Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Gennaro Gattuso Has Lost His Shit

Today's 1-0 victory over AC Milan has to be one of the most famous in Tottenham's history even though the San Siro is no longer the fortress it was in previous European competitions. Tottenham played an intelligent, counter-attacking game in the second half and as AC Milan pressed, the ball fell to the right pair of legs for Spurs' fans.

Say what you will about Aaron Lennon, he's wicked fast. Also, he's not Theo Walcott, which is a compliment. How many of you think Theo would have run like the hammers of hell straight out of bounds? Yeah, me too. Whoever says speed doesn't kill needs to ask Mario Yepes what was going through his mind as Lennon touched the ball around him, hurdled his knee high challenge, and squared the ball neatly for Peter Crouch. I'm thinking is was something akin to, "FUUUUUUUUUUUUUUCK!" But in Spanish...or at least Italian if he's picked up the language sufficiently enough to swear in it.

Anyhow, the real story here is the post match fisticuffs between Gennaro Gattuso and Joe Jordan. Gattuso was about to go off all game and it shouldn't have shocked anyone that a guy they call "The Snarling Dog," after being culpable for Tottenham's goal, might choose to vent his frustrations at the Tottenham assistant he had previously shoved on the touch line earlier in the match. Way to keep it classy, Gennaro.

Having said that, I don't think this is where he lost his shit. I mean, we've all been there, right? Hotly contested match? Emotions boiling over? A few choice words to the other team's bench? It happens to the best of us...especially those of us with canine inspired nicknames. Where Gattuso lost his shit was - and I mean LOST his shit - is when he decided to go after Joe Jordan.

If you didn't know all you needed to know about Big Joe Jordan when he BARELY FLINCHED after Gattuso HEAD BUTTED him, know these two things:

1. He's Scottish. The Scottish invented the head butt. The old Scottish kiss. It's a wonder Big Joe Jordan didn't just smile and bat his eyes.

2. He used to look like this...

Think he's celebrating a goal there? Nope. That's Jordan after eating a referee who gave him a yellow card...for eating another player who looked at him funny...another player from his own team.

Gennaro Gattuso has lost his shit.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Bizarro Day Quiz

I need a little help here. Can anyone make sense of today's matches for me? 41 goals scored. 7 penalties given. Arsenal shits themselves and give up a 4-0 half time lead to draw at Newcastle. Yes, Newcastle. Toothless Carrolless Newcastle. Wigan scored 4 goals and Blackburn scored 3 goals...in the same game! Louis Saha blacked out and put in 4. Jason Puncheon scored today for Blackpool. Who the fuck is Jason Puncheon?

I was thinking Man U would come out in the late game and restore some sense of normalcy against Wolves, and Nani's early strike seemed to point to that eventuality...and then George Elokobi scored...and then Kevin Doyle scored...and then Manchester United ran out of ideas going forward...in the 70th minute?! Ryan Giggs lost his cool, kicked a guy, and then shoved another. Ryan Giggs is like the Fonz. He never loses his cool.

I'm at a loss. Can't explain it. Dear reader, please take the below quiz and let me know your thoughts. Lord knows my brain is not coming up with answers any time soon.

Questions for the reader:

1. Which is more bizarre:

A. The ridiculous number of goals scored today.

B. United and Arsenal choke.

C. United and Arsenal choke to Wolves and Newcastle.

D. Seven penalties.

2. Why does Louis Saha do this to Everton fans? And by "this" I mean spend most of the time injured and/or disinterested and then go ape shit for about 5 matches and look like a world beater.

A. He's French.

B. He's like Sampson with the hair thing. The more ridiculous, the better he plays.

C. Let's be real, it was against Blackpool.

D. He has a goal quota for the year that he has to squeeze in to the games in which he is not injured and/or disinterested.

3. More surprising single match goals total:

A. 8 goals in Arsenal v. Newcastle.

B. 7 goals in Wigan v. Blackburn.

Spoiler: The answer here is clearly B. Wigan couldn't score 4 times with one of Wayne Rooney's prostitutes and do Blackburn have any legitimate forwards not named Santa Cruz? Still, feel free to answer the question in the comments section. Just know that A is the incorrect answer.

4. Did Carlos Tevez solidify his claim to Player of the Year today?

A. No, it was against West Brom.

B. No, he could have done more and two of the goals were PKs.

C. Yes, did you not see that little cut back in the box?

D. Fuck Man City.

5. Which was the better goal?

A. Tevez's cut back in the box and smooth finish.

B. Cheik Tiote's wicked full volley from 30 yards to tie the match against Arsenal.

Bonus Question:

Which player's hairstyle more closely resembles that of a 70s male porn star:

A. Jonas Gutierrez.

B. Marouane Fellaini.

Please leave your answers to the Bizarro Day Quiz in the comments section. I'll announce the winner next week!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Transfer Window Winners and Losers

So the transfer window is well and truly closed at this point and I'm a touch disappointed that there weren't any Arsenalesque our-fax-machine-was-out-of-service pleas for more time to get a last-minute deal done. It always cracks me up that this team or that team will go public after the window shuts and say something ridiculous like, "We were two minutes away from signing Superlative Player X." No you weren't. It's been over a month. If the signing was going to happen, it would have happened. If you let a major deal fall through because you didn't have two more minutes, you're a terrible agent/manager/chairman/director of football operations. Just my opinion.

Anyhow, on to the winners and losers!


