Monday, 29 December 2008

Feliz Navidad

our somewhat random Christmas observations

Johnny Evans has been playing. This presumably means, he wasn't allegedly raping anyone at this year's Man U Christmas party.

Stevie Gerrard has been arrested, after allegedly bar brawling. He claims it was a fancy dress party and he was going as Joey Barton.

Monday, 22 December 2008

Madrid replace Diarra

Real Madrid have replaced holding midfielder Mahmoud Diarra with holding midfielder Diarra. Diarra has been struggling this season so his replacement of Diarra is seen as a natural choice. Real Madrid however deny that replacing Diarra with Diarra is a like for like measure. Diarra himself says "I do not want to be known as Diarra number 1 or Diarra number 2. Just call me Lass."

The two Diarra's situation has been a source of confusion for some time.

Saturday, 20 December 2008

Excerpt From A US History Student's Essay on Womens' Liberation

"Women gained more freedoms as better household products allowed them to have more free time".

(Excerpted from Spangly Princess blog)

Paul Ince and Roy Keane are wincing.

Blackburn win 3-0.
Sunderland win 4-1.

That must be a bit like watching your sexy but frigid ex enjoying a rebound gang-bang.

Thursday, 18 December 2008

Premiership Panto

Poor Blackburn wants to reach the Promised Golden Land of European Football, but is having no luck getting there. With the hapless assistance of The Guvnor he's been involved in some scrapes but now the joke has gone too far and he's in the evil clutches of the Spectre Of Relegation (It's behind you!). Who Can save Blackburn? None other than reliable hero Shrek! Will he win the day (Oh yes he will) but will Blackburn reach European Football (Oh no they won't), not without the help of a Hairy Godmother, or a handsome Saudi Prince or two.

Welcome back Sam Allardyce.

PS- Whatever happened to Stuart Ripley?

Thursday, 11 December 2008

Possibly Inadvertent Gay Slur Part 1234 (2)

"Nice lad Sol Campell. Get's a bad press sometimes. He's solid at the back. He's not a screamer mind. He just tries to get on with lads in the dressing room and just let what he does on the pitch do the talking. He's not a screamer though."

Possibly Inadvertent Gay Slur Part 1234

"Perhaps Anelka and Drogba will finish off together later on tonight"


Tuesday, 9 December 2008

Peter Reid was a dire manager

a man whose reputation as a player, he was a very good player to his credit, carried him only so far. As his reputation faded it was matched only by his inarticulacy. (actually, is that a proper word, or am I being remarkably inarticulate by supposing that 'inarticulacy' is a word, surely phrasing it differently would be wiser- WAS MATCHED ONLY BY BEING AWESOMELY INARTICULATE. Just as well I am not doing a stint on Football Focus otherwise I would look a right gibbering idiot.

Anyway, Peter Reid is widely thought of as a crap manager.

Then there was Mick Mcarthy. He, like Reid, managed Sunderland. He, unlike Reid was not a great player. And Roy Keane had told him so to. 'you were a crap player and you're a crap manager', or words to that effect splattered with more excessive expletives. Which brings me to Keane. Who was an excellent player, like Reid, and a bad manager, like both Reid and Mcarthy, and had a beard more ridiculous than either of them. Actually the beard was not all that bad, but it was silly. Beards can only be worn gracefully by writers and left-wingers. Preferably both. Anyone else- from Richard Branson to Noel Edmonds, looks like a cock in a beard. I think Keane realised this, only he was too stressed, and too depressed, to shave it off. Either that or he decided Gerry Adams was some kind of fashion icon.

Gerry Adams of course can carry a beard- as he is a leftwinger. Oh, by the way, by left winger I mean those who, historically would have stood to the left Louis XVI in court, not those who grace the left of the football pitch and with pace and a touch of maverick genius get into good attacking positions. I've no idea if Gerry Adams, or che Guervara, or, Trotsky, were any good on the football pitch.

Perhaps only people who are pretty crap at sport get into politics. But then how would that explain the most awful of breeds- ex sportsmen, or women, who get into politics. David Icke is the only sportsmen who got into politics that I have any time for. And that is because he suffers (or suffered) from an attractive form of dreadful self-delusion. Like he internalised the plot of THEY LIVE...

Anyway, I digress. Roy Keane has gone. His managerial record is worse than both Reid's and Mcarthy's. But I reckon it is only a matter of time before someone gives him another chance to prove- in such high jest -dulce est playerium ab shit managerium. Or something.

Lovely to see you all by the way.

Monday, 8 December 2008

This blog will be operating again sometime

Expect a Pre-christmas rush a post Christmas sales.

Friday, 26 September 2008

For Sale: Mike Ashley Voodoo Dolls

Tense nervous headaches? Worried about the Newcastle chairman's tactics? Worried the team will slip the way of Sheffield Wednesday or Leeds?

Then never fear! Find solace in superstition and magic! Buy these Mike Ashley likeness voodoo dolls- complete with sharp pointy pins and other stuff. Buy this avatar for malcontent. Do your bit to ensure Newcastle's future is as glorious as its past. It is not as if you can do anything else.

Football Overdose's advice for Mike Ashley: If David O Leary appears to be the footballing answer then you are asking the wrong footballing question.

Unfortunately for Newcastle Fans Mr reliable, Alan Curbishely, a specialist in mid-table obscurity- something Newcastle would surely settle on giving on how it is looking for them now- has ruled himself out of the running...

The ideal situation would be for the mostly uninspiring mob that are the Newcastle players to somehow start playing like a team without the use of a coach- thereby providing an example to all of us that leaders are not as necessary as we think.

I shan't be holding my breath for that one.

Friday, 19 September 2008

If football was the economy part 1234#

After weeks of uncertainty the premier league is set to survive after the collapse of Chelsea prompted speculation that the premier league would fall into the vacuum of its own arse thereby denying the world of football. The government has agreed to give the remaining clubs billions of $ of tax revenue, with no need to pay it back, in order to ensure that there will be football tomorrow.

Investment in football leapt at the news and fans are said to be "relieved" that their clubs would be around this time next week, and their season tickets still valid.

Government sources said "the prospect of losing the world's biggest clubs would leave the entire future of football in jeopardy. And the world without football is unthinkable." The poor would be left without entertainment, and the rich without tools for staying rich.

Whether this government intervention is enough to save faith in football in the long run remains to be seen. One fan, wailing in the desert, said "the government never intervene in anything usually. They say to do so would interfere in the Darwinian style evolution of the 'free-market'. They say there is no money. They refuse to stump up the cash. When they intervene now it seems to prove nothing more than the inevitable necessity of nepotism."

Either way it seems that after years of Republican rule in the US the global economy starts going backwards. This time the ruling administration will donate billions of pounds to the world's richest companies in order to help them preserve their self fulfilling status as the world's richest companies. For this we are supposed to be grateful, for the crumbs that intermittently fall from their table.

This is our world and this is our history. It is a monkeyfucked fallacy. Football Is Not My God.

Thursday, 11 September 2008

They say a week is a long time in politics.

90 mins is a long time in football. In the course of one single match england have gone from sulky underacheiving millionaire no-trys to world beaters once more. 4-1 against Croatia, heady days.

A relieved Capello has urged calm, it is after all just one result. The media exalt baby faced assasin II Theo Walcott. Still not quite ready for regular first team action at Arsenal- scoring hat-tricks for England against much fancied opposition.

Future headlines about this player could be:

Theo and Only
Simply Theo Best
We Adore Theodore
These Boots will Walcott Over You
Walc This Way
Theo Walcs the Walc

In just a few more fine performances Walcott will have to become Walcs. This way the puns will become endless.

Meanwhile Wales, dear Wales, have forgotten how to take penalties. Two penalty misses in two games. Lads, lads- just smash it towards the corner, that way even if the keeper guesses right he still can't save it. Practice doing this. Despite the miss Wales were unlucky to lose in Russia.

Scotland meanwhile beat Iceland- which they should have done anyway.

In the ex Pale territory Northern Ireland got a good draw against the Czechs.

Gordon Brown wittered on about the football in his press conference today. Unable to answer a question on Angola but full of praise for 'Walcs'. Just what we need from a PM.

Tuesday, 2 September 2008

And now Kevin Keegan is quitting


I haven't read the full story yet but I am guessing he will say, in his post-quit press conference "I'm not a quitter, and I love this club, it is a BIG CLUB, and one of the best in the world. My heart is with Newcastle. But I honestly think I have taken the club as far as I can. Someone better than me needs to take over this club, in order to take it where is deserves to be." He'll then prattle on and the words BIG CLUB will contiue to trip out of his gob, every other sentence, or more.

Dennis Wise, who reportedly turned down the chance to co-star in the latest Guy Richie film, is tipped to take over.

Keegan's record as manager

Newcastle- Quit
Fulham- Quit
England- Quit
Man City- Quit
Newcastle- Quit (again)

Never has anyone been more skilled in the art of making an exit.

Football Overdose is sad to see him go. Together with Schteve Mclaren he is easy target numero uno.

Transfer Deadline Shocks

Kuwaiti House Of Sabah buy Stoke City!

Potter's fans "stunned" and "delighted" at audacious last minute £500 million purchases of Messi, Ronaldinho, Arshavin, and, weirdly, Robert Earnshaw.

Man City's surprise purchase by the Abu Dhabi group also raised a few eyebrows. As did their signing of Robinho for £30 million+. Chelsea's Roman Abramovic is said to be so disappointed at the news, having tried himself to sign Robinho for several fruitless months, he called a disgruntled Peter Kenyon in for an emergency debriefing in his underwater bunker in the Baltic Sea. His finger allegedly hovering over the Pirhanna Pool Trapdoor.

