An Interesting Weekend…..

Well, that’s week four of this seasons Premier League put to bed, and what an interesting week it was. Here is my round-up…….
Arsenal 1 – 0 Swansea
Arsenal, by the skin of their balls, just scraped past Swansea. The Welsh team looked good on the ball and caused Arsenal all sorts of problems, they just didn’t have anything up front. It’s clear why they haven’t scored yet, their strikers are toilet. Arsenal looked nervous all over the pitch. Unless they pull their collective socks this is going to be a very long season for them.
Bolton 0 – 5 Man Utd
Bolton will be regretting not selling Gary Cahill. Not only have they lost out on millions, but his presence in the Wanderers back line seems to be non-existent. They’ve shipped 11 goals already this season. Manchester United we’re in imperious form. Wayne ‘The Hair’ Rooney has scored his second hat-trick in two games and I bet Arsene Wenger and Harry ‘fuck off I’m a football manager not a wheeler-dealer‘ Redknapp will be booking some of their players into clinics down Harley Street as we speak.
Everton 2 – 2 Villa
Everton and Villa pulled a predictable draw out of the bag. Predictable because they’re both pretty good teams and I had an inkling that they might cancel each other out.
Fulham 1 – 1 Blackburn
Well done to Blackburn for getting their first point of the season. Still, If they don’t get relegated this year I’ll eat my hat. They’ve got some decent players, but their manager Kean looks like a ‘yes man’ for the Venky’s and he’s already singing the excuses. When will people learn that you shouldn’t sack Fat Sam; he might roll out the most unimpressive football on the planet, but the man keeps his team up. I tell you what, there’s only one man who can save Blackburn now – Gary Megson.
Man City 3 – 0 Wigan
Manchester City are still looking good and comfortably put Wigan to the sword, but then they were always going to weren’t they! Like their neighbours (no, I don’t mean Oldham Athletic), they can’t seem to stop scoring goals for fun. This is going to be an interesting battle for the title methinks. There’s not a gnats pube between them, for my money.
Norwich 0 – 1 West Brom
Norwich City will (rightly) feel aggrieved not to have got something out of their game against WBA. They looked bright, although maybe lacking a little pace. West Brom showed their Premiership experience by being clinical when it mattered. Still, there is no excuse for the assault that Gabriel Tamas inflicted on James Vaughan in injury-time – it was a stone wall penalty and, once again, the ref missed it (he must have felt like a massive tit when he saw the blood pissing out of Vaughan’s mouth afterwards). Still, when it’s all said and done, this is the BIG TIME and Norwich got taught a lesson in ‘how to win dirty’ by West Brom.
QPR 0 – 0 Newcastle
QPR gave us a first look at their new team. Exciting times for the peeps at Loftus Road. I predict a long hard season, but i’ve got this feeling in my nuts that they’re going to stay up. Just. Newcastle will also be in the fight to stay up, but by the end they’ll have done enough. Though if they keep recycling good players then I can’t see their stay in the big league lasting forever. Didn’t watch this game, watched the BBC text service – wish I hadn’t bothered to be honest. What we writers do for you readers!
Stoke 1 – 0 Liverpool
Stoke proved that they’re here to stay with a good win over Liverpool. I think that the Karma Police reared their ugly heads at the very end of that game. Luis ‘I’m a big fat hand-balling cheat’ Suarez got booked in injury time for protesting too loudly after the ball-to-hand incident involving him and Matthew Upson. To be fair to him, it wasn’t the first clear handball of the game, but he’s had it coming since the cheating git did this.
Sunderland 1 – 2 Chelsea
Chelsea did exactly what they needed to if they intend on challenging the Manchester teams for the title; they won away at Sunderland. They’ve got a lot of strength in depth (Torres on the bench is testament to that) and lots of pace. I think they’re going to have a good season, but I don’t think they’ll win it. Maybe next year. Sunderland, without Gyan, looked a little limp. It’ll be interesting to see how high Bruce can steer them this season.
Wolves 0 – 2 Tottenham
Tottenham got back on the wagon after beating Wolves. To be honest, we all saw that coming, and it’s not a surprise that this got last billing on MOTD. Yawn…..

