Charlie Adam – “One of the best players in the league”

by Jasveer Singh Gill

Friday, January 14th, 2011

He plays with a class and style that embody the club he is currently captaining; all hail Blackpool’s newest legend: Charlie Adam.
Blackpool are a club with a history of great attacking players and if their current captain maintains his form he is certain to join that list of their greatest players. As they continue to astonish the Premier League by comfortably maintaining a mid-table position by winning games with their attacking style Charlie Adam has stood out as the talisman that has symbolised the inner confidence the club have.
A classic playmaker of a footballer, Scotsman Adam possesses a sweet left foot which has helped tear apart defences and terrorised goalkeepers from the Championship all the way to the Champions League. If it is not his end product which has propelled Blackpool to their current standing – with the likes of DJ Campbell, Gary Taylor-Fletcher and Luke Varney proving just as efficient – it is the manor in which he plays his football which has proved just as vital to Blackpool this season.
Adam demands the ball to feet no matter how close by a defender is, which is usually very close considering his position in ‘the hole’. He is confident enough to run at defenders, he is happy to pick out players 40 yards away, is assured enough to take his time on the ball to ensure he picks the right pass and is even so confident he regularly takes shots on goal from the halfway line, as noted by Sky Sports analyst Dean Sturridge in Blackpool’s recent match against Liverpool. This type of self-belief is why Blackpool feel confident enough to play their short-passing, attacking game against any team. He is their captain and the rest of the team follow his lead, even when he does not play. Ian Holloway has trained his Blackpool team to play in a way which everyone – from his players to fans to neutrals – can enjoy and they can do this because of players such as Charlie Adam.
While his ability was never in question, to see Glasgow Rangers allow such a player to leave for a mere £500,000 placed questions about how far Adam could go in the game, perhaps even in his own mind. This is especially the case as Adam highlighted his ability in not only the Scottish Premier League but even in Europe, including the highest level of football around today, the Champions League. Adam first made his name in loan moves from Rangers for Ross County and than especially at St. Mirren, playing a key role as they won the Scottish Challenge Cup and the Scottish First Division. Going back to Rangers Adam scored three goals as Rangers went all the way to the UEFA Cup final in 2007 and scored two goals in the group stages of the Champions League for Rangers in the same year, including a stunning curler with his right foot against Stuttgart. Yet he found himself out of favour in the following season and eventually was sent out on loan to Blackpool in 2009.
Instead of sulking though about having to go from Champions League football to the second tier of English domestic football Adam decided to make sure he got back into top level football again, even if it was with small town club Blackpool.
His playmaking skills stood out a mile for Blackpool in the Championship and he was soon recognised as one of the leagues outstanding talents. In his first season Adam helped Blackpool stay up, leading them to pay half a million to make him their most expensive ever buy.
Adam continued to excel, playing a crucial role as Blackpool made a late surge into the play-offs in his second season for them. A goal from an Adam free-kick in the final against Cardiff helped Blackpool to the Premiership. Playing in the top tier of English football was a challenge Blackpool’s charismatic manager Ian Holloway relished, encouraging his team to see if they could implement their attacking game against the nation’s big clubs. With only two players who had any genuine Premiership experience most thought that Blackpool would really struggle this season, especially considering Holloway openly insisted he would not change Blackpool’s attacking style. So far, this game plan has worked wonders and Blackpool are proving everyone wrong having yet to stay in the bottom three.
The only downside is that now Adam has become one of the Premiership’s hottest properties, with the likes of Liverpool and Aston Villa linked with him. Holloway has laughed off bids of £3.5million and even said he would only allow Adam to leave for a Champions League club, which does not seem too far fetched with even Sir Alex Ferguson declaring his admiration for Charlie Adam, calling him “one of the best players in the league”. It is doubtful that Adam could play his football better anywhere else than he is currently doing for Blackpool, so a transfer to another mid-table club should not be in his interest.
Instead he should at least see out the season with Blackpool, to see how far both he and the team can go, because if he continues playing the way he is a transfer to a Champions League team could become a reality.
Adam has become the newest symbol of Blackpool football club at the minute, a team which can count the likes of Sir Stanley Matthews and Stan Mortensen as their club legends. With the way they are both currently playing this is a huge compliment to both Adam and Blackpool.

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