All previews essentially boil down to: ‘How about just fucking winning, eh, Everton?’
But there really, really isn’t much more to say other than that about this home game against third placed Tottenham Hotspur. A look at the Blues’ recent form shows, hang on, we’ve fucked up already here. The joke was going to be ‘more double-u’s than when Jonathan Ross announced the re-opening of the Redruth Rock’n’Roll Roller-Rink. But that would mean we’d won loads, and we haven’t, we’ve drawn, so that would mean something about a stack of D’s, and that only lends itself to something crass about brassieres, so we won’t bother.
Anyway, Everton have drawn a stack of matches against opposition from every stratum of the Premier League and yet have somehow remained a Gwladys Street coin toss away from the hallowed Champions League qualification spots.
After the second half shocker at Reading, the level of performance definitely improved against Arsenal and then Manchester City and with Darron Gibson back pulling the strings in midfield there is a feeling that we are about to return to the sort of potent form that moved us to the upper reaches of the table in the first place. And when Kevin Mirallas returns there should be no effing stopping us.
Incidentally, what happened to that ace rumour that was passed off as fact that Nikica ‘his second touch is a throw in’ Jelavic’s form has suffered because he doesn’t talk to Mirallas? What’s the Croatian’s excuse meant to be for never getting a sniff of goal while the pacey Belgian is out injured?
And while we’re on the subject of Jelavic, does anyone else find that advert with him imprisoned in a crate like the limbless Sherilyn Fenn just a bit creepy?
‘FRIGGIN’ HELL! The box stinks of shit. Has he been in there since November? Just put the lid back on while I try to think what to do with him.’
Tottenham , for their part, never really change, no matter who their flavour of the month manager is. They always have some dead tidy midfielders and a bit of pace out wide and it’s normally a fairly tight encounter when they come to Goodison. Cartoon wolf-boy Gareth Bale is out injured but they still have some dangerous players in the shape of Jermaine Defoe, Aaron Lennon and the two fellas they signed from Fulham, Moussa Dembélé and Clint Dempsey.
Despite them doing fairly well so far this season their manager still gets a pretty rough ride from the press; a hangover from his disastrous spell at Chelsea when he appears to have had some sort of nervous breakdown. By all accounts he’s essentially a bad posh nerd who ended up being bullied by the big personalities in the Stamford Bridge dressing room. As we all know, ‘big personality’ in football basically equates to arl’ arse shitbag who goes running to the press or to one of the directors behind your back when they don’t get their own way.
Villas Boas’s spectacular failure at Chelsea though certainly demonstrated that there is a little bit more to the whole management caper than just picking eleven players, boring them with talk about systems and then the acid test for all phone-in experts: ‘getting your substitutions right’.
Can anyone be arsed with any more speculation about what’s going to happen on Sunday? It should be a fairly tough game but with home advantage you would like to think that Everton have enough to get their first win in a while and hopefully go on a bit of a decent run that could make the remainder of the season pretty interesting to say the least.
If you get a chance before then, and you would like to get one of James Corbett’s books signed – either The Binman Chronicles or The Everton Encyclopaedia – he will be with his special guests at the following venues at the stated times doing just that:
Neville Southall, Waddleworths, St Helens, Saturday 11:00-12:00
Neville Southall, Waterstones Bold Street, Saturday 14:00-15:00
Bob Latchford, James Corbett, Everton Two, Saturday 16:00-17:30
Neville Southall, St Lukes Church, Goodison Road, Sunday, 13:00-14:30
Finally, on the subject of books, a quick review of Danny Baker’s autobiography, Going To Sea In A Seive. As you would expect, it’s funny, written in a dead lively style and has some great anecdotes about Sniffing Glue, the NME and, most of all, his late dad who he clearly idolises. If you ever hear him being interviewed he always makes a point of saying he is unapologetic about how ace his life is and that he thinks false modesty is a load of shite, which is fair enough. However, by the end of the book, after the umpteenth tale about how he had a great time with some celebrity or other and everything worked out just wonderful and everyone creased up at something dead funny that he said, you can’t help think of Mark Williams’s character from The Fast Show.
“…and on the way back from the cove, within a hundred yards from each other, we saw Stevie Nicks and Helena Bonham Carter. So we gave them both a lift on the back of the tractor. Which was nice.”
Hang on, more draws than Mike Baldwin’s factory! Which only really works if in your mind you automatically interchange ‘draws’ with ‘drawers’, and if his factory actually makes knickers. Does he even still own it? In fact, is Mike Baldwin still in Coronation Street?
Do you know what, this whole thing’s been a fucking disaster from start to finish.