If there has been one disappointment of the season so far, it is the performance of Shaun Wright Phillips. The lad is a “Blue” through and through; we all know that – he proved this when he returned to City after a three-year stint at Chelsea. City fans expected big things when the little guy came back to his spiritual home but his performances this season have left something to be desired.
He returned to Eastlands for £8.5m, which seemed a snip considering he was sold for £21m. It all started so well for the little winger as he scored 2 goals on his second debut away at Sunderland. Shauny then scored again in City`s 6-0 win over Portsmouth but that was the end of the stable, good form. Wright-Phillips went through an inconsistent period over the winter as he failed to influence games as much as he used to. He was poor against Bolton and Fulham but good against Omonia and West Bromwich Albion.
He popped back up again with his first goal for around 4 months when he blasted the ball past Steve Harper`s near post against Newcastle at home. However, he proved to be inconsistent again when he was nullified by Stoke at the Britannia, I should also add how lucky he was to stay on the pitch in that game after retaliating to Rory Delap`s kick.
Anyway, to sum things up – He had a pretty decent season making 37 appearances and scoring 8 goals.
His First Spell at City:
I can remember going to watch SWP during the time we spent in the First Division (2002-05). He was brilliant; he tormented defenders with his blistering pace and quick feet. Also, he used to score loads of goals from long distances, which were a nice aspect to his game. You could argue that his good form over that period was down to playing a weaker opposition but he is older and more experienced now, at 27 he is basically at the peak of his career.
This season, his performances haven`t been great. He`s been OK but it just isn`t clicking. He hasn`t attacked defenders with the belief and vigour that found him so much success previously. Also, he hasn`t looked as confident and he isn`t making those runs in-behind that supplied the main chunk of his goals last season.
I don`t know what this strange period of form is down to but I hope he resolves it soon as I think he is the player most at threat to being replaced. We have Bellamy, Robinho and Weiss as the other options on the right.
Maybe I am being a bit harsh on the lad but I think this criticism is justified. What are your thoughts?