Finally,Islom Karimov the brutal Central Asian Dictator has announced he is retiring from politics and acid bathing his opponents and plans instead to buy out Bill Kenright, the cheerful Evertonian theatre empressario. The blue side of merseyside are said to be "dead chuffed like", as his laundered billions will bolster a team who only just managed to sign a crocked Saha and some Belgian who impressed in one game against Liverpool as the transfer window thankfully slammed shut and became airtight for another few months.

Can you spot the lies from the reality???!!!

Thursday, 28 August 2008

Liverpool fluke it (again)

Liverpool somehow found a way passed a "courageous" Liege team last night, with Dirk Kuyt providing a very late winner.

This result is really one of the litany of Liverpool last gasp wins/escapes. It seems every season Liverpool conspire to make the results as close as possible. This makes for high drama, and helps explain the clubs appeal beyond the permed confines of Merseyside.

There is a top 10 but because of the constraints of time ie I do this blog while pretending to work- I'm going to concentrate on just three.

Liverpool's Top 3 European Seatedgers:

3) Madrid 0 Liverpool 1.

Alan Kennedy scores in the 82 minute.

2) Deportivo Alaves 4 Liverpool 5

I am so glad I went to the pub to watch this one. I have a prize for anyone who can remember, without googling, who scored the winner.

1) AC Milan 3 Liverpool 3

Liverpool were 3 0 down to a good Milan side at half time, I almost left the pub but stayed to giggle at scouser carnage and shattered dreams. In the canon of greatest comebacks of all time.

Tuesday, 26 August 2008

Did anyone else see the olympic send off?

Johnson: How much is this going to cost?

Boris Johnson revelling in the great folding and unfurling of the ceremonial Olympic tablecloth. Ken Livingstone must have been shitting blood as he hissed to himself "it should have been me there!".

Oddly enough Britain chose to transport the Olympic message onwards towards London in the form of The Last (and only) Red Convertible Routemaster bus. A strange red contraption with legendary handling, and a roof that peels back to reveal none other than David Beckham and Jimmy Page on demand, as well as weird plastic models of famous British landmarks. The only thing missing was a miniature Stonehenge and dancing midgets. It predictably arrived late into the Birds Nest stadium, much to the consternation of the awaiting all-singing all-dancing Big Issue vendors with umbrellas,(assembled especially for the occasion by none other than Sebastian Coe) who, in the style of contemporary dance, rushed to enter all at once only to discover the doors had jammed. "Can you move down please". They then prostrated themselves on the walls of the vehicle, and enacted some Bosch like rite as Bejing moshed to the strains of Whole Lotta Love. Surreal does not even begin to cover it. Shite is not sufficient either. 'Best of British' probably has it cornered.

Anyway, as he waved folded, and unfurled, the ceremonial Olympic tablecloth you could see Boris' horrible doll like shark eyes calculating. "How much is this going to cost?", and he forced a false smile, before being lost once again in the magic of the moment. Roll on 2012.

Thursday, 21 August 2008

I didn't see England play last night

But I see the scoreline is 2-2. Call me neutral but is that not too bad a result against the Czech Republic? they are a good team. Sure it is the sort of game England should hope to win, but equally, it is the sort of game you will draw or lose sometimes too. These Czechs are no mugs.

Or did England play really, really, badly? And were lucky to get off with a draw?

Wednesday, 20 August 2008

what is up with Sue Ryder Barker's microphone?

That handsfree sponge microphone she wears on her face? It looks like some kind of growth. Why is no else wearing a growth like microphone?
What has Gabby Yorath done with her hair? It looks great.

Leaving aside important matters like these for a moment- haven't Argentina done well. Felicitaciones chicos. They have reached the Olympic final and I totally expect my pre-competition favourites to duly dispatch of Nigeria.

This generation of Argentine footballers are seriously talented. They are akin to england's so called golden generation. Here's hoping that unlike england this group of players pull their fingers out their arse and actually win a major trophy. Or maybe you aren't all hoping that, maybe instead you are all hoping that they crash and burn and fail to deliver. Whatever. As you were.

Dale Argentina!

PS- I used to live in Argentina- I'm allowed to like them.

Monday, 18 August 2008

David Moyes is widely credited to have

'sown silk purses from sow's ears' at Goodison Park. And while this might be a bit harsh on some talented players- Cahil, Yakubu, and Arteta being some- the overall analysis is accurate. Moyes has proved a canny manager, one of the best, and Everton have kicked above their weight. But for how much longer?

Despite relative success when compared to other premiership teams the closed season has seen a grand total of NO SIGNINGS on the transfer market. Everton are without new faces. Meanwhile Everton warhorses, like Carlsely and Johnson, have moved onto to pastures new. So a threadbare squad, that struggled to deliver when key personnel were missing last year, is now even thinner. Oh dear.

Just what else Moyes can achieve, when the squads around him are strengthening, is open to debate. Take this weekend's result against Blackburn- Everton eventually succumbed to 3-2. It was a good game by all reports. But this is just the sort of game Everton would have won last season, and failing that they would certainly have salvaged a point. Under Moyes' tenure Everton have made a habit of winning tight games, and if a few of these start running against them we could see the Toffees providing backbone to the other half of the table this season.

So new faces at Goodison would inject life and vigour into the squad, create a bit more competition for first team places. And as a unit Everton lack nothing but creativity in the middle of the park. New signings could brings this too. Without fresh faces I fear we could see this ship on the Mersey begin to sink.

What is more, having achieved what he has, if I were David Moyes, and there was not even one new signing by the close of the transfer window- I'd quit. How can any ambitious manager move a club forward without any transfer kitty?

Thursday, 14 August 2008

League Prediction

One area of controversy here, the rest is guess work.

Man U
Villa ?!
Man City
West Ham
West Brom

At last! some football to speak of

fuck transfer sagas. fuck michael phelps. fuck the south african cricket team. football is back, not that it ever went away.


Steve Mclaren's team got off to a losing start in Europe last night. Despite this they created some good chances, befitting of one of the leading teams in one of Europe's leading football nations. It all went to Mclaren's head, so accustomed had he become to watching lacklustre England displays. When asked in a post match press conference if his teams good performance was evidence that he had outwitted Wenger, he replied that he had. Yes, outwitted him him so thoroughly that he ended up losing 2-0. His rival managers in the dutch league will be hoping he 'outwits' them all season then.


Liverpool somehow got through an away game with Standard Liege with only a 0-0 scoreline. Having seen a perfectly legitimate goal disallowed the Belgian team then missed a penalty, and had another good chance cleared. Word is that Liverpool were 'lucky'. We may well ask- when was the last time Liverpool were on the receiving end of an 'unlucky' refereeing decision?

Tuesday, 29 July 2008

More Cricket

England today named their squad to face South Africa tomorrow in the third test at Edgbaston. Despite some excellent batting Stuart Broad has been dropped, but then he has been looking tired recently, and his bowling has become increasing innocuous. Steve Harnison, a man whose career faltered just as it seemed to be unstoppable, failed to make the final 11 despite his inclusion in the squad. Paul Collingwood returns, and will hope his grit and know how will see his form improve with the bat. Tim Ambrose maintains his place behind the stumps, but is batting at a more appropriate number 8.

England's 4 man attack looks a tasty proposition, and the Proteas will need to continue to show excellent judgment and patience with the bat. Ryan Sidebottom, returning from injury, Flintoff, and Panesar, all have a natural economy to their game, and this will lead, one suspects, to South Africa targeting Anderson for runs. His sometimes wild, other times unplayable, hostility should complement the more controlled aggression of Flintoff and Sidebottom, and England should reap benefits. The more economic pairing of the England strike bowlers should also suit Panesar, especially if South africa decide to go after him. He is too good, and tenacious, a bowler to be batted out of the game. the Edgbaston wicket shoudl suit him too. all in all the bowling England bowling line up seems a much more balanced and complete, even without a 5th specialist option. In the last test too much was expected of Flintoff in Sidebottom's absence, and he was left to carry a struggling Broad and some bloke called Pattinson who turned out for what is surely his last, as well as first, test. Either way expect South Africa to score slowly in this match, or score fast while shedding wickets.

England's batting line-up depends very much on the top 3, and arguably Bell at number 4, hanging round to build a strong foundation, which will allow for more expansive play from Flintoff and Pietrson in the middle order. Strauss and Cook have both seemed solid and looked in reasonable touch, and Bell's first test innings is an indicator of his good form. Vaughan needs to stick around until he finds some runs if england are to prosper in the event of an early dismissal of one of the opening pair. While Vaughan's captaincy is beyond criticism questions are asked of his batting with increasing frequency. He will require at least one critic silencing innings per series if he is to maintain his place on merit of batting alone for the next Ashes series.

England's faith, for the the time being, in Tim Ambrose, sees the pressure fall off him. He can play his natural game at number 8 without too much weight of expectation, as well as concentrate on his keeping. Continued disappointment with the bat should see him replaced by Prior or Foster at the end of the series however. So the pressure, for now, is off for this game only. After the selection shocks in the bowling department last match England's faith and consistency in the wicket keeping area seems strangely reassuring.

Football Oversose Tip: England Win to set up a high stakes series decider for the final test. The tandem bowling of sidebottom and Flintoff is heralded after snaffling out any opportunity for the South African batsmen to show some flair.

Cricket brains among you? any opinions?

Thursday, 17 July 2008

the hilariously named, if you are 12,

John Ola Shittu, has confirmed that Yobo's brother has been realsed by the kidnappers.

Strange, the lack of interest in this story. If Rooney's even uglier little brother had been kidnapped it would be in the news for weeks and weeks.

Wednesday, 16 July 2008

Random none football related observation.

Even if Liverpool played live on channel 5 tonight that is not worth writing about. I feel ashamed even mentioning it- it was that dull.

However, I did see this gem on the Virgin Media homepage. "Big Brother Losers!

Sex work, teaching, unemployment - we take a look at how low former BB stars have crashed since their appearance."

