“[Lionel] Messi can do some amazing things, but anything he can do Joe can do as well, if not better. He used to shock us in training by doing footy tricks with a golf ball that most players can’t even do with a football. I really fancy Joe for the [player of the year] award this season.”
These were actual words spoken by Steven Gerrard as he heralded the signing of Joe Cole. When you analyse the stats he is right, Joe Cole has played 13 games (3 as sub) and scored one goal and received one red card.
Whereas “one trick” Messi has played 14 league games, scored 17 goals and provided 10 assists. In fact if you go back a bit further in the last 3 years Messi has scored 768 goals, 1,400 assists, won the Champions league, three league titles, an Oscar, the booker price and the mercury music prize as well as being chosen as rear of the year in Guam and The Easter islands. So it seems Steven may not have really thought his statement through, in fact it may have been one of the most inaccurate set of words spoken since Emlyn Hughes said “It’s a panic buy” to describe the purchase of Lord Eric Cantona.
Why review the words of the Southport basher now? Well the one goal little Joe Cole has scored for Liverpool came at the weekend against Bolton and hopefully this rare win will have provided Woy with a wepwieve. I firmly believe that Woy was wecwuited by Sir Alex with the sole purpose of keeping Liverpool away from the top 6. Sir Alex told him he was going to take Chris Smalling and in return he would relocate him in Merseyside with a well paid job. So far Woy is doing a wemawkable job and with a twist of good fortune and a smattering of well timed injuries we hope to see Liverpool finish in the bottom half of the table this season.
Some more well chosen lines have been erupting from Stamford Bridge over the last seven days. Firstly, Tiny tears told us that Chelsea are still the best team in the country. Thanks John, but how can you possibly justify that? Are Chelsea top of the league? No, they are sitting uncomfortably in 5th place. Then they must be the form team? No again, they are the 12th best team where form is concerned in the Premier league and they recently scraped a draw against the worst form team, Aston Villa. So in John Terrry and Steven Gerrard we seem to have ourselves a pair of story tellers.
Then the striker we all love to hate, Dider Drogba decides he should explain why he has been playing like an amputee for most of the season. Apparently he is still suffering from Malaria. This might be why he has only scored five goals since the opening day of the season? Or it might be because he has spent the subsequent four and a half months moaning, whining and falling over at the merest hint of an opponent’s shadow. He also told us that their league position is very similar to that of the same period last season. I checked this out (who am I to mistrust the cheater?) and it would seem he is wrong. At the end of the Christmas period 2009 Chelsea were top of the table, now they are 5th. Similar Didier? Not so much. Add Drogba to our gang of story tellers as well.
Another piece of news to capture my imagination this week was that Blackburn has made an offer for former Balon d’or winner Ronladinho. Even despite his fall from the peak of world football over the past few years this still seems an unlikely deal, but as we now realize watching City sign player after player these days it is ALL about money. It conjures up a wonderful mental image of the goofy samba star sat in an office surrounded by chicken carcasses with Mrs Desai while they wax lyrically about the ambition of Blackburn and how he will dovetail beautifully with Chris Samba and El Hadji Diouf.
Then we entered the farce that we know as the winter transfer window. Surely created just to sell more copies of the Daily Star and generate hits on spurious websites that peddle lies and nonsense. “Sources” that have “seen” Xavi at John Lennon airport wearing an Ian Rush tribute moustache and a shellsuit. “Groundstaff” that gasped as they watched David Beckham rock up at the Boleyn ground and launch into a rendition of “blowing bubbles”.
So as we saw in the summer United will be linked with around 198 various players, then as the signings fail to materialize the press will say it is just down to lack of funds and that Rooney will be off to Ewood park in the summer for £57 million and three dozen chicken thighs.
Article by John Young. Follow him on Twitter @JY_MUFC