09:42 I woke up (being slapped round the chops by Bertie because the furry little ratbag had decided it was breakfast time) to the ludicrous notion that everyone and their dog is trying to sign Jonny Evans. The world has actually gone mad.
More importantly, a 5am phone check had revealed that Llorente was scheduled for his medical. Mind you, so was Lukaku. And look what happened there. My mantra is until they are grinning with a blue shirt in their hand, I accept nothing. The Sp*ds are trying to hijack it. Scouse Sports News Transfer Deadline Day Ploy #1 Report every possible eventuality - then gloat like smug w*nkers when one turns out to be right.
09:45 Renato Sanches has gone from being linked with literally every major club in the country to potentially going to Swansea on loan. It does make sense when you factor in Paul Clement. Though suggest explaining to the kid he’s going to live in Wales, not London AFTER he has agreed to it.
09:53 Palace’s shocking start to the season has left them in the sh*t - what is their master plan? To try and sign Mangala from City. October might be the last time for a couple of years we are required to spend an away day in Croydon.
09:56 Llorente deal agreed between Sp*rs and Swansea. For. F*ck. Sake.
10:12 Every time someone on Sky says “Alexis Sanchez” My Echo Dot lights up all excited by the TV. Alexa is an attention seeking wench.
10:25 the Scouse have put a £30m tag on Sakho if Palace want him. If that doesn’t prove to you that the place is full of delusional f*cktards I don’t know what will.
10:33 Everyone stressing muchly with the whereabouts of Mahrez. Is he in London? Is he in Paris? I hope to God they run him to ground in a seedy brothel somewhere in Eastern Europe. Just for the sheer comedy value.
10:36 Scouse Sports News Transfer/Red Swarm Deadline Day Ploy #2 ‘ARRY IN HIS LAND ROVER!! Saying nothing of any consequence at all! We can all go to bed happy now.
10:41 Breaking - Ryan Shawcross signs new 4 year deal with Stoke. Every other club in England breathes huge sigh of relief.
10:44 Scouse Sports News Transfer/Red Swarm Deadline Day Ploy #3 “When nothing is happening at a club, dangle the absolutely improbable in front of the viewer so that they don’t turn over. This time? “United probably won’t sign anyone today, but don’t forget they were interest in Gareth Bale.” Idiots.
11:03 Arsenal not willing to let Sanchez go for cash only and their efforts seem mostly focused on trying to offload Wilshire so that he can go disappoint a set of fans other than theirs for the two weeks he isn’t injured this season.
11:42 First fan spots of the day - two reluctant adults and a pair of kids with a banner that is illegible outside Southampton. This can only get better.
12:10 Why can we not do TDD Italian style? Reps from all Serie A clubs rock up at the same hotel and do their business in one place. Must be awesome in the bar after 10pm. Plus that means that no club representative be no more than 100 yard from pistachio gelato. This is the way to live life.
12:41 FA revelation that there are no longer any fax machines involved. ‘Arry is f*cked. So far they’ve registered 3000+ players during this window… Scouse Sports News/Red Swarm Transfer Deadline Day Ploy #4. Filler. So far we’ve had this tour of an office at Wembley, a montage of Llorente goals against Chelsea because they have nothing new to say about him and because it gives them joy to dig at us and a recruitment drive for the Hertfordshire Fire Brigade.
13:10 Diafra Sakho is this window’s Odemwinge. Just blissfully sorting his own deal out. He’s even agreed personal terms. Mind you, you can’t blame him for showing that much determination to escape West Ham. So far he’s done a runner to France, come back, and now he’s on his way to Chelmsford for a spot of racing. Excellent.
13:30 All this coverage for four deals - two loans into Watford and Swansea, Aurier to Spurs which everyone knew what was happening and likewise with OC.
13:49 No players in. The Nappysh*tting is ramping up on Twitter - Alonso and Luiz were both late deals. Breathe.
14:07 Charlie Nicholas is having a hilarious nervous breakdown over the state of Arsenal. The moment Phil Thompson patted his shoulder with that smug grin on his face (well what you could see of it under that nose) I thought he was going to batter him.
14:10 Even Carragher is distinctly underwhelmed by the Scouse signing O/C. Not surprised. They’ve signed him over us, it looks like, because they have intimated they are more willing to let him play in central midfield. A position that he couldn’t even break into the Arsenal first team playing. I maintain that if someone displays any intimation that that don’t fancy playing for us before they have even signed, f*ck ‘em. Move on.
14:13 Wilshere to Birmingham AHHAHAHAHAHAHA. Even funnier: Jamie Carragher’s disgust that they cut away from him to talk about Jack Wilshere.
14:31 This is proving to be a trying stint. O/C didn’t decided against us because he didn’t want to play wide, according to Phil Thomson
“He’s said no, I don’t want that, I want to go to a club with a vision.” Does this vision include winning the league again before the End of Days? It certainly doesn’t include buying defenders, or even defending at all. Bellend. Just before that the Red Swarm claimed that the player had been on the Scouse radar for months. He wasn’t even on their radar three days ago. Argh. I suppose from their perspective they’ve signed someone who has won three FA Cups, and players with experience of any trophies at all is new for Klopp. Still nothing will every take away from me Thommo’s crying/sulking b*tch baby reaction to us buying Torres.
14:33 We’ve managed to do a deal for Zappacosta for £23m plus change without anyone hijacking it. Yet.
14:53 Even funnier than Wilshere to Birmingham? Birmingham indignantly denying that they have got any interest in him. When they have bought most things with a pulse this summer. Ladies and gentlemen. I give you England’s great hope.
Just the eight hours to go.
15:00 Mahrez is still wandering London somewhere. Nobody has tried to buy him.
15:08 Charlie Nicholas claims Chelsea as a club can’t compete with the Scouse. He also keeps referring to Conte as Costa. Thomson is claiming that Zappacosta is a fail - “Chelsea fans want big names, not this.” Don’t tell me what I want! DRACARIS! I CALL DRACARIS! There is a fair chance I might either smash my TV or leap from a second floor window before they rotate these two c***s out of there . We all might as well go home, because they’ve handed the Scouse the title.
15:31 Diafra Sakho is now in the car park at Chelmsford race course. Doing what nobody knows.
15:39 Alexis Sanchez has like a tweet. I sh*t you not. This is the best that they can come up with right now as a leading story after an ad break.
15:50 Jack Wilshere described by SSN as a perennial loanee. Whilst I applaud all mockery of the stoned little turd, this is ridiculous. He’s been on loan once. Right?
15:58 I have survived Dumb and Dumber - their stint is over. Nicholas is crying in his dressing room and Phil Thompson is licking a picture of Klippity Klopp. Well he is trying, but his massive beak is in the way.
16:00 Scouse Sports News/Red Swarm Transfer Deadline Day Ploy #5 Periodically heading up a new block with lies about how spectacular the day has been so far, hoping to fool all the people that have just got home and put the TV on.
16:15 Brilliant. Chap from Sky Italia being interviewed. They knew that the Zappacosta deal was agreed last night. And yet, it’s taken nearly 24 hours for the “journalists” in their London office to pick the story up. Class A Deadline Day work by Scouse Sports News. They can’t even email each other. Which explains a lot.
16:22 Arsenal are waiting for a response on a £92m offer for Thomas Lemar. Oh how the morally principled tedious f*ckwits have fallen. This is because they’ve dicked around with Sanchez, dicked around with other players, had an awful start and have left themselves no option but to offer Monaco anything they want. Including sexual favours and vital organs.
16:28 Scouse Sports News/Red Swarm Transfer Deadline Day Ploy #6 “Interest.” When there is absolutely nothing to say, you pluck names out of thin air, choose a club and speculate that there is “an interest” in a deal. Means absolutely nothing. I have an interest in doing dirty things to Alvaro Morata. There is literally no chance that it’s going to happen
16:37 Incoming text from Mrs Brown (Sitcom alias) “Chequebook Pulis wants Willian.” My response: “CP can kiss Bertie the Kitten’s furry little ginger a*sehole.”
16:49 Where’s Mahrez continues. He could be anywhere in Western Europe is the best that the Red Swarm can manage. How many hotels in London? Over 120,000 apparently. I quite like the thought that some member of their tacky profession has been ringing round them one by one today attempting to find out if he has checked in.
17:23 Thomas Lemar doesn’t want to play for Wenger. Ouch. We’ve gone in a few years from won’t pay, to can’t pay to get players through the door. #WengerIn
17:33 Fascinating insight from Jordan (former Palace chairman) about what it is like to be a chairman/manager on TDD. Says that you have to think of 4-4-2 in terms of the dressing room. For every ten players, at any given time a manager will have four dedicated to him, four on the fence or just willing to get on with it and two that shouldn’t be in the room because their attitude stinks. It’s the manager’s job to get enough of them firing together behind him to make a team. Different from our rosy little dreamworld where they all love our clubs as much as we do. The context of this was that Bilic isn’t doing his job properly with the way things go down at West Ham. I won’t be the one to tell him. Because he looks like a serial killer.
17:43 Mansfield Town Manager jovially complains that Chelsea didn’t accept their club record offer (I’m told £100 and a steak) for Costa.
17:56 The sun is setting. You know what this means. My favourite part of TDD. All the loons come out and try to get on TV outside the various training grounds and stadiums, bringing with them a massive array of random objects and sex toys. The naked blow up doll was hilarious one year, but my all time favourite was the purple dildo being jabbed in the reporter’s ear while he was trying to talk to the studio. One year they even bribed the baying mob with pizzas to get them to behave. A lot of clubs have let them just inside their premises to save them, but I am hugely proud to see that we haven’t let the Red Swarm onto our property at SB. Which means the poor helpless mug (Anton Tolui apparently) is standing on the Fulham Road. And he is going to get it.
18:09 Hurrah! Stuart Pearce is on shift. Asked what he would be feeling right now if he was Wenger. He says if he was Arsene he would have pulled the phone out of the wall.
18:19 French team hotel, Giroud, Giroud’s Beard, Koscielny and Lacazette all beating on the door of Lemar’s room and he still wasn’t having it. This image makes me really happy
18:32 SSN coverage right now? A toddler chasing a football around the car park at Stoke. I hope someone has done a risk assessment.
18:39 Well PSG. £198m on Neymar and now Mbappe on a season long loan pushing the actual transfer fee down the line to get around FFP. I don’t know why they bothered. It’s not like the sanctions are actually taken seriously. In money terms thats is well over £300m on two players, which nobody else has been allowed to do.
19:27 There is a distinct, depressing lack of fan antics. I like it not. I demand to be entertained. I sat through two hours of Phil Thomson to get to this.
19:44 Lemar is going nowhere. Sanchez is going nowhere, after all that. That’s just another season of Arse fans having to watch him laughing from the bench every time they lose then.
19:48 SKY HEADLINE. VAN DIJK TO STAY AT SOUTHAMPTON. Its 8pm. On transfer deadline day. And nobody, anywhere has bid for him. Well done for working that one out.
19:56 Still nobody knows were Mahrez is.