Teaching?! In just what kind of esteem do we hold teachers in this society of ours. Apparently they kind of parallel with sex workers and the unemployed in terms of prestige.

I'd like to reverse the logic of this statement a bit and write instead.

"Big Brother Losers!

How low BB 'stars' have plumetted since leaving their former occupations as sex workers, teachers, and the unemployed, to feature on the show"

The next step for this show should be, rather than having a public vote, introduce a homicidal maniac into their midsts, and watch them panic and turn on one another as they are picked off one by one.

Celebrities whose names sound almost like football teams

Terrence Trent Derby County
Paris St Germaine Greer
David Aston Villa
Dennis Zurich Grass Hoppers
Timothy West Ham
Fred West Bromwich Albion
Eddie Charlton Athletic
Hal Bury

Friday, 11 July 2008

I have a choice.

I either write about endless transfer sagas (lampard will he stay or will he go, ronaldo ditto)- or I diversify.

since I don't want to bore my tiny but loyal readership I am not about to start writing about contemporary poetry, marxism, or welsh history. So that leaves my other great love- cricket.

#I don't like cricket, I love it#.

I shall not wax lyrical about Kevin Pieterson here. Nor shall I quibble about Andrew Strauss' dismissal yesterday. Rather I am going to pickup on some comment made by Darren Gough concerning the illegal player saga.

I have always liked Gough. His inswinging yorkers were handy for England and Wales team at a difficult time- when the phrase middle order collapse was common (e.g "England suffered another middle order batting collapse yesterday at the hands of [insert any team name here] despite a good 70 from Graham Thorpe and a gritty 47 from Alec Stewart/Michael Atherton the team were all out for 193]. Gough also impressed in Strictly Come Dancing. His comments yesterday made me like him even more. He picked up on the inconsistency/laten racism of UK immigration.

Speaking of Azeem Rafiq he said "him and his brother have been going to school here since they were kids" I wanted him to call kids 'nippers' at this point. "they have boradoer yorkshire accents than I do." That is saying something. "you meet all these South Africans and Australians who have British passports but they've only been here about 5 mins. I don't know what the problem is."

Well said. On a day when a naturalised South African became a hero for England a kid who has lived in Yorkshire nearly all his life gets outed as being a foreigner, "who comes form Pakistan'. I hope the Home Office don't now do anything rash. If Rafiq had white skin, or came from down under, I doubt if anyone would have noticed, let alone cared.

Monday, 7 July 2008

Everton defender Jospeph Yobo's brother has been kidnapped.

in Nigeria. I know very little about this oil rich african state, other than a friend of mine got attacked by ants there, but could the kidnappers be connected to these guys? mend

Friday, 4 July 2008

Cardiff City's losses this year

5 million pounds.

Cardiff city Chairman Peter Ridsdale's bonus this year (on top of wages of half a million +) £500,000.

Nice work if you can get it.

Last night British MP' in Westminster voted down a measure to scrutinise their expenses more closely- meaning any expense for under £25 needs no receipt. And they still get up £25,000 for refurbishing their second homes in London (even if they live in outer London).

My sources say "that would pay for a lot of nurses... and rollercoasters."

Tuesday, 1 July 2008

Tennis Is Not My God either.

The crowd on Henman Hill:
A one off special guest post from the corner of my brain that becomes very interested in that lofty middle class pursuit called Tennis, for the two weeks around Wimbledon. I was, for several hours, swept up in Andy Murraymania yesterday evening. His game against Richard Gasquet was cleverly scheduled for proles like me to watch it after we returned from work. This is not quite true. While I did watch the first set with an air of expectation, I resigned myself to Murray's inevitable defeat after the first game of the second set, and had a little kip on the sofa.

I was awoken innumerable ground strokes later, thankfully not in the midst of a Khubla Khan like dream that I would then forget, by the crowd hollering in phsychosexual patriotic hysteria, as Murray broke back at the end of the third set, and then bleary eyed, jolting myself slightly, I watched him win the third set.

Firstly Murray, a talented and determined player. He is clearly a more passionate character than other stoic 'Brits' who have graced the centre court. I can't imagine Tim Henman ever getting as animated as Murray, not even at the height of orgasm, when no doubt he has a little smile to himself and rabbit punches the air, like he did every time he won a break point. In other respects he's right out of the Henman mould. A very good player,capable of scaling the walls of greatness and competing, but incapable of ever winning a grandslam, just because there are other better players around, such as Federer and Nadal. He, like Henman, has a dodgy first serve too. Having said that he played extremely well last night. Gasquet is certainly no mug. I felt sorry for him last night, having played so superbly only to be undone, in no small part, by the crowd.

And what a crowd. I am all for fervour. I am all for cheering. But the kind of people that go to the Tennis (not all of them, obviously) really, really, really, get on my tits. They cheer like they have never cheered anywhere else in their suburban little lives. And the cheering sounds wrong somehow too, it is slightly jarring, like listening to your nan trying to sing Gwen Stefani. And they often cheer at inappropriate times. There is something ever so, and I hate to be politically incorrect like this, spastic about their cheering. It is like the Sunshine Club have descended en masse upon SW11.

: (spaz voice) C'mon Andy!!

My mental image of this was further bolstered last night when the camera panned around the stadium during the change of ends. We were treated to the sight of a bucktoothed, square headed, public school Murrayite wrapped in the flag, looking delirious on jingoism and the occasion.

Apparently having 15,000 flag waving imbeciles, and a plastic enhanced Cliff Richard, shouting your name and frothing over each other, while Sue Rider, [edit]I mean Barker[/edit] slides around on her seat, helps you win matches. I can't see how. Maybe this is what separates me from the demi-gods though, and explains why I am an office worker rather than a sports star.

But yeah, having said all that, and made my position on Tennis crystal, I do have to admit it was tremendously exciting last night. A great match. And if you can't beat 'em join. At least in this.

I hope Andy Murray wins it.

Monday, 30 June 2008

good old John Motson.

He, as ever, did OK. Mark Lawrenson can be quite acerbic sometimes too. 'Mottie' did make me laugh last night though. With his stange insistence on referring to the Runners Up as losers. They may have lost the final but for Christ's sake-they came 2nd! That ain't so bad.

'And the German players look gutted, they are in no hurry to collect their losers medals.'

'Ah, here the come now, here come the losers.'

Then Quuen started to play over the tannoy, and as Freddie Mercury belted out "NO TIME FOR LOSERS " The camera cut away from jubilant España and towards Lehamann looking jealous as hell, and Schweinsteiger looking gutted.

Also strange was the endless repetition of the pundit's line "this is the worst German team in years." Sure, they are not of the class of previous years, but ever since Germany lost 5-1 to England half a decade ago commentators have been saying the same thing. For such a rubbish team they have done rather well one thinks. And they shoud be very proud of these so called 'losers' medals.

Football Overdose would also like to thank the A-Level English Language students from Bury St Edmonds for their wonderfully titled "Month In a Life Of A Fly At The European Champoinships 2008" that closed out the BBC's coverage last night. Poetry indeed.

Here is the first draft the prodcers rejected...

"I only lived for a month,
But what a month,
Unfortunately I was too busy watching football to remember to procreate
And my species is now dead
But what the hell
At least Italy or Germany did not win it"

Friday, 27 June 2008

the final is here, almost

and everyone, except the Germans of course, wants Spain to win. Europe is unified in its desire to see 'anyone but Germany'. Spain have been great. Not only have they demonstrated the attacking panache you would always expect from them, but they have proved solid defensively. Reducing Russia and Italy to a handful of shots on goal. solid in all areas, and with a keeper of Billy the Fish like agility, Spain are the clear favourites.

But never count out Germany. That old chesnut. Its true. Germany have been uncharacteristically inconsistent in these championships-after a convincing win against Poland, they lost to Croatia and struggled passed Austria, before impressing against Portugal, and yet while they seemed woeful against the Turks, they are surely due to another impressive game in the final. So everything is normal. Either team coud win it.

And now on to Turkey, who completely won me over the other night. I was quite moved by the end, which is weird. I was thinking about how shit the Turks are spoken about by many Germans, always going on about the "Turkish problem", and how the endeavour and enterprise they demonstrated, reflected their people in such a good, and largely accurate, light. They did themselves proud. I for one have been won over to Turkish football- in a way I wasn't by Greece's football 4 years earlier, when that nation played the triumphing underdog.

And then to Russia, who while being a pretty useful team, were not as good as everyone thought. In the opinion of football overdose their spectacular win over Holland can be put down not only to an excellent collective performance, especially going forward, but also to the briefing and insight of Gus Hiddink- who surely knew the dutch players and tactics inside and out. This is not to detract from Russia though-they are at least as good as England. The sooner the English climb down off that silly looking patriotic hobby horse, and realise they are not that good just because they play in the filthy rich premiership, the better.

Finally, I enjoyed the 5 live commentary the other day, when it accompanied the pictures. When that power cut kicked in. Can't we have them do the telly commentary all the time? they were soooooo much better.

Wednesday, 25 June 2008

tomorrow's potential (rubbish) headlines

TURKISH DELIGHT (for the umpteenth time)
SOUR KRAUTS (if Germany lose and there is an air of controversy)
ONE FLUKE OVER THE EAGLES' NEST (admittedly this would work better if Turkey had a last gasp lucky win over Nigeria)
GERMANY SPELL IT OUT IN LEHMMANN'S TERMS (if they win on penalties)

Turkey's magic carpet is still flying high after last night's....

There was to be no Arabian nights style twist as Turkey's fairytale came grinding to a halt last night....

Turkey pulled the rug out from under Germany's campaign last night...

The ruthlessely efficent German footballing machine annexed Turkey last night...

Actually, surely no-one is daft anough to write these, apart form me... we shall see.