The Penny Has Dropped For Fabio Capello

Capello at last realised the painfully-bleeding-obvious, just before Engerlands excruciatingly predictable struggle to overcome the 117th best team in the world. He realised that our players are about as mentally sturdy as a rich tea biscuit dunked in cup of the nations favourite refreshing hot beverage.
How that not-so-elusive fact escaped his attention during the World Cup, only he knows, but it seems that the penny has only just dropped. You’ve got to wonder what Stuart Pearce has been telling him for the last couple years!
His grand plan is to throw out the old deadwood and bring in some sleek and shiny new players. Quite who he means is anyones guess. With regards to the old guard, he might be talking about Lampard, Terry, Cole or Gerrard. They’re the senior players (as you well know).
But who is he likely to bring in? Ashley Young looks the part, Theo Walcott, Adam Johnson etc. I could keep on listing good young English players but that would be boring. The point is, the obvious players are already on the fringes of the first team anyway. It’s hardly a massive revolution is it?!
I think the main problems with the England team are beyond Capello’s considerable influence. I’ve bitched before about the media intrusion, the fragile mentalities of some players, the national allergy to penalties and the lack of a winter break. These are not things that Mr Hat can fix (short of going to see a faith healer – we all know that works).
Really, a team with Rooney, Lampard and Gerrard should beat just about every other team that is put in its path. I’m not sure how replacing the old guard is going to make that much difference, but then nobody pays me millions of pounds a year to make these decisions.
Whatever he does, I hope it works, but I fear that Capello will get qualification, make his changes, see that they’re not as good as the players they’re replacing during some friendlies, bottle it and bring back the old favourites for the Euro’s and then watch them capitulate in the quarter finals for precisely the reasons I mentioned in paragraph 5.
And you thought I was an optimist.

Manchester United Fans Predict A Riot

I upset myself today by clicking on a Daily Mail article (by accident – but still). What I found there was shocking to say the least. Apparently bitter Manchester United fans are trying their damnedest to spoil Man City’s first foray into the Champions League.
They’ve tried to do so by pretending to be City fans, going onto Napoli websites and trying to incite violence between the two sets of supporters when their teams meet later this month and again in November.
What a bunch of bastards.
Perhaps these ‘supporters’ don’t mind the idea of violence on the streets of Manchester because many of them are based down in Hampshire. I don’t know. What I do know is that I’d not want violence kicking off in my city, regardless of who was playing football. Are (some) United fans really that elitist that they can’t just get on with their own games without worrying about what their noisy neighbours are up to?
Given what’s happened in this country in recent weeks, I find it sad that a group of people are prepared to risk the lives of others by inciting violence against, potentially, people living in their own community.
I love a good rivalry. It keeps things saucy. I revel in the chanting and the banter and the banners. But at what point did these numbskulls think it would be alright to bypass perfectly acceptable football banter and try to (at best) injure someone or (at worst) get them killed?
I hope that the Manchester police find out who did this and throw the book at them. On top of any criminal proceedings taken against them, these fans should all be banned from watching football, at any ground, for life. Perhaps then they’ll have the time to think about what they’ve done.

Garry Cook Reveals His Tender Side

I love it when powerful people get caught with their pants down. The best bit is when they come up with fantastic excuses to try and get themselves out of the shit. Rather than ‘fess up and move on, they just come out with total nonsense as they try and get themselves off the hook.
Garry Cook, the chief executive of Manchester’s richest club, Man Citeh, has (allegedly) accidentally emailed a colleague (he thought he was emailing someone else) ridiculing them for having cancer and being ‘ravaged with it’. Not only is the man hateful, but it seems he cant operate his emails properly. That’s a big fat oops on his behalf.
The colleague in question is defender Nedum Onuoha’s mother, Dr Anthonia Onuoha. Apparently she’s the person at the club who looks after player’s contract arrangements.
This story is both hilarious and sad at the same time. Sad that Cook thinks its funny to mock or make light of people with serious illnesses. Hilarious because doing so, and getting caught in the act, has revealed to the world what a giant wanker he is.
What I enjoyed most about this revelation was the fact that rather than man-up and deal with it properly, Cook has gone on the defensive, suggesting that some naughty little scamp has hacked his email account and sent the message on his behalf.
I’m sorry Garry, but that’s a load of bollocks.
Why would anyone in their right mind hack someones account and send someone such a hateful mail?! Let’s face it, even if a hacker had got into his emails, there are any number of ways of discrediting the man without resorting to such remorseless levels of bullying.
Surely any hacker worth his salt would have sent the message to Sheikh Mansour ‘accidentally’ telling him what lovely tea towel he wears on his head, or they would have emailed the secretary ‘accidentally’ saying something inflammatory about her great rack. Not according to Garry though, no no no, apparently his hacker mocks the critically ill.
Hopefully the Man City board will investigate the matter properly, confirm that he did what it’s alleged that he did, and then sack the bastard for being a bastard. If and when that happens, I doubt I’ll be the only one laughing my arse off.
PS. Garry Cook came onto my radar recently when he alerted the world to his and Samir Nasri’s shared parentage. The video is long and boring, but at the end Cook definitely refers to Nasri as his ‘brother’. It made my soul shudder; here is a man trying too hard to be cool. Click here to see it in full.

