Player verdicts - strikers

Carlton Cole seems to improve every season and this one was no exception. Helped by Zola and a lot of hard work, the striker improved his technique, held the ball up superbly and notched a career-best 12 goals for the campaign as well as earning an Englan

Carlton Cole seems to improve every season and this one was no exception.

Helped by Zola and a lot of hard work, the striker improved his technique, held the ball up superbly and notched a career-best 12 goals for the campaign as well as earning an England call-up.

Next season, he must be the completed product.

Dean Ashton started with a bang and two goals in the first match of the season, but by September his campaign was over, defeated by injury again, and with him out, the back-up proved inadequate.


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David Di Michele flattered with two goals on his home debut against New-castle, but that was as good as it got and he only mustered two more in the rest of the campaign, while Diego Tristan, drafted out of semi-retirement, was even worse, scoring three goals while Zola continued to say 'wait until he is fit' - he never was.

Freddie Sears was never really given a chance to show what he can do, though when he was on the field, there seemed to be plenty of enthusiasm and not much else.

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Craig Bellamy looked excellent and scored five goals, before jumping ship for the Man City millions, while Julien Faubert didn't play up front, but if he did he would have been absolutely terrible!

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