Halloween Hee Bee Gee Bees

Posted by on Oct 20, 2020 in Blog | 0 comments

Ladies and gentleman – I give you the fabulous Mike Myers. Plus, if that wasn’t enough to give you the Halloween hee bee gee bees, I am even going to add that amazing intro to John Carpenters’ classic 1978 movie Halloween

but that Silver Shamrock clip from Halloween III Season of The Witch? That’s a step way too far for any child born in the 70s.

In previous seasons, Halloween is about the time where the jitters start. Owners start to get itchy feet and those managers who haven’t had a particularly good start to the season begin to get that horrible creeping sensation on their necks, that maybe something just isn’t right. Of course the tell tale sign is normally when the Chairman does an interview on the telly and claims that the manager has the full backing of the Board. In that, they want to see the back of him! But because of the delay to the start of the season because of bat flu, some might be spared their blushes, at least til Christmas. However, it’s hardly much Saving Grace is it?

This was our own club BB (Before Bielsa), happily not any more. Since the collective stroke of genius that was Radrizzani + Orta + Kinnear +/- ? Christiansen for bringing in some players in which led to Bielsa watching us? (who knows??). Whatever combination of events led to Marcelo Bielsa taking an interest in us, we were lucky. Lucky that he was tempted by what he saw. He must have seen something in us. There must have been something that made him see that we had potential. At 65, he’s hardly a spring chicken is he? But he’s no old warhorse like Warnock either.  In all this time he has been at ER, why hasn’t anyone asked him why he chose us? Or have they and he just hasn’t said or he’s sworn people to secrecy? There’s no doubt at all that he chose to come to us. Yeah, Victor Orta might have put the feelers out, but as the old saying goes, you can take a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink it.

Bielsa is like one of those clever neighbourhood cats. The ones that just turn up because they know they’re gonna get fed and fussed after. The ones that everyone from the post office to the pub knows. Children, adults and the older ones, all see it and give it a pet, and people will feed it but no one actually knows who owns it. It will come and do what it wants to do in your garden, because he knows it pisses you off and he loves it. But he’ll come and wind his way round your legs til you feed him, because he knows you will and if he doesn’t like the food, he’ll go elsewhere. He’ll even have a kip on your chair or ride the bus until his stop, and then he’ll wander off. Like Rudyard Kipling’s Cat That Walked By himself, as those people who stop and ask if he wants a lift to Thorp Arch know, Bielsa Walks By Himself and all places are alike to him (if you didn’t do it in English at school –  read it)

Back to the Horrors of Halloween, it wasn’t so long ago when we were going through managers like it was going out of fashion. Bat flu has extended the lease of life to some of the more fortunate, but there’s no doubt at all, with current standings, courtesy of bookmakers.co.uk, Agent OGS is in the running.

But which Charmed One would take his place? Pochettino? Or would they try to resurrect Fergie? Now that would be a proper horror show. Let’s hope that the Scum Board are so eager not to lose face that they keep Ole Ole for a bit longer.

There’s no doubt at all that not having fans in the ground has made a massive difference, and perhaps that is the key to PL and EFL managerial survival. Maybe that’s why they are keeping us away. If there had been a full crowd at Villa park with 3,000 away fans would 7 had gone in without a car radio being chucked at Martinez? Would Spurs have slotted 6 in Salford before a load of prawn sandwiches had been hurled at Son? Mind you, not having a crowd didn’t help Sir Ferme LaBouche the Forest manager, considering that celebration when they beat us last season, you’d have thought that they got promoted, won the PL, the European Cup and secured InterGalactic Peace in that 90 minutes. I won’t even mention Derby…. Please note, I know his name is Sabri LaMouchi but those of you who know a bit of French, will understand the comparison that I have drawn.