Monday, 23 June 2008

My new favourite footballer:

Toni. Good ole Tone. Toni the guy from down the pub, big Tony, il barrista, Megatone (proud sponsors of boca Juniors?!). How do you say Couldn't Hit A Barn Door in Italian? Toni 'good in the air'. NOTE: He doesn't 'have a good touch for a big man' he is just 'good in the air'. I eagerly await a compilation of his misses in this championship on youtube. By the end of last night's match the commentators had stopped exclaiming TONI THORUGH ON GOAL TONI! and reverted to muttering 'a ball through the middle but there is only Toni there to collect it'. Poor Toni. The highlight of last night was Big Tone's attempted bicycle kick. It was like watcing the tallest kid in your year trying his hand, and feet, at ballet or contemporary dance. As he pirouhetted with the grace of a wilderbeest on stilts he contrived to miss the ball by, literally, metres, before wrapping his back leg round at an impossible angle, and then falling over, his front leg flailing in spastic homage as to what the manouvere should have looked like. Toni, we will miss you. Not since Peter Crouch has there been a player so blessed with inadvertent comic potential. Call it the curse of a tall footballer.

Despite a love of all things Italian (apart from fascism, mummy's boys, and roman catholicism of course- these three things are not necessarily linked) I for one was glad to see the back of Italy last night. They are the only team in the world who can plausibly think '0-0 with 15 minutes to go- everything is going to plan'. I blame the Romans. Who, in warfare, were famous for withstanding the charge, waiting for their opponents to tire, then decimating them with a sucker punch. Those tactics live on, in the form of Italian football, to this very day. Thankfully the fickle god of penalties (or godess) swapped alliegances again last night. Good for the rest of us, who, while we like the Italians, and are not beyond being jealous of them, like to watch teams actually try to score during 90 minutes from time to time.

Friday, 20 June 2008

Steve Mclaren will no longer be seen

doing his best Robert Carlisle dancing in the job centre queue impression- he will take his P45, tattered reputation and, presumably, his umbrella, to dutch club, tween.. tewete, endieslaven... I can't remember. But apparently they are good and almost in the champions League 3rd round. I will however stake money on them not qualifying for the the 4th under Mclaren.

Meanwhile Roman Abramovic is already regreting signing scolari as- after Portugal's failure to overcome familiar over achievers Germany. The notoriously fickle owner of Chelsea is now wishing he had courted the german coach.

And finally, my perenially childish humour was in full force the other night as I continuiosuly got the giggles as the commentators kept pronouncing Russian star Zhirkov as Jerkoff.

Thursday, 12 June 2008

Ronaldo and 104 nurses:

According to recent press reports Man Utd are willing to sell Ronaldo for £75 million pounds. To but this into context £75, or a cheap new telly, is 0.0001% of £75million. Put another way £75 x 2=£150 which is roughly the pre-tax monthlysalary of a nurse in Argentina, if that nurse works in a public hospital. So Ronaldo's value as a raw footballing commodity is worth 50,000 months of labour of a fully qualified nurse. Considering that nurses work maybe for 480 months over a lifetime Ronaldo is valued at 104 nurses working for their entire working lives-before he even kicks a ball for Real Madrid.

I shall honourably leave you all to deduce your own moral or political conclusions from all this, that is if I have got my math more or less right.

[insert naughty nurse picture here]

Tuesday, 3 June 2008

the euro venues

inspired by the good people of Some People Are On The Pitch here is Football Overdose's take on the venues for the European championship. AS I've been busy with other stuff and it has been my birthday weekend I have taken an age to write this and it still is not finished, but yeah, here is part of it-

It is all to easy to be dismissive of 'boring' Austria and Switzerland. But to do so is to ignore the strategic importance of these european states, that has seen them smelt together french, Germanic, Slavic, and Italian cultures, among others- and give them a peculiar Alpine twist. It also overlooks the bare facts that these countries between them boast some of the most picturesque landscapes anywhere in the world.

So here goes, what to make of...


Pronounced Inchhhbruck by the natives who speak a demi-peculiar German dialect, and a lot of Italian too, Inchhhbruck has apparently been populated since the stone age. By the time the bronze age came along the ancients had tribed themselves together and and had their own special identity and become a people that inhabited the Tyrol, of which Inchhbruck is now the capital. Even now the residents of the Tyrol, have a distinct sense of cultural autonomy, in fact some of them, especially in the north of Italy, want there own state.

Inchhhbruck is located in a really handy geographical point to cross the Alps, as such it became very rich with all the trade channeled through there. These days tourism is huge, as are winter sports. These two points are clearly connected. Skiers are given alpha privileges across town and venerated somewhat- the town has hosted the winter Olympics twice. It also has a huge population of students- the density of tourists and students probably means it is a good place to get laid.

More lately the first world war saw some horrid battles fought among the mountain peaks surrounding the area, as the two sides bedded down among the snow and ice. And there was a concentration camp built nearby too around WW2, a sad testimony to fascism.

Interestingly many residents of Innsbruck, to revert to classical spelling, have as strong a traditional hatred of the Germans as the British, if not more so.


The history of Vienna is redolent with conflict, culture, and intrigue. The Celts, Barbarians, Romans, and Ottomans have all fought it out for this central European hotbed. Even the mongols had their eyes on it at one time and had plans to sweep through on horses to do a bit of raping and pillaging.

More recently the city's back streets and swanky hotels saw the shady goings on of the Cold War and James Bond-style espionage. Throughout history, therefore, Vienna has been a western stronghold, a bastion of the west against the rest.

No wonder, then, that culture, or what we think of as western high culture - the opera and all that - has become so integral to its identity. All the intellectual and cultural highbrow activity mark it out as a place of importance: a place worth preserving in the western mind set.

Loads of composers have lived and produced there, the classical big guns of Strauss and Mozart among them, attracted like artistic types always are to throbbing and diverse cities.

Statues and busts of the great and good dot Stadtpark in the middle of town. More recently a youthful Adolf Hitler would stalk the Viennese streets, inspired by its triumphal Aryan heritage.

Vienna is really a living museum of the west, stately and mysterious. An historic venue for that comparatively small matter of the European Cup, it also has the world's oldest zoo. Oh, and the Viennans make a delicious apple strudel.

Tuesday, 27 May 2008

Review of the Year

As Christ said. It is finished. Only it is never finished. There are friendly internationals to be played, European championships to be contended, transfer sagas top unfold. But in other respects it is finished. All the domestic titles have been handed out for this year. And Football Overdose is giving out its awards:

Begrudging Award for Best Team- Everyone hates Manchester Utd, but hate them as you might you have to admit that part of this is based on the fact that they are a very good, very successful team. All of us who hoped that the Glazer empire would ruin Old Trafford were sadly mistaken. Utd in short- great keeper, great defence, promising and increasingly accomplished midfield, fantastic attack. While some will cite Ronaldo as the key to their success that is overlooking tat they played pretty damn good in encounters when he didn't feature. So yeah, well done Man U. Fuckers.

Award for Most Vindicated Manager of the Year. this award is shared between two managers- the first being Steve Bruce, who after beg treated harshly by Birmingham City was shipped off to Wigan, or hotfooted it depending on how you look at it. The two teams then swapped places, with relegation threatened Wigan climbing to the lower flights of the midtable, and Birmingham slipping, late in the season, into the bottom three. With accusations of financial impropriety in the air, and soft pornographers at the helm, it looks like a a bad time all round at Birmingham this year. Steve Bruce, on the other hand, can feel smug. Well done Steve Bruce.

Paul Jones also gets this award. Most of us have forgotten that he was once a respected premier league manager doing a reasonable job at perennial relegation flirts Southmapton , but his career never got over the allegations (thrown out of court) of child abuse, and he was effectively sacked so Saints could hire qusi mystic guru Glenn Hoddle Cardiff City reaching the FA Cup final is surely a vindicating moment for this solid and talented coach.

Worst Transfer Of the Year- James Mcfadden , a gifted yet unreliable player, was moaning that he was not getting enough first team action at Everton. Apparently the Toffees were not recognising his talent. So he left. for Birhimingham, flatterd by the attention of Alex Mcleish. He will ply his trade in the Championship next year. Everton will be in UEFA cup.

Most unexpected Sacking Of the Year- take your pick between Mourinho at Chelsea and Erikkson at Man City. If ever there were two coaches whose jobs I thought were safe it was these two. Further proof of football's staus as a fickle mistress.

Biggest Twat of the year- Steve Mclaren

Nearly Man/Men Of the Year- While this could go to the entire Barnsley team it goes to Avram Grant and Chelsea, who so nearly won three titles this year but did not win one. Avram Grant will be back. Everyone wonders who will replace him- choose between Hiddink and Billic at this point.

Manager Of the Year- goes to Harry Redknapp. Pompie won the FA Cup, did well in the prem, and he showed guile in the transfer market- releasing Benyani when they did looks like a stroke of genius. He also had to contend with police allegations just as was getting into the frame for the vacant England Manager job. A special mention goes to Ramos of Spurs, who brought precious silverware and turned round a dreadful start to Spurs' season, and David Moyes, who has produced a threatening and cohesive unit that kicked above its weight to finish 5th.

Comeback of the year- this goes not Kevin Keegan, whose comback to St James Park was as dramatic yet disappointing, but to Fulham and Roy Hogdson. How Fulham avoided relegation is a study in gestalt -being more of the sum of your parts.

Award for the team least likely to win anything award- goes to Derby who were dismally, and consistently, dreadful all season, rarely looking in stride or in their depth.

Mediocrity Award of the season- there are a few contenders for this as no-one really stands out. Bolton deserve it, as do Sunderland. But they err too much on the poor side- so it has to go to West Ham.

Quote of the year- An honourable mention for Rio Ferdinand who hoped to retain his place in the sideboard even if he had to pass the mantlepiece to Steven Gerrard. Unsurprisingly the winning quote comes from Kevin Keegan during a tactics talk to Newcastle "Arsenal are a good passing team, we are just going to have to pass better than them." Tactics indeed.

