Anorak News | Pool Of Talent

Pool Of Talent

by | 17th, May 2004

‘WHO do you think the “most influential player in the Premiership” is?

Henry waits for Fergie to notice him

To even the newest Chelsea fan, the answer would most likely be Thierry Henry or his Arsenal captain Patrick Vieira, the former of whom can be seen on the cover of the Telegraph’s sports section carrying the Premiership trophy like a sack of coal.

But if you’re Alex Ferguson, you do not consider two parts of what the papers universally call “The Invincibles”. You look at the Liverpool team sheet.

Granted, Steven Gerrard is a very fine player, and Ferguson has not lost his mind utterly and decided to heap praise on Jamie Carragher and call him the “most influential player in England, bar none”.

But Fergie’s assertion that Gerrard is the best of the crop smacks of sour grapes at his Manchester United being beaten out of sight in the race for the championship.

“To me Gerrard is Keane,” says Fergie in the Sun. “He is now where Keane was in 1993.”

This is the tin lid on the arrogance. Gerrard is not where Keane was in 1993 – a young buck playing for a fading team at Nottingham Forest – but a top England player and captain of Liverpool, a side that came just one place lower than United in the final reckoning.

Gerrard is also, as the Telegraph leads, a product of the Liverpool academy and has been shaped by Gerard Houllier’s “guiding hand”.

If Ferguson hopes to lure the Liverpool dynamo to Old Trafford, he’d better come up with better plan.

But in among Fergie’s bluff and splutter, and after pages of Arsenal victory celebrations through north London, the Times finds a story of another heavyweight slugger.

Roy Jones has long been viewed as the best pound-for-pound boxer on the planet, if not the best fighter per se. Perhaps even the greatest of all time.

But a part of his glorious reputation has been left in a pile of drool in a Las Vegas boxing ring, as Jones was decked by what his conqueror called an “overhand, left, right on the kisser”.

So all hail the new light-heavyweight champion, one Antonio Traver, the most influential boxer of his generation. Or not…’

Posted: 17th, May 2004 | In: Back pages Comment | TrackBack | Permalink