20:22 Screenshot has come my way from the Sun - Chequebook Pulis coming for Willy apparently. If he does he’s going to find me, my football bro Howard (sitcom alias) loaded super-soakers and a lot of stolen luxury cars forming a barricade between the Fulham Road and the board room at Stamford Bridge.
20:36 Leicester have got a replacement lined up from Sporting for Drinkwater, but we still aren’t playing ball with their valuation. While I applaud this to some extent, time is running out, all prices have been stupid this year. We’ve been burned enough. Just suck it up and get it done. I tire of this now.
20:39 I am also sick of walking/skipping/jogging back and forth across my living room. In order to live in front of the TV today, have had to cover 10k and burn requisite calories to keep up with preparation for the charity walk in Jordan. Sod this for a laugh. I’m dizzy.
21:02 Two hours to go and the only thing to amuse us right now is Ian Wright’s misery at the reality of Arsenal on Twitter.
21:17 Sky are running on fumes now. Have been confirming everything that is not going to happen for the last two and a half hours.
21:29 Everyone at Leicester is sitting round waiting for us to put in a higher offer for Drinkwater.
21:31 Lemar has scored again for France. He might as well be cock-slapping Wenger’s face right now.
22:15 Suddenly it is all happening. Slew of players at Cobham waiting to be seen. Worse than trying to get a doctors appointment on the NHS. Barkley and his reps pulled the plug on a move mid-medical. Second thoughts apparently. Merson with the absolutely, unequivocally, most stonking quote of the day:
Just a baffled face and: “You can’t live in Liverpool all your life!”
22:22 Fan antics! Finally! Though it was amateur, I wont lie, a few saps running past the camera shouting w*nker. Where? Outside the Bridge of all places. Obviously QPR fans making mischief.
22:35 Barkley apparently wants to reconsider his move away from Everton when he is fit in the January window - Daft to let the deal go that far along but apparently does not rule out possibility of him joining us then. You can bet the sp*ds will be sniffing around though. I don’t believe any player that’s ruled out for months should ever be moving on before he’s at least close to fitness so I can’t complain about it. Surely its not a good thing to move from one medical team to another while you are crocked? I guess potentially the biggest impact that it has on us is that that was a homegrown player about to come through the door.
22:44 Sixteen minutes to go - we’re potentially being given a couple of extra hours by the Premier League to wrap this Drinkwater deal up.
22:53 We aren’t the only muppets that have left it till the last minute, as Brighton are trying to get two deals over the line. Tim Krul has come down from Newcastle and he’s literally sweating live on Sky now he’s on the south coast.
22:57 The Red Swarm have spent the last six minutes running down championship deals and interviewing Watford signings. #priorities
22:59 Kamara quite rightly questioning why three players (Llorente, OC, Barkley) have got all the way to organising medicals at Chelsea, that is after you’ve discussed fees, wages, personal terms, everything, and then they signed. Very valid question.
23:05 Another source now claiming that Barkley didn’t get as far as starting a medical. It will be interesting when all of that comes out in the wash.
23:14 Zappacosta is done. There are six potential Premier League deals that could still go through by 1am, one of which is Drinkwater to Chelsea, but thank f*ck that is over, is all I can say. I’ll pick the bones out of it when the dust settles. For now I need to get away from Liam Hemsworth, who has been banging on about some cheap aftershave in every ad break since 9:40am. I never want to see his face again.
Photo of shiny new man comes from Chelsea's official website.
Chelsea 2 Everton 0
Sunday 27th August 2017 13:30
In the News: Dyche says he nearly signed Kane. Watching those two try and have a conversation would be possibly the most hilarious event since Belgium called up Hazard for international duty this week. On. Your. Bike. We lent you our shiniest toy at the beginning of the summer, and you trashed him. You are most definitely not having him back now. As if you needed any more proof that Goons are the gift that keeps on giving, one of them actually stopped living his life this week to write to Wenger complaining that Lacazette's yellow boots were to blame for their defeat at Stoke. Yes, because it was that and not the fact that Arsenal are p*ssies. There was also a big article about how amazing Phil Jones is, begging you to take him seriously. Impossible. Not when every photo ever taken of him looks like Sloth from The Goonies in a funhouse mirror.
The Champions League draw is out. Since 2006 the most difficult team United have ever played against in the group stages is Benfica. Other than that it’s a constant stream of CSKA and people you’ve barely heard of. Ludicrous. Sp*rs, however, hilarious. Ours, not ideal, but if we can't qualify past Roma and FC Carrier Bag we don't deserve to be in the knockout stages, so there is no point crying about it. In the transfer market, if the Scouse hijack this Oxlade-Chamberlain deal after the amount of effort we've put into it I will lose my sh*t. Arsenal to Klippity Klopp is pointless - it's a sideways move. It's one team who won't win much to another team that won't win much, but with the increased threat of being mugged. This has looked like our most likely deal for some time, but there are some other irons in the fire. Clock is ticking though. And elsewhere Diego is starting to resemble BA Barracus in that you're going to have to knock his a*se out and drag him onto a plane if you want him to leave South America. He’s like a nightmare ex, when your forgotten how great the sex was and all you can see now is that they are a complete bunny boiler. I haven't burned my Diego doll yet, though. Because I'm not a whiny red Scouser. Suggestions on uses for it on a postcard.
The Others: Tammy Abraham scored his first premiership goal yesterday for Swansea. Huzzah! How is De Boer doing so badly at Palace? Real Pulis and Stoke bored each other to a 1-1 draw. There’s a surprise. West Ham are bottom of the league after losing to Newcastle. Happy days, maybe the taxpayers can have their stadium back when they end up demoted to the Championship. “There’s nothing wrong with my back line” says Klippity Klopp. This might be all fine and dandy when you are playing suckers like Arsenal who can’t beat Stoke (I know, tempting fate, but I’m recklessly delirious on violet flavoured Gin and victory) We’ll see how that pans out for you. Huddersfield are still unbeaten, and, blissfully, Sp*rs still can’t win at Wembley. City beat Bournemouth, jammy f*ckers, after Charlie Daniels scored the goal of the weekend at 12:43 on Saturday lunchtime. We may not have spent “enough” money this summer, but it could be worse. We could have spent enough to feed a small country and still be riding our luck. We all know I have a soft spot for Bournemouth. And Eddie Howe. They will be OK, I’m sure of it, but this result made me angry, especially when I saw that Mike Dean basically doubled injury time. Then I saw Sterling sent off for celebrating his goal. This made me laugh, at least. Pep says he needs it explaining to him. We can teach him to suck eggs too while we are at it. Bellend. You’re not in Kansas anymore Dorothy, and you play by the same rules as everyone else. From watching two minutes of highlights I attained a faultless perspective on the United game, and decided that Chequebook Pulis and his Mob of Rotters (Fellaini, Ibrahimovic, Jones; lookers they ain’t) were lucky too. They made a meal out of getting the first goal, against a mid-table club, which gives me great hope about people crushing them at some point and ending the media lovefest. Yes that's right, a lovefest for a man who they pilloried when he was in charge of us, despite the fact that he was less bonkers and full of sh*t than he is now.
Our Game: The usual half awake atmosphere for a 1:30 kick off. Distinctly hungover crowd, enthusiastic but nowhere near coherent enough to sing en masse at kick off at least. Being a trooper, I sank two double guns in quick succession after 12pm, when it was slightly more acceptable, in order to wake myself up. Of course this was with all of your best interests at heart and so my match report didn't just read "zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz Morata naked zzzzzzzzzzz."
Us: First time ever without an British player in the match day squad apparently. Pesto (all right, auto-spell, you win) came back into the starting line up with Cesc after his suspension at the expense of Bakayoko and Christensen. Boga has disappeared like a Sp*d title challenge. What's that about? The poor sod got his start, had to make way after Cahill's sending off and hasn't been seen or heard from since. Has he been sending nude selfies to Antonio's missus? Nicked his parking space? Or been caught FaceTimeing Costa from the team hotel? Who knows. I wonder if he's stuck in football purgatory, they want to loan him out but how do they dare until they know we've got people coming in?
Them: The Blue Scouse are like a penniless chav with a tax rebate who spends his days picking up people's fag ends and loitering in a Wetherspoon's. They are so unused to having cash they've spunked all the Lukaku money before it's even touched their pocket. How is that going to pan out for them? And why were they wearing what looked like a white kit washed with a black sock and left to gather mildew for thirty years?
Multi million pound Pickford, the most expensive goalkeeper ever in the universe (or whatever) fluffed his lines with his first touch and to be honest it didn't get much better for them in the first half. There was not much in it in the opening spell, but we were definitely on top after a quarter of an hour. When Everton did have the ball we were forcing them to play very quickly and they just seemed to be lacking any spark. Their new signings came nowhere close to setting the pitch on fire. Pickford looks like they've shelled out a fortune for someone who will grow into his potential and isn't fulfilling it yet, and as for Shrek I didn't even notice he was on the pitch until he started rolling round on the floor (leaving a pretty hefty dent in the turf) pretending to be injured. Sigurdsson was completely anonymous. I’ve just checked to see if he even played. As for us we were steady if not spectacular in our efforts to break them down and under no real pressure. Then on 26 minutes came a great touch from Fabregas to Morata, who returned the favour with an improvised header down for Cesc to knock it low into the far corner with the outside of his boot. It was all too quick for meatheads like Jagielka at the back. It never felt like there was going to be any drama after we went ahead. In fact we doubled our lead before half time, despite the stupidity of the referee (we'll come back to him) when the ball fell outside the box. An outstanding ball in from Dave dropped perfectly for Morata to head it in. At the other end, Everton were limited to one single shot off target in the first half and if you gave me a million pounds I couldn't tell you when that was. Admittedly this is because the division of colour assets going on between Boycie (sitcom alias) and I and over our pack of Starburst was more focused than Roman's forthcoming divorce negotiations. For this we take full responsibility.
The rowdy lot in the Matthew Harding sent up a shout for a penalty straight after the restart but to be fair, from behind it looked at the time like a pretty 50/50 shoulder barge in which our player was not fat, so came off worse. After an attempt by Pesto which went wide, Rudi put in a good block which finally gave the blue Scouse their first corner of the game. Everton looked slightly more awake but that's not saying much. Pretty soon it was all us again. A great run by Moses, another ball fizzed dangerously across the face of goal just didn't quite find anyone in the box, then Pesto, straight back into form it seems, hit the side netting on 59. A similar shot immediately afterwards from Moses went straight into keepers hands. By just after the hour mark it had all gone a bit flat, but what did we care, we were winning. Comfortably. We were playing at 70% because we were finding it that easy. Koeman's response was to make a singularly unimaginative and pointless substitution. You've achieved nothing, all game. You still haven't had a shot on target. So rather than try and challenge us by shuffling your pack you make a like for like switch between two forwards. Must be nice to get paid for being that dopey. Crucially, the player going off was not Rooney. Struggling to breathe whilst strapped into his girdle afternoon, Boycie and I chuckled at the idea that he has "given up playing for England to devote himself wholly to Everton.” Perhaps "utilising the entire 30% of skill and ability he's got left on club football before all those fags and takeaways catch up with him" is more accurate. I don't know where the media got the idea that he was enjoying some kind of renaissance early this season. His total non-appearance ended in him being booked for gobbing off. When you're going bald a second time, even after you paid to have your pubes shaved off and stuck to your head, it's time to at least bow down to the Championship.
