-He had two against United (one for Kuyt where he put the ball in the channel and De Gea made a great save and one that Henderson missed with a header from the edge of the six yard box)
-Two against Man City, one of which Kuyt missed the header (it was a deflected cross though) and one where Kuyt just didn't stretch far enough and just missed on the back post
-One long pass to Suarez against Villa where Suarez hit the post (was not a cross but still worth mentioning)
-One against Wolves where Carroll hit the bar inside the six yard box
-One against Swansea which was "that miss" by Carroll
-Two against Norwich (Kuyt and Bellamy) that they headed right at the keeper on the six
-His cross against Bolton where Carroll simply missed the ball
-This wasn't a cross but he played the ball through to Carroll in the first leg against City which he hit right at Hart.
-Also not a cross but he played in Suarez against QPR and Suarez missed the target from just outside the six
If you take those instances, and couple them with the fact that he has hit the bar against Sunderland, Fulham (both of these after cracking runs), and West Brom while forcing Hart into great saves both in the second leg of the CC and in the two league games, you can really see the impact that he's made beyond the statistics.
He certainly has been rough around the edges, but if just half of these opportunities had hit the back of the net (and that's generous considering some of the chances on this list), you'd be talking about a player with around 4 goals and 6 assists, and I don't think people would be complaining about that return. He's definitely a confidence player though, but hopefully an increase in confidence will see some returns over the next few months.
downing has not played as well as he can this season, but it is far from black and white.....a couple of goals for him and from his crosses and who knows what would have happened to his season.....but that never happened, we have failed as a team to be clinical, and all our individuals have generally not been clinical enough in front of goal, downing included......and that needs to be considered when assessing everyone's performance to date
however, we now get to start all over again.....i feel we have reached a watershed in our season....we have got to a cup final, and knocked the mancs out and put a couple of performances together after a poor one at bolton.....the race for 4th is on, and we are still in it......and our squad is now fit, and everyone has had a spell of form and got on the score sheet, so downing now really has to earn a game now.....and that can only be good for the team, with bellamy, kuyt, henderson, gerrard, suarez, maxi and downing all providing something in terms of width and shape downing is not an automatic pick, and results are what will determine our teams, formations and subs......and downing can now concentrate on him playing, and delivering, knowing the competition is high and the trust is there if he is selected
so now, i think, is a good time for us to look to forward, take what we have seen to date but not judge too much...in my opinion downing has much to offer, and i reckon he will have more opportunities to deliver as the season goes....but we will not be dependent on him alone for chances......also a good opportunity to move on from spanish winger cum midfielders, even though it is 6 months later than it should have been