Barcelona – What a bunch of…..

I laughed my ass off when I first read it. Poor, poor Arsenal. Gooners who’ve heard the reports must be very frustrated. Some idiot at Barca – a vice president Josep Maria Bartomeu – has been out gloating how they’ve completely ripped Arsenal off.
Apparently he reckons that the 35 mill that they paid was cheap and that Fabregas is worth closer to the 60 million that Arsenal initially valued him at. Perhaps he should’ve kept his mouth shut; nobody likes to get robbed, but its worse when people shout about it in the press a month after the deal has been done.
The incident has confirmed for me what I have long suspected: Barcelona have no class.
When they are actually playing the game they are a joy to behold. The passing, shooting and movement are all top notch. They are, without a doubt, the best team on the planet right now.
But this level of quality is sadly lacking in everything else that they do. They dive around like a bunch wimps, crying and holding their faces when people look at them funny. They might have skills, but they’re also a cheating scum. I know that in European leagues and in South America that they look at it as ‘earning a free kick’, but I don’t care how you dress it up, it’s petty cheating and it doesn’t suit a team that are so excellent in all other respects.
Off of the pitch they are not much better. Gone are the sponsored UNICEF – a saving grace for the club – replaced by the sponsoring Qatar Foundation. Not so much a charity but more a PR exercise by some seriously corrupt oil sheiks still trying to convince the world that they didn’t bribe their way to the 2022 World Cup.
They regularly tap up other teams players. They realise that the pull of playing for such an amazing team is going to convince their targets to push through transfers, so they just bypass the part of the transfer process which involves them agreeing a fee and go straight to the talking to the player part. They’ve started brazenly doing it through the media, and UEFA don’t seem even slightly bothered. Sure, they don’t get the president to do it; it’s the players who speak out on their behalf, but at the end of the day, it’s still tapping up.
Nobody doubts that Fabregas shouldn’t be back at his old stomping ground. Only the most unsympathetic Arsenal supporter would suggest otherwise. But surely they could have a little more decency in how they recruit. First they tap the player up by talking about him publicly for over two years, then when they actually get their man, they rub salt in the wounds of the selling club by reminding them how much more they should’ve paid for the player.
They’ve done a good bit of business with resigning Fabregas. He is indeed worth more than the 35 million that Barca paid. And maybe there is bit of justice in the fact that they got him on the cheap from Arsenal (who themselves poached him from the prestigious Barcelona Academy many seasons ago). But there is such a thing as being a ‘gracious winner’ and not gloating in the face of someone you’ve just defeated, whether on the pitch or in the board room.
Barcelona seem to have the world at their collective feet. They’ve got everything. Just like Charlie Sheen, they’re winners. It’s just a shame that they’re also a bunch of @*?%’s.

Come on Engerland!

