There’s an old joke about a devout elderly woman called Doris, who every night before she goes to sleep prays that tomorrow will be the day that she wins the lottery.
The following evening she explains to the Almighty that she understands that it was not possible today, but maybe tomorrow. And so on.
This goes on for years and years, until one night, after her normal prayers, she is settling down to sleep and a vision appears before her, complete with flowing robes, big bushy grey beard and a booming voice.
“God, is that you?” she asks incredulously.
“YES DORIS, ITS ME! IT’S ABOUT THIS LOTTERY TICKET THING!”
“Yes!” Squeals Doris, thinking she’s about to become a millionaire.
“DORIS” replies God. “DO ME A FAVOUR, AT LEAST MEET ME HALF WAY HERE AND GO BUY A LOTTERY TICKET!”
I’ve thought for a while now that we have been a bit like Doris in so much as we haven’t been buying any tickets.
What a treat it was last week to see Haris Vukic having a go from well outside the box. We get all excited when we get a free kick and either Taylor or Cabaye step up but that has been the extent of our efforts.
We need to buy more tickets. How can you score goals if you don’t take shots?
The AAAs take quite a bit of time to put together, and at the moment I find time is one thing I don’t have quite as much of as I used to, along with money, hair and trousers that fit properly, but let’s not get too depressed.
As part of a festive revamp I thought I might revive the old format that I used to chuck out a couple of years ago. As ever, comments on the format are more than welcome.
Bolton vs Newcastle – The Good, The Bad and The Ugly
The result. Tim Krul, Mike Williamson, Fabricio Coloccini, Cheik Tiote, Hatem Ben Arfa and Demba Ba.
Excellent result, particularly after such a bad run, even if it was just Bolton.
Coloccini was “Sista’s Gravy” as usual (solid!) while Williamson was the surprise of the day.
Krul had a bit of a brain fart but the rest of his game more than made up for it. Given will always be a hero but what a difference to have a keeper who’s not agoraphobic and comes off his line.
Following his lay off Tiote is getting back into his stride, but as good as he is, “Thumper” doesn’t rest well. If he’s off for four weeks it takes him five games to get back to his old self.
Having struggled a bit in his last few games Ben Arfa has finally turned up, while Ba continues to amaze. Ba reminds me of Andy Cole all those years ago. Just get it into the box and watch him go. Just think what he’d be like if he didn’t have a bad knee!!
Rumour has it we’ve also signed his brother Kenton!
The long balls up the middle and Gabriel Obertan.
There’s something not right with the game when you beat Bolton by banging long balls down the middle.
I used to play squash years ago with a mate called Steve. Steve was immensely fit but had the hand-eye co-ordination of a kumquat. He was one of these annoying blokes that you could run around the court all day and he just kept on going.
Obertan strikes me as a bit of a “Steve”. Let him run and run and run and he’s happy, but give him someone to beat and the word “clueless” springs to mind.
A bit like our neighbour sunbathing nude in the back garden, there are the occasional flashes but otherwise its pretty uneventful. However, as the saying goes, every now and again even a blind squirrel stumbles across the odd nut.
I’ve done the decent thing and been round to ask the neighbour to cover up, but he’s still doing it.
The Away Strip and Jonas Gutierrez
The Strip – the type of thing a seven year old would come up with, and probably did.
Guttierez – Jonas is a one of a kind player. In the last four games he has actually invented three new ways to fall over and win a foul, but unlike Shola, he at least has the decency to wait until there are other people around before he goes down.
His tumbling is reminiscent of Steven Taylor’s handball a couple of seasons ago when he was shot by the sniper.
Quite simply – nobody goes down like Jonas. Well, there was this girlfriend I had years ago from Haydon Bridge, but that’s a story for a whole different ‘blog.
Snippets – A selection of thoughts
As a team do we actually understand how the offside rule works? I think the Ref’s Assistant flags so late at times because we are so far offside he’s trying to decide if it’s actually a player coming back or a fan running onto the pitch.
Is it a good idea to use zone marking when the zone you are marking is actually a time zone?
Following in the tradition of such greats as Titus Shambles and Overpayme Martins – players whose names are somehow descriptive of their characteristics – we now appear to have Gabriel Overran. I could have mentioned Chris Waddle and Kieron Dire, Charles Insomnia, Alan Cheerer, Damien Duff, David Batty and no doubt many more, but that would have been labouring the point. So I didn’t
Have we possibly seen the end of Titus Bramble’s charmed Premier League career? I can’t imagine Martin O’Neill holds him in the same esteem as Steve Bruce did.
Commentators – apparently a protected species (otherwise how do you explain the fact that they are allowed to speak) they have given us Colemanballs and Pleatitudes for many years now, burning such awful phrases into our brains as “he gave it away cheaply”, “the give and go”,“gifted” goals, “good height for the keeper” and “a real centre forwards tackle”. Lately they appear to be suffering from “Just-about-itis”, but one of my all-time least favourites is the “reversal”! In the good old days if they scored more goals than you did you were deemed to have lost. Now you get “reversed”.
Can’t help thinking that soon games will be played in “quarters”, we’ll stop for commercial breaks and every time the keeper takes a goal kick someone behind the goal will shout “In Da Hole!”.
Have a happy New Year!