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Nailed-on for a Bolton Victory?

fans viewsPaul bemoans our finishing but feels we're going to hammer Bolton on Wednesday and move 3 points clear of Arsenal and finally put our struggle for goals behind us.

At the moment, it might seem particularly churlish to moan about Manchester United, such is our position in the footballing world. Well, I’m not really bothered, I’ll moan at anything and everything so I’m going to. United have tumbled out of the cup at the hands of ‘Arry Redknapp, that wheeler-dealer Del Boy of a manager, in a performance that reminded me somewhat of a boxer with no arms, dancing around an opponent under no hint of danger, but being unable to find any sort of telling blow. Then, the boxer trips over his own laces and sparks himself out on the corner post. I’ve never watched a game of football so frustrating in my life, it was more frustrating than trying to nail jelly to the ceiling under duress of your family being held at gunpoint. The most sickening aspect of the day was Redknapp Jr, who vomitously gave every compliment in the book to his father with the teary-eyed tenderness of a groupie, as if ‘Arry had cured cancer, or sorted Africa with the wave of his hand, and not beaten a team in a football match. It doesn’t help that Jamie looks like a Disney character, or that he may have been cloned using half the DNA of an eternally tail-wagging Labrador, he just annoys me. That was a pretty breathless opening, and you might think I may have used all my stores of hyperbole on this first paragraph but no, faithful reader, I will continue on.

Further to this, we seem to have hit something you might call “meta-bad form” if, like me, you had any clumsy acquaintance with football and philosophy. This means that despite playing turgid, edgeless, spongy football we are continuing to win games, as our friends from North London sputter over their indifferent form and point to the San Siro, where they deservedly passed a dusty Milan side into the ground as evidence of their brilliance. The Derby game was a case in point, and if there ever was one of those games that football men (and women, I’m an equal opportunities writer) always look at and say, as if bestowing sagacious counsel from on high , “That’s the kind of games you have to win to be champions”, this was one of them. We huffed and puffed but failed to blow down a Derby house that looked to be as sturdy as a shanty shed made of hay, which would worry me deeply if it wasn’t the case that having Manchester United come to town is often the catalyst for a superhuman performance above the dross that is often the customary lot of teams lower down the scale.

The bigwig backslappery of the Champion’s League draw in Geneva also threw up some interesting, and by that I mean completely predictable, results. We have gained a draw which I think is more difficult than most people think, with another trip to the Eternal City, whose denizens appear to be the most knife-happy in Europe, with a police force who would be incited to club-wielding carnage by a crying child with ice-cream around its mouth. Thankfully we are spared the inevitable Battle of the Premiership mediafest as the papers thrash themselves into sensationalist orgasms over Arsenal vs. Liverpool tie, blowing any quote out of proportion and basically grinding up the animosity to Stalingrad levels. Chelsea, as is their wont, managed to finagle the easiest of the draw, although going to Turkey could still represent a banana skin for Avram Grant who, with the passing of time, is coming to resemble a constipated, confused frog more and more. In any case, I feel we have little to fear of anyone left in Europe, even Barcelona, who shorn of the sexily talented Messi look eminently more toothless and whose defence and form has been rickety at best.

But the relentless march of games continues apace and our Greater Manchester buddies Bolton come to Old Trafford on Wednesday for our game in hand. Three points would put us the same amount in front of our Gooner rivals ahead of “Grand Slam Sunday II”, as it will no doubt be lauded by Sky. Bolton could be just the side to rediscover our attacking fluency against before heading into battle on Sunday, as I fully believe Arsenal-Chelsea will be a draw. As to whether we can get past Liverpool, with the classy Fernando Torres looking more menacing by the week, is another matter. As it stands, I would take the status quo ante bellum with draws all round if it was offered to me now, regardless of the fact I hate Liverpool FC more than I hate every one of McFly, the teeny-rock horrible little talentless shits…

Here’s to a good week, and to rediscovering form. We’re getting to the business end now, and pretty soon every game will take on the heart-pounding stressful nervousness of flushing the chain in someone’s house and seeing the water rising toward the rim. It’s squeaky bum time, as our fearless leader proclaims it, and I for one can tell you it’ll be a tight one this year (the title race, not my bum, though I have had compliments…).


And once again, Wes Brown, pen-to-paper; for God’s sake man…


Paul M


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