The transfer deadline day fun is over, now it’s time for the internationals.
I love the premier league. It’s exciting. It’s fast. It’s full of controversy. In short – it’s shit hot. On the other hand, I hate internationals. They’re boring. They’re slow. They’re predictable. In short – they’re shit.
Now I don’t want you to mistake my discontent as a lack of patriotism. I’ll still watch the match, despite its inevitable crapness. Come World Cup time i’ll be in my local, wearing the three lions and screaming like dickhead as we crash out of the quarter-finals.
My dream is to one day watch Engerland win an international competition, I just can’t ever see it happening! Why? Because we’re a nation of sporting bottlers. Now I realise that’s a massive generalisation and not all English sportsmen and women choke at the do or die moments of their careers, but nobody can argue that our football team has got the composure and self belief to back up their obvious talent.
Over the years I think we’ve developed a nationwide allergy to penalties. When it comes down to it, our pessimism means we’ve missed the goal before we even kick the ball. This mental block, in my opinion, extends to more than just penalty kicks. Our players don’t believe they’re going to win, and so they don’t.
The media are definitely part of the problem. They are so intrusive and crank up the pressure whenever they get the chance. With their bullshit headlines they heap unwarranted and unnecessary expectation on the players.
I don’t think the lack of a winter break in this country helps things along either. Our players always look tired when it comes to the summer competitions.
We’ve maneuvered ourselves into this position over the last few years. We’ve got good enough players and so we expect them to perform as they do every week in the league and, by doing so, thrash every team that comes our way.
As well as our massively high expectations, if you add to the mix a bit of pressure from an intrusive media, the inevitable scandal involving at least one of our players who cant keep his dick in his pants, the change of climate and the fact that everyone wants to beat us because we’re a ‘scalp’, and you’ve got a whole host of reasons why we struggle on the biggest stage.
I’ll be watching the game tonight, despite the fact that its going to be dreary. I’ll be watching because I believe; I believe that one day, if we can put all our petty shit to one side, we might actually have a chance of winning something. Come on Engerland.

Transfer Deadline Day # 2

A power cut robbed me of my first entry (about 30 seconds before I submitted it – you can imagine the expletives) so this one is going to be much more functional.
First I’ll go with the confirmed signings; then I’ll round up the maybes.
Arsenal left it to the very last second to sign Mikel Arteta from Everton. It took a transfer request and about 10 million squids to make it happen. Everton fans will be pissed as the proceeds will undoubtedly go straight into the overdraft and not back into the squad. To cheer them up Moyes has moved to sign Royston Drenthe from Real Madrid (on loan I think). Arsenal wrapped up a loan deal of their own; Yossi Benayoun is going to be sitting on the Emirates subs bench this season it would seem.
Bolton signed Kakuta on loan from Chelsea. I’ve heard good things about him, it’ll be interesting to actually see him play. They’ve also moved to sign Ngog from Liverpool, the figure I heard was 4 million, but don’t quote me on that.
Palacios has joined Stoke. Tony Pulis will be delighted. He’ll be an excellent signing, just you watch. Stoke have have also made Cameron Jerome their new bitch. We’re waiting to see if the Peter Crouch deal goes through or not. I bet the Potters fans can’t wait to see his robot dance.
Scott Dann has hopped and skipped his way up to Blackburn. He must be very happy. Personally I thought he might get a bigger club. They’ve also signed Yakubu, presumably they’ll feed the Yak chicken and he will score.
Chelsea had their own last minute dot com moment and signed Meireles from Liverpool at the last second. Apparently he handed in a transfer request at around 10pm. Talk about fannying around.  Still, it worked. I’m sure he’s looking forward to his reunion with Villas-Boas. Expect lots of continental kissing and passionate embraces.
Liverpool fans can console themselves with the fact that they have splashed out on everyones favourite ultra-violent umpa-lumpa – Craig Bellamy. He’ll do well there methinks.
The billionaires favourite – Shaun Wright-Phillips – has made the move to QPR. We’re waiting to hear whether the Ferdindand deal went through.
There were all sorts of saucy rumours flying around. There were murmurs of Kaka to Spurs but we all knew that wasn’t going to happen as soon as we heard the words ‘Kaka’ and ‘Spurs’ in the same sentence.
Wesley Sneijder didn’t sign for Manchester United. Frankly I’m relieved. The last thing they needed was more quality in the middle of the park. Staying in Manchester, Tevez didn’t get his move away. I imagine he’ll just have to be happy earning a fortune whilst living in a box  in Mancini’s basement.
Ribery was suggested as a possible signing for Chelsea. It’s probably for the best that that didn’t happen. Imagine a Terry/Ribery pulling team; Terry does to shagging, Ribery coughs up the dough afterwards. The women of London can sleep easy tonight. Wayne Rooney will be disappointed though; he’s still the ugliest player in the Premier League – despite his ever-so-pretty new barnet.
Last, but not least; there was a fantastic rumour that City offered Barcelona 100 million and Balotelli in exchange for Messi. Now that would have been funny.

