Burning Question

After Fredi Kanoute's unfortunate penalty miss against Arsenal on Saturday, do you think that someone else should take spot kicks in the absence of Paolo Di Canio and, if so, who would be your choice from 12 yards out and why?

Your Replies:

David Parratt, Hornchurch
I'm quite happy for Fredi to continue taking penalties if he feels confident. At the end of the day, I would rather have someone taking it who has confidence in their ability than someone who doesn't really fancy it. Fredi isn't the cleanest striker of a ball, but if he believes that he can score, then let him take it. I think Defoe would be the best bet, but even he missed one against Reading last season. It's all about who wants to take it on the day.

Toby Morrisey, St Albans
Michael Carrick is the sweetest striker of the ball in the club and would be my choice if Paolo is out.

Jonathan Boakes, Wickford
I think Trevor Sinclair or Joe Cole should take the penalties in Paolo's absence because they are both reliable in front of goal and they would just smash it into the net.  Fredi isn't that reliable in front of goal - even though he scores goals he could have a lot more.

Marc Thomas, Cayman islands
Nigel Winterburn or Seb Schemmel - experience and calm heads count for everything. I'd have bet my house on Fredi missing that - a calm head is not his strength

Marc Smith, Grays, Essex
Well, basically the penalty taker should be someone who doesn't mind giving it a good whack. I'm not sure if it's an old school way of thinking, but what ever happened to the Ray Stewart/Julian Dicks method of hitting the ball as hard as they could giving the keeper no chance. Even when they did get a hand to it, the ball still went in more often than not. I think Trevor Sinclair would be a good bet to score from the penalty spot or maybe even Jermain Defoe who is an out and out striker. I have also heard on the rumour mill though that Breen is a secret penalty king. Give him a go!

David Sherrott, Perth, Western Australia
I've already e-mailed Fredi with the following suggestions: 1. Have a chat with Geoff Hurst, ask him how he used to do it, and 2. Don't give it up, give it 'eaps!

Simon Boon, Staines
I don't think there should have been any debate over the matter - Defoe should be the penalty taker. He is after all the best finisher in the side.

Brian Lawrance, Ipswich
I said to all my fellow supporters around me on Saturday that Fredi was the wrong person to take the spot kick, he is not a great hitter of the ball for power and speed, and not the most arrogant and confident person, which you need to take penalties. My choice would have been Sinclair. If Ian Pearce had been on the field he would have been my other choice.

Graham Gaskell
If there's no Paolo on I'd pass it over to Jermain. I know he missed one against Reading last year, but he struck it very sweetly and was unlucky to hit the inside of the post and see it come out. If not Jermain, perhaps someone who can blast it (like Dicksy used to). Labant, Pearce or maybe Carrick. Ideally we'll have Paolo back soon. If he's on the pitch I can't see anyone else getting a look in. (Certainly not since he took it off Lampard against Bradford!)

Rob Ellis, Slough
Carrick's the man. He can strike a ball as well as anyone. More emphasis should be placed on accuracy and power rather than trying to make the opponent's goalkeeper look silly. Take note Kanoute!

Ben Fox, Bristol
I'd have Michael Carrick taking the penalties. I'm a fan of power rather than placement and Carrick can certainly strike a ball.  We should dig up some of Dicksy's old pens and get the squad to learn from the master!

Mark Mason, Ashford
Michael Carrick should take penalties because of his accuracy and coolness. His shooting is hard and his passes are extremely accurate. Put these factors together and combined with some penalty taking training to get in the swing of it, I think he could be better than everyone else, except Paolo Di Canio.

Shane Osborne, Cowplain Waterlloville
A seasoned player like Trevor Sinclair should be taking the penalties with or without Di Canio. Sinclair has been in the big time circuit for a long time and would not be worried in the slightest about the pressure that surrounds the taking of a penalty. Alternatively Kanoute would have a point to prove and should be allowed to bury his ghost of that awful miss against Arsenal.

Stuart Grey, Westbury, Wiltshire
To be honest, I think we suffer from relying on one player to score from the spot. I think this showed in the Arsenal game. It should be whoever is most confident at the time, but I would back the likes of Repka. In the mould of Ray Stewart, hit it hard.

Toby Beehan, Dartford
I think that as there is no obvious penalty taker, Steve Lomas should take them. He has the determination needed and isn't easily fazed. If he is not available, then Fredi or Jermain should continue as the recognised strikers. If Vlad is on the pitch maybe he could have a go as he has a hefty shot on him.

Wesley Harper, Southend-on-sea
I think Trevor Sinclair should take penalties in Di Canio's abscence because he is more confident than Kanoute and he would relish the chance of taking a penalty because he doesn't score as many as Fredi in a season.