Premier League: Ups and Downs
The National staff | February 12, 2013
Our guide to the three standouts in the English Premier League this week - and the trio whose coats are hung on loose pegs...
UPSCharles N’Zogbia, Aston Villa The winger has previous for galvanising relegation-threatened teams, stringing together impressive performances when they are most needed, as he did against West Ham, scoring a fabulous free kick.
Ryan Giggs, Man United Used sparingly by Sir Alex Ferguson these days, but when his manager needed proven players to get the job done against Everton, he called on the 39 year old, whose goal means he has now scored in every Premier League season.
Rafa Benitez, Chelsea The interim manager would have been looking nervously over his shoulder after overseeing three draws and one defeat in four games before the dismantling of Wigan. Chelsea remain third, and the Spaniard in a job, for now.
DOWNSEmmanuel Adebayor, Tottenham Hotspur The Togo striker was in trouble after arriving back in England later than agreed after African Cup of Nations duty. He was fined as fourth-placed Spurs had to send a private jet to South Africa to collect him.
Andre Santos, Arsenal He has failed to endear himself since arriving from Turkish side Fenerbahce in a £6.2 million (Dh35.7m) move in 2011, making just 13 starts. Now been sent on loan to Brazil to Gremio despite injury to first-choice left-back Kieran Gibbs.
Johnny Heitinga, Everton The Holland international has looked three yards off the pace of late. He let Robin van Persie beat him too easily to the ball to set up Manchester United’s first, a week after Christian Benteke ghosted past him for one of Aston Villa’s three goals.
- Monday cover: Angel di Maria and Manchester United rediscover swagger
- For Moyes at United, pre-match ban may have been the chip to break the camel’s back
- Sunday cover: No rust on Neymar as double fuels Barca victory
- Saturday cover: Who’s who in the Arabian Gulf League
- What independence would mean for Scottish sports
- Luis Garcia satisfied in making point in Baniyas’ opening draw against Al Nasr
- Former Al Ain teammates consider Al Qahtani a brother, but ‘Inside the pitch, we don’t know Yasser’
- Young Al Wasl a work in progress to Jorginho after draw with Al Dhafra
- Indian company ‘a great fit’ for Tiger Woods Hero World Challenge
- Amateur Vance in joint lead as Dubai Creek Open tees off
- Real Madrid need Javier Hernandez to start firing and end their struggles