Transfer Deadline Day # 1

Arsenal have been busy busy busy today. They’ve confirmed the signings of two defenders: Mertesaker and Santos. Two great bits of business by the looks of things. Now all they need is some midfielders. Arteta is looking like the man they want, though if I were Wenger I’d be suspicious; he went through the Barcelona Academy. Perhaps he should have a DNA test as part of his medical.
Joe Cole has picked Lille (the French champions), over Aston Villa. You’ve got to feel sorry for Cole; he was supposed to be the next best thing and he’s….. well….. not. That signing fueled all sorts of rumours regarding Eden Hazard, but so far it looks like that ain’t happening.
Wilson Palacios and Peter Crouch still don’t know where they’ll be playing next season. Presumably they’ll go wherever you can get a better deal on a tube of Pringles. Those curved little buggers just get Crouchy dancing. Expect them to head up North somewhere.
Owen Hargreaves has signed on the dotted line for Man Citeh. Presumably they’re trying to keep their physios busy, after all they pay them and it’s not fair if they just sit around on their arses all day doing nothing.
Villa have made two underwhelming signings with Alan Hutton and Jermaine Jenas heading over to the second city. I envisage they got sold purely to fund…..
Last seasons Player of the Year – Scott Parker – has just signed for the Spurs. Great bit of business by that scamp ‘Arry ‘fuck off I’m a football manager, not a wheeler dealer’ Redknapp. Can’t believe nobody signed him before today.
Greasing the wheels of that transfer were the loan signings of Bentley and Lansbury. I reckon that West Ham have done a good bit of business there. And here was me thinking they were skint. Staying in the Championship momentarily, West Ham have also signed the player with the best name in world football; Papa Bouba Diop. I never get bored of saying that.
Christian Poulsen has come out of retirement at Liverpool to sign for France’s answer to Peckham Springs – Evian.
Zdenek Grygera signed for Fulham. Expect to see him worshipping at the shrine to Wacko Jacko any minute now – it’s in the contract.
Davide Santon went from Milan to Newcastle late last night. Boy, he’s in for a shock.
There have been some other transfers but none of them did anything for me, so I’m gonna pretend they didn’t happen.

