THE LIST: Sportsmail's top 50 English flops of the season - Nos 20-11

22 April 2010 03:55
        HAVE YOUR SAY.     Who has been your biggest flop of the English season? It's that time of year again. when we start handing out the annual prizes as the football seasons comes to a climax. There have been plenty of success stories throughout the campaign - but, inevitably, these are counter-balanced by a far few flops. So, tell us who has been your disappointment of the season. TELL US WHAT YOU THINK The end of another dramatic league season is nye and for what seems like the umpteenth season in succession, Chelsea and Manchester United will do battle for the Premier League crown after Arsenal's bid was ended by Wigan in dramatic fashion on Sunday.

Someteams and characters will not have reason to look back over thiscampaign with any great fondness, and the time seems right for us toexamine those that have had disappointing terms at the office.

From Rafa Benitez's turbulent campaign at Liverpool, to Richard Keys' on-air howler, we'll remind you of the gaffes that have shaped the season.

We're counting down 10 each day till our No 1 is revealed on Friday and, as ever, let us know your opinions.

Read Nos 50-41 Read Nos 40-31 Read Nos 30-21 

Don for: Ince

20 Paul InceInce rejoined MK Dons in July last year - a move which he hoped would give him the platform to prove his doubters, after atorrid spell at Blackburn, wrong.

But the club is heading for a finish well of the pace, even for the play-offs, the fans have beenventing their anger and Ince has resigned.

The former England midfielder has agreed to stay until the end of the season but will watch thefinal five matches from the stands after being handed a five-match banand £5,000 fine after being charged with improper conduct by the FA for contesting a decision by referee Phil Crossley against Gillingham.

19 Dimitar BerbatovYou can't blame the Manchester United fans for demanding quality - they're used toit. And when they heard their club had spent £30.75m on Tottenhamstriker Berbatov, the anticipation levels rose accordingly.

But the Bulgarian's languid style has not enthralled the masses since he arrived in 2008 and he still is no closer to the form he showed infront of goal for Spurs.

What has grated the fans the most this season is the 29-year-old's performances inthe games which matter most.

He was found wanting in the crunchclash away at Blackburn and his efforts when introduced against BayernMunich were poor. A game in which an injured Wayne Rooney waspreferred to Berbatov.

Frustration: Berbatov has failed to live up to his billing at Old Trafford

18 Chelsea's rallying cryOpposing fans often use the stick of 'you've got no history' to beatdown the nouveau riche of Chelsea FC.  The consensus is that the Blues are supported by fans who don't know too much about the club, orfootball.

Now we know that's not entirely true but what did pour fuel on the firewas this edict from the club's website ahead of the Champions Leaguelast 16 clash with Inter Milan.

'Flags or scarves will be laid out at seats around the stadium fortonight's game but please bring your own colour and singing voices, andplease arrive early to raise the temperature ahead of kick-off.'

Do thefans really need telling how to support their club?

Nick Metcalfe: Chelsea get it all wrong with battle cry to fans Feeling blue: Chelsea fans were urged to make some noise at Stamford Bridge

17 Kevin McDonaldFor the majority of  us, shooting off down the pub after ahard day at the office is a very acceptable practice. But it's notacceptable if you're a footballer. And it's definitely not acceptable if you do it during agame.

McDonald was subbed at the interval with Burnley trailingManchester City 5-0. Returning to the stands after his shower wouldhave been a good plan, but he nipped next door to join his father inthe bar instead.

The Scotland Under 21 player was docked a week's wages - £5,000 -and dropped for the following two games.

Worst decision bar none: McDonald before he was subbed against Man City

16 Anton Ferdinand You've waited 58 games for your moment, grafting away in the heart ofthe defence, and here it comes, your chance to seize glory and score yourfirst goal for Sunderland.

With dead-eye composure you sweep the ball home. At last. Glory! Theball hits the back of the net and the crowd go wild. What now?

Ferdinand was over the moon with his effort against Tottenham so hesprinted away  celebrating and pulled off some nifty Michael Jacksondance moves by the corner flag.

But he had not realised the goal had been disallowed. Cue much embarrassment.

15 Burnley's boardYou wait 33 years to make it back to the top flight then whathappens? Your manager leaves and the club is threatened with relegationstraight back into the Championship.

Fear not though, there's some bright spark on the board who has theidea to select the manager who will guide you to safety based on asurvey conducted by accountants Deloitte and Touche. That person turnsout to be Brian Laws.

The sacked former Sheffield Wednesday boss came top of Deloitte's'Value for Money' charts - but two wins in 16 games with the Claretswould suggest the survey is duff.

Bad moves: Ferdinand

Miserable run: Laws

14 Robbie KeaneI wonder how the conversation went between Robbie Keane and Tottenhammanager Harry Redknapp as the Spurs captain tried to arrange aChristmas trip for his team-mates?

'C'mon boss. We're only going on a golf trip. Yes we're going to Dublinbut we won't be drinking. Promise.' Something like that, maybe.

Unsurprisingly, the golf was just a ruse, a cover line for a bingesession in the bars of Dublin after Redknapp had expressly stated thata yuletide knees-up was out of the question.

However, Redknapp got his revenge a few weeks later by sending Keane out on loan to Celtic. 

Party line: It wasn't the weather for golf at that time of year

13 Lukasz FabianskiNot long now until Fabianski's very own Annus horribilis is over - a season to forget for Arsenal's Polish keeper.

His year took a turn for the worse in February, away at Porto in theChampions League. He scored a sloppy own goal and then turned his backon play after handling a back pass to allow Porto to score their second.

But the injury to Manuel Almunia allowed him to find redemption at theend of the season. Not quite.

His sloppy error against Wigan allowedthe Latics to equalise before the Gunners were eventually beaten. Adefeat which ended their title challenge.

Don't Lukasz now: Gunners keeper Fabianski lets a goal in against Stoke

12 Michael OwenWe all nodded in agreement when Owen joined United. It didn't cost SirAlex Ferguson a penny to bring an established and experiencedgoalscorer into his side. In a World Cup season too. Bonus for England.

But, apart from a few glimpses of his early career form, the movehasn't worked for Owen, or Fergie.

Just five starts and three goals inthe Premier League means the move will be branded as a crock who flopped ratherthan a masterstroke from Sir Alex.

Not enough: Owen scores against West Ham - one of just nine goals this season

Fire your Gunn: Bryan didn't last long

11 Bryan Gunn Gunn joined Norwich in January last year, taking over from Glenn Roeder who was sacked with the club lurking a couple of points above the relegation places.

The Canaries' board should have noticed something wasn't right when they lost the last three games of the season and were relegated.

But the Norfolk outfit persisted with their former keeper, with disastrous results.

The club were humiliated in a 7-1 defeat at home to Colchester - a defeat which cost Gunn his job - the first boss to be axed in the four divisions.

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Source: Daily_Mail

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