pecking order and an injury sustained playing for England under 21’s has seen him miss the business end of the campaign. At Christmas time I would have said he had a good chance of signing on a permanent basis but I would say that is now highly unlikely but I wish him all the best for the future.
Best moment – Scoring his first goal in the FA Cup win at Tranmere
Worst moment – Shaky display in the defeat at Stoke
The player who made his first start for the club in the final game of last season at Sunderland has managed to get a few more under his belt this term, most notably in the win at Southampton in late January. Sadly for him the following week coincided with the return of Ki from the Asia Cup and Jack Cork signing so he has barely featured since. Before that though Fulton featured in Cup games and didn’t look out of place although he wasn’t spectacular. I feel a loan spell next term would help him as he still appears unlikely to become a regular at this stage.
Best moment – Playing in the win at Southampton
Worst moment – Losing in the early rounds of both Cups
It’s very difficult to know what to say about Grimes in such limited appearances but he’s been very comfortable in possesion when he has featured and it may only be League 2 but to get into the team of the year when you’ve only played half a season means it must been a very good few months for the former Exeter man. I look forward to his continued development next term; a loan spell may do him some good.
Best moment – Signing for us in January
Worst moment – He’s only been here five minutes, I’m not that harsh!