Bakayoko came on for Pesto on 74 minutes, which was nice. Mostly because it was a relief to know he didn't smash himself to pieces at Wembley and aggravate his injury by putting that much into the game when not fully fit. We had chances to extend our lead further. A great cross from George Michael, who is still playing out of his skin, and still being penalised for nothing regularly, almost fell to Cesc. Morata bowed out for Michy. Please put it the right net this time. Although he looked so mortified at Wembley I almost wanted to cuddle him. And we beat the twats anyway so I’m not holding it against him. Koeman took his head out of his backside and finally took off Jagielka to replace him with Aaron Lennon, who runs like a penguin whose balance is skewed by the disproportionate size of his arse. What was the point in doing this in the 83rd minute? They actually started getting forward, even if they still couldn't hit a shot on target. Maybe if you'd have given your team more than seven minutes to try and get something out of the game your day might not have been such a bust. Again we might have had a third on 85, if Willian hadn't taken the ball off Moses's foot in the box. An effort by them was tipped over by Courtois, but nope, still off target.
Refwatch: Jon Moss - are you sh*tting me? We've already had Madley, Moss and Taylor and it's not even September? We all know he's my least favourite official. (I know, it's like gauging your least favourite STD) Questionable in the first half at times but not so that he damaged either side. Dave and Morata saved him from an absolutely shocking advantage he tried to not give us by scoring. Let’s be clear, if not for an outstanding ball in and some useless defending by Everton, there was no advantage. There was just him standing there doing nothing. He went downhill a bit in the second half but he was not as much of a c*** as he normally is, and that's the nicest thing I'm prepared to say about him. Because really, when you're paid £100k a year, not being as awful as people expect isn't really good enough is it?
So: Never did I expect today to be such a walk in the park. You'd have expected a lot more from them for the amount of money they've spent this summer. One like for like sub until ten minutes to go? Leaving the Lennon sub almost to the end? The only player that gets a pass is Besic, who turned up for work today despite the fact that his father was shot this week. If I was a blue Scouser I'd be mighty p*ssed off at this lacklustre effort from the manager right through the team. But I'm not, so I'm just going to sit here sipping my gin with a smug look on my face.
I don't think they ever really looked like undoing our defence. I'm really liking Rudiger quietly going about his business. I've been told he's a bit shy and awkward, so show him some love after the international break. Morata learned a hard lesson last week and straight away from him there was a determination today to be tougher on the ball and hold it up. His reward was an assist and a goal, for which my fantasy team is muchly grateful. He behaved like a man who had been told to go and watch tapes of Costa being annoying and chasing everything down. But do you know what really highlighted his swift learning curve for me? The moment in the 25th minute when a great lump like Ashley Williams, much experienced at slinging his weight around, tried to hold him off the ball and ended up moaning on his a*se. At Wembley a week ago Morata would have folded with a perplexed look on his face. That was the first time I've seen him dish out what he's been getting since he arrived. Also, he and Willian are combining really well. There's a real understanding brewing with little flicks and one-twos. But just to be clear, if they start on with those sad little w*nker handshakes like The DLS and his Sp*dling mates in North London, they are both dead to me.
I may blog transfer deadline day, because one can only be so entertained by one's mad kitten whilst trying to unravel the complexities of the government crisis of spring 1915. It is so ridiculous in places that it sounds like something the Daily Fail made up... on no, wait, they did. Nothing has changed in the last 100 years. Shout out to Mowgli. (Special alias) He finally made it to his seat in the 70th minute. And to Gonzo’s mummy, who is great company and eschews overly PC madness as do I.
*Photo of Conte going apesh*t comes from Chelsea's official website
Don't forget you can relive last season at very reasonable cost by following the Amazon link to below to buy the book of the blog:
Sp*rs 1 Chelsea 2
Sunday 20th August 2017 16:00
In the News: Apparently thus far we've fined Diego 150k a week for not turning up. By my reckoning that means that Pogba owes United 7.8m for the last year. Seriously though, I spent the first part of the week raging about that nonsense drivel in the Mail. Oh and Conte is the bookies favourite to get sacked first. F*cking behave. Then I saw Conte's reaction. He pissed himself laughing. I could have done my blood pressure so many favours if I'd have just done the same. Costa is a loon, and the press Plebs are a race of thunderc*nt virgins whose lives are so sad that they go home and spend their time living the life they wish they had through World of Warcraft. Neither of these revelations are new. Just know this - if you were the worst journalist in the world the first question you STILL would have asked Costa would have been "Show us this text then?"
But in addition to Costa and his bleating, the Daily Express claim that after precisely a month at Chelsea Morata is miserable and hates us and wishes he was back in Madrid. I wished I was in Madrid when I looked out at the torrential downpour from the window of the Round Tower at Windsor too. Bellends. Later in the week they also claimed that we were going to sign Messi. So potentially their Sports Editor is just on crack. Jamie Carragher says we need to give up with the "tidal wave of negativity" at Chelsea about our club. Given that he's got the intelligence of something my Kitten buries in his litter tray it seems almost superfluous to point out the hilarity - that he said this in the Daily Fail within days of them publishing their accidental-yet-perfectly-timed-coincidental world exclusive interview with Diego. I pointed out to him on Twitter that the tidal wave of diarrhoea is coming from his chums, not us, but he didn't answer. I'm guessing because he can't read.
The Others: Well done Zouma, said I, before I scampered off to watch Arsenal TV. Stoke won that with 22% of the possession. The Scouse are planning a title charge with James Milner at left back. But it really is their year. Good luck with that. They looked only half convincing at home to Palace. Chequebook Pulis is implying that the league is too easy. (When he's not claiming that United will not win the league) Come back when they've played a rival. He is like a filthy ex. The whole time you are going out with him everyone you know tells you they are a complete c***, but you just won't have it, because you are besotted. Then when you dump them you realise that all your friends were right the whole time. The Press Plebs are the one skank in your circle who, despite the fact that they have slagged him off something rotten ever since you hooked up with him, ends up sleeping with him like a desperate slag. Southampton won. I was too busy screen-capping pictures of Charlie Austin to read anything about this game. Burnley received a reality check at the hands of Real Pulis. How did Craig Pawson get a f*cking Premier League game after last week? Not only that, but the w*nker waved his cards around like there were glued to his hands last Saturday and yet let people get away with kicking each other in the head at Huddersfield today. Elsewhere Bournemouth lost again, while Leicester beat Brighton, who looked out of their depth.
Our Game: If you were of a dramatic nature you could have flung yourself on the tracks at Baker Street today rather that face the match. Eleven days to save Conte, says one rag; doom, more doom. It was like a Thomas Hardy novel, or watching an episode of Eastenders. I wanted a point. If I'm honest, I was already sick of the sight of Wembley this year, even before Janice (muppet alias) and I emerged from the depths of the Metropolitan line and found that literally the whole estate had been plastered with cartoons of a chicken balancing on a beach ball. I felt dirty. There is nothing subtle about the Sp*rsification of the national stadium. Every remotely flat space has been commandeered for chicken propaganda. And despite the fact they had lost six of their last eight games at the place, there were more than 60,000 of them strutting along Wembley Way, pontificating about how many goals they would score today and just how much they were going to bend us over.
Us: When I saw the team lineup I thought that Conte might be going with a back four, but Rudi, Dave and Andreas Christensen made up the back three. Luiz protected them, Morata was right up the top and then other than that, the system was so fluid and interchangeable that it was difficult to define it. F*ck it, as long as they knew what they were doing. It worked.
Them: A varying number of whiny underachievers who like leaving a foot in and have delusions of grandeur. They say “England international” like it’s still 1990, and exciting; instead of something that in 2017 you would want to hide from your neighbours on account of the shame.
It took the Diving Little Sh*tbag (I refuse to use his name) all of 30 seconds to try take someone out. Having boasted about being in that number, all 65,000 of their mugs sat down when the match started and went to sleep, apart from one battered (both in appearance and in terms of blood-alcohol levels) middle aged woman waving a flag who was in a world of her own. Yes, a flag. For all the crap we have taken from them about them over the past few years, they were waddling away from the stadium today clutching handfuls of them, they were that excited. They could have gone ahead in the first quarter of an hour, when everyone in blue neglected to mark the DLS coming in on goal. Thankfully, his aim was sh*t. So fifteen minutes gone and we have eleven players still on the pitch and we are not losing. Huzzah! And I clung to the fact that in every game, Lloris has at least one epic brain fart that presents an opportunity to beat the gits. By far the most entertaining thing of the opening quarter of the game was the Sp*rs attempts to incite some noise from their fans by piping a drum through the speakers. They were a combination of oblivious and as disgusted as we were, and still didn’t get up, but we had much fun mocking them every time the tannoy drum w*nker came back. He shuffled home at half time and gave up. Probably in tears.
We hadn’t done badly, but we hadn’t fashioned much in the way of attempts, other than a Luiz effort which ended up in the middle tier. Then in the 23rd minute a stupid foul by the DLS left George Michael with a perfectly positioned free kick. He placed with with absolute precision and
so here we are. The first team to score against them at “home” at Wembley. Five minutes later Harry F*cking Kane (not possible to say it without swearing) slipped over his own drool and tried to con a penalty out of the referee. As usual the first yellow went to us. Dier only got a yellow for trying to murder Luiz, but then, he doesn’t play for us. Is there anything more joyous than those w*nkers running on goal, all their dopey fans getting excited and then witnessing them hitting the post like bellends? Today, I think not. Then it got less funny when Thibaut was forced to parry another shot away and it became all about trying to get to half time without conceding. Happily, they couldn’t have hit a barn door before the break and Wembley was awash with confused Sp*dling faces who couldn’t quite figure out what was going on.
We looked a bit punch drunk as the second half began. They carried on where they left off and almost scored in the opening minute. About a dozen corners followed before finally the ball came down our end. Yet another shocking tackle, yet another yellow card when it isn’t a Chelsea player.
Which brings me to Refwatch. Anthony Taylor. I can’t stand him, but let’s face it, based on the first game of the season the bar wasn't exactly set high, was it? As long as he didn’t sh*t his pants out there on the pitch he couldn’t do any worse than Pawson last week. That said, in the first twenty minutes he stamped out nigh on every bit of playacting or sly b*stardry they tried, which was hilarious. By the 53rd minute, when he failed to send off Vertonghen, I wanted to fill a football sock with pennies and bludgeon his stupid bald head. As per usual he was massively inconsistent. They are the worst in the league for crying for a penalty every time someone touches them in the box and for sitting on the floor and hopefully looking at the referee, and as the game went on he fell for this like a bellend of monumental proportions. Conversely I watched Willian get fouled half a dozen times and then get told to shut up.
