Writer: Tim Stillman
Date:Tuesday December 30 2008
2008 was an eventful year for this strange old game of ours. Inside the first weeks of the year, Kevin Keegan shocked everyone by rolling back into town at Newcastle and then surprised nobody at all by promptly walking out again. Tottenham have appointed yet another new saviour, just months after the last messiah delivered them a nice shiny tin pot. Harry Redknapp surprised the footballing world by winning the F.A. Cup with Portsmouth and then did his usual 'Houdini' trick and did a runner the second Pompey's funds dried up. John Terry became the poster boy for schadenfreude with his slip and subsequent teary eyed outburst in Moscow whilst United swept all before them. As for Arsenal, well Milan apart, it's all been a bit shit since Eduardo's leg shattered into pieces in February, but hey, it could be worse, you could be Spurs fan! With 2008 nearly behind us, this is a list of 20 things I'd like to see happen in football in 2009. Enjoy and feel free to add your own in the comments section.
1. If celebrating a goal with your own supporters is a yellow card offence, then taunting opposing supporters in celebration should also be bookable. Or better still, why don't the F.A. stop interfering and let players celebrate with a modicum of spontaniety? And if players taking their shirts off in celebration is such a heinous crime as to warrant a yellow card, then players should all be booked after the final whistle for swapping shirts. Alternatively, the F.A. should stop fart arsing about with insignificant rules like this and interject when it matters. Like for leg breaking challenges that aren't properly punished. Besides, watching football's an expensive pass time, why shouldn't women/ homosexuals get a little more bang for their buck and see the players shirtless? Better still, why not adapt Sepp Blatter's idea and have them all play in hotpants?
2. A Premiership Chairman appointing a manager that has served a decent apprenticeship in the lower leagues as opposed to the next big name player that retires. Are you telling me that Gary Johnson would have done a worse job at Blackburn than Paul Ince?
3. The Iraqi journalist who threw a shoe at George Bush interviewing Joey Barton.
4. Theo Walcott releases a cover of 'Anarchy in the UK.'
5 . Sepp Blatter rescinds all of FIFAs corporate sponsorship deals in support of his assertion that 'money is destroying football.'
6. Premiership Footballers fined £10,000 for every use of the phrases 'you know' or 'at the end of the day' in every post match interview with the proceeds going to charity.
7. Arsenal play Stoke City at home on the last day of the season. I'd love to see Robin van Persier relegate Stoke with a last minute thirty five yard free kick and then celebrate by mooning Thomas Sorensen. In his post match interview, Arsene Wenger's words of consolation for Tony Pulis would be, 'On this historic day I'd like to remind Mr. Pulis of a famous song, #Always Look on the Bright Side of Life, de doo, de doo, de doo, de doo.#
8. Steven Gerrard booked for diving. (Probably the most far fetched scenario in this list).
9. Jose Mourinho does a ten year sponsored silence.
10. Barcelona/ Real Madrid charged with 'tapping up' a player and forbidden to purchase anyone for five years.
11. Lassana Diarra retires from the French national team in protest that they don't play him every week.
12. The F.A. give the 'Respect' campaign a real kick in the pants by appointing Page 3 girls as referees. I'd like to see John Terry's reaction to being booked by a 21 year old Double D blonde. Plus, the prospect of a Premiership footballer being cautioned on the basis that "you slept with me and never called me back" is too enticing to dismiss.
13. Fabio Capello gives a post match interview through the medium of interpretive dance.
14. Joe Kinnear knighted for services to public diplomacy and broadcast journalism. Can you imagine the ceremony at Buckingham Palace? 'Which one of you is Prince Philip?'
15. Peter Kenyon admits, 'Yeah, Chelsea are never gonna break even. But as long as my pay cheques keep rolling in it's all luverly jubbly my son.'
16. After stiff opposition from Haringey Council to erect a new stadium, Tottenham announce a shock move to Woolwich.
17. Shock sex scandal emerges involving John Motson, the Queen's corgis, three ounces of pure uncut cocaine and the entire staff of Spearmint Rhino in Leicester Square.
18. Arsene Wenger offers to make peace with Michel Platini by inviting the UEFA President round his gaff for one of his 'special lasagnes.'
19. Blackburn Chief Executive John Williams mysteriously sacks Sam Allardyce early in the New Yer on the basis that, 'He's a bit of a c**t.'
20. Emmanuel Eboue scores the winner in the Champions League Final. Happy New Year everyone.LD.
Date:Tuesday December 30 2008
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Stats: Arsenal v Reading (Saturday April 18 2015)
Semi Final Team News: Arsenal vs Reading (Saturday April 18 2015)
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Alexis Gets PFA Nod (Friday April 17 2015)
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