Blackpool: Yes, Charlie Adam turned in a transfer request. So would you. Playing for Blackpool and having Liverpool come calling is a bit like dating a 5 and then suddenly catching the eye of a 9. Granted, Liverpool is a hot mess of a 9, which is why they were interested in you in the first place, but they're still a 9 and just because they're confused doesn't mean you shouldn't take advantage. Charlie Adam is a solid player, but Big 4 Tux Wearer? The jury is out to say the least. At any rate, it didn't happen. At the end of the day, Charlie's 5 isn't the best looking bird, but she's his and she loves him. Fences will mend. His wandering eye will be forgiven. Blackpool keeps its talisman for the second half push for survival, Ian Holloway is riding an all time high in popularity after that ridiculous fine for fielding a weakened side and also holding on to Charlie Adam, and Adam has motivation to keep playing at a high level. I mean, another confused 9 may come calling. Well done, Tangerines.

US Men's National Team: Jermaine Jones to Blackburn. Michael Bradley to Aston Villa. Robbie Findley to Nottingham Forest. Edson Buddle to Ingolstadt. Eddie Johnson to Preston North End. Brad Guzan to Hull City. Oguchi Onyewu to FC Twente. Obviously, none of these are blockbuster deals. In fact, most of them are loans until the end of the season and there are two ways to look at loan deals. One is that the loanee isn't that good and is therefore expendable (Onyewu?). The other is that the loanee is good but maybe a bit unpolished or too young to break in to the parent club's first team and needs to get time to develop with another side (Guzan?).

Regardless of each player's situation, to have important players in our national pool getting significant playing time in major European leagues can only be a positive. How solid does our midfield suddenly look. Holden, Dempsey, Jones, and Bradley all playing in the Premiership? Edu still fending off the occasional Scottish racist and making it happen for Rangers? I'm excited.

Liverpool: I know, I know they lost Fernando Torres, his nose for goal, and his ridiculously perfect bone structure. They also lost all of the BS surrounding whether or not he wanted to stay and did a tidy bit of business in shipping Paul Konchesky off to Nottingham Forest. In fairness to Konchesky, I think he's a functional player (a little creepy looking, but functional). Liverpool just wasn't a good fit and the pressure cooker of Anfield seemed to have taken its toll on the hairless wonder.

What Liverpool did get was a somewhat fresh start for King Kenny. He's got unformed clay to work with in Andrew Carroll and Luis Suarez. They're his players. If they tank, everyone can blame Torres for deserting the club. If they succeed, everyone can get that much more behind hating Torres, and the KOP really hates him now. If they succeed AND Torres fails to launch at Chelsea? Well, I'm not sure anyone in Liverpool knows what schadenfreude means, but the ensuing party could be the most epic example of it ever. Note that King Kenny and the owners aren't losers in any of these scenarios.

Roque Santa Cruz: He escapes Manchester City's menagerie of over paid superstars and goes back to a club that needs him, values him, and plays in a style that suits his game. I can't help but give my own analogy a shout out here. Roque swooned at Man City's come hither eyes, took his chiseled, Paraguayan jaw to the sky blues and...sat the bench. Now he's back at Blackburn. Man City had a sweet ass and perfect tits, but Roque, your mother always really like Blackburn. Lesson learned?

West Ham: Granted, we're not talking about signings that will guarantee survival, but West Ham made some astute buys and are clearly committed to staying up. Unfortunately, Rob Green still has cinder blocks for hands and seems to make every save a Choose Your Own Adventure. Oh no! You've fallen off a cliff!

Big Fat Andy Reid: Is anyone else shocked that Andy Reid is still playing in the Premiership? I can't explain this. He's built like a beer keg and terrace chants of "Who ate all the pies" aren't really that funny or ironic because clearly Andy Reid ate all the pies. Regardless, the kid can still pick out a ball and I guess that's why Blackpool signed him up. At least I hope that was the motivation. I'd hate to think this conversation happened:

Ian Holloway: How are we going to replace Charlie Adam if the chairman sells?

Steve Thompson: I don't know. Andy Reid?

Ian Holloway: Brilliant!


Newcastle: So they made a boat load of money off the Carroll sale. Now where do the goals come from? I have an image of Mike Ashley swimming in a pool of money Scrooge McDuck style...in the League Championship.

Aston Villa: Darren Bent is a solid goal scorer, no doubt. Is he worth the amount they paid for him? Possibly. Will it matter that he gets goals if they consistently ship 3 or 4 against even moderate competition? Not even a little.

Jonjo Shelvey: Lost his waxing partner Paul Konchesky to a loan deal to Nottingham Forest. Seriously. Those two look like human versions of the gerbil Richard Gere allegedly shoved up his ass.

Fernando Torres: All of Liverpool hates you. Your "You'll Never Walk Alone" tattoo must look sadly ironic and way-too-freaking permanent right now. You're going to a club with two other world class strikers who probably aren't in the mood to just hand you their job. Next year's team is an older version of this year's underperforming team. Did I mention all of Liverpool hates you? That's like being hated by all of Detroit. If someone says, "All of Charlotte hates you," you're probably safe. If someone says, "All of Detroit hates you," buy kevlar. That's next level.

Emmanuel Adebayor: I feel like he jumped from the pot into the fire. If you're at one obscenely rich club and not getting any playing time, why go to another obscenely rich club where, if everyone's healthy, you'll likely also not get much playing time? I like to call it Benayoun fever.

Wigan: Relegation frontrunner. Can't score goals. Who did they sign to remedy this malady? Conor Sammon. Who? Exactly.

Until the summer transfer window opens! Kiss, kiss.