However, even though we haven’t played 6 games yet, the excuse generator has  already been hard at work. I rarely watch any pre match build up on SkyTVisf**kings**t, basically because I cannot stand Jamie CareerScouser’s drawl. It’s like that Cerys from Catatonia, whose accent became even more annoyingly Welsh (sorry Taff!) after she got famous from 1997’s Mulder and Scully. I’ve met a lot of people from Livarpool in my lifetime, and none of them sounded like that. It’s how people who aren’t from Liverpool wind Liverpudlians up by putting on a Scouse accent. Dreadful!

Unfortunately, I had already had my tea on Monday, so I was a captive audience with my cuppa and packet of “perfect for dunking” Foxes Viennese biscuits. I didn’t want to get the remote covered in tea, so I was subjected to Jamie’s whining about how Dick Van Dyke getting injured and Scum and ‘Pool dropping points last week, meant that “all that would be needed was 90+ points this year for the title” and “the bar is being set really low this season”. It’s as if winning the league is a done deal. It’s as if winning the title for the first time in 30 years, with a lot of help from VAR, automatically entitles you to a winning run.  Maybe Jamie and Jimmy know something we don’t?

What I do know is that until we get back into the stadia, the results are going to be skewed. Like all Leeds fans who have the luxury of attending games home and away (I say away hopefully!), the atmosphere that we generate has a massive impact on our players and the opposition team. We ARE the 12th man. We are part of the backline in defence and the extra 5 yards at the front. We are the extra man in the wall and the extra height at the corner. We are the extra last ditch block in the box and the extra man hitting on the break. In the battle between Leeds Fans v Halloween Hee Bee Gee Bees. Leeds fans would win.

Football is nothing without the fans. Roll on November 9th.

Halloween (1978) - Photo Gallery - IMDb

Thanks to IMDb for the image

Read More

6 out of 3

Posted by on Oct 2, 2020 in Blog | 0 comments

Who would have thought that at the start of the season? 6 points out of 3 games?

I’ll tell you who, NOBODY apart from maybe the bloke who won that £122 million on the Euromilions the other week.

When the fixtures came out, we got dealt Livarpool away as our opening fixture in another continuation of the summer’s Universe of Alternate Roald Dahl, typified by “Tales of the Completely Expected aka Stories of The Blatantly Obvious”.  It was hardly surprising at all that we would find ourselves at the end of 90 minutes plus the necessary injury time required to achieve the “correct” result, 12 inches or at least a misplaced foot (or arm), away from a deserved draw from that game. Enough has been said already about those penalty decisions. In reality, it doesn’t matter what we think, once that final whistle is blown, that’s it, game over …….. unless of course you are Scum, it’s the 100th minute of the game and you were promised 3 points. Harsh? Never.

Our next game against the might of that dedicated follower of fashion, Scott Parker (and his jardigan) and the Capital’s second favourite club, Fulham was another 7 goal thriller in the end. But them, T’Blades and Livarpool for our first 3 games, for me spelled potentially the worse start to the season we could have. It could only have been made even worse if we had got Everton away as well. Our top flight bogey team. Some wise person will dig out the stats but it’s something daft like 11 wins in 52 visits to Goodison in the last century. It’s never been a good hunting ground for us. We last won in 1990, I think.

Why Worry? And I don’t mean the opening track of the Dire Straits album Brothers In Arms. Why? Because barring injuries, Fulham and T’Blades had that lethal combination of players who always score against us. Mitrovic, that McBurnie bloke and Billy ‘Blades 4eva’ Sharp. Whilst Bielsa knows his craft, this isn’t something that Marcelo could beat with just good football. This is jinx, bad hoodoo, bad vibes, witchy craft stuff. You may laugh at my superstition, but how many of you had a panic when you saw Wilder bring on McBurnie and Sharp? Admit it, ALL of you. I saw that subs board go up, saw them lining up on the touchline, and it was squeaky bum time. As for the Fulham game, admittedly we scored some damn fine goals against Livarpool the week before, but when Koch took the hit for another dodgy penalty, the only thing going through my mind was Groundhog Day.

