So here I go again…
I’ll admit to suffering with a touch of the dreaded writers’ block syndrome of late, but I have the perfect motivation to allow the words to flow and sadly for many readers, it is another infamous Gaffers rant.
Here we go…
As you all are aware, the PFA (Professional Footballers’ Association) this week announced the nominees for both, their player of the year and their young player of the year. Before my rant begins, I am aware that these are voted for by the players and that they are cast in early March.
Can these players please think outside of the box and go against the established so-called big teams and the so-called easy choices of players from the teams at the top echelons of the Premier League. It appears not!!
It would be a pleasant surprise to see some unfancied names appear on the list, some more deserving winners than the Drogba’s of this world and I mean that as no mark of disrespect to the names on the player of the year list but how about the unfancied players in the big teams or the key players of the so-called lesser teams?
It appears to have become somewhat of a public relations move to only nominate from those who can give a good public image of the game worldwide especially to the masses of fans in North America and the Far East who are arguable the Premier League’s premier audiences.
God forbid that say the likes of Bobby Zamora be successfully nominated for the player of the year award or the excellent Michael Dawson or how about the brilliant Pepe Reina, I mean come on at least make it interesting.
Then as for the young player award. It is a shambles, it really is, Rooney is 24 years-old and nominated in both categories, his career, confidence and reputation will benefit from winning the player of the year award and not its junior accolade.
This award should be left for players who at the start of the current campaign were aged 21 years of age or under, say a Jordan Henderson, a Jack Rodwell, a Alex Song or even a Jack Wilshere.
Players that are genuine prospects, players that are establishing themselves in the game, players that represent the term ‘young’ and players who are not obviously too old for the accolade, hence tarnishing the reputation of the PFA, English football and the players themselves.
Yes, this does seem a harsh stance to have taken but these awards are the pinnacle of our beautiful game and offer a seasoning ending celebration for the joys the games brings.
Should this be left to the same select few each season? If so, then this de-motivates the masses in the top-flight of the English game and will only result in the product we offer been devalued. Is this what we want?
I realise there is very little, I or anyone else can do but to merely accept these nominations and subsequent awards makes us all part of the grey suit, money grabbing game we have harboured so hard to despise.
What do you think?
Who would get your nominations?
Read more of Derek’s articles at his excellent site Gaffers Sports Blog