Title challengers Lokomotiv Leeds face a not-so-happy New Year with the prospect of losing their star midfielder Yaya Touré to the African Cup of Nations.
“Our country needs people like myself and Didier Drogba because there is a war and it’s important we do what we can for our people, but this is also a crucial time of the season,” said Touré, studiously doing keepy ups while seven friends carrying Russian assault rifles beckoned him from the rear of a 1988 Toyota Hilux.
Lokomotiv find themselves in a top three separated by only 18 points going into Christmas week.
“We’ve got plenty of talent in midfield to maintain pressure on FCT and Newington Reds in Yaya’s absence,” said the Lokomotiv manager at the club’s training ground, before diving for cover from another errant Victor Moses goal attempt.
Newington Reds are also set to lose prolific, Senegalese striker Demba Ba to the tournament in Gabon and Equatorial Guinea.
The PSV Mornington manager stared down at the remains of his arroz con leche and sighed a heavy sigh.
His self-imposed exile of the last few days was not having its desired effect. He’d locked himself in his office and hadn’t seen anyone outside the room since Saturday night.
He turned up his face and spoke slowly: “Just when I was starting to get a run of form together Gary Cahill gets sent off and Frank Lampard misses a penalty. How can I make up the 36 points to climb the next place in the table with most of my team misfiring?”
This short outburst over the PSV manager returned his gloomy gaze to the table.
“I want my team to play with the freedom and the fluidity of yours. How have you made such a team of superstars gel, when I can’t even get Salgado and Wes Brown to spring an offside trap?” he said, as much to his glass of hot chocolate as to anyone else.
Utterly at odds with himself, the PSV boss wiped away a tear before heading to the sofa for this third siesta of the day.
The life-sized, cardboard cut out of Pep Guardiola propped against the door stared in silence.
Even without Rafa van der Vaart, Lokomotiv Leeds are giving FC Testiculadew a challenge; Little Pea, Dean Sturridge and the unlikely Victor Moses providing the lion’s share of the team’s points this week.
It’s fortunate that the Yorkshire club are just Juan Mata’s contribution this week behind, as the pack are ambling along 50 points off the leader.
The Chairman said: “Betting without Lokomotiv, only a small miracle can stop Mata and his FCT chums from completely running off with the league.
“Well, either a small miracle or playing Rooney deep in midfield and leaving Dzeko on the bench for a few games, although the latter doesn’t seem to be helping.”
A little later than planned, last week’s scores are now available.
The table would’ve been up sooner, but the Chairman and Vasco boss were away on a management training course (in separate hotel rooms, mind).
Honoured to have been invited, the Vasco manager prepared a 30-minute PowerPoint presentation for the group entitled ‘Leading Your Team To Success’.
Unfortunately, the delegates did not share the Vasco manager’s enthusiasm for going through each week’s spreadsheet of the 2005/06 season, and he made a sharp exit before the crowd turned.
Luckily, the Chairman had already started the car.
Once this cursed international break is over, we’ll have definitely learned one thing: a team can be as comfortable in their fancy dan possession as they like, but to win matches a side doesn’t need the skill to string together more than three passes.
Certainly, the England team, in fact England as a whole, will now adopt this philosophy and full-scale frenzy will descend upon the country until they slink out of Poland and/or Ukraine after losing on penalties to a Republic of Ireland team who can string together just two passes.
If any Englishmen out there start thinking “Maybe we could just do it this….” Stop! Have a word with yourself. We haven’t done it for 46 years.
The Kenna was rocked this week by allegations of derogatory remarks made during a match to Pikey Scum defender Patrice Evra.
Superfuzz striker Luis Suarez, who stands accused of using the ‘N’ word, denies any wrongdoing and has the full backing of his manager.
“Like all my players, Luis epitomises the civility, taste and style of Superfuzz FC and I can’t imagine him ever coming out with this type of remark during a match,” said the manager, after putting in a discreet telephone call to Ebony Entertainments Ltd to cancel down the surprise stripper for the club’s Halloween party.
The Pikey Scum manager defended claims that his defender fabricated the incident to draw attention away from another lacklustre performance.
“Being the Pikey Scum of the Kenna it’s a sad fact that we’ve grown used to these sort of comments and this type of negative stereotyping,” he said, while loading scrap metal into an untaxed van under the cover of darkness. “But, to call Patrice a ‘nomad’ during league play, that’s just unacceptable.”
It’s an unnerving time for the mid-table Kenna manager.
Dangling above, FC Testiculadew are slowly drawing in to tea bag the rest of the league.
Lying below, the tangled mess of Hairy Fadjeetas writhes unenticingly with just seven points this week.
“Sh1t! Football is sh1t!” fumed an apoplectic Fadjeetas boss from the rolled-down driver’s window of his 1995 Renault Clio, before checking the mirror, looking both ways and pulling away at a brisk, but ultimately sensible, speed from the hack pack outside the club’s Bikini Lane ground.
Three managers will be reaching for the bottle in their bottom drawer a little earlier today as the Kenna table now contains a ‘relegation zone’.
Quite what will happen to managers who face the drop is unclear, so rumours abound.
“Here at Kenna HQ we have a long-term plan to introduce more statistics into the league,” said the Chairman in a corporate Betamax video filmed on the Norfolk Broads. “We want to make managers’ careers more transparent.
“We’re also looking at various options, but I think the possibility is emerging that those in the relegation zone at the end of the season will have to come back at the helm of another club next year….(cough, cough)…and pay an increased entry fee.”