Five things we learnt this weekend: Huddlestone’s new challenge; Martinez ringmaster at the circus; Pennant begins to repay Hughes’ faith; Redmond’s bright future; Jeered Cabaye could leave Pardew in the lurch

view gallery VIEW GALLERY

That was the weekend

Huddlestone’s new challenge as times change at Tottenham

When Tom Huddlestone agreed to leave London for Hull, he bid  farewell to the glamour of Tottenham and exchanged it for regular football. Had Huddlestone turned in for Spurs the kind of gritty, inventive performance he delivered in the 2-0 defeat at Manchester City, he still may not have kept his place.

“There were times, regardless of how well I did in a game, there would be certain players in front of me. It was  difficult to take,” he said.

This summer has seen the de-Anglification of Tottenham. Of the £107m Andre Villas-Boas has spent,  not a penny has been on an Englishman. “It is surprising,” Huddlestone said. “They seem to be changing their policy a little bit but for the manager, Franco Baldini [director of football] and the chairman it is all about finishing in the top four.”

After the circus Martinez might be short of star attractions

Having described the transfer window as “a circus”, Roberto Martinez finds himself as something of a ringmaster as it reaches its climax. The goalless draw at Cardiff was not only Everton’s third in succession under their new manager, it is also likely to be Marouane Fellaini’s last for the club.

And while Martinez accepted after a meeting on Thursday night that he would go to Manchester United for £24m, he was given every encouragement that James McCarthy would become the third member of his Wigan FA Cup-winning side to join him at Goodison.

Given the toothless nature of Everton’s attack, another of his former players, the Liverpool-bound Victor Moses, would be more useful, stranded surplus to requirements at Chelsea but with Jose Mourinho insisting he still has “a future” at the club.

Pennant goal begins to repay Hughes’ faith in the winger

When he was asked why he did not follow the path of so many members of the League Managers’ Association and get rid of Jermaine Pennant, Mark Hughes replied he was afraid of the winger “coming back in another team’s shirt”.

Having played for 10 clubs,  including Watford, Real Zaragoza and Wolverhampton Wanderers – a club whose relegation he failed to prevent – Pennant has a wide choice of shirts already.

His winner against West Ham on Saturday not only provided Hughes with his first managerial victory at Upton Park, it also justified his  decision to retain Pennant for Stoke.

However, the desire to say that it means Pennant is in a “new place” in what has been a troubled life should be treated with caution.

If managers as different as Rafa Benitez, Arsène Wenger and Tony Pulis could not control him, then Hughes needs every bit of available luck if he is to be more successful.

Redmond’s bright future brings Hodgson rare delight

On a weekend when Roy Hodgson complained again about a dearth of English talent that might scar the national team for a generation, his Under-21 manager, Gareth Southgate, was watching 19-year-old Nathan Redmond seize victory for Norwich against Southampton.

There has never been a better time for a young player to make an impact.  On the opening weekend of the Premier League season another goal, from Everton’s teenager Ross Barkley against Norwich, earned him a place in Hodgson’s senior squad.

Redmond’s goal was also an  important one for the Norwich  manager, Chris Hughton. Not only did it justify him spending £3.2m on the player from his former club Birmingham, it ensured he would not spend the international break stranded in the bottom three.

Jeered Cabaye could leave Pardew in  the lurch

There is always a price to be paid for defiance and Yohan Cabaye’s desire to quit Newcastle has cost the midfielder an extended tour of the former Soviet republics.

France left Cabaye out of their squad for the World Cup qualifiers in Georgia and Belarus as uncertainty over his future at St James’ Park grows ever larger.

It was wise of manager Alan Pardew to state he could understand the jeering of Cabaye during the 1-0 win over Fulham and honest to suggest he had “no idea” if he would be at the club when they face Aston Villa on Saturday week, even if he was somewhat naive when he suggested he hopes Cabaye’s agent “plays the game”.

The only game Sport Innovations, Cabaye’s agency, will play is to extract the maximum value for a player that Newcastle can ill afford to lose to suitors Arsenal.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

As in 1942, Germany must show restraint over Greece

As in 1942, Germany must show restraint over Greece

Mussolini tried to warn his ally of the danger of bringing the country to its knees. So should we, says Patrick Cockburn
Britain's widening poverty gap should be causing outrage at the start of the election campaign

The short stroll that should be our walk of shame

Courting the global elite has failed to benefit Britain, as the vast disparity in wealth on display in the capital shows
Homeless Veterans appeal: The rise of the working poor: when having a job cannot prevent poverty

Homeless Veterans appeal

The rise of the working poor: when having a job cannot prevent poverty
Prince Charles the saviour of the nation? A new book highlights concerns about how political he will be when he eventually becomes king

Prince Charles the saviour of the nation?

A new book highlights concerns about how political he will be when he eventually becomes king
How books can defeat Isis: Patrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad

How books can defeat Isis

Patrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad
Judith Hackitt: The myths of elf 'n' safety

Judith Hackitt: The myths of elf 'n' safety

She may be in charge of minimising our risks of injury, but the chair of the Health and Safety Executive still wants children to be able to hurt themselves
The open loathing between Barack Obama and Benjamin Netanyahu just got worse

The open loathing between Obama and Netanyahu just got worse

The Israeli PM's relationship with the Obama has always been chilly, but going over the President's head on Iran will do him no favours, says Rupert Cornwell
French chefs get 'le huff' as nation slips down global cuisine rankings

French chefs get 'le huff' as nation slips down global cuisine rankings

Fury at British best restaurants survey sees French magazine produce a rival list
Star choreographer Matthew Bourne gives young carers a chance to perform at Sadler's Wells

Young carers to make dance debut

What happened when superstar choreographer Matthew Bourne encouraged 27 teenage carers to think about themselves for once?
Design Council's 70th anniversary: Four of the most intriguing prototypes from Ones to Watch

Design Council's 70th anniversary

Four of the most intriguing prototypes from Ones to Watch
Dame Harriet Walter: The actress on learning what it is to age, plastic surgery, and her unease at being honoured by the establishment

Dame Harriet Walter interview

The actress on learning what it is to age, plastic surgery, and her unease at being honoured by the establishment
Art should not be a slave to the ideas driving it

Art should not be a slave to the ideas driving it

Critics of Tom Stoppard's new play seem to agree that cerebral can never trump character, says DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's winter salads will make you feel energised through February

Bill Granger's winter salads

Salads aren't just a bit on the side, says our chef - their crunch, colour and natural goodness are perfect for a midwinter pick-me-up
England vs Wales: Cool head George Ford ready to put out dragon fire

George Ford: Cool head ready to put out dragon fire

No 10’s calmness under pressure will be key for England in Cardiff
Michael Calvin: Time for Old Firm to put aside bigotry and forge new links

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Time for Old Firm to put aside bigotry and forge new links