Monday, 4 August 2008

The New Season Checklist

With another season almost upon us, here is a reference point to the key components of a Premier League year.

See how many you can spot, and how quickly you can do so...

1. An Alan Hansen sentence made entirely of listed attributes. Bonus points for nonchalant delivery or contemptuous tone.

E.g "Power, pace, aggression, strength, control... just great."

2. Exotic foreign signing to proclaim it a realisation of a long-standing ambition to join newly-promoted Premier League side.

"It has always been my dream to play for Hull. I can't wait to play alongside my hero... Dean Windass."

3. Aforementioned exotic foreign signing to make 'come-and-get-me-plea' to an underachieving Serie A side by January.

4. Joe Barton to be arrested.

5. Lee Dixon noting that an unfancied side's win is almost entirely a result of their closing down. At no point, should a side supposedly famed for physical strength be lauded for flair or skill.

"Bolton did really well today, they really got in (insert 'big four' team) 's faces. They closed them down, and didn't let them play."

6. New, groundbreakingly expensive Champions League side recruit makes flying start, putting Wigan to the sword in a second substitute appearance.

7. Said player fades from September onwards but roars back to form by bundling in a late second goal to ease nerves in January cup tie against League Two opposition.

8. Sky Sports News to 'exclusively reveal,' every eleven minutes, that Phil Neville has a sore foot.

9. Supporter, player or manager of relegation-threatened team to claim that "every match will be a cup final." Kevin Campbell-styled motivational speech ("If you don't believe, you won't achieve!") optional.

10. A radiantly orange Gary Lineker to sign off an episode of Match of the Day with a smugly sarcastic quip, apparently dispelling the notion that the top four placings can be predictable.

"Just another typically boring 15-goal thriller, then. Good night."