Transfer Bollocks

Transfer gossip is reaching fever pitch tonight with the window closing in just over 24 hours. Tomorrow I’ll take a look at who’s bought who.
By the time you read this, expect some of the mentioned deals to have gone through.
Arsenal need new faces and fast. After getting well and truly spanked by the Champions on Sunday, Arsene Wenger’s red cheeks have emerged from the darkness of the Emirates to place several bids on several players. Some of them might have even passed puberty. The shock. The horror.
Mertesaker is seemingly on his way to North London. That will please Gooners everywhere. Santos looks like in interesting attacking full-back, if the deal is done. After kidnapping Park Chu-Young (see yesterdays blog here) Arsenal seem to have sorted their striker shortage.
With the exception of Mertesaker, whose signing will no doubt please most supporters, Arsenal have yet to address their most pressing issues. The most notable of which is the gaping hole in the middle of their midfield. Apparently Dortmund have politely given Arsenal the finger following an unsuccessful bid for Mario Goetze. Though, given the fact that he’s only just grown pubes, most Arsenal supporters will probably breath a sigh of relief.
The Gunners have also been sniffing around the Chelsea subs bench of late. Apparently they like the smell of Malouda, Alex and Benayoun. I predict that one of these might go. Maybe. But then what do I know?!
In Wenger’s usual stomping ground of Ligue 1 there are rumours aplenty. Lucho Gonzalez is too old for Wenger so don’t expect to see him. Marvin Martin is a possibility as is nearly every other creative midfielder worth his salt. M’Vila looked likely but apparently Rennes want 30 trillion for the player. No, I can’t see it either.
I know, I’m banging on about Arsenal a lot. Don’t worry, I’m nearly done. But I promise you the dealings there are more interesting than at any other club. You’ll see.
It might be easier to list the players that Arsenal haven’t been linked with. Maybe not, but you get the idea. There are fecking hundreds of them. Here’s a digest, in no particular order.
Cahill, Samba, Jagielka, Dann, Baines, Vertonghen, McCarthy, Arteta, Hazard, Jadson, Willian, Elia, Pereira, Zarate, Benzema, Defoe, Doyle etc etc etc etc zzzzzzzz. There are more, but I stopped giving a shit halfway into that list.
Aston Villa are apparently having a look at the perennially-crocked Owen Hargreaves. That sounds like a really ‘good’ idea. Unless he’s going to give them a cut in his next fitness video I can’t imagine why anyone would want him on their physio table. They must be desperate.
Alan Hutton might be on his way from Spurs. They also quite fancy Yossi Benayoun. That cheeky little Israeli scamp must have put something in the water because everyone seems to want a piece of him today. Scott Parker has an outside chance of signing for the Villans.
At the end of the day I don’t expect anything exciting to happen over there. It’s almost as if Alex McLeish has sucked all joy out of that place.
Blackburn Rovers once dreamed of signing Ronaldinho, but since he realised that they intended on paying him with giblets, there has been an unsurprising lack of transfer activity going on at the club. They look like they might sign Scott Dann from Birmingham and they’ve also been linked with the not world-famous furniture store Bangura’s of Stockholm. Meh.
Bolton might have condemned Gary Cahill to Europa League football. The bastards. By playing hardball with Arsenal and pricing the player out of the move he wanted, it looks like Cahill’s options are now limited. He said he wanted to play Champions League, so lets see if he waits for a free transfer or if he goes for the payrise that Tottenham will surely offer.
The Wanderers have been linked with that pint-sized bundle of pace Shaun Wright-Phillips. Good signing he would be I think. Well that’s how Yoda would write it if was: 1. Real. 2. A football writer and not a Jedi Master. They’re also looking at NGog from Liverpool; presumably they’re not missing enough easy chances.
Chelsea have probably done most of their business. After all, they’ve spent enough money to make Solomon blush. Word on the street is that they’re talking to Stoke about loaning out their 20 million signing Lukaku. Can’t see it myself. Seems like they’re spending money now before the Financial Fair Play comes into effect, effectively stockpiling players for a rainy day. It’s not fair, but nobody seems to have noticed.
The one possible signing that could happen in the next 24 hours is Modric. Is he worth the reported 30 mil that Spurs are after? Maybe, maybe not. But lets face it, nobody gives a toss if Chelski get ripped off, do they?! Still, he’d be a good signing for them.
Oh, I nearly forgot about Gregory van der Wiel. Another quality full-back for the subs bench. Presumably Chelsea plan on arming the defenders with air rifles and forcing them to compete in a work-experience-boy shoot-out for a place in the first team.
Everton have no money. They might get a loan signing but I doubt it. They’re that skint. The vultures are circling now and expect one or two first teamers to ship out tomorrow. Arteta to Arsenal, maybe. Coleman to Liverpool, maybe. We’ll see. It’s a shame cos Everton are a great club. It proves just how difficult it is to compete with the big boys if you don’t have a sugar daddy to sit behind you, stroke your hair and buy you nice handbags.
Fulham are definitely on the prowl for new players. Their options seem limited because: 1. They don’t like to spend lots of money. 2. They’re just not that exciting. 3. Mohammed Al Fayed insists that all new signings worship at his private shrine to Michael Jackson. Just the thought of it sends shivers down my spine.
They’ve cast their beady eye on Grygera from Juventus. I won’t lie, I haven’t got a frickin clue who he is. More likely is Zaha from Palace and Jerome from Birmingham. Nothing scares fans more than pillaging players from the championship. I expect a tough season for them.
Liverpool have lots of money and they’re not afraid to spend it.
Some crazy rumours are about involving Joe Cole (almost certainly on his way to Lille on loan), a wedge of dirty five pound notes, a bottle of lubricant and Eden Hazard. I think it’s gossip mongers grasping at straws, but hey ho.
Sebastian Coates looks like a done deal. Look forward to loads of ‘get your Coates love, you’ve pulled’ jokes. I know I am.
Coleman looks a possibility, though it remains to be seen whether Everton want to suffer the indignity of dropping on all fours and selling one of their prized assets to a much hated local rival. Though money makes people do the strangest things.
Afellay is a long bet from Barca. And I read somewhere that King Kenny is going to have a head-butting competition with Arsene Wenger to see who will sign Pereira from Parma.