Best non top 4 player of the year award- I don't know. You tell me who the classiest act was outside of the Big 4.

And that is it. One last thing, football Overdose looks forward to seeing Dean Windass in the premiership again next year.

Thursday, 22 May 2008

Thank fuck that's over.

Way back in the day, when Man U somehow contrived to score not one but two last gasp goals against Bayern Munich there was widespread revellry. Not only had an English team finally won the European Cup again, but we'd beaten the Germans too. A few years later Liverpool somehow overcame a 3-0 half time score to make the comeback of comebacks in possibly the greatest final ever. Even Everton fans were won over by it. Last night's final offered us none of this stirring drama, even if it did manage to be quite exciting none-the-less. Here are the football overdose highlights:

Frank Lampard dedicating another goal to his mother.
Ronaldo tumbling over like an unbalanced chess piece everytime anyone came within tackling distance.
Drogba also tumbling over like an unbalanced chess piece everytime anyone came within tackling distance.
Wayne Rooney, england's great white hope dope, being substituted.
Ronaldo missing a penalty, again.
Hardman John Terry, Chelseaman, missing a penalty and falling over at the same time.
ronaldo sobbing in relief into the turf that his penalty miss wuyld not cost themthe title.
Alex Fergusson's ice cream man suit. Make mine a 99 with hazelnuts and chocolate sauce. (I can't find a pic of this)

But yes, well done Man U, comiserations chelsea and Avram Grant (that will be the last we see of him).

OK- soon to come the fotball oversdose review of the year, and then its the Euros...
Make sure you visit the Onion Bag soon and check out all there Eurotacular material- follow the lnk over there>>>>

Tuesday, 20 May 2008

In preparation for the European Cup final clash

between Man U and Chelsea the Russian government have re-opened the archipelagos. With 50,000 rowdy fans expected to descend upon the Russian capital special security measures have been taken. It is thought that the re-opening of the remote Siberian prison outposts, which do not have Sky TV, or indeed duvets, will be a sufficient deterrent for potential hooligans to stay on the straight and narrow and not fcuk da p'lice. Anyone seen taunting the Russian anti-terrorism enforcement who will be patrolling (most of whom are more familiar with militant checynans than Terry Christian sounding football supporters), pissing in public, or chanting in an unruly manner, will be sent directly to the tundra, and made to mine salt, with just the sexual attention of 'Igor' for entertainment on the long, long, winter nights. After being given a good kick-in.

"We just want them to come and enjoy the game, the vodka, and the women." said a spokesman for Russian tourism. "Minni Driver's character in Goldeneye was not a caricature!" Insulting Russian women everywhere.

Meanwhile Edwin Van De Saar has been commenting on the literal meaning of English words. "When I first that we were to 'clash' with Chelsea I was puzzled." Said the polylinguist. "For me 'clash' is the sound that saucepans make when they are struck together. That this word should have such diverse usage and connotations is indeed an example of the endless curiosity and beauty of the English language."

Also revealed today was the level of debt enjoyed by Chelsea is over 500 million pounds, the majority of which is in the form of a private, interestless debt, to club chairman Roman Abramovic. Nice. This allows Chelsea to operate at a loss. What was not revealed was that Abramovic and his minions could, technically, use this debt 'owed' to them, to secure more debt themselves. And then use this debt to secure more debt, which in turn could be used to secure more debt, and so forth, all underwritten against his vast personal wealth. Amazing. The scale of his empire, and how it could be used, is devastating. I'd love to see Roman Abramovic take the chair on Martin Lewis' money saving show It Pays To Watch. "yes roman, you have millions in the bank, but do you use a cash back credit card? how much do you pay on energy bills? have you thought of swapping energy provider?" To which Roman could reply "when I pay my energy bills I make myself profit!" Dazzling, baffling, and corrupt, all in one go.

Monday, 19 May 2008

Found in a disused barn somewhere in the

Whirral Valley- Cherie Blair's Actual Diaries:

"When I first met Tony we were at a party. I will not tell you whose party, as she does not speak her name. It was the annual festival known as the gathering of the acolytes. I met two men. Denny and Tony. Denny spent the evening drunk, drenched is his own cognac, aftershave, and bluster. Tony was increasingly amorous. We slipped out the back and took the bus home. He whispered to me, "I wish to destroy socialism, are you game love?" and how we cackled. Intoxicated in the banal ambition that shaped us, the post fascist future we imagined after thatcher, seeded in the name of the left, we fucked like hounds all night, he even got stuck in me, I've grinned this way ever since. He made my clit throb like Babylonia, as a multiheaded whore, envisioning the blood caked over his hands, his face, his tongue and teeth, oily blood, a nation in flames, a people in fear, whole towns erased in the lies we could unleash together, hypocrisy and mutilation flavoured. Chuckled on the daily role call as we made millions on the back of secret hedge funds, and played out triumphal hedonism as the property markets supported our horrid boon. We were so sure of ourselves, our gifts and charms. Made real in the dead of an American night, when we gathered to the sound of drums and bleating, and knelt to dumbassed starspangle, lord of the flies, head of goat, cock of horse, tail of a lizard, prehensile proportions, disguised in wide brim suits and body armour. We sucked his cock. He prayed together. We became friends. He offered his assurances. Unleash the inferno on his chosen country, and the good times roll. Sleep on a mattress of vile profits, and the world will blink, then forget, most of them. Never mind the Rubicon, or the infants headless in the Bosporus. It would be Tony and I forever, like a political posh and becks, in the stars, encapsulated in hypnotic lucerferic half light, forever. I am laughing at you all.

She then writes a bit about football.

Friday, 9 May 2008

Keegan in sensible outburst shock:

the footballing world blinked slowly yesterday as Kevin Keegan declared, something along the lines of, "Newcastle have no chance of breaking into the Big 4". A startlingly realistic observation from a most unlikely source that confirmed what every other football fan knew long ago, about the same time as Graeme Souness took the reins. Keegan even broke a lifetime's linguistic habit and instead referred to Newcastle as a "great club" rather than a "big club". Thereby confirming what every football fan knew, well, about 50 years ago. For some reason the media are reporting that club owner Mike Ashley has taken umbrage at Keegan's comments and has summoned him down to London for 'important talks', where, football overdose expects, Keegan will have the strict limits of his transfer budget spelt out to him. Mike Ashley will no doubt be saying something along the lines of "we'll be paying over the odds for mediocrity, like we always have."

In my head the meeting will end with Keegan saying:

"It's going to take time, a whole lot of precious time, it going to take patience and time, to do it right now. It's going to take money, a whole lot of spending money, it's going to take plenty of money, to do it, to do it, to do it, to do it, to do it, to to it right child, I mean Mike."

Tuesday, 6 May 2008

the promotion contenders

I would like to do a thorough in depth proper article about the teams in the play-offs. I can't. I have not the time to research a piece properly. So those of you that like subjective meanderings will be pleased. Anyone here for proper copy on this subject should leave now. Which of the following would Football Overdose like to see gift 6 points to the majority of premiership clubs next season.

Bristol City

Hooray for them. I lived in the West Country for years, my mum works in Bristol, and because of this local connection Football Overdose would love to see them promoted. Also, my sister in law's brother in law's son plays for City. And I like idea of having, very, extended family in the premiership.


Even if Watford are on the tube they aren't a proper London club. But Elton John will be pleased. They are sure to fulfil the same bracket as West Brom, ie- they play good football but don't win enough matches- should they be promoted.

Crystal Palace

Neil Warnock is a good manager. But he is disliked by many. He's never done anything that controversial but seems to get right on everyone's tits.

Palace hope to cement their position as yoyo club par excellence.


God knows. I thought they played rugby league. Is Dean Windass playing for them? Is John Prescott a supporter? Did he ever regurgitate a meat pie at half time? Did the club celebrate promotion in the infamous artalt drinking den Spiders?

How to describe the last week of the premiership:

The premiership is going all the way to the wire.
Both teams are scrapping all the way.
Neither team is able to land the knock out blow.
Scrambling towards the finish post.
Dragging themselves over the line.
Preparing themselves for one last push.
Last ditch effort.
Salvage pride.
Chase down glory.
Come out on top of the dogfight.
Prove to their supporters that Europe is a genuine possibility next season.
Give their all.
Ensure european football next season.
Secure the elusive 'X' spot.
Reach safety on the final day of the season.
Last gasp
Houdini act
In order to avoid Championship football next season.
Despite midtable security.
All to play for.

Goes fucking on and on.

Wednesday, 30 April 2008

They may turn into a gang rapists collective

after a couple of shandies at the Christmas bash. They might attack Chelsea pensioners with clubs after losing in West London. In fact, Alex Ferguson may well have crucified impertinent young journo's upside down for asking obvious, if upsetting, questions, but what the hell- didn't they play well last night. While menacing going forward, especially the relentless porteño Carlos Tevez, the Red Devils harried, hurried, and tackled there way all the way to the final last night where they are bound to play Liverpool. I say bound to. Nothing is certain. But the law of impending cliche dictates that one of the Reds will be victorious in Red Square. Having said that, Chelsea, Russia, Abramovic, has a nice ring to it too. Chelsea are Moscow's second team. If, and it is a big if, Chelsea do win tonight expect lots of tittle tattle speculation pieces, as to the corruptibility of Russian officials, in the build up to the final. Stories will focus on Abramovic's Jewish roots, his incredible wealth, and the historical bias of Russian linesman. So whatever the outcome we are certain to have one or two of the following in the coming weeks.

If Liverpool win- a succession of 'red' cliches and talk of the rekindling of the old rivalry between the two old enemies.

If Chelsea win- Is the final fixed, what is the extent of Abramovic's mysterious power? Could he really influence the final?

Which do you prefer?