But it’s all behind us now. 6 points out of 3 games. Brilliant. An average of two points per game will see us in Europe. Dare to dream? Yeah, we dare. It’s like standing up and flicking the V’s at the Premier League. Something you see in the movies, triumph over adversity, but we have to be careful. Bielsa needs to tread carefully.

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, the old cliche (as opposed to Klich), EVERY game will be a Cup Final in this league. Especially this season, the first season back in 16 years. There’s the usual “Dirty Leeds” nods to battles of old at ER and the odd away (Stamford Bridge – Ken, and I don’t mean the one near York in 1066), but this season there is the Bielsa factor. Since we got promoted, every pundit has said that Bielsa is THE coach of all coaches. The “One”. Mourhino was the “Special” One, Guardiola the “Focused” One, Klopp the “Chosen” One who finally got Liverpool the title after 30 years, Frank the “Fat Cry Baby” One and finally Ole, the 100th minute winner One. For you older readers, I know that at Newcastle at some point, Kevin Keegan, Kenny Dalglish and Alan Shearer were called The One or at least The Messiah, but I can’t seriously think about Steve Bruce without seeing Robin Williams as Mrs Doubtfire, so I’m not going to digress further.

As I said, every pundit has talked up Bielsa as the man that everyone has learnt from. But frankly, up until he joined us in 2018BB (Before Bielsa), I can’t remember them ever saying anything of the like. Can you? When they were talking about Guardiola, they just went on about how well he did at Barca. Pochettino, rarely was he ever mentioned in dispatches saying that Marcelo had taught him everything he knew. I know I am a sceptic and I always see the worse in people, they don’t call me The Anti Altruist for nothing.

SkyTVisf**kings**t / BT / BBC pundits are deliberately placing Bielsa on a massive pedestal, in the hope that if he falls, the crash will be calamitous. They are setting him up to the scale of Christ The Redeemer proportions, desperate for a Pompeii like catastrophe. They want a Leaning Tower of Pisa style toppling, but given that the Leaning Tower has been leaning for the last 840 years and has STILL not fallen over, Lineker is in for a long long wait. I would say that his hair will turn white, but it has already.

The rest of it?

Well, the transfer window is still open as I type. I said after the Liverpool game that Koch just needs time to bed in. There was never any way that he could do a Ben White and just slot straight into the team. Ben White was the Player Of The Season for me last year. Absolutely outstanding. We need to get him back when Brighton give into us after Christmas, and just hope to God that he hasn’t lost any of his fitness in between times. The fact that the season ended and then there was such a short period in between to get everyone training together after all that booze eventually got out of their systems after we got promoted, doesn’t help. They haven’t played properly as a team sufficiently. Then again, 6 points out of 3.

Goals? Patrick is on fire. 3 in 3 games. I can’t help thinking that the good start to this season and pretty good end to last, has been helped by the lack of whingeing from the stands. Like Chris Wood proved in his last full season with us, he can score goals. He just needed the crowd to get off his back. I’ll repeat what I said in a previous blog. If he was tattoed within an inch of his skin, had a ponytail and was knocking off Scarlett Johansen, Margot Robbie and that one off Game Of Thrones all at the same time, you still wouldn’t like him, because he’s a bit posh. Numpties.

Domino's Pizza Boxes | Fast | Standardized Work | Overproduction |Lean  Blitz Consulting

thanks to below for the picture of what I will be eating tomorrow before the Citeh game

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/proxy/6Ebxv5KOb48HCfYL6WqV9ovqiA25U85wkf0mnJtM9kuqc4q0rqJ3ozrjgNhDdkRtkyszRupUMcvOsyyrPtutVCxOrbiXuthCJEuo_lPL-joWVh0kDofbGuUqGg

Read More

Keep The Faith

Posted by on Aug 31, 2020 in Blog | 0 comments

Last season the phrase was “hold your nerve”, as the new season is about to begin, my new buzz line is keep the faith. Unlike the Bon Jovi album from 1992 – yeah nearly 30 years ago – that I can still happily sit and read the sleeve notes from, the situation we find ourselves in is far from youth angst, relationships and rebellion against authority. It’s edge of your seat apprehension about what could be, and what might be. It’s steadfast clinging onto the belief that Bielsa has got this. It’s standing on the precipice looking straight ahead at what is coming at you not staring down the gap worrying about the fall.  It’s nervous trepidation, excitement and anticipation, not worry, anxiety and fear (for a change). 