All the play was with them now. My God I’ve missed Victor Meldrew (SItcom Alias) I’ve done fourteen weeks without his random, hybrid obscenities being screeched in my ear at away games and I have been bereft. God help him, he was not going to survive another half of this. Without really terrifying us in the box they were coming forward a lot, and a few of our players were starting to look tired. When we did recover the ball, we couldn’t quite make it happen. But they started to leave themselves open at the back. Willian broke on 70 minutes and Morata just pondered over the shot a bit too long. Willian hit the post himself too and we started questioning whether the tossers in white had shot their load prematurely. Could we nick another one?
We had defended really well, and rode our luck. Every time they got a shot off it invariably hit the anatomy of a Chelsea player as they charged on to the ball. I lost count of the amount of blocks we made. So it was a shame when we went and scored for them. Was that even a free kick? I wrote in my notes. It looked from my excellent vantage point a hundred yards away behind a lanky man jumping up and down like he was falling over. On the replay its on the DLS, so we should be exempt on the grounds that he is a cheating c*nt. I think it might actually have been harder for Michy to score than it would have been to put the damn ball out of play. Arrrggggghhh. Taylor continued to give out dubious free kicks which made Victor work his way through a litany of insults, most of which he made up on the spot and every single one of which was deserved.
Remember that moment I mentioned? Lloris’s epic brain fart? Just when we were praying we’d cling on for a point, George Michael came running in on a tight angle, no reason for any drama and somehow he manages to do Lloris at the near post by playing it under his body. Awesome. Never, EVER cut your hair! The bouffant do is now our lucky charm.
I'll be honest I was so busy gloating I don't have a clue what happened after this. Victor got so excited he nearly fell into the row in front, some random man without any front teeth insisted on cuddling us, and then everybody turned around to give the Sp*ds above us as much sh*t as possible before the final whistle. “T*ttenham Hotsp*r” It’s happening again,” was one chant, “Welcome to Wembley” another. Poor Pochettino thinks they were hard done by. I think as his belly gets rounder and rounder he looks more like the little porky German kid in The Simpsons.
So: Every time we see those horrible b*stards they sound more like Gooners. No doubt there will be a DVD released next week entitled “We Had Six Shots on Target and Made it Really Difficult for Them.” Insufferable, but hilarious that they have become what they despised. As Geoff Shreeves pointed out to everyone who would listen after the game, we only had two shots on target. And? Here’s some stats for you, Geoff. We scored two today. We even scored a third for them. They didn’t score any. We have won four on the trot against the gits at Wembley. Also, I hadn’t noticed this, but we have also never lost a league game that we have been winning at half time under Antonio. And three points today despite enforced changes, half fit players and inexperienced personnel starting against “statistically the best team in the league for the last two years although they haven’t won anything.”
Luiz was outstanding today, I doubt we’ll be hearing any of the George Michael nay-sayers moaning (for a week at least) now he has humiliated the Sp*ds at Wembley. I love that in all the photos from the game he looks as surprised as we were. Thibaut needs some credit, for the amount of times he came for the ball today but STILL he needs to be bossier in the box. Willian was booed off by them. What a proud moment. As for the new guys Morata took one for the team today. He cut an isolated figure waiting for a counter-attack. He got a brutal introduction to the Premiership on his full debut. He was buffeted from pillar to post and looked a bit shell-shocked, and will know now that he’s got to toughen up. I love the way he runs onto the ball. It’s like Torres, but without the demeanour of someone who's permanently contemplating suicide. For someone who hasn’t had a preseason, Bakayoko was immense. He’s going to feel it tomorrow, but he is like Matic, except that the can run. Christensen was called on last week to come on after Cahill’s red, and wouldn’t have expected to be playing in this game, but in both he has been assured.
I said go there and just don’t lose, but Conte went one better. Good man. This should make the spin on tomorrow’s papers interesting. I’m going back to my gin now. Bring your change to the Bridge next Sunday, not to throw at people like the Sp*ds. I shall be outside with a bucket on behalf of Veterans in Action collecting for my desert trek.
Chelsea 2 Burnley 3
Saturday 12th August 2017 15:00
Yep, that’s right. The first time since 1992 (maybe the second, I’ve drunk too much gin to care) that the reigning Premier League champions have not been televised on the opening weekend. Bet they wouldn’t have done that to the Scouse. To my immense amusement though, you have to go back before the Premier League was invented to find when THEY were last champions. That’s before most of their current team was born. And probably the last time Klopp had a shower.
The Others: Urgh. This “Friday Night Football” irks me. It irks me greatly. Clearly all that Shiny Dinner Plate glory went to the Goons’ heads last weekend. They got out of jail eventually, but showed everyone why they probably won’t come anywhere near winning the league. In the words of Jamie Carragher, well, the ones I could understand as he drowned in his own saliva, “Arsenal have played like they’ve never seen Leicester before,” Happy days. The Scouse vindicated everything I said about Klopp and defending in the season preview, Watford clearly didn’t get the memo that this is their year. Shrek scored on his return to Everton, and Huddersfield are top after thrashing Palace at Selhurst Park. They’ve now spent more time leading the Premiership than Sp*rs have in the last two seasons. Southampton and Swansea battled their way to a bore draw, while Real Pulis managed to throttle the life out of valiant little Bournemouth at the Borethorns. In the late fixture Brighton held off City for more than an hour but lost 0-2. This leaves Newcastle to play Sp*rs tomorrow lunchtime and Chequebook Pulis to park his famous bus against West Ham later on. I worry that United will win the league this season. He’s had his first season, then he wins in the second, and then obviously in 2018-19 we can look forward to him having a complete mental breakdown, leaving chaos on his wake in the third.
Nobody is giving us much credit. Chris Sutton and Martin Keown are on my sh*tlist for dismissing us in Sky’s previews. Incidentally, out of every single one of the pundits on the BBC (Boooo - they are in my bad books) only one predicted that Chelsea would finish outside the top four. Gullit. F*cking traitor.
Us: Dave moved up to fill in for suspended Moses and new signing Rudiger went into the back three. In place of Pesto (I yield autospell, I yield) came Boga, which was apparently a shock to the media but not to anyone who’d been paying attention in preseason.
The Game: The first time a Chelsea player tackled someone, he got booked. And so it began. We strung together about 500 passes in the opening five minutes. 495 in our own half, but still, Burnley could hardly get a foot on the ball. Our first break on goal came when a great ball flew out to Dave on the right but he shanked the shot. Shortly afterwards, Boga could have scored on his debut had he made better contact using his head. For his effort he had a foul given against him for having the audacity of trying to win the ball. Then, having dominated we were down to ten men in the first quarter of an hour. My enormous list of transgressions for which I want to repeatedly pimp slap Craig Pawson doesn’t actually include this red card. Uncharacteristic and absolutely no malice in it. Could he have given him a break? Maybe, but allowing for the fact that this referee is a monumental bellend I can see why he sent him off.
So having barely touched the ball Burnley were back in it. I take issue with Fabregas’s first yellow card. You’ve just sent a Chelsea player off. Understandably, his teammates don’t like you. So when you do nothing in the next passage of play when a Chelsea player is hacked down and then Cesc gives you a smattering of sarcastic applause, do you book him? Or do you show a bit of common sense, tell him to watch himself and keep a lid on the situation? Well if you’re Craig Pawson, i.e. a thunderc*nt, you book him and further antagonise 40,000 people before you’re twenty minutes into the game. The crowd response was riotous. I want Mr. Kydd of the Fancast’s opinion, seeing as he has got certificates that allow him to empathise with these twats.
Poor Jeremy Boga made way and Christensen was punted into the deep end to get his first team career started, not only today but probably for next weekend too. For what it’s worth, I think he did OK today. Burnley had a goal chalked off for offside, but following the sending off we were all over the place. There was the odd spell of control, but it was not enough. Burnley did not “stun” us today, as the press plebs are saying, they contributed little before the red card, and sat back for the whole of the second half waiting for a counter-attack, but for that half an hour of the first half when we could hardly string three passes together, they were clinical, disciplined and made the absolute most of the opportunities they got. When finally we settled, looked to be on top despite being a man down, we went and conceded again. Just not good enough. Then the third went in. “Hopefully Trump will choose now to push the button,” said Boycie. Entertainment, this was not. I’ve never seen Gonzo move that fast to get to the beer. All he wanted to do was dull the pain of what was to come after half time.
At least they came out with their heads up. A long range shot from Rudiger on 47 went wide but not embarrassingly so, and a minute later George Michael (still he rocks the atrocious 80s hair) had a shot tipped over. But sadly, for me, despite surmounting our opposition, who outnumbered us, for the whole of the second half, we could not surmount what was the most pathetic attempt to referee a football match I have seen in recent years. No doubt the press will say we booed our team off at the end of the first and second halves. I hear that this is definitely the case with NBC in the States. Nope, that was all for Pawson. Random, stupid stoppages, absurd decisions and about as adept at spotting a Burnley infringement as Nelson would have been waving his telescope in front of his useless eye. In the dark. If he had flown a helicopter over Stamford Bridge and napalmed the stadium and everyone in it, it still would have been more subtle than his car crash of a performance. I just stopped taking notes in the end because it wasn't a football match, it was a farce. I have not see an outpouring of such disgust aimed at the match officials since that ludicrous semi final against Barcelona in 2009. Penalty shouts went begging, at least one of which was blatant. No cards for Burnley in the first hour. To me that implies we kicked them up and down the pitch. Bullsh*t. It just didn’t happen.
Conte changed it up, for what it was worth. On 57 minutes Batshuayi went off for Morata. The first thing he did was hit a shot. It missed by a mile, but sad to say more than Michy managed in an hour of football. George Michael came close with a free kick, but still my little corner of the Shed Upper just watched on in sheer disbelief at the three man comedy act in magenta who were either blind, high, of extremely limited intelligence or most likely a combination of all three. Morata gave us hope on 67. The ball went in. Pawson looked pleadingly at the Lino then realised he was going to have to give it. We had it in the net again a few minutes later, but this time a flag did go up. Jon Walters came on for Burnley. This gave me hope. Apart from Kondogbia the other week I've never seen a player who doesn't wear our shirt go so far out of his way to score us a goal.
Still, the Pawson show went on. Then, when Fabregas received what should have been his first yellow card, Stamford Bridge was deafened by chants of “3-1 to the referee.” Even with nine men we were still better than them. Luiz thumped in a second, and sent Alf Garnett (sitcom alias) leaping up and down and screaming “NOW I forgive him for PSG!” As one last punch in the face? A mere four minutes of injury time to account for two goals, six subs and a disgraceful amount of time wasting. It was that bad that Alf roared: “Spineless c*nt!” Alf abhors the C-bomb. We came so close to an equaliser in the dying seconds, but it was not to be. Opening day defeat, but a dogged showing against the odds for the duration of the second half.