Breaking news. Liverpool in for 1 goal in 4 game striker Zarate. Do me a favour. NO CHANCE.
Manchester City, fresh from signing everyone good, have probably finished with their shopping. Though you never know. Fernando Gago from Real, maybe? Hargreaves from the United treatment table is more likely. Some people have called this one a gamble. Though it’s not really a gamble if you have all the money in the world, is it?!
I’ll be honest, I don’t really care what they do.
Manchester United proved at the weekend that they don’t really need to sign anyone else. That said, they’ve been heavily linked with the excellent Wesley Sneijder all summer. It’s a deal that may still happen. If it does, United will have put the cherry on top of an excellent midfield. Pound for pound they might not have the best players, but they’re a cracking team. Couple that with more injury time minutes than you can shake a stick at and you’ve got a winning formula.
They’ve also been linked with some dude called Ganso. He’s probably good. If you really care then google him.
Newcastle. Now that Mike Ashley is putting the finishing touches on dismantling the team that got his club promoted, he’s looking for cheap replacements to help them kick on. They’ve already made some interesting signings and they look like that they might make one or two more.
Davide Santon is the most likely. Having sold Enrique to Liverpool they need a cheaper alternative. They’re looking to loan Macheda from the Red Mancs. PSV’s Pieters looks like he might be on his way; expect him to be cheap too. I also read a rumour about Aly Cossokho from Lyon.
It seems like Ashley and co., are following the Wenger method. Sell your players at home, buy replacements of dubious quality from France and hope that it all works out. Perhaps someone should point out to the Newcastle board that it hasn’t really worked out all that well at Arsenal.
Norwich City’s survival this season hinges on who they have and who they will sign this summer. They’ve recruited from the lower leagues so far with Vaughan and Ayala the only exceptions. To be honest, rumours are a bit thin on the ground here. The best I could come up with is a last ditch attempt to sign Lansbury from Arsenal. I’m sorry, don’t hate me.
QPR – now this is more like it. They’ve got a few quid laying about somewhere I think. They’ve been linked with Scott Dann and Shaun Wright-Phillips. Can’t see either happening, but never doubt the power of the pound.
Someone somewhere says that they’re interested in signing Liam Ridgewell from Birmingham. I know many Villa fans will be disappointed that he’s not going back to them, but they’ll get over it.
They have just signed left-back Traore from Arsenal. Obviously he did a great job of selling himself on Sunday.
Stoke have been strongly linked with footballing journeyman and Pringles salesman Peter Crouch and his side kick, Wilson Palacios. Pretty boring rumours if you ask me; however, I think both would fit right in to Pulis’ team. If they sign them both then I think most Potters fans will be pretty chuffed with their summer spending.
Sunderland are a team who have spent this summer. They’ve got loads of new faces in at the Stadium of Light. Whether they’ll gel or not is a different matter; time will tell.
In an attempt to undo all their good work in the market it sounds like they’re trying to waste some wonga on signing Samaras. I think the only people who would be happy about that deal are Celtic fans.
Interestingly they’ve been linked to Papiss Cisse from Freiburg. He’s been scoring goals for fun in Germany. If they sign both Cisse and Samaras I think they’ll cancel each other out and they’ll be just as good as they were before they signed them.
Also, I just read that they too like the cut of Peter Crouch’s jib. It’s all about the strikers up there it would seem.
Swansea have, according to those devils over at Sky, just signed German keeper Gerhard Tremmel for free. Expect him to never play.
They also want to sign Master Bates from Middlesborough. I’m so funny.
That is all.
Tottenham! Why the exclamation mark I hear you scream? Well, I expect old ‘Arry ‘fuck off I’m a football manager not a wheeler dealer’ Redknapp to do some serious business in the next 24 hours.
They’ve been linked with Owen Hargreaves. Though I imagine he’ll stay up in Manchester one way or another. They’ve been heavily linked with Scotty Parker and, to be fair, it looks like a good match. They’ve also been giving Yossi Benayoun the eye today, hoping that he elopes with them instead of one of his other suitors.
Craig Bellamy has been touted as a possible signing. You never know, the no-necked bully might fancy a bit of London action. It also looks like they might make a move for Gary Cahill in a player plus cash deal, but he’ll only go if they buy him some Milk Tray.
They’ve been linked with Damiao for a while now; thats a maybe. According to the Times they’ve been passing love notes after class to both Fofana of Le Havre and Barta of Barca; it’s called hedging your bets and we’ve all done it.
Harry’s been trying it on with Joe Cole all summer, though it looks like he’s fallen in love with the French. He likes the accent and the ease at which they surrender to his charms. Allegedly.
I expect one or two of these players to sign. And probably one or two that we haven’t even heard of. He moves in mysterious ways does old ‘Arry.
West Brom are going to be tough to write up. I can’t find any decent rumours. They looked like they might sign Owen Hargreaves, but even he bolted when he realised just how boring they are. Expect Woy Hodgson to make one signing that nobody has ever heard of and expect it to be very boring. To be fair he has transformed them from being the team most likely to get relegated to being the team most likely to be terminally boring. Yawn….. You see what I meant about Arsenal now. Bet you wish I could rub some funk into this section don’t you?!
Wigan have just signed Albert Crusat from Almeria. According to some news outlets. It’s probably true. Why would they lie? Everyones favourite hate-rag – the Daily Mail – reckons they want to sign dos Santos from Spurs. Not really that interesting is it?!
A carrier pigeon just arrived here with news that Wigan are in talks with Celtic over the signing of Shaun Maloney.
I read somewhere on Twitter that they were looking at two South Americans called Canuhe and Fernandes. Sounds about right. They tend to make most of their signings by buying prospects from across the Atlantic. Expect one or two transfers and expect them to be just good enough to help keep Wigan up by the skin of their collective balls.
Wolves. Why do I feel like I’m talking to myself right now?! Well, as far as I can tell, nobody wants to sign for them and between you and me, I’m not surprised.

