Well, shall we get some of the cliches out of the way first? Right, let’s see now, It’s a funny old game! A week is a long time in football, you get the picture. I’m sure I could go on and no doubt you’ve thought of a few yourself.
But I am right, a week is a long time in football, especially when you’ve spent most of it lying flat on your back on the floor unable to move as I have done all this week. One of the most news packed weeks there has been in years and I’ve been totally out of it on the floor and on painkillers. Just as a quick aside, all this back trouble is something new for me. I used to work with a couple of people who suffered from back problems and when they were off from work I would think to myself, “A sore back? They’re just having a laugh, a few days off?!” Hmm! I will admit I feel a little ashamed now that I thought that. I didn’t, in fact I couldn’t have ever imagined in a million years the pain, the excruciating pain, they must have gone through. Well, I do now. This has been one of the longest weeks of my life and it still hurts. But at least I can sit down now, albeit for about a maximum of an hour before I have to reacquaint myself with the floor!
Anyway, enough of my little episode of ER and back to the football. So, to recap, what’s gone on this week…
Chelsea thought it would be a good idea to place a picture of Robinho on their website and started taking orders for shirts with his name on. Of course that went down really well in Madrid and you can bet the guy who made that decision is now probably in Siberia somewhere. Then out of nowhere Manchester City buy him instead for a British record transfer fee. I really did think the drugs were playing tricks on me when I heard that! You can just imagine the faces at Real when they heard another team wanted Robinho as well as Chelsea! Bet it didn’t take long for the man from Del Monte to say “Yes”! (Those of you outside the UK probably won’t understand that Del Monte thing, sorry!)
Then sulky boy Berbatov finally uncurls his bottom lip, has his bottom wiped and with just minutes to spare he gets his move to Manchester Utd. It later transpired that Man City also tried to buy him from under Utd’s nose with their new found wealth, more on that later. As I wrote a couple of days ago, everything looked pretty dodgey until a few minutes before the deadline and then suddenly Daniel Levy, Spurs, Alex Ferguson and Man Utd were all best friends again and Spurs weren’t going to report them to the Premier League. I wonder if Levy and Spurs take American Express? “That will do nicely sir!” Because something obviously happened to make everything all rosey.
So one of the richest guys in the world, or at least families, turns up at Eastlands and basically buys Man City (or is going to). By this time, I’m thinking these are some good drugs! I heard a report yesterday on the relative wealth of the foreign owners of English Premier League clubs. This is unreal! (I think these figures were in Sterling as I heard it in the UK.) Anyway, the Aston Villa owner, Randy Lerner (probably spelt that wrong, sorry) is reportedly worth approx £700m. The Laurel & Hardy duo act at Liverpool are reportedly at £1.2bn. The Glazers at Man Utd at £1.4bn. Then we get into a different league with Abramovich at Chelsea who is apparently worth £11.7bn. But I’m afraid Roman is a destitute pauper when you compare him next to the guys who have just rolled up at City. And this figure of their wealth was called a “conservative” estimate. Drum roll please………. £550bn. Yes, that’s FIVE HUNDRED AND FIFTY BILLION. And let’s just confirm that 1 billion = 1,000 million! Think I need to pop another painkiller!
Ok now we get back to poor old Kevin Keegan and Alan Curbishley who have both felt they had no option, after only 3 games of the new season, but to resign from the managerial positions at Newcastle Utd and West Ham Utd respectively. Just quickly, you’ve got to feel a little sorry for the player Xisco that Keegan bought a couple of days ago. As usually he was quoted as saying it was a dream come true to join Newcastle etc etc. Then he wakes up the next morning and his new boss has gone! Welcome to Newcastle lad! Fancy a Brown Ale?
When Keegan returned to Newcastle just 7 months ago, which was also a major shock, I wrote that it was either going to be a match made in heaven or a complete nightmare and wouldn’t last more than a year! Ok, I got that right but I never though it would happen like it has. Despite whatever statements the club comes out with over the next few days, the fans at Newcastle will be in no doubt who is to blame for their beloved King Kev’s departure and it will be very interesting to see what happens at the next home game. In fact some of the Toon Army have even mooted the idea of boycotting that home game which is against Hull City on Saturday 13 September as a protest against King Kev’s resignation.
Of course the bookies are already lining up who will take over from Keegan. A few of the names of David Moyes, Didier Deschamps and even Gus Poyet to hook up with Denis Wise. There’s another recipe for disaster if ever there was one! I could see Moyes maybe being interested, or at least he would have been if all this had happened about 10 days ago when he was having real problems trying to sign players.
But of course there is surely another name who will be in the mix, Alan Curbishley. In the interview I heard after he had resigned from West Ham he made it very clear that he wanted to return to managing as soon as possible, and not only that, but managing in the Premiership. This was before Keegan had officially resigned but come on, he’s not stupid, he must have been laying down a marker with the Newcastle Board. He couldn’t have been any less blatant if he’d held up a sign sign during the interview saying “I’m free!”. Although I can’t think why. After all that has gone on at Newcastle and West Ham over the last few days, you’ve got to think that both jobs have a little of the “poisoned chalice” ring to them. All I’ll say is “good luck” to whoever gets those jobs. How about Paulo Di Canio for West Ham? Now that would be entertaining! Not too shy our Paulo. We need more characters like him! And let’s not forget, this is the guy who not only scored some of the greatest goals seen in the Premiership but The Greatest goal ever seen. Here you go, remind yourself here…