One last thing: In 96 Fifa released a football console game. It sported an irritating commentary feature that ensured John Motson would spout the same six phrases randomly throughout each game until you either broke your jopypad in rage or selected COMMENTARY:OFF. David Pleat actually came out with one of these phrases last night. In testimony to his unerringly imbecilic ramblings. "good variation, mixing the short and the long." The twat.

Tuesday, 29 April 2008

The final throes of another season:

The footballing year shifts up a gear now, and for some, like Man Utd, every game is significant, and has preorgasmic intensity. For others, out of the hunt for Europe cups, and titles, the season's efforts have again proved to be squandered on nothing but fantasy. There is no victory at the end of the sweat. That is sport for you. Many live in hope of ardent and elusive glory, and the sacrifice that makes the dream worthwhile. The rest of us get our rocks off watching. Not that footballing stars sacrifice that much these days. Not for them the fruits of Sparta or self righteous Stoic pleasures, as in days gone by. No, in fact footballers exist in a decadence vacuum of classical proportions, or so the media would have us believe. Footballers are portrayed as living in a world powered and made real by hype, flash bulb, gasoline, high fashion, orgiastic, dice rolling, high jinx. Which makes our oggling into the football shaped fishbowl that much more pleasing, and our submersion in the games that much more vicarious. In the words of Depeche Mode we "just can't get enough." In the words of Murdoch's brainfreezing, bile inducing, cock twitching, tabloid minion The Sun, edited by the impish and despicable Rebekah Wade- "We Love It." We should be thoroughly ashamed of ourselves for taking even the slightest interest in any of it. Hey-ho.

So convinced are Man U of their current footballing virulence that they were actually sure, almost certain, that they could travel down to Stamford Bridge, last weekend and pretty much seal the deal on this year's premiership title. Possible granted, but I can certainly imagine there are easier games against, say Wigan, or Derby, where one would hope to clinch the league. As far as league clinching venues go Stamford Bridge is pretty low down the list really. I am not too surprised Man U lost. And that it was such a close game. Equally, I would not have been surprised had they won. Footabll's like that. I am surprised though about the manner of their defeat. The pram upsetting petulance of it all. Ferguson's riling against officialdom, like he does every time Utd lose. Rio Ferdinand attacking inanimate objects and female stewards, and senior Manchester Utd players embroiled in post match fisticuffs. Pathetic really. And maybe not the best way to prepare for a crucial CHAMPIONS LEAGUE encounter against Barcelona. A game, which were Utd to lose, would mean they only have a chance of 'winning one title this season'. As if that was so bad. Modern day footballing success of course is measured in doubles and trebles, such are the expectations of the Big 4. Winning, or mostly winning, is simply not good enough.

Avram Grant can be be disappointed however that despite his side winning, and now having every chance of a premiership title that was written off a few weeks back, no-one has really said anything about his job being any safer, concentrating instead on Man U's post match shenanigans.

Thursday, 24 April 2008

Ronaldo's Penalty Miss- Skill or Fluke?

Here is what Alex Ferguson had to say “There’s no fluke about it, I see him practice them all the time in training” .

Wednesday, 23 April 2008

And this season's award for most undeserved

equaliser goes to.... drumroll... Chelsea!

What a delicious, cruel, twist of fate to concede a potentially crucial goal, so late on, having relatively easily seen off such lacklustre opposition for 94 minutes. Chelsea somehow dragged out this unmerited draw. And it could well be enough to see them through to the final.

The result is something of a conundrum for Chelsea too. For while they would certainly have settled for 1-1 before the game, they played so poorly last night that none of the pressure will have been lifted on Avram Grant. Indeed, to see such a collection of players defending so deep, and banging so many long balls forward, was bewildering.

It is 'results that count though innit'. And if Chelsea can play so badly against a team as good as Liverpool and still somehow walk away with a draw, then at their peak you are looking at a very dangerous team. Even champions in the waiting. Liverpool are not beaten yet however, and have comeback in Europe from shit thrice deeper than this. So, to coin a phrase which I am sure features elsewhere, it is all poised nicely for the 2nd leg at Stamford Bridge

Tuesday, 22 April 2008

Which football club goes by the nickname

of the Doonhammers?

Why, it is Queen Of the South of course. Who, after a great cup run in Scotland will feature in next years UEFA cup, thereby joining the canon of clubs with unusual names who have featured in this competition. Who knows, they have the outside chance of glory, and may get drawn against the likes of Bayern Munich, or Juventus. More likey however they will land Molotov Tblisi, or XY Zangervoort in teh frist rund qualifiers. Here's to them though! Reaching Europe is a triumph for any small club.

Queen Of the South aquired their bibilical name after poet and freemason David Dunbar coined the term to describe Dumfries during the 1857 election campaign. The rather grand moniker stuck, and when 3 Dumfries clubs merged post war 1919 it was adopted by the new football club. That's another mystery solved then.

No googling now- a quiz- returning to jaokes made last year. Which of these teams featured in European competion this year, and which names have I invented? ...

Copenhagen HFC
Sparta Muscavak
Lokomotiv Moskva
Auschfremmen 06
Dinamo Tblisi
Menderfuntzen Zonder
Zlata Jkyckyczk
Groser Koln
Santa Coloma
Reykjavik Jazzprov

Football later- but first my real favourite sport-

Royal Bating. Prince William Saxa Coburg Goethe Spencer was sent out on do-gooding duty yesterday after his stint of state sponsored big ticket joyriding in a helicopter landed him in hot water with the queen. As punishment for his abusive idiocy the king in waiting was sent to accompany his brother on a visit to a military hospital where they hooked up with a Royal Marine who had lost both legs treading on a landmine on Afghanistan. As this would counter the negative publicity garnered by his reckless stunt.

Shorty before leaving for the hospital the prince was, allegedly, heard to strop at the queen "Wait till I'm King, granny! Then I won't have to do this crap."

Prince Harry, who is rewriting his dire public image on the back of military service did not tread on any landmines while in Afghanistan, and still has the use of all his limbs, when sober. Some guys get all the luck. Some get born into the landed and ruling classes, and enjoy living a life of luxury at the expense of the British taxpayer. Others step on a landmine, and then get patronised by toffs.

"You're the real hero" spurted Harry. Who maybe is not so eager to get back in the frontline now.

"Could you do any handbrake skids in that?" 'Jibed' William, to a young soldier crippled for life, in a wheelchair. And everyone guffawed.

They walk the line those Princes. The thin line between being patronising imbeciles, and having the common touch. It won't rub with me, I am impervious to the hypnotism of pomp and would find offence in pretty much anything they said, as they 'block my sunshine'. I would like to know if the amputee enjoyed the joke though.

Friday, 18 April 2008

Avram Grant gave a very terse press conference

last night after his team's 1-0 win over Everton. "Do you have a message for the fans Avram?"

"No message" And everyone waited for him to carry on speaking. But he didn't. There was an awkward silence filled only by the murmuring of journalists and the occasional camera flash.

What he was thinking of course was 'why yes, I have a message. You are a bunch of insufferable cunts with overly demanding expectations. Not all of, but some of you. With your Uncle Avram this, and your Uncle Avram that, and the team are just not playing well enough opinions you overheard or read somewhere. Most of you have never even been to Stamford Bridge. You cunts.'

But he didn't say that. Diplomatically. Wish he had. He may well also think, not without entitlement, that could the fans and the board support him at least until it becomes obvious they will not win a title this year. Chelsea should win a title every year with their resources, but n fairness to Grant they are in the hunt for two, and have made a pretty damn good fist of it in the others.

Abramovic of course is apparently disappointed with Grant, as he was with Mourinho, because the team are just not 'entertaining enough'. May I suggest he abandons football then, which is made exciting only by virtue of the long boring bits in between, which then seem intriguing rather than entertaining, and invest instead in some kind of Circus. Cirque De Soleil perhaps. They are always entertaining. Or get himself to Stringfellows or other greased up pole dancing club. That would surely be entertaining for him.

The flipside of Chelsea's pathetic wealth induced whinging would be Everton. Who are happy now just to be hunting down a UEFA Cup spot having built a team with the fraction of the resources. They regularly fail to 'entertain' but the fans don't let it bother them. This is what fans, and people like me, supporters, do. They support their team. They cheer them on. They want the best of them. And this is tempered by a weird mixture of optimism and realism. And this is it, Chelsea fans (the new Chelsea fans) are not optimistic or realistic. They have had, and have, the best roubles can buy them, and it just ain't good enough. Fuck 'em.

(PLUG: Lee at La Liga Review inspired this article with his comment below- go check out his La Liga Review website and learn something about Spanish football if you ain't already)

Monday, 14 April 2008

There is no crisis at Arsenal

There should be no crisis at Liverpool but there is. Rick Parry, despite overseeing one of Liverpool's most successful ever stints, has his card marked by at least one Texan. Presumably, as a good scouse, he is not so keen on the asset stripping that would see a quick ROI. If his sacking begins to look properly likely, rather than Daily Hate Mail reported upon, expect marches and protests and (more) death threats.

Word has it that Avram Grant is a dead man walking. Seems a bit harsh, he's done as well as could be expected following in Mourinho's 'special' footsteps, apart from the Carling Tinware result, and one wonders who exactly could replace him. My bet would be, if Croatia do REALLY well in the Euros- Slavan Billic. More likely however is Frank Rijkaard whose gallatico juggling skills are well up to speed after fucking around at Barcelona. Both these candidates, crucially, look the part, and will walk the walk. They have that rockstaresque kudos and glamour needed at Stamford Bridge these days. Both are handsome enough for Chelsea.

For what it is worth here were my predictions at the beginning of the year.

First manager to be sacked. Sammy Lee.

Man U (FA Cup and Carling Cup)
Chelsea (Champions League)
Man City
West Ham

England not to qualify for the Euros.

All in all an inaccurate, middling, and predictable litany of errors and lucky guesses so far.