I said WGUAFC at the start of last season…. and we did. The nails were in tatters after that Cardiff game and I openly confess that PPG was looking a good option for reducing the chance of any impending cardiac problems. But we held our nerve, and in the final run up, West Brom and Brentford didn’t. We finished on a flourish of 8 unbeaten games and the highest point tally for ages with clean sheets galore, despite the EFL’s best attempts to scupper this by holding poor Kiko hostage for 8 games because someone thought he heard something that no other f**ker heard. Leko got his just desserts as did his loan club Charlton Athletic. A grudge is for life, not just Christmas.

Within hours of sealing our promotion, the rumour mill was well and truly grinding at full pelt. No quarter was given, Cooper and Klich had barely woken from their drunken stupors, before the whole “Bielsa for Barca” thing started. Picture Klich waking up the next day on the settee, reeking from cigar stubs in that mega mix donner kebab, that seemed like such a fabulous idea at 2am from Mill Hill kebabs, knocking over Stella empties, reaching for his glasses, and peering at his phone to the news that Messi was demanding that they get Bielsa.

In fact, there’s hardly been time to draw a breath since we a) sealed promotion, b) got promoted as Champions (like I said we would) and then c) the “pi-ess de resistance” or piss take that was the guard of honour from  Derby. We got promoted without kicking a ball, and all of a sudden, we needed to invest and buy more, indeed, some “fans” used the word “proper” players. Christ, we’d just got promoted against the likes of Brentford and West Brom. Brentford had hardly lost a game in 10, they’d gone on a massive winning run and had the best defence in the league. West Brom, well with Bilic in control, a man who had proven managerial calibre in the English game (unlike Bielsa who had proven that he couldn’t hack the pressure last season), promotion was inevitable. Wasn’t it?

You’d think everyone would be ecstatic, but even before the stench of the blue and yellow smoke bombs had time to disperse outside ER, the old critics were sharpening up the pencils, and the millenials were charging up their phones to complain that we now needed a proper team.

The fact that we’d deservedly got promoted as Champions meant nothing. From what was posted on noseybook alone ( I don’t do Twitter or have anything to do with these noticeboard fan sites) you’d have thought we’d only just scraped through by the skin of our teeth. Admittedly, despite Bielsa’s high intensity training regime, we were lucky with injuries last year. It might be a bit different in the PL. Having said that, after putting myself through the pedestrian strolling of some of the PL games on Sky last season, it may not be as much of an issue as we might think.

Having been through the Ridsdale era of spend, spend, spend beyond our means and the consequences of said frivolous squandering, I am weary of splashing out on new players. Yes, the likelihood of getting Ben White has waned away, so we need someone to bolster the back, but the thought of frittering away every last penny of promotion cash that has found it’s way to the coffers, is the thing that is worrying me the most. I think one Seth Johnson, is one Seth Johnson too many. Bad enough when we got Thomas Brolin. We need to learn from our mistakes. We have got promoted playing some of the most exciting football since, well, last season. Our players play as a unit, a well rehearsed unit, I am really uneasy with the thought of a repeat of the “we need to buy more players in the transfer window” Augustin episode. It was bad enough when we got Izzy Brown because ” we desperately need more investment”. There’s no point buying more players for the sake of it. The wage bill will keep going up, at a time when matchday revenue is the princely sum of £0. Yes, there will be SkyTVisf**kings**t money and money coming in from the advertising etc. but if the players are on £60,000 a week, that’s £3 million already gone in just one player a year. Don’t even get me started on FFP and all that.

