So, it’s all over for another year and we are left to ponder what might have been, or relish the good times – either way, the Premier League is done.
Congratulations to Manchester City on their first title for 44 years, while commiserations go out to Wolves, Blackburn and Bolton in the relegation zone.
There is only one thing left to do before our attention can turn to this summer and the various showpiece events it will contain – the awards ceremony.
There will be no lavish glittery bash for this, no glistening statuette to hand out and certainly no fanfare.
However, there will be the sense of satisfaction that comes with thinking about great moments in the season and all the fun we had watching them – as well as the disasters.
GMF are aware that there are many other, better-known and respected awards out there for achievements in a Premier League season, but we’re going to do it anyway.
However, these gongs won’t include any player of the season or team of the season like wards, but we will will acknowledge certain individuals and certain achievements.
So, without further ado, we bring you the GMF 2011-12 Premier League Awards!
Best Goal – Papiss Demba Cisse, Chelsea v Newcastle United
What was he doing shooting from there? Goodness knows, but whatever it was we’re pleased the Senegalese came to make that decision. The angle was tight for a left footed strike, but with the right foot? Ridiculous. It was a touch decision because GMF enjoyed Peter Crouch’s volley against Manchester City a lot, but Cisse clinched it for even attempting such a ludicrous shot.
Best save – David de Gea, Chelsea v Manchester United
Stamford Bridge was the scene for many great moments this season, though not so much if you’re a Chelsea fan. Andre Villas-Boas was a having a little bit of trouble with his new team here, but that was all forgotten when the Blues raced to a 3-0 lead. Cue United resilience. Sir Alex Ferguson’s team dragged themselves level once more but Juan Mata had a very late chance to steal back the two points just wrenched away from his team. The Spaniard’s injury time free-kick was curling viciously towards the top corner, until his compatriot De Gea soared across the goal and palmed it away. Absolutely brilliant.
Best tackle – Kieran Gibbs, West Brom v Arsenal
This wasn’t the best in terms of aesthetics but Gibbs’s injury time intervention has ended up being worth tens of millions of pounds to the Gunners. A Marton Fulop display of goalkeeping incompetence had handed Arsene Wenger’s team the precious win needed to beat Spurs to third place. As is usually their wont though, Arsenal gave the Baggies one last chance when full-back Billy Jones was allowed the freedom of the right channel and a chance to advance on Wojciech Szczesny. It looked a certain goal until Gibbs came flying across Jones to get between the ball and the goal. Chelsea’s Champions League triumph only highlighted how crucial this was.
Biggest upset – Manchester United 2-3 Blackburn Rovers, December 31
This season threw up a host of unexpected results – Liverpool fans rarely had long to wait before the next one came along – but this result was probably more than anyone could have expected. Maybe thoughts of the coming New Year celebrations had distracted the United players, or maybe it was a slightly weakened team sent out by Ferguson. Whatever it was, the United team did not look at their best – even when coming back form 2-0 down to draw. Yakubu supplied the first two before a Berbatov double restored parity, but a late Grant Hanley header gave struggling Rovers an unlikely three points. A mention must also go out to Wigan for their late run to secure safety.
Best comeback – Arsenal 5-2 Tottenham Hotspur
Many will cry City for this one, but we don’t think two injury time goals against a relegation battling ten men is that great a feat. Coming back form two early goals against your most bitter rivals to score an emphatic victory is, however. It was not only a case of losing a derby, but defeat for Arsenal here would have seen them fall 13 points behind Redknapp’s team and have to face finishing behind them for the first time in nearly two decades. Something clicked in them and a 28-minute spell of tyro football saw them blast five goals past Brad Friedel. Their season transformed and third lace beckoned.
Best Jekyll and Hyde impression – Djibril Cisse, QPR
The former Liverpool striker came from Lazio with his reputation preceding him, which makes his contribution all the more surprising. Cisse’s forged a reputation of a speeding chance miser on Merseyside and was often ridiculed for a sometimes suspect first touch. His spell at QPR was hallmarked by the hilarious fact that in every one of his eight appearances he either scored or got sent off. Some bizarre behaviour matched with great finishing made Cisse become one of the most entertaining spectacles in the second half of the season.
Most clueless owners – Blackburn Rovers
This was hardly going to be a tough one, but perhaps it should include the majority of last season too. Venky’s took over at Blackburn and began by sacking Sam Allardyce, the man who had taken them from relegation fodder to sweet mid-table insecurity. They then replaced him with one of his underlings – the unheralded, untried Steve Kean. Maybe they just expected a gruff Scottish manager to automatically bring success, but their decision to pick Kean was not the best. What was even more baffling was their insistence in sticking with him when the team were quite clearly heading for trouble. The whole story in this case has quite clearly not been heard, but explanatory revelations after the event are hardly going to comfort the club’s fans.
Most dramatic moment – Manchester City title win
The GMF team thought you a number of you may still be grumbling after the Best Comeback award – you didn’t think this 'ceremony' would go by without a mention of the last day did you? One of the most exciting finishes to a season ever in this country. Mancini’s side are 2-1 down to relegation threatened QPR, Joey Barton has been dismissed for an attack of idiocy and it’s heading into injury time. Never fear though, as up pops substitute Edin Dzeko to equalise, and then Sergio Aguero slaps it home in the 94th minute. The Premier League trophy heads to the Etihad Stadium. Incredible scenes.
GMF hopes you are happy with the awards it has ‘handed out’, but we are certain that you good people have you’re ideas on the matter.
That is why we want you to name other award categories and their respective winners. Be as absurd as you like (but keep it clean!) and comment below to join in the debate...