So: Conte didn't look happy. Said one genius on the tube. Are you f*cking surprised? To be honest everyone near me stood in an identical pose with a face of complete bafflement for most of that game too. This match had nothing to do with who we signed and who we didn't or how many players we've got. The fact is that the thin squad Antonio does have almost came back from 0-3 down with nine men to get something out of the game. I heard some snippets today: one that a wide player we've been linked with is close to joining, it's a matter of finances now, and that we haven't given up on another. We've put in an offer and I don’t think we’ve yet been told to p*ss off! In the grand scheme of things, we have 37 games left. Write it off, try and get through next weekend without any players, averting a complete disaster and then our season really starts. Apart from saying that I was sad to see Michy have a disappointing afternoon, and that Morata when he came on bagged his first goal quickly and looked exciting (dare I say Torres-like with his runs) it's not even worth trying to overly scrutinise performances today. Like I said, farce not football.
All that's left to say is that Pawson has form for ruining matches with utterly atrocious decisions. (City's FA Cup final semi last season is one of his most epic recent stinkers) The fact that we (as in the Premier League) talk about the effect on results of inept officials week in, week out, and that nothing changes is of real concern. We can discuss how this gets rectified another day. I'm not in the mood to be diplomatic right now. I'd be surprised if the f*cking Expendables can get that tosser out of Stamford Bridge unscathed this evening. With luck the referees room resembles the inside of that plastic medical capsule in Prometheus after the bird from the dragon tattoo films has given herself an alien caesarean. I'm going to spend my night drinking gin, watching the athletics and mocking up a North Korean passport for the ref. Then I'm sending it to Trump. With a note saying that Pawson cussed his mum. Don't tell my publisher, because I should be doing something more constructive than this.
But the last word shouldn't go on that snivelling butt monkey. It belongs to our team. I think the last time we were three down at half time was at the Emirates last September. That game ended 3-0 and we had eleven men. We were pathetic. Today our boys, all nine of them, came out after the break and refused to lie down in the face of a ludicrous official and literally couldn't stand up at the end. We gave ourselves a lot to do in the second half today, but were undone by the referee. I don't care what it looks like by the time the Press Plebs have whittled it down to two joy-filled minutes of them celebrating our demise. I was there and I believe that had it been officiated fairly, that we would have finished turning the game around to get at least a point by the end of it. But I don't have a time machine, and as Mrs. Brown (sitcom alias) says: if your granny had balls she'd be your grandpa.
Any manager with a brain will pull the significant bones out of it this. Down to ten men, then nine, Chelsea were still a threat and despite the disparity in numbers, came within a hair of taking a point whilst they completely dominated their opposition. We may not have any players for next week but we'll worry about that later. I don't think I've ever been prouder standing there applauding my team after a loss. And nigh on everyone else had stayed to do the same. This did not feel like the beginning of the last Chequebook Pulis season. Happy to say that I departed the stadium today surrounded by an aura of defiance and determination, and to the sound of fans roaring Chelsea songs. As opposed to rampant, overflowing nappy sh*tting. If today’s madness doesn't galvanise players and fans alike for the rest of the season nothing will. We’re not the only contenders to have had a less than perfect start. I’m still massively excited, and actually, a bit relieved that for all the moping and worrying, we are at least still a group of fighters. That’s going to come in handy.
I’m now going to celebrate the 4X100 relay win with a massive amount of gin.
*Photo of the ref w*nker comes from Chelsea's official website
You can buy the book version of the blog from last season by following the link below. Please do so, it keeps me in gin.
Go on let’s have one more go at the Game of Thrones analogies as we have a ponder about what is to come, I enjoyed those and if you didn’t manage the biblical length of the A to Z of preseason bit I did you would have missed them. If you don’t know now what I am going on about, then frankly you must have been under a rock for the last seven years. Or you live in the land of Scouse, where they are permanently frozen in 1988; still wearing shell-suits, sporting tightly curled perms and cussing Maggie Thatcher.
Us: (Chelsea are House Targaryen - A predilection for complete madness, no objection to annihilating all the other p*ssies on their way to the top and the rightful inhabitants of the Premier League throne) God I feel better after the fancast this week. It's amazing what a couple of hours of sodding about and talking sense will fellow fans will do. Even I was starting to get sucked in by the Press Plebs and their spunk-trumpeting clickbait.
Top four please. And last eight in the Champions League would be a great reentry into the competition. Though his demeanour is rather like a teenager consistently denied wifi at the moment, I don't think that Antonio is exaggerating particularly when he says this will be the toughest season of his managerial career. High expectations, less than ideal, though not disastrous summer of transfer business, a squad that looks very light for four competitions. Personally I'd have no issue sacking off the two cup competitions - handing them straight to the kids and concentrating on the big two. But let's hope that by the time the window closes it hasn't come to that. If they know what is good for them, the board are scrambling to bring in the squad players he wants. The higher ups can't possibly do nothing. Right? Pissing off Antonio irreparably within a couple of months of a surprise title win that even shut Robbie Savage up for five minutes would be a ludicrous state of affairs. It'd be like me bagging Charlie Austin then packing him in because I can't be arsed. Unthinkable. Self destructive. And worthy of repeated punches in the face from someone who cares deeply about your mental state until you see the error of your ways. To paraphrase Conte himself, you can’t eat at a £100 pound a plate restaurant with a tenner in your pocket, so they have got work to do.
I think a lot of fans think it’s just a case of offering money and a deal is done. It wish it was that f*cking easy. But if the board do fail us, Dave could end up being the key to our season in the crunch games both at home and in Europe. I’d expect him to end up utilised as a wingback on one side or another in tougher games. Moses and George Michael (No, still not been to the barbers) played out of their skins last season, but if we are to go deep into European competition they will both have to kick on again. I had a few gins last night and started to wonder: if Costa's solicitor had kept his trap shut would we have got desperate enough to use him? It might have been the football equivalent of drunken make up sex that just prolongs the inevitable for a bit longer. Perhaps until Atletico were able to sign him back. Could have worked. Anyway, I've sobered up now and remembered the look of death of Antonio’s face every time a journalist asks about Diego.
If we have offered £25m for Oxlade-Chamberlain then that sounds remarkably low. From what I hear this deal has long been more likely (pending Arsenal’s reaction to an actual bid) than most of the other names we have been linked with. He might not be Sanchez, but he’s a grafter, and one of the only one of theirs with backbone for a fight when the going gets tough, which will no doubt appeal to Conte. I sincerely hope that £37m for Drinkwater is another clickbait fabrication. If not, Emanalo is going to feel like Winston Churchill outlining his plan for the Gallipoli campaign to the rest of the Cabinet in 1915 when he asks Roman to sign that cheque. Even when you slap on the English tax he's not worth more than 20. I have no secret squirrel insight on this one, but if we were to pay any more than 25 we'd be mugs. Incidentally, I doubt Roman's impending divorce is going to have any impact at all on our spending. Firstly, his wife’s company is reliant on his cash and also, her family is minted. So she's got money. That and if Roman didn't pull out a prenup after his last ex-wife stung him for 150m he'd be a lunatic. It isn't worth even contemplating where we might finish yet. Ask me again at the beginning of September.
City: (House Lannister - After nearly a decade can’t understand why supposedly being a sh*tload richer that anyone else doesn’t translate into world domination. People might be afraid of their ruthlessness, but they also love watching them fail) Well Pep has literally no excuse and nowhere to hide as of now. If doesn't win every domestic trophy with the squad he's got he's a schmuck. So good luck baldy. But then you could have almost said that last year and as usual the criminally expensive sum of City's parts did not translate into a team effort. He’s got to start taking defending seriously. This isn’t Spain or the Bundesliga when you can waltz to a multi-goal win most weeks. I also hope over the summer City's media people have sorted out him picking his nose in interviews. And bought some powder for his head. It's like an eclipse. If you stare straight at it you go blind. They've got to be overwhelming favourites for the league. There is a just a shocking amount of talent in that squad.
L'Arse: (House Tyrell; up their own backsides, smug, ultimately trampled on by everyone. Yes, this makes Wenger Diana Rigg) Cut and past any preseason waffle from the last decade here. Because (happily) nothing changes. They’ve had a worse transfer window than us, in that they have strengthened less and weren’t as good beforehand. I saw a headline that claimed Lacazette (yes I have realised it was him that hit the post by now) had scored 122 goals from midfield in a season. This was in the Ligue 1 though, right? I’m pretty sure I could do that. For Arsenal to win this league, this season, they'd have to a Leicester - that is remain consistent whilst everyone else utterly fails and drops stupid points on a regular basis. Let's see how close to the usual trend they run this year:
Aug/Sep: Promising start
Oct/Nov: Decline in consistency. Dropped points. Probably injuries.
Dec/Jan/Feb: Annual implosion. Their fans, like the southern Scousers they are, will start bleating like they don’t deserve it. Then it will be #WengerOut, homemade signs, lame sit outs conducted by 30 fans, hours of hilarity on Arsenal TV, (blud) possibly a plane spotted circling the Emirates towing the not very angry slogan Time to Go or Enough is Enough.
March/April: Champions League humiliation. Oh no, wait… lol. Scrap for fourth, more Wenger out, lyrical waxing about the merits and stability of finishing fourth and yapping about their illustrious history.
May/Summer: Anguish of realising that Wenger is staying. Cue limited transfer window activity, and then mismatching delusions that for some reason beating your head repeatedly against a brick wall is going to have a different effect after a decade. This is the definition of insanity, you know.
Sp*rs: (House Greyjoy - cockless, whiny, ideas above their station and of no real consequence in the grand scheme of things) If they were to win the league this season it would be a more impressive feat than the one that Antonio just achieved. And that's without factoring in the amount of fixtures - because we didn't have European football and they have got the Champions League to fail at. Again. They want to watch themselves. If they have another trophyless season (God willing, praise Buddha, insha Allah etc) then others will follow Walker's lead pretty sharpish. Apart from Harry F*cking Kane (Try saying it without an obscenity at either end, or stuck in the middle, it’s not actually possible). With his IQ, his brain will probably catch up in about 2020, and then he’ll end up signing a 48 hour a week contract with Marks & Spencer's.
