Written by kirsikka
I drafted this earlier last week with the intention of making any relevant adjustments after the last few games of the season but life has intervened a bit and I don’t think I’ll be posting on here for a little while so here it is early.
After the game at Southampton, I may have changed the text for Simpson and Hyndman if they made more appearances in the next couple of matches but I’ll leave it as I wrote it since it’s coming early. So it goes when you have to jump the gun!
All only my opinion and is a judgement on their performance this season alone, even if I do refer back to previous seasons for context or to show a pattern sometimes.
Artur Boruc – 8/10
Looks fitter and more than earned another year. Took his chance when it came and was unlucky to be dropped before coming in again. Doubt he will be number 1 next year but is great to have around the club.
Asmir Begović – 3/10
The stats aren’t kind to him when they show his performance compared to the other PL keepers. That run of goals conceded with barely a save made was worse. Lucky to be given a second chance this season but blew that as well. Presumably on his way out this summer.
Aaron Ramsdale – 7/10
When you drop divisions to go on loan you have to excel to show you’re ready to climb back up and put yourself in contention, à la Fraser at Ipswich. By all accounts he has done that at AFC Wimbledon and so, instead of looking like L1 is his level, should hope for a Championship club loan at the minimum next season, if not being part of the first team here.
Simon Francis – 7/10
Many have wondered for some time why he always seemed to get picked but his injury has made him look so much better. A leader that the team desperately missed whilst he’s been out.
Steve Cook – 7/10
Was schooled in a few games but also showed quality and leadership in others. For a team that conceded so many goals, it’s strange that player by player analysis doesn’t seem to point the finger squarely at most of the defenders individually. Must be the tactics! Decent season but I’m hoping for even more next.
Nathan Aké – 8/10
A rock in defence most of the time. Score may be a bit harsh but only because he didn’t quite climb the heights of last season and for that reason, I don’t think anyone will pay the asking price for him this summer. Good news for us.
Tyrone Mings – 7/10
How do you solve a problem like Tyrone? His AFCB career looked to be all but over in January with his not so subtle Instagram posts making a statement that may have not gone down so well. The Villa loan appeared to be a play by us to try and get value for him when we sell him. Reports of his displays there have brought him back in the picture but, unless Ake is sold, I still only see a transfer out for him this summer. At least it should be with a good fee now.
Charlie Daniels – 5/10
Looked to be struggling at times before injury intervened. Needs help from another left back in the squad as simply can’t carry the load on his own.
Adam Smith – 9/10
At times, the team looked bereft without him available to offer his dynamism. Some feat to be both the best right back and best left back in the squad at the moment. Proven himself absolutely critical to the team in the PL. Any chance we have a cloning device on the summer shopping list?
Diego Rico – 3/10
Little boy lost at times. Allowing him the one season bedding in period some players need when they come to England means we can expect to see him next season and hopefully this time ready and prepared to show his best as he was, to be kind, poor this year. Unfortunately timed injury late season just when the first team place was completely open.
Nathaniel Clyne – 2/10
He gets two points for that first couple of appearances. When you bring in a player of his pedigree you expect them to enhance the team and help the others up their game. Instead, after a couple of games, looked like an agent sent by Southampton to try and wreck our season.
Jack Simpson – 4/10
22 years old and with barely any first team minutes in his legs. For the sake of your career go out on loan or ask for a permanent move young man! You can’t end up 24 or 25 years old with less first-team experience than a 19-year-old. The score may be harsh but not based on performances, more lack of involvement.
Chris Mepham – 7/10
Thrust into more first-team action than he was probably expecting when he signed but he mostly looked very composed, with a few shockers thrown in. That’s to be expected as part of his learning curve allied to the step up. A good start and with very high hopes for the future. Will really need to work at his game but if he puts in the hard yards could have some career ahead of him.
Dan Gosling – 5/10
Opportunity knocked when injuries ensured he was going to get a big run of games. He brought his energy but also his first touch. Despite his detractors, he does have good games but sadly, results and his more common level of performance have only gone to show that he’s a squad player in the PL at best. We simply can’t rely on him to be a regular starter.
