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Archives for May 2012

The Premier League's best - by the numbers

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Alistair Magowan - BBC Sport | 17:45 UK time, Tuesday, 15 May 2012

You will probably know that Arsenal's Robin van Persie won the Premier League's Golden Boot for his 30 goals this season, and may have found out that Manchester City's David Silva made the most assists over the last 10 months, with 15 of his passes leading to goals.

But who else tops the rankings in this most thrilling of seasons?

We asked Opta to provide us with the top 10 performers across 10 different categories from defence through to attack. While there are some clear anomalies - Blackburn's Mauro Formica being the third most successful tackler, for example - the statistics do offer some interesting insights, with the value of Swansea's players particularly revealing.

So, although you might have decided who the best players of the season are, here we present an alternative view of the season's top goal takers, goal makers and goal stoppers.

Goal takers

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Who should go to the Euros for England?

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Alistair Magowan - BBC Sport | 15:08 UK time, Thursday, 10 May 2012

New England boss Roy Hodgson has been successfully parachuted into his role but the real work starts now.

Without a single international to see his players in action under his stewardship, the current West Brom manager must choose who to take to Euro 2012 and will announce his choices next Wednesday.

In goal, the selection of Joe Hart would appear obvious but across the whole team there are several decisions to be made, not least who will start in the absence of Wayne Rooney for the games against France and Sweden.

Here former England internationals including Gary Lineker, Chris Waddle and Danny Mills give their thoughts on who will make the trip to Poland and Ukraine.

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How Hodgson's tactics could suit England

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Alistair Magowan - BBC Sport | 08:15 UK time, Thursday, 3 May 2012

The Football Association has made a habit in recent times of appointing a manager in contrast to the previous incumbent, attempting to blow away the stench of failure as it seeks a bright new horizon.

And yet in securing the services of Roy Hodgson, the national governing body has opted for an elder statesman, similar in some ways to previous England boss Fabio Capello.

While Hodgson has not won as much silverware as the Italian, his coaching experience is without question and - unlike Capello - he takes charge of England with experience at international level, including a World Cup in 1994.

He will also be able to get his ideas across in a more communicative manner than the former AC Milan and Real Madrid manager, who struggled to learn the English language. That will be a crucial factor according to former Blackburn and Scotland striker Kevin Gallacher, who played under Hodgson at Ewood Park.

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