The Scouse Muppets - (House Bolton - Unwashed mouthy northerners with delusions of grandeur and grim and unpalatable customs who need to be kept in their place. By extreme force if necessary) Like us, they are too hard to call. They haven't (yet) spent money where they needed to. Why aren't they chasing world class defenders with ferocity? They made complete tits of themselves over Van Dijk and then ambled off on a tangent and never came back. At the very least why weren't they in for Harry Maguire? They've bolstered a ropey defence with a squad player and let's not forget they still have two hilarious clown keepers. It's Klippity Klopp all over. Don't get me wrong, they will smash some teams, but their problems will come in the games when they get shut out by the better defenders. Because they will concede. Goal carnage and hoping you're ahead when the final whistle goes does not league winners make. If they were to suddenly pick up Van Dijk, things would be a bit more concerning from the point of view of the rest of humanity, but he didn’t have bad defenders at Dortmund and they still conceded all the time. Does he just not know what to do with them? I have visions of him sending them off to play dodgeball while the rest of the squad trains. They will also be rocked if Barcelona manage to get in and poach Coutinho. Fingers crossed. Anyway, who knows, if they don't add further reinforcements at the back by the end of the window I'd be amazed if this finally turns out to be "their year.” (Yawn)
United: (House Frey - Ensconced somewhere bleak and northern with a rambling lunatic at the helm) If Chequebook Pulis does win the league I predict that he will be unbearable. They look strong, well, like a more expensive, more competent Tony Pulis side of meatheads, funnily enough. I’m lost with this supposition that Matic is going to "set Pogba free." Not to mention I have this rant to contribute: Why did you spend nigh on £100m on a man when you needed to spent a further £50m on another man to enable him to look remotely like a footballer and not an intruder who randomly wandered on to the pitch, and judging by the hair got run over by a lawnmower in the process? They could win the league, but it will probably be dire to watch. He won’t care. I’ll just add: Mr. “I won’t be ripped off in the transfer market” has just become the first manager to spend £1bn on transfers. Eye roll.
What about the rest? It is a big season for Everton. They have had a massive transfer window with all the money they managed to extort out of United. Even in accepting their failure to get Willian or Cesc out of us in a part exchange, (snigger) Koeman must be expecting big things. I like the look of Palace more this season than last, obviously because Fatso did the world a favour and left. I predict he’ll be back to bore the living sh*t out of us come the end of the year when someone has been fired. The Eagles shouldn’t be struggling and then scrapping for survival though. Bournemouth, have added some good players. Just never change, little black and red men. No matter the opponent they come out and play football. All hail Eddie Howe. Not so Real Pulis. I predict that during the two occasions I am required to watch West Brom I will want to stab my eyes out with anything sharp I can find in my handbag. Same with Stoke. And Watford. Burnley have added some more going forward with smart business, and they’ll at least be hard to beat at Turf Moor again. Leicester aiming for mid-table? They should be with the names they have bought in. Still don't think they will be repeating any top of the table heroics. Swansea have got to hope for better this season, and I am really keen to see what Tammy Abraham does there. West Ham have bought in some good players, I have no idea what methods of threats/bribery they had to resort to to achieve this. But they must have been terrifying. Southampton have changed very little, but still more than Sp*rs. (lol) I think the bottom end of the league is going to be hugely competitive. Huddersfield’s captain has just quit his job four days before the start of the season. Ouch. I don’t know why, possibly because I’ve got a soft spot for the fresh cinnamony doughnuts at the end of the pier, the absurd Pavilion and its WW1 links and stabbing the f*ck out of my feet on the pebble beach, but I think Brighton will do better than them. They’ve had a couple of years to think about playing at this level, I don’t think Huddersfield thought they would be here this time last season. With Brighton it was overdue and as a club, firstly their Captain hasn’t just legged it and secondly, they are better prepared. Newcastle I refuse to talk about until they stop sitting us on the roof with a better view of the John Lewis car park across the way than the pitch. Gits.
So sh*t is about to get real, but lets not take life so seriously. Firstly this weekend BT sport actually entertained us for once, with the revelation that Clattenburg, the man with more bravado than anyone in the refereeing world, sounds like a Geordie Clanger sucking on a helium balloon when he speaks. Aston Villa appear to have ceased to exist as far as the Press Plebs are concerned. I’ve not seen them referred to as anything but “John Terry” for the last fortnight. Chequebook Pulis claims he gave more to Real Madrid than any other club. More of his sanity, perhaps, as by the time he left he had perfected a blank thousand yard stare and abandoned all personal grooming. In fact, dirty, hollow on the inside, he looked very much like he’d just got back from ‘Nam, though in my head he was working as a navvy thirty miles behind the battlefield. Mind you he tidied himself right up to come back to us a few weeks later and he was still a loon. Can’t wash that crazy off. Anyway, you can only hope that PGMOL would have tattooed the word CONSISTENCY on the forehead of every official over the summer. I doubt we’ll see much of an improvement. Not until there is actually some punishment for being really, really f*cking terrible at your job. There will be the usual two week bluster from some of them about pulling in the box and then they will forget all about it again and resume normal service. One that makes Southern Trains look like winners. And lastly, you know those infuriating ad campaigns for those pikey accident recovery solicitors? The ones that send you texts about the injuries that weren't your fault that you've never had, and bombard you with a telesales campaign straight out of a Panzer Division playbook? I heard one yesterday. "My name's Michael Owen. And I know what it's like to be injured." I sh*t you not, the worlds most boring man will do anything for money. Jesus wept. And then hit his digital radio with a sledge hammer.
Community Shield: Arsenal 1 Chelsea 1 (Goons win on mad penalties)
Sunday 6th August 2017 14:00
No. As you can see we learned nothing at all from the FA Cup Final.
Us: It was a predictable Chelsea line up, with Michy replacing Costa. Obviously Matic and Chequebook Pulis have hooked up again like a couple of exes ignoring all the reasons they broke up in the first place, so Cesc started alongside Kante. Willian came in for Hazard, who is still recovering from injury.
Them: Presumably Sicknote Ozil had "flu" again. Or whatever this is code for when he can't be arsed to go to work. No Ramsay or Sanchez either. Shame.
It was almost real football and f*ck it. It'll do for now after a summer spent being conscripted for household chores and Saturday supermarket shopping. The highlight of the first five minutes was us starting a song about how much we hate Sp*rs, then the Goons joining in, with the result that 85,000 people all sang “Stand Up if You Hate T*ttenham” in what is currently their “home” ground.
It was pretty even, but there wasn’t much intensity in the opening spell. The first chance fell to them, a tame header which floated right into the hands of Thibaut. By the tenth minute we looked leggy, lethargic. If anything, they were slightly on top, but it was not a bristling contest. It felt like watching a Sunday morning kickabout. Willian in particularly looked languid, and Moses was doing everything at half speed. On the flip side Michy was tenacious, constantly trying to orchestrate runs in behind. Luiz tried to give us forward momentum and of course, Kante was Kante. There were a couple of close calls, Welbeck hit the post, and at the other end the jammy buggers managed to keep it out after Michy and Moses had combined in the box. Then there was a lengthy break while Mertesacker rolled about on the floor.
Mrs Brown (Sitcom alias): How did Mertesacker get hit in the head? Nobody can get up that high?
Me: Probably elbowed himself in the face. Moron.
This lull rounded off a bit of a flat half hour, and it only got worse as we moved towards the break. We were nodding off in our seats. If anything the sloth like momentum was now with us. The ball was dug out on 34 minutes by Kante, run forward by Willy and resulted in a great long range shot from Pesto (Yawn autospell) but it was expertly saved by Cech. Not, Thibaut, because they play for the same team, BBC journalists. (Facepalm)
The reaction after half time was exactly what you’d expect after an ear-bashing from Conte at half time. And it worked. Within two minutes we had a corner. Trigger (Sitcom alias) pointed out that Cahill was completely unmarked on a corner. That’s f*cking stupid. We said. It was also stupid when nobody had picked him up after the corner was taken too. Not a man near him as the Captain headed it on for Moses to burst forward and put it past Big Pete. Michy could have had one shortly after, and we were looking much better. A naughty one from Pesto on Xhaka prompted no card, presumably because Xhaka has scythed down just about everyone in the league at some stage and it is just regarded as karma. As the half went on, the Goons settled into it more. There were some timely interventions form Cahill and Luiz, ubiquitous foul throws from Moses, the ghastly appearance of Giroud’s beard and a headed clearance from Cesc. On 73 minutes Morata made his competitive debut for Chelsea. Almost immediately he could have scored. The effort, four minutes after his introduction, was brilliantly worked, Willian curling it across the box to him with the outside of his foot, but the new boy connected with the shot all wrong and it blazed over the bar. Rudiger came on, and Musonda was getting ready just as Pesto went crashing in with another naughty challenge. This time he didn’t get away with it and he limped off after deservingly seeing red.
Which brings me to Refwatch. Bobby Madley. Bobby. F*cking. Madley. It took me ages to realise it was him because he appears to have been on a crash diet over the summer. It also looks like he might have embraced the fact that his hair has run away from his head in embarrassment and just shaved it off. So the PGMOL punishment for being one of the worst officials in the league last season? Command of the curtain raiser at Wembley. It beggars belief. What else could he then provide other than the usually volatile, unpredictable and imbalanced minefield of f*ckwittery? The red card call was right, but Bellerin escaped a second yellow after dragging Dave off the ball by the neck, then there was Willian’s booking. From my excellent vantage point 200 yards away it was clear he fell over his own feet, and nobody is going to convince me otherwise. As the game ticked on, it didn’t particularly show that we were a man down. Morata could have scored again and at the other end Cahill put in an excellent block. Why. Why. Why. Why. When there are ten seconds left in a game do we persist in passing it about. Just punt it into the box! Sadly this appears beyond comprehension, and so 1-1 it was, and straight to a penalty shootout.
The overly-excited chump on the tannoy announced that it would be in the new “A-B-B-A” format. Were they going to have a disco dance off? No, apparently this does still involve penalty kicks. Being English, panic set in. There was much drunken bafflement about how it all worked. Then there was drunken shock and quite a bit of horror as the order of our spot-kick takers was revealed. Maybe they did think it was a dance off and Cahill and Courtois are the players with the groovy moves? I know that Cahill initiation song was “Sexy and I know it.” Anyway. He was a Super Trouper. Courtois was most categorically not, then Morata scuffed his wide and we didn’t win. It was over quicker than a Sp*rs title charge. I like not this new shootout format. All the pressure ends up on one team very quickly. And it's over in two minutes. W*nk.
So: We could have won the shiny dinner plate just as easy as we lost it in the end. That said, this just felt like another preseason fixture, as opposed to a competitive one; especially in the first half.
We didn't learn anything new today. Except perhaps that Antonio doesn't give a sh*t about the Charity Shield. Otherwise he brings Christensen on instead of Musonda after the red. Kante is still a boss. Batshuayi is in mid-evolution. He no longer skips around like a harmless bunny rabbit. He holds the ball up much better, but sometimes still gave way under pressure. I want him to instill fear in defenders. I want them to groan when they see his name on the team sheet. Rough em up Michy. It's time to go full b*stard. Great little cameo from Musonda. Rudiger more clumsy but it’s very early days. Morata was the best of the subs. Looking increasingly sharp - he could have won it for us today, but it was not to be. I’ve forgotten what it’s like to watch a Chelsea forward win ball after ball in the air. As a whole we were markedly better in the second half, but very few were consistently sharp all the way through. Fabregas faded, Willian floated in and out. Cahill, Dave and Luiz looked, for the most part, more ready to get going than most. But you'd expect that from three absolute pros, even if one of them is bonkers. Our major problem remains that if the two wings backs aren't at it, we're in trouble. And in preseason George Michael (Nope Alonso still hasn't seen himself in a mirror) has not really been at it. He wasn't great today either. He limped off and I wonder if he's been carrying a niggle. An actual niggle. Not an ITV Sport "niggle" when they are actually talking about someone's broken ankle. Either that or it occurred when Bellerin cleaned him out in the first quarter of an hour. On the other side Moses was good against the Goons in China but in the last three fixtures he's been decidedly ropey in the first half before coming good in the second.
