Sidebar

18
Wed, Oct
51 New Articles

Typography

Kenwyne Jones celebrates his hat-trick against WalsallI REMEMBER my first glimpse of Kenwyne Jones when he turned up at Southampton as a gangly youngster from Trinidad hoping to make a name for himself.

I sat up and took notice when I saw him out-jump our goalkeeper, Anti Niemi, in training.

I later caught up with him at Sunderland, when I thought they paid a lot of money, about £6m, to sign him from Southampton. But I soon realised why. I took one look at him when he first arrived and thought, "That's not the same Kenwyne," because he had filled out so much.

He then went and terrorised the Manchester United defence in his first game for Sunderland.

I texted him on Wednesday, after his hat-trick against Walsall, just to remind him that I'd said he'd got everything... pace, power and technical ability.

Mark Hughes is the man who has to make the choice between Kenwyne and Peter Crouch in attack at West Ham tomorrow, and good luck to him because both are fine players.

I suppose if you were looking at it from a centre-half's perspective, you would say Kenwyne is the tougher to deal with.

That's because, while Crouchy is technically gifted and has a great career scoring record, Kenwyne is the stronger of the two and has the pace that can stretch you whenever the ball is played over the top or down the channels.

On his day, Kenwyne is simply unplayable because of all those assets of his. Fingers crossed, he will benefit from life under a new manager.

It's no coincidence that players like Kenwyne and Crouchy, who arrived at Stoke with good scoring records, have struggled to maintain their goal output because of the way the team has been set-up.

That may well change now under Mark Hughes.

But while Stoke might create more chances and score more goals, supporters have to accept they might also concede more at the other end.

You've got to be prepared to take the rough with the smooth, so to speak.

Charlie Adam is another player who should prosper more under the new manager than the old one.

There will be those wondering if you can play Charlie on a regular basis if he isn't going to complete a full 90 minutes.

Well I think you can as long as he is doing as much as he seems to be doing at the moment in the 60 or 70 minutes he's on the pitch. West Ham will be a tough nut to crack and I can definitely see them finishing in the top 10 this season.

I haven't played directly against Stewart Downing much because he always tended to be the other side of the pitch, but I've seen a lot more of Matthew Jarvis on the other West Ham wing.

I remember him turning out for Wolves against us on the opening day three years ago and he certainly got the better of me that day when we lost 2-1.

Speaking to a few of the Wolves lads, they spoke very highly of his contribution, so it's no great surprise to see him doing the business for West Ham these days.

You can follow Danny Higginbotham on Twitter at #higginbotham05.