Zambia v Ethiopia
Promising Everton youngster, Ross Barkley today signed a deal to join Leeds United on a one month loan deal. The England Under 19 star is highly rated by the Merseyside club and the loan deal sees him take a further step in his development.
Early this season he enjoyed a successful loan spell at Sheffield Wednesday, in which he was important part of Dave Jones' squad. A goalscoring midfielder, he sets to fit in with the Leeds' team. A Warnock type player. Leeds have ambitions of promotion, which their hope lies in the Playoffs. A successful attempt would look very nice on the CV of this future England star.
The last meeting between the two sides produced a thrilling 1-1 draw at the Liberty, the semi final is set to be a cracker in the league cup. Chelsea eased through the quarter final with 5-1 win away at Leeds. While Swansea left it late against Middlesbrough with Seb Hines heading into his own net with ten minutes to go.
It is probably fair to say, Joe Cole was perhaps England's best footballer in mid 2006. At the top of his game with England and Chelsea, he was up there with the likes of Gerrard, Lampard and Owen. Them days are long gone and his time at Liverpool was certainly a time to forget. Now Cole has his chance to revitalise his career at his old hunting ground, West Ham.
A tricky customer who enjoys being played in behind, Joe Cole could fit into West Ham's system taking chances on loose flick ons. He has lost a yard of pace, but regular football could see him return to a good standard of fitness. It was easy to tell he wasn't enjoying it under Rodgers at Liverpool. In his loan spell with Lille, he was one of the top players in Ligue 1. Still only 31 if can capture some of the form on show from five years ago, he could stake a claim for the England squad. Joe Cole was always one of the hardest workers in the England squad, Hodgson is a big fan of the hard workers. The move to West Ham is good one for him, perhaps a return to the Cole of old is on the cards.
A dejected Harry Redknapp looks on as his side whimper out of the year with 3-0 drubbing to Liverpool. With the first half performance warranting the Americanism, 'Garbage'. A word that reflects the whole year itself, complete and utter garbage.
Redknapp seems forced to hold onto false optimism, insisting his QPR side can still stay up. That appears to be a pipe dream. No side has quite been as woeful since the Derby County side of 2007-08. That Derby wasn't built on big star names like QPR, which possibly gives the edge to QPR for the worst Premier League team ever. If there is any hope for survival. Redknapp must rally the troops and get them playing as a team. QPR are currently a group individuals seemingly orchestrated by Adel Taarabt. January signings need to be made and they need to make an impact. Its going to be difficult to sell QPR to players, but if anyone can. 'Arry's your man!