As for them they looked better than when we thumped them 3-0. Lacazette? Their money signing, I forgot he was even playing. He got outplayed by Welbeck. So he might as well go and drown himself in the dressing room jacuzzi. And let's remember that according to their standard schedule, Arsenal will have face-planted by October. That's the highlight of their season. On 6th August. Suckers.
We drew, it's the not the end of the world. Do you know how you know that Conte doesn't care? He was in his tracksuit. Just like at West Ham (sorry, the prized Olympic Stadium that West Ham are squatting in at the taxpayers’ expense) in the League Cup last season. This is the equivalent of you or I turning up in our PJs. Perhaps we had hoped for more progression over the summer and more new faces, especially when the two Manc clubs have spent a fortune. That said, they did that last season. Everyone said it was Pep vs Chequebook Pulis, and they weren't anywhere near the title. Just a thought. Chelsea have not been sitting round with their thumbs up their a*ses all summer. The club has been unlucky in that some of their efforts have come to nothing through no fault of their own. United were willing to pay more than Lukaku was worth, we weren't. They wanted 75m plus Willian or Fabregas. Quite rightly we told them to f*ck off. Sandro was, apparently, a done deal until Juve failed to sign a replacement and wouldn't go through with it. Even the Bakayoko deal went around and around because of his current injury. Nothing has come easy.
Can I say with impunity that I believe Chelsea have done everything possible to boost our numbers, and got every deal right? No. Because I don’t have enough information to make that judgement, and because right now from the outside it looks like they might have missed a trick. But I know that at least four of the outgoing players wanted to leave, however much we'd have wanted to keep them on our books. What do you do in that scenario? (I will say though, that unless he knows where bodies are buried I don't know quite why Matic held so much sway that he got away with his move to United) I don’t like hearing about unprofessional texts and Conte talking about disagreeing with the club in public, but our league winning manager is not happy, and this, considering we won the league a few weeks ago. His demeanour has been miserable in the last few days and if he feels like going through the press is the only way to make himself heard that is just stupid.
He is the manager Roman has wanted for years, so he needs to be backed. The sad fact of modern football management is that the results come down on the boss’s shoulders when they aren’t 100% in control of their circumstances. Conte has a right to feel supported by the players, the board, the fans after what he has produced. As far as the board is concerned, they need to do their jobs so that he can continue do his and this is the discrepancy at the moment, or at least he feels it is. But let's not start bulk buying nappies just yet. We haven’t actually failed at anything. We've got Hazard to come back to fitness, as well as Bakayoko. The window isn't shut, so the club have time to turn it around, even if arrivals will now come in later than would be ideal. I’m happy with the three big signings we have made, and I don't think we need marquee buys, we don’t need to do a Pep and spunk money on every bloke with a Spanish accent who bats his eyelids at him and owns a pair of shin pads. What we need is a deeper squad. Seventeen players is not enough.
In the meantime, Sean Dyche will probably have watched that and been encouraged that he can drag something out of the game next week. The players that we do have have now got six days to get their heads properly in the game ready for Burnley. When the work really begins.
*Picture of Pesto practicing for a dance off comes from Chelsea's official website
Don't forget you can relive the joy of last season (and the sarcasm) in the book of the blog:
An A to Z of Chelsea's Pre-season
A - is for Arsenal. Our first outing. The pundits didn’t appear to have picked up a newspaper this side of May. Hazard had a niggle (bit dismissive for a broken ankle) Zouma should go on loan (already has, bellend) and allegedly, if your name is Tony Cascarino, the only difference between Arsenal and Chelsea last season was “consistency.” (Facepalm)
It was a slow start, until Willian and Michy tore them a new one and gave us a comfortable lead in quick succession. In the words of one Twitter wit, “not one player on that pitch looks like they’ve spent two months eating pies and shagging the club doctor.” This match was memorable for the magnitude of the Goon capitulation. During fourteen decades in charge, Frenchman Wenger has instilled into his troops an efficiency when surrendering, if nothing else. Ospina's attempt to decapitate Pesto (autospell hasn't had any useful updates over the summer) also sticks out in my mind. I don't think he remotely meant it, he is just crippled by having the IQ of a jet-lagged wet lettuce that's got off the plane in China, been brutally shaken and immediately sent out to keep goal. None of the new signings took part aside from Caballero. Michy was immense (all hail the King of Twitter) Boga too, and the North Londoners shuffled off back to their team hotel deservedly chastened. The game was also memorable for the fact that it was the only time I’ve ever seen Gooners still in their seats at the final whistle. Speaking of. Let’s all spare a moment to mock their latest banner, which reads "Boom Xhaka Laca." I'll pause here so you can p*ss yourself laughing... The Goons will forever be the Premier League equivalent of your embarrassing uncle, the one who still acts like it's 1995 because that's when he still had hopes and dreams and hadn't failed at life. The one that gets reluctantly invited to family weddings where you have to watch him cracking on to the Bridesmaids half his age and doing Carlton-from-the-Fresh-Prince dance moves to Run DMC.
B - is for Bayern. Our second match. They had to play well after being embarrassed in their previous outing but still, the disparity was hilarious. Boga had earned his start, and he came in to replace Pesto, who was having his face rebuilt somewhere in West London. Poor Christensen got a start, and no chance of making anything of it because we were so collectively awful. Courtois had a day to forget, Moses was shocking in the first half but atoned in the second. Mostly. Most of my wrath was reserved for George Michael (I refuse to call Marcus Alonso anything else until he gets rid of his 1984 Whamhair) He scored in first half injury time, but that was the minimum requirement after he had spent most of the game running round like he had concussion. Had he not made up for forgetting to defend and pressing so high that Bayern basically had the whole left side of the pitch to themselves, Conte would have been filling up everyone’s sweaty socks with pennies (or the Singapore equivalent) in the dressing room and letting his teammates take it in turns to knock him senseless after the game. I pointed out that they made the last eight of the Champions League last season, and that we weren’t in it, but it was still tough to watch. Boga came close, so did Cahill’s beard, but we still went in 3-1 down. Riveting it was not, after the break. Had Ham-ez Rodriguez had a better sense of direction than a a blindfolded kitten that has just come out of the tumble dryer, we might have conceded another five. But happily he was exactly that inept. At one point he fell over and landed upside down. It said it all that he couldn't figure out how to get up. Morata came on on the hour, but judging him would not have been fair as he was clearly a couple of weeks behind fitness wise. Nonetheless the commentary team slated him for not scoring with his first touch. We got better as the game went on, and Michy put one in from six yards out, but we’d left it too late and they ran the clock down. 3-2.
C - is for Chequebook Pulis, (I'm retiring the HWWNBN nickname this season in favour of this, because it's hilarious) who is already proving hilariously entertaining. He is also turning into a scowlier version of 'Arry Redknapp in that he is hell bent on raiding his previous club for personnel. Mark my words if the trend continues he will put in an offer for Nico Krancjar, Jermaine Defoe and Peter Crouch by the time transfer deadline day comes round. But the best laugh so far was when, after shelling out enough money to buy a Caribbean Island on Pogba and Lukaku, he said that he wasn’t going to pay over the odds for players. Then he went and gave as nigh on 50m for Matic. What a tool.
D - is for Desperation. The emails have already started arriving from Club Wembley for the September international break, offering me a ticket to see England in return for a packet of skittles. Two days before kick off they will be offering us money to go. I try and make my responses progressively more insulting/disgusting to see if there is a point at which they will give up. This time I replied that I would rather lick Sam Allardyce’s scrotum. I’ll let you know how it pans out.
E - is for End. As in "of the line". Costa. Here is what I know, because it came out of Conte's mouth. He had asked to leave three times. They way the manager tells it the club, the player and his agent all knew that the FA Cup Final would be his last game in a Chelsea shirt. I sincerely hoped that Conte hadn’t sent “the text” but he did. I’d love to know what it said. I will miss Costa, but for all the good things, he was ready to cut and run to play football with a load of goat herders and leave us to burn, so I am not going to cry that his time with us has come to an end. Kenedy might well have become the second Brazilian to yap his way out of a Blue shirt. I said at the time, he was an idiot, and he deserved to be sent home but I did have to laugh at some of the translations coming out of the Chinese newspapers. Apparently Chelsea showed a "lack of contrition" and were labelled as “disrespectful." I’ve got three words for you. Diego. Costa. And January.
I have to admire that Conte believes in unmitigated control of the dressing room. You have to agree, looking at some of our managers that have shuffled off pretty quickly when they didn't have it over the last decade. "If you lose control, anything can happen,” says Antonio. “Prepare to die... if you are lucky three months. Your end is decided."I love that this makes Premier League management sound like an episode of Game of Thrones.
Incidentally, who would be who?
Antonio: F*ck the wheel that is the Premier League. He didn't wait to roll around to the top and try to stay there, he just smashed the wheel. He's the mental bird with the dragons.
Pep: Dripping in money - House Lannister for sure. Specifically Joffrey. Pouty and whiny and a lot less substance than the realm of football would have hoped. And watching his demise is addictive viewing you'll want to rewind over and over again because he's such a smug w*nker.
Klopp: Is Ramsay Bolton. A nonsense pretender to the Premier League Throne. Sneaky, grubby and with dubious grip on reality and vastly overinflated opinion of his own stinky northern army. Would probably look better if his face was chewed off by dogs and everyone would secretly quite enjoying watching it happen.
Pochettino: - That lesbian Greyjoy bird. All gob, we're coming for you, blah blah, aren’t we hard. In reality there are such a weak showing that no body considers you contenders. In fact until you pop up on peoples TV screens they've forgotten you exist. If he's the bird, I am pretty sure makes Alli the snivelling little sidekick that got his knob cut off.
Chequebook Pulis is Walder Frey. Clearly a tit short of an udder, sits in a throne/press room, getting progressively more dishevelled, probably soiling himself and gibbering an unconscious stream of bonkers nonsense in which he perceives himself as the King of the world. And lots of people want to spike him in the gullet with a sword.
I want to be Arya Stark. I can think of so many people I'd like to gut/decapitate in the world of football, but unfortunately I haven't yet figured out how to go around doing it wearing Danny Rose's face. Two birds, one stone and all that.
F - is for Fraud - As in St. Pep. Failed to win anything in his first season, despite spending a shedload of money. So has spent a sh*tload more. For the cash he has spent on players since arriving in England, NASA could launch a shuttle into space. The sum is the equivalent to the cost of every single supply teacher used in the UK for a year. You could buy an Airbus A380. I don’t scorn the amount of money on principle - I scorn the idea that if he wins ANYTHING this season people will be fawning over him like he is amazing. Because if you gave my MUM that much she could win the double, and she can barely tell the difference between Ibrahimovic and Ashley Cole.
