Our youngest columnist by some margin, Keir Bradwell, 14 at the end of this month, quickly follows Pete Sixsmith back into action with the return of his man-by-man SAFC player ratings. You are at liberty to disagree …
Player ratings are like bottles of wine: the longer it takes to make them, the nicer they are. Apparently.
Mannone – 6
Quietly impressive, although looked a bit shaky at times.
Vergini – 5
Seemed a bit off the pace, and he’s never going to be the attacking full-back we’d like behind Johnson. He’s still our best right-back at the club, but his offensive limitations were exposed today.
Brown – 6
A fairly subdued performance from Brown, who never really shone in the heart of the defence.
O’Shea – 6
Had one or two decent moments, but, like Brown, had a quiet game.
van Aanholt – 5
His delivery was poor and he’s still not very solid at the back, but offers enough pace and work rate to justify his place in the team. Not his finest game in red and white, even so.
Cattermole – 9
Stole the show. Time and time again, Catts came to the rescue with some fantastic challenges and then passes up field. I’ve seen some people claim he wasn’t at his best, but to me, at least, he was brilliant. (I thought he was off the pace—Ed)
Larsson – 7
The effort Larsson puts in is incredible. He ran and ran and ran up and down the field all day, moving the ball up the pitch in a way that the rest of the midfield doesn’t seem to want to, by keeping it to himself, rather than passing it around, which seems to take an age when you need a goal.
Rodwell – 5
Maybe he’s still not fit. Maybe he needs to adjust to playing more often. I don’t know. But again, this week, Rodwell has seemed off the pace. It’s hard to be too critical but he’s really not having the impact I’d hoped of, so far. I still think he’ll do very well, in time.
Alvarez – 5
I didn’t expect wonders from Alvarez on his debut, and it was clear to see he needs to settle in England and adapt to the physical nature of the league, and that’s to be expected. Like Rodwell, I still have very high hopes that he’ll do well, once he’s up to speed.
Wickham – 7
It’s amazing to see how far he’s come since joining the club. His strength is a huge asset up top, and while he didn’t score this week, you can’t imagine goals will be far away.
Johnson – 8
Scored an outstanding goal at a time when we were in danger of being overrun at 1-0 down after a minute. His best performance this season, quite comfortably.
Giaccherini – 7
Still slightly confused about why he isn’t in the team. Brilliant—yet again—from the bench.
Buckley – 6
Good when he came on, apart from that miss (can you imagine if Altidore had done that?)
Gomez – 6