Andrew Surman – 6/10
He does his thing and will continue to do so. Another affected by injury this season but useful to still have around and expect him back next year doing the Surman.
Jefferson Lerma – 7/10
When we broke our transfer record for Ake he was immediately and demonstrably better than anyone else so perhaps hopes were too high when we smashed that record to get in Lerma. There’s no doubt he’s a PL level midfielder and of a sort for which we’ve been crying out. He’s good but he isn’t head and shoulders above the rest. He may blossom in his second season having adjusted to the English game this one.
Jordon Ibe – 1/10
First season Ibe was terrible. Second season Ibe was actually pretty good despite his detractors and if he’d stepped up from that then this season he’d have been a real force with which to be reckoned. Confidence took a huge knock when Brooks was given the nod ahead of him for the first game of the season but his response to that was shocking. A step down from first season Ibe. Not sure I see a future for him now with 12 months left on his deal. There’s a player in there, cowering away from the glare of playing in front of a demanding crowd, but I’m not sure we’ll ever see him.
Lewis Cook – 7/10
Another who has been made to look so much more important by injury. The lack of an alternative similar player available in the squad showed just how important he is to us, although I hope we have a proper backup option next season just in case and to keep the pressure on him.
Junior Stanislas – 3/10
Looked woefully out of form when he was on the pitch but again missed a good chunk of the season through injury. His worst season with us since we got promoted but, unlike certain others, has more than done enough in previous seasons for us to forgive this one and welcome him back next year with a clean slate.
David Brooks – 9/10
I don’t think anyone expected this season from him when he signed. A revelation. Form tapered off a little bit after his injury but he’s still young. Another one who, if he carries on working at his game, could end up having a very special career. Hats off to both him and the recruitment team.
Emerson Hyndman – 0/10
What happened? When the team was so badly injury hit that it had almost no CMs available and he couldn’t make a bench that contained three strikers then things are grossly amiss. Unless something extraordinary happens over the summer he needs to move for the sake of his career.
Ryan Fraser – 9/10
Formed one of the most lethal attacking partnerships in PL history with Callum. An extraordinary season that has seen his name grow into one feared amongst the opposition. With only 12 months left on his contract, the only question is will he stay or will he go? If he stays there will be trouble (for our opponents). If he goes then we may struggle.
Callum Wilson – 9/10
I know people love to point out the chances he’s missed but his goals per minute ratio is excellent. That injury seemed to really stall his season if he had stayed fit when he was firing he’d likely be closing in on 20 league goals. Brought more than just goals to the team though. Deserved his England caps and almost nothing gave me greater pleasure this year than watching him score at international level.
Lys Mousset – 4/10
Should have been his breakthrough year as he saw off the challenge of Defoe to become the genuine third choice striker. The difference is that last season it felt like when he came on he may change the game but this time he mostly looked anonymous. Did score in (I think) his only league start, even if we got thrashed. You have to wonder about his future after the arrival of Solanke.
Joshua King – 7/10
Decent goals return and contributed to the cause. Wasn’t the ball wrecking nightmare for defenders that we saw in some previous seasons. Fluffed his lines a little during the Wilson injury when he had a big chance to lay claim to that coveted leading the line striker slot.
Dominic Solanke – 6/10
Too early to form much of opinion really. At times showed that clichéd good touch for a big man and seems to have a stinging shot on him but hasn’t really made an impact yet. We have to remember we bought him with patience and the future in mind, hence willing to take him injured, so shouldn’t rush to judge too soon.
Sam Surridge – 8/10
Generous I know but let’s remember he started the season going out on loan to L2 and finished it as a regular on the bench with many supporters hoping he may come on so we could see more of him. That’s almost as good as he could have hoped for. Still only 20 and may have it in him to be the first AFCB youth graduate to have a PL career with us.
Obviously, some of the marks were extremely harsh. I share much of your overall sentiment but disagree with bits. Certainly don’t think Ibe was worse this season than in his first, for example. – Join the conversation, click here.