You can have all the skill in the world, but if you don’t try
Neil Lennon has played Darren Pratley in an unfamiliar role on the left wing. This position doesn’t suit him but boy is he trying to make it work.
Actually, I wouldn’t have thought that football actually suited him as a sport. He’s a pretty strong runner and I think he’d actually make a decent rugby player if he got a little stronger.
Anyhow, one thing I can tell you about that man is that not one match goes by when he doesn’t try hard. I think as fans we all accept this though have never really taken to the former Swansea captain. At Swansea he helped the club to two promotions and captained them to the Premier League, scoring 11 goals that season in the process.
We’ve all been pretty cynical about his ability on the ball and whether or not he can read the game, myself included. Put all the misplaced passes, random acts of falling over and unnecessary fouls to one side and ask yourself- is this man good enough? This is an interesting question.
I would have to say that his hard work and determination outweigh his technical difficulties which admittedly frustrate fans so much. We have to remember that while he’s no Chris Eagles, he can do keepy-uppies (suprising, I know but I have seen video proof!), he can play a simple pass to a team mate and he’s strong enough to compete for header and win the ball.
It’s funny that I should mention Chris Eagles. Eagles had the world at his fingertips- such skill, flair and prowess. However, he threw it all away at Bolton. He failed to track back and though while in form he could get away with it, when he was unsuccessful going forwards it was unforgivable. Rejecting the chance to go out on loan in January was a wasted opportunity to resurrect his Bolton career (let alone playing career).
As Mark Davies comes back into fitness and Chungy seems to have occupied the central position of the former, we may see Sparky compete for the position Pratley’s currently in. He scored a fantastic goal from there against Brentford.
Once again, everything said about Pratley’s limited ability on the ball is true, don’t get me wrong. I was in tears laughing when he tried an overhead kick against Brentford. However, when you have a player who works that hard for him team, it’s very hard not to pick him. We also hae to remember that he did score a few in this league with Swansea- a feat unachievable for someone with no skill.
That’s what I’ve been thinking about anyway… Leave your thoughts below. I’ve also set up a poll to discuss this.