G - is for Genius. Possibly. We’ve made £100m in less than three years from selling players who had less than ten league starts for us, apparently. Now, if the players we have let go this time, i.e. Chalobah and Ake have buy back clauses in their deals, Chelsea could have pulled a fast one. Neither have gone to rivals, they’ve gone to mid-table clubs, which suggests their current level. Chalobah was on the last year of his deal, so we could have ended up in a situation where he had no ties left to us. “If” they make it, and we have first dibs/intimations from the players that they’d return in the event of doing really well and wanting to move on from their clubs, it’s a less time/financially consuming system than the loanee one we currently employ and enables them to develop without severing all links with Chelsea. If, however, there are no buy back clauses and we’ve just waved them off, ARRAAARGH!
H - is for Hysteria. More commonly known as nappy-sh*tting and bed-wetting. God we’re good at this as a collection of fans. The end is not nigh after three friendly games. The transfer window is not yet closed. See below for an insight into how the brain of a nappy sh*tter functions during preseason:
I - is for Inter. Our final preseason game. Conte went with what will probably be our starting eleven at Wembley this Sunday pending the availability of Pesto. It was a solid test of where we are at. First half was nothing impressive. George Michael had guilty feet. Again. As they had literally no rhythm. Michy huffed and puffed but his luck wasn’t in, but the difference in him is astounding since West Brom. I would no longer be found at the back of the stand curled into the foetal position and rocking back and forth if he was our only available striker. Good for him. Moses was better than he had been, which wasn’t much, but at least calmed me down. Yet we were 2-0 down. The second half was end to end, we saw Rudiger for the first time. Beast. Musonda got a run out too and was full of beans. We also saw quite possibly the most hilarious own goal ever, which gave us a final score of 2-1. Kondigbia had to shower with our lot after the game to avoid being towel whipped by the entire Inter squad. The nappy sh*tters went into full meltdown, but let’s get one thing straight. At one point we had 17 players on the pitch and I’m not convinced that the referee would have noticed if they had all stayed there. The officials were absolutely atrocious. He gave an offside against us at one point. From a throw in. He awarded them a penalty for nothing. He disallowed out equaliser for no apparent reason. They are just the three stinkers I can recall. Also, it was a tough game, tougher than some of our league games are going to be. I’ve been reading some Italian write ups which attempted to explain that Conte doesn’t give a damn about results in preseason. He spends the days literally running his players ragged to get their condition levels up. That’s two sessions a day, and includes sessions on the morning of those evening games. Juve fans have claimed that the team was then in such good shape when the season began that they exploded out of the blocks. By comparison, Inter were resting in between matches. So we had two teams at completely different levels officiated by imbeciles who didn’t know the rules of football. Windeth in your necks, nappy sh*tting faithful.
J - is for JT - How weird is it seeing him in anybody else’s shirt? As of a few days ago Villa had not conceded a single goal in preseason. Well done Cap’n. Also, how hilarious are the massive hypocrites amongst their faithful? All those years listening to them boo him, abuse him. And now the bellends have run out of ‘R”s in their club shop because they have had to print his name on the back of so many shirts. Tw*ts.
K - is for Klippity Klopp. And his delusional band of f*ckwits bleating about how this is their year. Again. So let’s assess this. They have bought/inherited two of our rejects. Salah and Solanke. Forwards. They have scored some goals in preseason. Yawn. They didn’t have a problem scoring goals last year. Their defence, however, was hilarious. And what have they done in this area? They bought some bloke I’ve never heard of. From a club that just got relegated. Andy Robertson has gone from Hull City to the Champions League. I await the annual implosion with glee.
L - is for Loftus Cheek. I think I waffled on last season about whether he should stay or go somewhere strong, not relegation fodder, and just get a sh*tload of games in. So hurrah. This trip to Croydon might do him a lot of good, even if he does get mugged on his way to work every morning.
M - is for Morata. Our shiniest signing thus far this summer. He looks suitably excited to be here, which is a good start. Plus he is pretty enough to ensure that I’ll be sitting in a puddle of my own drool this season. Apologies in advance to those in the Shed Lower beneath who might get wet.
N - is for Numbers, or lack of them. So far we have 17 players in our squad. Sandro appeared to be almost a done deal, but I’m guessing that the whole thing went away because Juve didn’t have a replacement lined up and wouldn’t let him go. Which is annoying. We were talking to a striker very recently, as well as seriously enquiring about another midfielder, but if we don’t address the lack of personnel sharpish there is no chance that we will be attacking on four fronts. We’ll have to sack the League Cup off for starters and make it solely about the kids. In fairness to the nappy sh*tters, I too find it a bit baffling that people seem to have poured out of the club liberally and that we are now light on players. Why aren’t we putting ourselves first? Like Juve have? I will keep fingers crossed regarding a Plan B where this all suddenly works itself out by the end of August.
O - is for Oxymoron. The Press Plebs came up with a blinding effort the other day. “Sam Allardyce thinks that Loftus Cheek could have been another Delli Alli if he had left Chelsea five years ago” or something like that. Let’s just go back a bit. “Sam Allardyce thinks.” Exactly. The best response came from the Blues in Miami. “Sam Allardyce could have been the next Alex Ferguson if he had won more matches starting twenty years ago.” Also, if you are giving webspace to opinions coming out of that pie-stuffing face you have stopped to new levels of depravity.
P - is for Press Plebs. Obviously they have been at it all summer, but this was my favourite: “Conte signs a new £9m a year deal but there is no extension.” When have you ever seen a headline as stupid as that? He didn't want an extension. What he did want was to be be paid more than 25% of the likes of Pep, and Chequebook Pulis which, given what he did to them last season with the resources he had is completely understandable and completely fair. This kind of payrise deal happens all the time in football, you morons. Further down, they enlightened us that our manager was "now committed" because his family coming over to join him. This was the plan from when he joined us. They just wanted his daughter to learn English in Italy before coming over. The over-stretching to try and find something negative about Chelsea is so desperate it’s embarrassing, but it at leaves give me round the clock ammunition.
Q - is for Questionable Mental Capacity. Obviously Chequebook Pulis is a given, as is Wenger beating away at the same drum for fifteen years now with the same result. But Joe Hart eclipsed them all this month with the hilarious bullsh*it that came out of his mouth after he signed for West Ham. (The Head and Shoulders ads should have told you that he’d do pretty much anything for money) He said that, barring a direct rival, so let’s assume Palace or Millwall, because they hate them particularly, everyone loves West Ham. He’ll make his competitive debut for them in about a week. If they let him out of his straightjacket in time.
R - is for Rudi. In true English fashion our new man has already got a nickname. He didn’t get long against Inter, but I liked what I saw. I noticed that he’s a good replacement from Branna attacking in the box, and that he’s pretty monstrous running at an opponent innocently skipping along with the ball. He’s also pretty damned articulate. I read an interview where he talked about his problems with racism in the Italian League. Articulate, reasoned. Suggest chopping off Kenedy’s hands (he doesn’t need them anyway) and giving his phone to Rudiger.
S - is for Selective Memory Loss - In true Lukaku fashion, he pulled out of the Everton training ground to sign for Chelsea, but his first touch took him to Manchester by accident. (Badoom-tish) Either way, he appears to have forgotten that Chequebook Pulis sacked him off with all the grace of someone flushing a goldfish down the toilet. As far as we're concerned, he’s either lazy or he lacks awareness, and he’s cost far too much money when you don’t know which. Especially when if you haven’t got the latter in your mid-Twenties, you ain’t ever getting it. Bullet, dodged. Then there is Matic. I’ve got no beef with him, but his running back to CP made me chuckle. As for his new (old) boss, Matic was one of the players that went completely AWOL in the run-up to CP’s second departure from Chelsea. Possibly one of the worst culprits. Now he’s lauding him as a genius. Lets chuck in Walker too - who has p*ssed off to sit on the bench at City. He says Sp*rs lacked edge to win things. He does realise that he was front and centre whenever they’ve bottled anything in the last few years. Right?
T - is for Twenty-First Century Football - I’ll condense this rant as much as possible but in short - it’s our new club shop, which is an unmitigated disaster. The People’s Republic of Nike have showered us with money, but they have taken their pound of flesh. The place has been gutted and turned into a Nike store with a Chelsea theme. Style over substance personified, it has had every last bit of club personality and any vestige of soul sucked out of it, not to mention anything without a tick on it, and the capability of a large part of the fan base to shop in there more than once a season. There is even a Nike Commandant (who admittedly is very nice) who now oversees all Chelsea personnel to make sure that they don’t deviate from party lines. This is also the money-grabbing preseason tours. I like the idea of fans around the world getting to see the team, that is awesome, but it isn’t done for that at all. It’s the cash. You can’t tell me the setup/scheduling/conditions this month were planned with the wellbeing of the squad in mind. It’s £198m for a twat like Neymar who can’t even do his hair properly, who can afford to try and hand over a cheque for his buyout clause like he’s paying for petrol. It’s also the disparity between the modern player and the fans. Barkles (special alias) told me this month that as a season ticket holder of twenty years, he’s never felt less of an emotional attachment to the team. He’s not wrong. And it’s just f*cking sad that that is the way it has become, and that this bottom line obsessed, corporate, dispassionate shell is what a club the size of ours has to become. Thank God for the fans, eh, who still remember what it is all about.
U - is for Unbelievable. Yes, we’re back to Neymar again. £200m. Jesus wept. Although, the absolute hilarity of someone ditching the love-in that is Barca made me laugh my head off. Because basically they think they hover somewhere between Jesus Christ and Mother Theresa where their sh*t doesn’t stink.
V - is for Venereal Disease, which I wish sincerely on all at Sky Sports News, the Daily Fail and any Scouse player appearing in sad advertisements for male grooming products.
W - is for WTF? I'm talking about the hilarious nonsense that's been coming out of Pochettino’s mouth all summer. Sp*rs with their “watch us rise” tagline, despite not a single penny spent. They have a "different philosophy,” says Mauricio Greyjoy. The rest of was will stick with "trying to win things.” He’s clearly been snorting whatever concoction Joe Hart has been at all summer.
X - after a drunken night in Colliers Wood - is for Xylophone. One that has Neymar's stupid face on it, so you can beat it repeatedly. This was an achievement for self, Granville (Sitcom alias) and Jurgen Klopp’s long lost twin, considering the amount of gin/ale that had been consumed.
Y - is for Youth. As usual, a mass exodus of loanees has begun from Cobham. As has the accompanying mockery and snooty judgement from all quarters. So all hail Andreas Christensen for shooting them down in flames and setting the record straight. He wasn’t isolated, Chelsea didn’t wash their hands of him. The likes of Eddie Newton and Paulo Ferreira have worked damned hard with the loanees.
Z - is for Zouma. This loan is the best thing for him. He needs games, and it comes in line with a six year deal, which gives him hope. If I'm honest though, I wonder if we stay with three at the back if he is going to be a victim of our system like JT was.
Shamless book plug here: