Who said the relegation battle was over? Well yeah, I guess I did. But Darren Moore leads today’s Super Six and for very good reason.
#1 Darren Moore
I said this yesterday and I will keep saying it in the hope that he listens. When it comes to the end of the season, Darren, thank WBA for the opportunity and retire from management. Nobody will ever be able to take away from you the fact that you beat Jose and Rafa and drew with King Klopp. Ever. The fact that, in four games, you have picked up more points than Alan Pardew managed in his entire tenure is both commendable and hilarious. It won’t get this good again, leave on a high.
#2 West Ham United
You can imagine David Moyes’ team talk. “Boys, this lot don’t need any help scoring goals so just keep it tight and don’t make any silly mistakes”. Well, that worked, didn’t it? Patrice Evra, part of Gold and Sullivan’s social responsibility programme to keep the aged in the workplace deflected the first one past Adrian. Then a delightful combination of Adrian, Declan Rice and ex-City title-winner Pablo Zabaleta helped City score their 100th Premier League goal of the season. It’s almost as if the Hammers want the drama of still being involved in the relegation battle.
#3 Leicester City
Jamie Vardy was on Sky Sports doing the obligatory “we have no problems with the manager” interview that gets rolled out at Leicester City every eight months or so. Sadly for JV, the team’s performance against Crystal Palace pretty much suggested the opposite. Yes, Palace were good but Leicester would have made a better fist of it if they had actually turned up in their flip-flops, shades and started playing some beach volleyball in the centre-circle. The question is, will they have a new manager by the time they hit Miami?
#4 Henrikh Mkhitaryan
Why on earth would you not celebrate? Jose Mourinho treated you like a leper and you’ve just scored a goal against him. A goal that might lead the manager who rescued you to a victory against his biggest remaining rival. A goal that might have had some of the Old Trafford crowd thinking, “hang on, he looks familiar”. If there was ever a moment when the full Emmanuel Adebayor was appropriate, this was it.
#5 Islam Slimani
Slimani joined Newcastle United on loan in January, leading this fool to suggest he might be the man to keep them in the Premier League. It turns out Newcastle United were capable of staying up without the big Algerian who got himself injured almost immediately. Given a start at the weekend, so Rafa could have a look and decide whether Islam might be worth a second season, the big striker kicked out at Craig Dawson off the ball and will probably be told his season is over courtesy of a three-match ban. He won’t go down as one of Newcastle’s folk heroes after all.
#6 Alex McCarthy
His late, late save against Bournemouth might just be the turning point in Southampton’s chase for survival. Could selecting him ahead of Fraser Forster be the only thing Mark Hughes has got right at St Mary’s?