I certainly did not foresee such a good year for Welsh sport. Swansea promoted. Cardiff in the FA cup final. And a Welsh grandslam in the Rugby. Neither did I in my wildest fantasies guess that Ryan Sidebottom would be transformed from county journeyman to England match winner.

Wednesday, 9 April 2008

Great game. Never a penalty though.

A decision straight from the Anfield Refs' Slush Fund.

Random observation: Rafa Benitez looks like the kind of guy who would eat a packet of peanuts in front of you but not offer you any. Avram Grant on the other hand, he is the sort of guy that would offer you half the packet.

Grant: Fancy some peanuts?

Tuesday, 8 April 2008

"Arsenal only have a chance of winning

one competition this year now" said Rafa Benitiez last night. Hoping no doubt to amass a degree of psychological pressure over Arsenal last night. Arsenal are now a bit off the pace in the premiership, and have struggled to find form post Milan, but Benitez forgot one crucial fact. Liverpool only have a chance of winning one competition this year too, havng failed magnaminously in every other competition. So it easy to imagine Wenger giving his comment the old Gallic shrug and muttering "pot-kettle-black" underneath his breath; except in French. then adding "at least we were setting the pace at christmas, and around at Easter in the premiership."

Who will win tonight? God knows. But I doubt God cares. Even if he did he would continue his well practiced habit of non-intervention in the free market. The form book says it will be a draw. And while home advantage favours Liverpool they have been unspectacular at Anfield this season so you can make optimistic predictions for Arsenal too. My advice, consult the oracle to Delphi, or toss a coin. There is that little between the two sides. If, and it is a big if but very possible none the less, it goes to penalties, I favour Arsenal as they have less English players. More than that I could not possibly say.

Monday, 7 April 2008

Man U struggled against Boro over the weekend

And Gareth Southgate should be commended for fielding a team determined not to contain, as is usually the case, but to win. I have not seen an Also Ran start with three up front against Utd for many a year. A decision perhaps made easier for Southgate by the injury inspired (or forced) pairing of O Shea and Wes Brown in defence. While reasonable players who would make the squad of any premiership team, they would struggle to make the first 11 of most, and it is fair to assume that Ferguson invested lots of the transfer kitty to avoid them both playing together in this capacity. I have a theory about defenders, that if you don't notice them for most of the match, they are having a good match. And O Shea and Wes Brown rarely enjoy quiet matches.

All this offers hope for Roma. I would be intensely surprised, but very pleased, to see them start with 3 up front come the second leg. While a full strength Utd would tear through the frailties revealed by this system any team built on the shaky defensive foundation of O Shea-Brown will be susceptible to relentless and sustained attacking play.

The English national team are trying to play more like the Italians. Let's see if an Italian club team will play more like an English club, for one night only. If they do they might just reap the benefits.

Finally a TV inspired gag.

Andrew Lloyd Webber, currently presiding over the BBC's musical talent horror cabaret 'I'll Do Anything' is sat on his throne with a look of ecstasy on his face. Off camera one can hear slurping and sucking noises and it is clear he is being orally pleasured. After an orgasmic exclamation he wriggles back in his throne and says contentedly- "Yes, you could be a Nancy."

The camera pans down to reveal, not one of the eager young actresses, but rather one of the young Olivers. A very able Nancy indeed.

Saturday, 5 April 2008

Jonathan Pierce/Pearce?

Jason, author of, made a reference to Jonathan Pierce below. It reminded me of why I have a problem with this most excitable of footballing voices. Allow me to demonstrate, imagine it is Liverpool vs Spurs. He would say something along the lines of:

'Huddlestone going forward, but Finnan is there to tidy up. Aaron Lennon is running across to the corner to take it. '

So far so good one could say, but I am always waiting for him to interrupt himself with some faux hysteria along the lines of


The Kop: "PIT! PIT! PIT! PIT!"

Those memories of Robot Wars will never fade. It is a credit to Pierce that he managed to convince anyone he could be taken seriously ever again. And he could even make gardening and fishing sound like exhilarating pursuits. Craig Charles has not been so lucky. Those dire 'poems' he recited at the end of every show ensured that.

"My career
is no more
not since I hosted
Robot Wars"

*kissed two finger salute*

Thursday, 3 April 2008

Interactive TV idea

annoyed by David Pleat. Find his bleating irritating, his voice irksome, his so called "observations" obvious at best, vacuuous normally, and just plain wrong the rest the time? If so then our new service is just for you. To shut up David Pleat just press the Red Button.

This leads me to a more serious question- just who is the most irritating commentator in the history of football?

Least said about the Merseyside derby the better.

With that in mind it would be nice to write some witty and insightful reviews of the Champions League, unfortunately since I do not have Sky I only saw the Man U game, and I'm afraid to say I found it a touch dull. Strange that. Man U winning 2-0 in Italy should be something of a footballing spectacle. Instead I thought 'oh, they won then.' When you start seeing victory of significant magnitude as routine it is a sign that you have been exposed, and thinking about, high quality football too much too long. Even if an English club were to win the Champions Legaue it would not be that exciting. Unless they won 4-0 in the final. Or came back from 4-0 down at half time to win. I think I need to disassociate from the glam and hype and reaquaint myself with 'real' football. I might take a walk to the local fields over the weekend to watch Magor vs Maplas Somerton in division C of the Gwent and Blanaeu Sunday League, or something. The emapassioned idiocy of the amateur game has a certain sense to it. This vaguely symbolic scrapping skillessly for nothing in particular is what most of us are doing most of the time in every other aspect of our lives. this existential whimsy can be reversed quic,ly however- if Everton were to finish 4th, or Bristol City get promoted, or Newcastle start getting really erratic again 7-0 one week 0-7 the next- then the spectatorial vitiality would get a quick fix of urgency. I am only one game away from the fascination of the illusion.

Meanwhile, instead of considering weightier matters- why not play a suprisingly hard footballing word game: How many names of footballers, coaches, chairman, etc are animal related- or can be changed to sound like animals.
Here are a few to get you started- Giraffa Benitez, Wayne Kangarooney, Ruudog Gullit, and Jurgen Klinsmanneatingtiger.

Friday, 28 March 2008

The Merseyside Derby:

I am prejudiced. I have been a supporter of Everton since I was six years old. Basically it was a toss up between Man U, who my brother supported, Southampton, who my dad supported, and Everton, who my best friend supported. I went for Everton as I liked the colour blue. And I have stuck with them ever since.

This weekend sees the most important Derby in ages. Win and Everton soar to 4th, and will surely gain the confidence needed to successfully fight for that last Champion's league spot. Lose and Liverpool will surely bed down and make the inevitable march to Europe next season with the other Big 3. Again.

So what we have this weekend is not just Red vs Blue. Certainly not Protestant vs Catholic, that went out of fashion years ago. Instead you have a Well Managed Club with a Proud History, like most of the top flight, vs a Club That Has Been Less Well Managed (Financially) of Late but has enjoyed the cash bonanza and BIG 4 status for a long time. So really it is the BIG 4 vs the Also Rans and the apple cart is all set for an upset. (That last bit is my entry in the worst metaphor of all time competition).

Every neutral should be rooting for Everton this weekend. If only so that those of us who spurn the BIG 4 can start dreaming of the end of an era again. That is if you ever bought that in the first place. If Liverpool win it most likely stays as it is for at least another season, with the rest of scratching round for the scraps and the hope of a good cup run. If Everton get 4th spot, Portsmouth get the FA Cup with Spurs having already secured the Carling Cup we'll have had the most significant season in many a year. C'mon you Blues.

What my girlfriend makes of England.

As a Uruguyan she knows a thing or two about football. They've won twice as many world cup's as England. She was a supporter of Nacional in Montevideo in her youth, these days she errs towards Everton, in support of me, and Spurs, in support of her countryman Poyet. But fundamentally she is a neutral.

While her opinion is not founded on any real knowledge of the English game it gives a round impression of how the English game is percieved from outside the UK. She has lived in both Spain and Italy and has lots of German friends so has a good idea of how the game is played and thought of across the continent.

What she makes of....

Peter Crouch: Hilarious. Like some strangely skilfull giant ghoul. Good but hilarious.
Wayne Rooney: Cursed to always disappoint for England. 'He'll always do something stupid or angry. you just need to look at him to tell that'.
Gerrard: Actually pretty good. Always looks like he's trying hard at least.
Beckham: A handsome if insufferable cunt. Not as good as everyone thinks he is although he crosses well. "you have him in the team for crosses'. She is mystified by his continued insistence on taking corners as everyone knows he is going to whip it in 'the way he always does'.
English goalkeepers: Rubbish since Seaman. "Seaman was really good, why isn't he playing still? Did he retire?"
Steve Mclaren: "He is the coach?! He looks and speaks badly. How can someone who looks and speaks like that be the coach?" During the match with Croatia she exclained "why does he have that umbrella?!"
Capello: Very good coach. Very bad for England. He will need Italian style players to get his system to work. And that England can't play like that as 'they are England not Italy.' Besides, Italian football is boring to watch.
JO Cole: England's best player. Even if she alwyas forgets his name.
English Coaches: Important. The French or Italians or Germans would NEVER have an English coach. The English might think they are being modern embracing a foreign coach. Everyone else thinks they look like desperate idiots. "Is there really not one good coach in all of England. He might not be the best but he will be better than any Italian. for England."
England as a football club: England are good but they are never going to win anything and are way too nervous. Why are they nervous 'they are England'. She is as mystified as anyone about why they 'nearly always play badly'.

OK- that is that. Next week 'what my cat makes of English Cricket'.

Wednesday, 26 March 2008

Ah- I found it!

My TV highlight of the year (this could be because I am am a bit weird)

Ray Stubbs, better known for his likeable yet ever so slighly bland style of sport's presenting, brings a new dimesnion to the idea mediocrity with his rendition of Everybody Needs Somebody To Love. If ever there were more of a glorious carcrash in the name of charitable humiliation then I have yet to see it.