We need to consolidate, not speculate to accumulate. It would be great to see us get the magical 50 points by Christmas needed to stay up. That’s all I want for Christmas, cheers Mariah. Don’t get me wrong, it’ll be fantastic to get Top 10 and even better-er to get to Top 6 with maybe a decent cup run. PLEASE let us have a decent cup run. I’m fed up of this pretending to join in rubbish that we have been subject to in the last decade. Field a decent team, PLEASE or just don’t bother filling in the application form in the 1st place. I really do not want to join in with the Burnleys and West Hams who just go through the motions because they are focusing on staying up. We are better than that. Surely?

The main thing, keep the faith

 

Read More

Top Of The World

Posted by on Jul 22, 2020 in Blog | 0 comments

In the outstanding harmonies of Miss Karen Carpenter – incidentally Smuff’s (Paul Smith’s) favourite song – we are truly on top of the world.

We’ve waited a long , long time to see the cup that Strachan raised aloft 28 years ago, thrust skyward again by another Leeds United captain at Elland Road. And tonight, the pleasure, excitement and exhilaration of that momentous occasion has been stolen from us by bloody bat flu

After getting so close last season, hampered by injuries, suspensions and all the off the pitch shenanigans, it felt like the ground had collapsed underneath us. Even that picture of Bielsa, alone, in his customary crouched position but head low, bereft and crest fallen rather than his norm alert and on point pitchside pose, was enough to rattle even the most optimistic optimist known to us – me. It was taken after we lost to QPR, but that image followed us like Churchill’s black dog, till the final whistle of the play off against Derby.

The photo earned the photographer, Bruce Rollinson, a submission in the Society of Editor’s Daily Photographer of The Year Awards, the prestigious national industry ceremony. The prize was won by Simon Hulme from the Yorkshire Post (see link below)

https://www.yorkshireeveningpost.co.uk/sport/football/leeds-united/unusual-photo-leeds-united-head-coach-marcelo-bielsa-earns-award-nomination-2876903

I have spent some of this week reviewing my blogs from last season. I can’t help but repost some of them and I have to admit sometimes the urge to be childish and go “ner, ner – ner – ner, ner” has to be held back by going to the fridge for a cold beverage …. or two.

Some of you may say my unnerving and sometimes annoying optimism until it is mathematically impossible for us to get promoted, has been like a broken record, over the last few years. As if you didn’t know already, I couldn’t care less. I am proud to say that despite everything that has happened, despite every obstacle that has been chucked in our path to glory since we got relegated in 2004, I never gave up. It definitely wavered when I heard that Warnock had been appointed. What I feel about that guy is unrepeatable in polite company, and yes, most of you have heard it several times. When the Redfearn, Mcdermott, Redfearn, Hockaday, Redfearn, Milanic, Redfearn, Rosler, Redfearn (put that in for comedy value) Evans and Monk combo was finally exhausted by a winning run from Thomas Christiansen, no one was happier than me …. at the least just not to see Redfearn’s name repeated on that roster!

The attendances according to the Leeds United programme from 2015/16 season do not make happy reading. Although they had increased considerably from when bates was in charge, they still reflect badly on us. The highest attendance at home was against the Huddersfield tesco bags at 29, 311 and that included 2,082 dog botherers. The next home game against QPR a massive 17, 388 albeit on a Tuesday night. The number of home games with above 25,000 Leeds United fans was 2 – seriously TWO. Burnley and Huddersfield. The other attendances over 25,000 were helped by the larger numbers of away fans like Brentford who brought 621 bees with them to boost numbers to 25, 126. The only other game was against Rotherham United who brought 905 fans to bolster the 25, 802 numbers. So including the opening game against Burnley, the number of attendances over 25, 000 that season was 4 – seriously FOUR.

