Simmering Sporting take August honours

Getting it on: Defending champions Sporting Lesbian start as they mean to continue (photo courtesy of

IN MANY ways the Kenna is a carbon copy of the Champions League. Football’s most talented managers locked in a high stakes tactical battle, scrutiny from fans and media across the globe, the thought of premium lager never far away.

The two competitive arenas share one other inescapable comparison – no manager has ever won twice on the bounce.

So it’s with great interest that everyone is watching the indomitable progress of Sporting Lesbian.

The defending champions, who won the Kenna so convincingly in May, are right back on top of the table after three competitive weeks of the season.

Podolski, Giaccherini, Wilson, Coloccini, Coleman and de Gea are all, like Mick Philpott in hero mode, setting the place on fire. Goals, assists and clean sheets are flooding in. And Stevan Jovetic hasn’t even played yet.

The omens bode well for the Sporting boss, in the last three seasons the winner of August’s MOTM award has gone on the take the title.

Things don’t look so rosy for Still Don’t Know Yet. In four of the eight Kenna seasons, the last-placed team at this stage of the campaign has gone on to be relegated.

League table

3 September 2013 - 3 of 37
Kenna table 3 September 2013 – week 3 of 37

Weekly scores

This week
    Manager Points Goals
1 Piedmonte Phil 37 1
2 Headless Chickens John N 33 1
3 Dynamo Charlton Alex 32 1
4 Pikey Scum Jack 31 1
5 Sporting Lesbian Ben M 28 0
6 Team Panda Rules OK George 27 1
7 Northern Monkeys Hugo 25 0
8 Rapids De Cullons CF Jorge 24 1
9 Newington Reds Dudley 24 0
10 Spartak Mogadishu Abdi 23 1
11 Hairy Fadjeetas Aiden 23 0
12 Lokomotiv Leeds Ben S 23 0
13 FC Testiculadew James N 21 0
14 Lurliners Luke 20 1
15 Just put Carles Carles 20 0
16 PSV Mornington El Pons 19 0
17 Young Boys Denney 19 0
18 Bala Rinas Lewis 15 0
19 Judean Peoples Front Sholto 13 0
20 KS West Green Stix 13 0
21 Still Don’t Know Yet Pete 10 0
22 St. Reatham FC Mike 8 0
23 This is Sparta…Prague Rich 7 0
Points Player
Player of the week 11 Davies, B – SWA – DEF
Club Piedmonte
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The time the old man (might have) met Eusebio

Programme front
15 March 1995: Sport Lisboa e Benfica vs AC Milan

THERE ARE two reasons why I always found it hard to believe my dad met Eusebio.

The first reason was that he hates football and I would never have suspected him of ever being in the vicinity of any stadium not showing rugby or cricket.

But when I was 15 he returned from a holiday in the Algarve claiming to have been to a Champions League quarter final. I was gobsmacked. Even when he produced hard evidence I wouldn’t have any of it, until my mum corroborated the story.

Benfica 1995 squad
The Benfica 1995 squad: Upon his return from a 13-month ban for cocaine use Benfica was the first club for Claudio Caniggia (the new romantic on the back row)

Flicking through the programme for the 1995 second leg between Benfica and Milan was awe inspiring. We wouldn’t get the internet at school for another year, and as Scott Murray pointed out last week, back then exposure to foreign football was restricted to international tournaments, Channel 4’s Football Italia and the odd game involving underwhelming English teams.

Claudio Caniggia, Paulo Bento, Joao Pinto, Marcel Desailly, Zvonimir Boban, Paolo Maldini, Franco Baresi and Dejan Savicevic. My dad watched them live in Benfica’s Estadio da Luz. My bloody football-apathetic dad!

Club partners
Pop quiz: When was the last time the Champions League group stage contained no more than one club from each country?

Before watching Europe’s elite lock horns in what turned out to be a 0-0 draw, the group my dad was with had enjoyed a meal where the club legend Eusebio is reported to have pressed the flesh.

On this point Mum emphatically did not back him up, which brings us to the second reason why he’s unlikely to have met one of the greatest footballers ever to have played.

Milan individual squad photos 1995
Who?: At the time Gianluigi Lentini was the most expensive transfer in the world

When I was six I innocently asked the old man if one could ‘eat the red bit off the Edam’. Without missing a beat he coolly responded that you could.

Not having regular contact with that most delectable of Dutch semi-hard cheeses I naively bowled through life for over a decade until one fateful moment at a dinner party.

A couple of minutes after the cheeseboard was produced, merrily munching away I realised everyone was staring.

Asked if I’d eaten ‘the wax’ I replied: “What? Oh that bit. My dad said it wouldn’t kill you.”

Cue laughter, and a story I’ve just come to accept.

Host broadcaster partners
RTL wins hands down for the best host broadcaster logo

A couple of weeks ago I visited Lisbon for the first time and took a tour of Benfica’s ‘Stadium of Light’.

I contemplated the tactics board in the away dressing room, walked out of the players’ tunnel, posed for a mock press conference and got up close to the two bald eagle mascots who live behind one of the goals. Well worth 12 euros.

Outside the ground I stood next to a statue of club legend Eusebio, an act which, I still believe, brought me closer to the Black Panther than the old man ever got.

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PSV boss rues ‘mean’ Clásico

Catalan flag donkey
Donkey punch: Barcelona suffered title hopes blow

JOSE Mourinho is facing fierce criticism over his tactics in Real Madrid’s victory over Barcelona last night.

The Portuguese is sure to be unsettled by comments made in the wake of the away win by the PSV Mornington manager.

The Catalan put aside recent hostilities with his fellow countryman and gave a resigned press conference at the club’s Crescent stadium

“Yesterday evening it happened that Real Madrid played with 11 players behind the ball – something that should not honour a team with nine European cups – and were lucky enough to get two goals from three shots on target.

“I know, Barcelona did not have that many yesterday, but they had the ball just in front of their [Real Madrid’s] box for 80 per cent of the match, so normally this would mean a Barcelona win,” said the Catalan with a comical look on his face after Total Football’s insides had been kicked out for the second time in four days.

“Anyway, this happens in football, they have played us this way, very mean, for the last 10 matches and just got one win yesterday, one win in the extra time and eight losses – including 2-6, 5-0 and 1-3.”

Usually confident ahead of such fixtures, the PSV boss will endure a nailbiting 48 hours ahead of Barcelona’s ill-fated Champions League second leg with Chelsea.

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