A week of headines.


As you may have gathered England midfielder David Beckham will get his 100th cap tonight against France. He has also said that he is targeting Peter Shilton's record for most England caps, carefully ignoring the fact that Shilton played in goal and only played on so long because being in goal means you don't have to run around much.

Aside from Beckham getting his 100th cap a massive piece of Antarctica melted unexpectedly, over 40 Iraqis died in violence, a Shia rebellion has started in Iraq (not along now until the media start calling them 'Shi'iites' again), Gordon Brown announced actually not insignificant constitutional reform, and, most important of all, England won the cricket.

Fabio Capello still shows no signs at all of having mastered English.

EDIT: and how could I forget, having sat through about 115 reminders in the 10mins that I watched BBC Breakfast today. The Apprentice starts again tonight. Let the weeks of greed, fuckwittery, and shaftery commence- as the nation ponders who, apart from Alan Sugar, they would least like to be stuck in the same room as.

Alan Sugar is most famous of course, as far as football goes, for once owning Spurs, and for his acrimonious partnership with Terry "half a pound of apricots, only ahhh tuppence" Venables.

Friday, 21 March 2008

I don't like hyperbole. Honestly.

But as this weekend approaches it is make or break time for Avram Grant's Chelsea. There I said it, and I mean it too. A win and Chelsea are right back in the mix for the Premiership, lose and they will start to look, and feel, like Also Rans. Just looking through the names on Chelsea's team sheet, the depth of expensive talent in practically every position, you realise that failing to win a trophy should be unthinkable for that team. It may be difficult to juggle and manage the egos and big personalities but that, correct me if I am wrong, is what first class managers are expected to do. If Capello can be let go at Madrid having delivered them La Liga, and if Mourinho can be got rid of having brought Chelsea the most success ever, Grant should be fired with a tarnished reputation if Chelsea were to finish third and without one measly trophy, not even the tinware Carling Cup. With such an embarrassment of riches at his disposal it should not be that hard really. I reckon given a squad like that Alan Curbishely, Sam Allardyce, or David Moyes, could do it.

The rush of substitutions and negativity that foxed Chelsea against a rampant Spurs (and I truly rate Ramos and his coaching staff- especially Poyet) reminded me of another Chelsea coach. Not of Mourinho's guile and showmanship, but of Ranierri- the so called 'tinker man'. Difference being of course that Ranierri was a dead man walking at that stage in his career, and may have even be looking to be sacked so as to ensure a hefty severance package; but Grant, having been cherry picked by Abramovic, has the full support of the board. The pressure must be intense.

So it is crunch time at Stamford Bridge. The Kennsington twats and glory hunters expect. It is time for Chelsea to stand up and be counted and show us who they are.

My money is on Arsenal.

Does this constitute a proper footballing article? I have not written one for weeks.

Ooo- how exciting

apparently, according to the folks at Wikio, I have the 91st Top Sport Blog in the country. Not exactly sure what that means, if anything, but I am a vain sonofabitch always looking for compliments and attention so I have added a button advertising the fact. I am only 80 places below the excellent Some People Are On The Pitch now.

Thursday, 20 March 2008

Football by The Rules of The Excesses of The Market

At the beginning of every year every team declares how many points they hope to attain in the coming footballing year. On this basis supporters decide which teams to support, and invest accordingly purchasing tickets. Obviously the brighter the prediction the more tickets will be sold. The number of tickets sold will determine how much money the teams can invest in their team. All games however are played behind closed doors. Teams can play in any league domestic or overseas and accumulate points which will determine their overall performance. The registering of points will be made by the teams themselves, and will only be monitored by regulatory authorities. In this way all teams can out perform or meet expectations and predictions, therefore selling more tickets, leading to greater accumulation of capital with which to invest. There is no actual obligation to invest. Confidence and perception of performance drives the profits of clubs.

for example- Manchester Utd make modest predictions of 50 points in all leagues. Supporters believe they will comfortably achieve this and purchase tickets giving them a massive surplus with which to exceed their targets. Manchester Utd actually only play 3 games the whole year (a maximum of 9 points) but nevertheless declare they have attained 60 points. as this is matched by supporter/investor confidence there is no reason not to believe in Manchester Utd's results- whether or not there is any material basis for their market success. The whole thing works fine as long as not too many supporters ever demand to see too much football. The commodity, in this case football, has no real value, only the value given to it to by supporters, and the success with which the clubs, banks etc exposed to the market, have in dealing with it. A commodity is only as valuable as people say it is. Profit is not actually based on the value of the commodity at all but on the perception of the value of the commodity and its performance.


Wednesday, 19 March 2008

It is a day for apologies- first the Express

Now me. It seems the Guardian is more accurate than Latin American TV after all. At least in UK footballing matters.

Theo Walcott is not Aaron Lennon- no matter what the Latino pundits said at the time.

Monday, 17 March 2008

Alternatives to Game 39.

Football may, at the end of the day, when all is said and done, taking all things into consideration, be a game of two halves, eleven men against eleven men, just a game, and a silly that only encourages ritualised prancing, but it is other stuff as well. It is a passion. From the slums and favellas of Rio to the painted houses of Buenos Aires, to the bazaars of North Africa, the ex tenement suburbs of London, there are literally millions, billions, of stoic fans addicted to soccer and intoxicated on its promise of excitement and the whiff of displaced glory. So when the head honchos over at the Premiership talk of a global game they ain't exaggerating. And this makes for big business in an age like this. Football is no more a colloquial expression, it is rather an international marketing phenomena. This is why an idea that truly maximises the games global appeal is such an appealing idea, tantalising, and not one without merit. Despite all this frontier crossing razzamataz there are some things you can't get away from. Football is built on local foundations that you can't fuck about with. But nothing will replace the drama of a local derby- be that River vs boca or Mersey Reds vs Mersey Blues. And the logic and symmetry of a league system is kind of sacrosanct. It was the disregard for this which made the Game 39 idea such a poor one; and why it was snubbed by the fans, and ultimately ridiculed by FIFA. This does not mean however that something similar couldn't and shouldn't happen.

In light of this, when all is said and done, at the end of the day, taking all things into consideration, Football Is not My God Football Overdose proposes somethings that the game surely has enough of already but that does not mean there isn't room for more. The ultimate dream of football after all is football every day, all year, 365 days of games forever. Another meaningless cup competition.

Let me float this up the flagpole then and see what sticks.

The Football Ryder Cup

Or inter-continental Cup- 8 teams from Europe and 8 from the Americas (that is both north and south) play off to decide which is the best footballing continent. The first four games are euro club vs american club (Barcelona vs River for example), the second four games are played between teams representing the best of the continent. Effectively Europe vs Americas. But, in order to ensure fairness and a degree of tactical complexity, at least three players from every club must play at least once in one the eight games. A Continental Captain must decide which clubs play in what order- and take the responsibility for coaching and selecting the continental teams. The contest can take place anywhere in the world. It would happen every year, in the summer, when there is not a European or World Cup.

In short this competition would have both partisan and international appeal, and would not fuck with any domestic arrangements. Complex it might be- but it surely has a lot more going for it than the Game 39 idea. And we would probably get to stick it to the yanks once in a while.

If in the unlikely event of this taking off this please remember where you read about it first....

Thursday, 13 March 2008

When Southampton left The Dell

and went to the Saint Mary's stadium their home form suffered. The Dell was a claustrophobic little ground and the Saint's fans always made enough noise there to give every home game a Turkish style atmosphere. It was a tough place to go and win. Or a tough place to go "and get a result." So The Dell was known by the media then, somewhat inevitably, as "a fortress". St Mary's, that replaced The Dell, isn't a cramped ground however. It is rather nice and modern by all reports. The problem with nice is that it doesn't naturally bond with other adjectives like imposing, or intimidating, the kind of words you would like to associate with a home ground. If only the architects had considered this and instead of making an airy all-seater they would have wrought the stands from sheer granite, so the home end could hurl down rocks and boiling oil onto the visiting team. Then Saint Mary's could have really been like a fortress. As it was though the pleasant open plan atmosphere lent itself only to a string of poor home defeats for the Saints, in what was their new ground. Cue a stroke of genius from then manager Gordon Strachan. He decided his players were associating the new ground with bad luck, and that they missed The Dell, and called therefore, not for the sports psychologist to help them like you would sensibly expect, but for a Witch. A white witch. An emergency witch. And this white witch blessed the Saint Mary's ground, and blessed the players, and cast away the demons and pixies of bad luck. And while the Saints never did capture the sort of home form they had previously enjoyed at The Dell things did get an awful lot better. The blessing cum exorcism worked.

Right now, having watched two English teams crash out on penalties last night in the UEFA Also Ran's Cup (both having played well against good opponents) I would really like to call on the services of that white witch and ask her to lift another curse. The British Isles are obviously smite by the god of penalties. It certainly seems that way; that it is written in the stars that all clubs hailing from the British Isles will suffer nerves, bad luck, and on form goalies, when it comes to the cruelest and most dramatic of contest conclusions. So could this witch, or any witch, please come and clean the national psyche? Please.

I know many of you will be cynical about this. You do not believe in magic, or voodoo, or hoodoo. But, let me ask you this- was there anyone anywhere in Britain last night, or overseas, watching either Everton or Spurs, who did not think to themselves, "Oh no! Not penalties" when it came to penalties? Of course you thought that. We have been programmed by decades of tears and failure to think just like that. I am sure other nations do not get so excited, in fact I imagine the Germans look forward to it. I just knew what was bound to happen last night from before the first fateful kick. Even then I still had to watch it though- the sense of inevitability looming larger and larger. Multiply this sense of impending doom by all British fans watching and all that negativity has got to have an effect.

So- anyone know any reliable witches or sorcerers please? It is the only solution. If not we, as a nation, are condemned to live forever under the shadow and heartache that is 12 yards.