But right now, I am just going to enjoy the moment…

To finish with, here’s a young Kalvin Phillips from when the original LUSC sponsorship picture was taken. My how he has changed

Read More

Missing You

Posted by on Jul 9, 2020 in Blog | 0 comments

Yes, John Waite was a Lancastrian, but his 1984 classic sums up what the last 15 weeks has been like. I am missing Leeds United, like most people, but there are bits of being a Leeds United fan,that I “ain’t missing at all”. I’ll stick the link in from youtube of the song at the end for those of you too young to know what I am on about.

It’s been strange times these last few months.

I have had a season ticket for far too long to remember, but I haven’t been watching Leeds United as long as some of the people in the branch and LUSC, who were going to football long before you even had to buy a ticket. Long gone are those heady days of just paying at the turnstile to get in…… hang on, you could do that at Villa two seasons ago on that Friday night that no one wanted to go to….

Anyway, 22,000 season ticket holders and 15,000 gold members haven’t been able to go to ER  since watching us beat the Dog Botherers in March (2-0 by the way, Bamford scored). The 2400 or so of us who had booked our coach seats to go to Cardiff and the 7,000 or so who were looking forward to Blackburn have had a big fat empty hole in their lives where their pubstop, tickets and travel (and victory celebrations) should have been. But no one is missing the gigantic hole that would have been in the wallet after those two expensive trips. Expensive because of the coach hire to Cardiff, and extortionately expensive after the all day-er for Blackburn, starting with brekkie in ‘Spoons.

Bloody bat flu.

I have been forced to sit there trying to get the login to work for LUTV like the rest of you. Having watched the first game on the fledgling “new normal” / “temporary abnormal” behind closed doors televised game, and having not watched any of the German / Premier League matches, I was dreading watching the rest of the season like this.

Fake crowd noise being pumped in like a badly dubbed out of sync film from the 70s was incredibly distracting. Think 70s Japanese classics like Monkey or The Water Margin but 5 seconds slower. It probably would have been better with commentary from Bert Kwouk, David Collings and Miriam Margoyles to be honest as some of it has left a lot to be desired. Even more disappointing to find out from your betting app that Luton have actually scored several minutes before it actually happened on LUTV!

But beggars can’t be choosers and it has improved. It’s good to see some of the crowdies being taken out by wayward shooting. At least those ones who are still standing after being soaked by the rain in the magnificent new East Stand. It would have been a nice more realistic touch if the stewards could all run up the stairs with them when it pours down….

I am forced to admit that SkyTVisf**kings**t does actually provide a reasonable, less shaky, wide angle camera AV service, alas if only Bert Kwouk and David Collings (look them up younger readers) weren’t actually dead… I have managed to hook up my telly and now get a damn good letterbox widescreen picture on LUTV, I don’t know how people cope watching it on their phones. But I suppose my eyes are getting old and you younger ones are used to it. And just for clarity, I don’t do BT sport, won’t have Virgin media (on principle) and a firestick is what you put on your newspaper before you pile the wood on.

Now that I have to rely on what the TV companies want you to see, it makes me realise how lucky I have been to be able to watch what I want to watch live. My opinion of Beckford has improved considerably, after listening to his commentary the other day. He was commenting on how much Bamford actually does off the ball, drawing players away and doing runs and little touches like his build up for the Blackburn goal before Klich took the guy out to win the ball (yes, it could easily have been a foul and I would have been cross if that had happened to Cooper). I have always believed that two people can go to the same game and see an entirely different match despite standing next to each other depending on who they are focusing on. Of course, much of that is down to selective viewing, i.e. seeing what you want to see. Where your judgement and therefore enjoyment of the game, depending on who you hate most and which player you think has the sun temporarily hiding up his arse, therefore can do no wrong, can be blinded. Think Beckford in the build up towards the end of the season we got back into Division 2.

The things I “ain’t missing at all”?