The Kidnapping

Lille chairman Michel Seydoux raps on a hotel bedroom door. He is in a fine mood. He is about to pillage the recently relegated Monaco for one of their star performers. And what is best is that he is doing so for a pittance.
“Park! Open the door” He yells through the door (in French). “Park, we’ve got to start the second part of your medical. We’re due at the medical centre any minute now!”
After some banging and some more shouting, Seydoux goes and gets the concierge.
“Open this door right this minute.” He barks. Still in French. After all, we are in France.
“But sir, this room belongs to Mr Park Chu-Young” whimpers the nervous hotel employee.
“Who do you think paid for the room you imbecile? That’s right, it was us. Now open it before I ‘it you with something ‘arrrd.”
Reluctantly the concierge opens the door. Seydoux peers into the room.
It’s empty.
Slowly and cautiously he enters the room. The Lille OSC protection team follow him in, side arms drawn. The room is empty save for a note on the bed.
Seydoux drops to his knees. He screams up to the heavens.
Meanwhile at Arsenals state-of-the-art complex for evil footballers in Colney, London: Wenger removes the cable ties from his captive’s wrists and the blind fold from his eyes.
“It is time for you to take the bleep test.” He pauses, more for effect than anything “And should you fail I have instructed my henchmen Frimpong and Song Billong to strap you to a goal post and tackle you from behind until they have broken your legs. HAHAHAHAHA.”
Park Chu-Young blinks in the harsh light and gulps. He knows he has no other choice. He must complete the bleep test, because should he fail, he may never be released by his new captors.
Wenger laughs in his face “Ha, we have you now Monsieur. I have needed a much publicised kidnapping victim since that pesky Francesc Fabregas escaped my evil clutches and returned to his family in Barcelona”. He spits on the floor.
Pat Rice appears from nowhere. “What’s the plan boss?” =
“The plan” Wenger cackles with a look of relish in his eyes “Is to turn Arsenal into the most evil club in the world!”