Sunday, January 02, 2011

Several Words About Association Football

In many ways, as a Spurs supporter, I can have no complaints about 2010. In May, they finished 4th, allowing them to participate in the Champions League tournament for the first time since they were actually Champions (incidentally that last foray into the Champions League was the year I was born...). By December, people were talking about Gareth Bale, Rafael Van Der Vaart and Luca Modriç as world class footballers and now, on the 2nd day of 2011, Spurs are still 4th and only 5pts behind the leaders as opposed to 20, as they were in May.

There's still a long way to go and to finish in the top four again is going to be very, very hard. Not only have Manchester United managed to remain unbeaten this season, but Man Citeh's riches are beginning to show; they might be a team without much harmony and a manager who isn't that good, but when you have £300million worth of talent, like scum, quality has a tendency to rise to the occasion. Arsenal continue to flatter to deceive, if it wasn't for their inconsistencies they should be five points clear at the top rather than 2pt behind and Chelsea are a team that you write off at your peril. Yes, they are on their worst run of results since 2000, but they will still be in with a shout come the end of the season. All four of these teams are more likely to achieve a top four finish than Spurs.

Bolton and Sunderland are playing beyond their fans' beliefs, but while the Europa League is now a definite possibility, it is only because Liverpool, Everton and Aston Villa have been so poor. Liverpool (or The Red Shite) isn't a shock. The Fat Spanish (Unemployed) Waiter successfully destroyed this team in his final year at the cloob and poor old Roy Hodgson has been on to a hiding to nothing because he hasn't immediately transformed them into title challengers. Red Scousers are CAUCs - pure and simple.

Everton have flattered to deceive; the majority of their points coming from teams in the top half of the table while showing a profligacy against crap teams that must have had David Moyes wondering what he has to do to get his team to understand the concept of the word 'consistency'. However, my team go to Goodison Park on Wednesday night on the back of a 10 match unbeaten run... Kiss goodbye to that unbeaten run then...

Villa were everybody's favourites to cause a few upsets this year and push on from perennial top 6 finishers. No one expected them to push down and become relegation candidates. Was it Martin O'Neill's departure, Gerard Houllier's arrival or Randy Lerner falling out of love with this soccer game that caused this massive about face? Villa are now the new Newcastle, while Newcastle are still the laughing stock of English football. Chris Hughton is better off away from lunatics like Mike Ashley and Alan Pardew is just waiting for his contract to be ended so he can pick up 4 years and 10 months worth of reneged contract.

I'd like to see West Ham do a bit better. I understand that Hammers' fans hate Spurs, but having a wife who supports this poor excuse for a football team means they have always been my second club (or cloob as the FS(U)W says).

My nomination for manager of 2010 goes to Ian Holloway (narrowly beating the Lord Harry Rednapp). Barking mad, covered in bum fluff and leading a team with not a single player worth more than Didier Drogba's left testicle, Holloway is a fantastic advert for eccentricity and how to impress chairmen. He should be knighted.

Outside of the Premier League: my tip for the Championship, QPR, are still there, but Colin Wanker is struggling suddenly. Cardiff are capitulating faster than a Craig Bellamy contract clause and suddenly Narch are looking like they might grace the top table again; which would be nice.

The Cobblers are just that and probably have just enough to avoid playing Kettering and Rushden next season, but I fear for Sampson's job. He literally got rid of an entire team at the end of last season and replaced it with a shit one.

It's the FA Cup next week and I hope that Liverpool or TRS as we shall forever know them as now get one over Man U so that whoever draws them in round 4 will be assured of a round 5 tie. My tip to win the FA Cup this year? If we don't win it then Everton will and if they don't then it will probably be the Arse, because they have to win something at some point.

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A brief mention for the oval shaped object that isn't a ball. At the beginning of December the Mighty Saints were 8 points clear at the top of the Aviva Premiership and with two games in hand. They are now 2 points behind with two games in hand, and have to play new leaders Leicester next week in Leicester. Bugger...

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