Away ticket ordering day

Going through the list of names the night before making sure you have got everyones name on the ticket ordering list. Switching on the computer at 10.15am on ticket ordering day, praying the broadband doesn’t go down right at the moment you see the “you are in the queue” screen. Praying you don’t see the “less than an hour” message in the queue come up. Getting to the log in stage and seeing the “password is incorrect” message. Praying you don’t see the “number exceeds the number of available tickets” message. Filling in the names of everyone on the list, praying that the basket doesn’t empty straight away and you have to fill in the names again with the concessions in the right place. Getting to the “checkout” phase and praying the basket doesn’t empty in front of your eyes. That 15 seconds where you wait for the “checkout confirmation” message and write down that confirmation number.. just in case something happens and you lose the tickets.

Travel Day

Printing off the email of the coach confirmation and the number of your driver, just in case there’s a no show. Meticulously, double checking and triple checking that you have everyone’s tickets. Going through the list to make sure everyone knows what time to be at their stop. Making sure you haven’t forgotten the football card. Getting to the first pick up and seeing that coach sat there. Waiting at the next and every single consecutive stop, wondering where the eff everybody is whilst the rest of the passengers are getting itchy feet. Counting everyone on, counting everyone off and then repeat for the pubstop.

The credit card bill at the end of the month….

I could go on, but having spoken to other branch secretaries, we all do it for the love of the game and for Leeds United.

I hope that this period of “temporary abnormal” demonstrates to the Clubs, the EFL (worse case scenario), the Premier League (best case scenario) that football is NOTHING without the fans in the grounds.

For too long, the match going fans have been ignored. Yes, the lip service is there when they want it, but season tickets have been rising over the last 20 years. Certainly the ones in the Premier League are astronomically high. It’s still only 90 minutes on the pitch. Leeds United? A bit different since our fall from grace in 2003/4 and 2006/7. We fell and fell again after Bates and the poorest Arabs on the planet, so the prices we pay haven’t suffered as severely as they could have done had we not bottled our return to the top flight by not bothering to turn up to that Watford game. And don’t get me even started on the paltry away fan allocation at some (half empty) grounds and treatment by the authorities since 1980s.

That Sporting Grounds Act of 1985 is an effing travesty and it’s about time that it is repealed. It’s been 35 years, time has moved on, policing has changed, jeez, football has changed, especially the “prawn sandwich brigade”…. and it still only actively applies to football. Rugby, cricket, horse racing can carry on without recourse, but football fans still remain Public Enemy Number 1. If there’s any institutional discrimination that should be tackled in this new woke liberal era of “freedom and liberty”, it’s the constitutional hatred of football fans on match days that needs to be abolished and that happens to fans regardless of colour or race.

Here’s famous lancastrian John Waite and someone irrepressibly born off an egg on a mountain top (thanks to vevo for the song and google images for Monkey)

 

Monkey Magic cast: Where are they now?

 

Read More

Lockdown Blog

Posted by on Mar 29, 2020 in Blog | 0 comments

Like many folk at the moment, I am missing football and desperately hoping that this lockdown works. The sooner this virus does one, the better.

There’s been lots of suppostion about what’s going to happen when we get through this. When will the domestic leagues restart, if they will restart at all. What’s going to happen to the Chumpions League and the Europa (Nohopers) League? What about Euro 2020? As Yul Brynner said in the King and I, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera.

Let’s start at the very beginning (another musical nod – Julie Andrews). It seems like a lifetime ago now, when those Champions League games in Europe were being threatened with playing behind closed doors and they started going on about the impact on the English clubs. Then I think it was Arteta who got it first and Calvert Lewin of Everton. Then a week later, they got better and everyone was saying that it was a storm in a teacup (probably didn’t help that the WHO (World Health Organisation) said there was no evidence of human to human transmission).

How VERY wrong we were.

Then the Premier League said they were thinking of cancelling games, then the EFL said they might do too, and then all other sporting events started to get worried. Even I thought it was because all these professional sportsmen were getting a bit precious and that the Primadonna League were worried that Liverpool might NOT win the title….

How VERY wrong I was.

Soon, it became very clear how severe this was and how small and insignificant our fears about not getting promoted were. Dwarfed by the possibility that there may not even be a next season. By the way, my thoughts go out to those who have lost loved ones to this terrible epidemic, and to those who are risking their lives every day, not just those in the NHS and the emergency services, but those truckers, farmers, fishermen, shop workers, bin men and volunteer workers who are putting other people’s lives in front of their own, and keeping the country running.

This blog is about football though. But even then, there are some parallels to be drawn.

These are uncertain times, but there should be no doubt at all that the season needs to be completed.

Why? Simply put? There is no reason why we can’t.

Our domestic leagues can always be completed regardless of how long it is postponed. Plus, how great it will be to be playing in June – just like being at the Euros then!

Euro 2020 has been cancelled. We can just play when we should have been in that competition. To be honest, we might be playing longer than the England team would have been anyway! Euro 2020 would have finished 1st week of July, so plenty of time before the new season starts. Leeds have 9 more league games to play. That can easily be squeezed into 4 weeks playing Saturday and Wednesday. The FA Cup can be sorted in a week. You can play the quarters at the weekend, the semi finals during the week (one on Tuesday and one on Wednesday) and the final at Wemberley on the Sunday. The players should be desperate to play, given that they haven’t done anything for the best part of three months.

Yes, sorting the tickets will be a logistical nightmare, but given how much sport will be crammed into such a short length of time, it might well be that the corporate lot will have so much to choose from (Wimbledon, Grand Prix, rugby, golf, cricket, athletics) that there may actually be more tickets for normal fans to go round! Woo hoo!

As for the Chumpions League and Eurhopeless League, well we’ve known for ages that these tournaments have been drawn out for advertising and revenue purposes for years. When it was just a proper knock out competition, it was a decent Champions League, but with all these group stages it just got tiresome. Especially when they took it off terrestrial TV. Bad enough when they moved it to SkyTVisf**kings**t (and Setanta!!!), but when BT took it over it went completely downhill. Is there anyone who actually watched the group stages? Can anyone, hand on their heart, honestly tell me that they know if they are in the last 16 yet or whether they are still in the group stages? I have just been told they are definitely in the knockout stages! But instead of it taking just two weeks to sort, they had been drawing it out over 4 and that is the reason why the FA Cup replays have disapppeared.

UEFA won’t let any televised top flight football (our domestic cups) be up against the Chumpions and the Nohopeless League, so our domestic tournaments have been playing second fiddle to UEFA because we are kowtowing to the corrupt wasters. FIFA and UEFA are so desperate to have their own competitions made up of the “top” sides in the world, not for the good of football, but for the money that they can generate in advertising and corporate revenue. There is so much money to be made in which to line their pockets.

Although this pandemic is an unprecedented event, it just goes to show the fraility of their “big” plans to accommodate and allocate tournaments to the will of the highest bidder. Football is the sport of the common man, always has been, and until FIFA and UEFA finally put an end to it, always will be. By allocating the World Cup to Qatar, hardly a country with any developmental needs (like in South Africa) or a country who will benefit from it (Brazil), they broke with tradition. It used to be that they alternated it between Europe and South America. Then they wanted to expand and do an Asian one and an African one, hence Japan and South Africa. They did Russia and no doubt they’ll be an Australasian one as well. All great footballing nations, Qatar???

I can see the problem with the Nohopers League, seeing as they start the group stages in June, but then they just need to reduce it just for one season. This season was the first that the Primadonna League had a “winter break” to “rest” their players, but it mucked up the FA Cup and some teams belittled the tournament by fielding their under 15s. But all of these things can be worked out, and if the leagues start a week late, who cares? Euro 2021 will still be on.

Let’s hope they can all see reason once this is over and done with.

thanks to the one who took the mick out of Mrs May on twitter for the picture

 

Read More