Early Doors

  • Et tu, Wisey ??

    King Kev is dead, again, but this time it's "for real like", and it's all the fault of that nasty, ankle-biting rodent Dennis Wise - who used his rat-like cunning to send the Messiah on his way.

    Clearly a career spent kicking people for Chelsea, followed by a move into management at much-loved Millwall, followed by a move to much-loved Leeds hadn't quite satisfied his thirst for public disdain.   

    In light of his involvement Early Doors expects Wise to be issued with the Geordie equivalent of a fatwa. Ant and Dec will present a one-hour special renouncing him, Jimmy Nail will record a

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  • Democracy in action

    The Eurovision Song Contest is to bring back juries in a desperate bid to salvage the competition's credibility.

    It seems the European public can no longer be trusted with the massive responsibility of judging a singing competition because of so-called political voting.

    Basically, Britain always comes last (something to do with our habit of invading countries and trashing them until they look like a provincial town centre on Saturday night), and Russia wins (apparently Georgia 'had it coming to them').

    In a desperate, yet futile, bid to make the results in some way reflect the quality of the

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  • Ballpark figure

    Early Doors cannot say it is particularly impressed by the 'motivational' handout given to the Arsenal team before Saturday's game against Bolton.

    It is a triumph of modern business speak, uses the word 'team' 12 times and doesn't mention Kevin Davies's flying elbows at all.

    Early Doors has two questions:

    What is the French for: "The driving force of a team is its member's (sic) ability to create and maintain excellent relationships within the team that can add an extra dimension and robustness to the team dynamic"?

    And why did the club rather pompously see fit to classify the handout as

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  • Bigger than Jesus

    A week ago, a major satellite broadcaster was full of the importance of Liverpool versus Manchester United.

    It argued, with apparent sincerity, that the fixture's history and rivalry made it the biggest game in English football.

    So Early Doors was confused when it saw Chelsea versus Manchester billed as "the biggest game of the season so far".

    Alex Ferguson, meanwhile, spent the build-up trumpeting his biannual skirmishes with Arsene Wenger.

    "If you look back over the last 12 or 13 years, who has it been? - Arsenal v Manchester United, Manchester United v Arsenal," he said.

    "Of course we've

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  • It’s not about football

    In 2007, FIFA vice-president Jack Warner said this about England's 2018 World Cup bid:

    "There are moves to give it to England
    and I must fight that. If, by chance, in 2018 the World Cup were to go to Europe, I'm
    quite sure, with the English luck as it is, they won't
    get it. It'll be Italy, Spain
    or it might be France.
    Nobody in Europe likes England.
    England
    - who invented the sport - has never had any impact on world football. England at no time has had the love and support
    of Europe. For Europe, England is an irritant."

    Then the
    following year, he executed a remarkable volte face by throwing

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  • Hacks quick to change Terry’s tune

    John Terry's attempt to challenge Fabio Capello's power over the England squad has turned out to be the worst coup since Mark Thatcher's plot to topple the government of Equatorial Guinea.

    Well, that's what we're being led to believe anyway.

    Yesterday, the defender was put up in front of the media as the FA hoped he would prove a steady, experienced hand in deflecting media criticism while playing down the significance of the drab 0-0 against Algeria on Friday.

    Instead, the former England captain did the opposite. After some welcome forthright and honest criticism of the performance, he

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  • Breaking the fourth wall

    It seems that even controversial incidents in football are now subject to rapid inflation in these unstable economic times.

    Soon after Barcelona's last-gasp equaliser at Stamford Bridge that sent them into the Champions League final, Frank Lampard bemoaned the fact that Chelsea were denied three clear penalties, followed by Michael Ballack claiming they should have had four or five before John Terry trumped them all by saying: "Over the two legs they played well but the fact is that, in this game, we had six or seven penalty claims waved away".

    Norwegian referee Tom Henning Ovrebo won't be

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  • Video: Comedy works well for charity

    Early Boers finally gets out of Sun City
    and immediately heads for Cape Town, where comedian and famous football
    fantasist David Baddiel was found to be doing some good work for charity.

    As Baddiel explains, it's a win-win
    situation for everyone, not least the citizens of the township he visited -
    and his brother.

    Watch EB's latest video blog here:

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  • Not Brazilliant, but resilient

    It appears that winter has finally fallen over South Africa. There's a cold, biting wind, sub-zero temperatures once the sun goes down, and still no wild baboon sightings. Is this Africa or what?

    Just as well that Brazil were on hand to deliver a warm breeze to Early Boers's frozen heart as they beat North Korea 2-1 in Group G. Could you possibly get two more disparate cultures facing each other in a football match? That's the beauty of the World Cup.

    Maicon's obscene swerving strike from the byline (credit for which should be shared between the Inter full-back and the Jabulani ball)

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  • Why Tony Adams had to go

    Tony Adams's
    tenure at Portsmouth
    is over after a mere 103 days and the question is, how did he last that
    long?

    Four wins from 22 games and an inexorable slide into relegation
    trouble were not helped by Adams's failure to convey even the remotest impression that he knew how to arrest Pompey's
    freefall into the second tier.

    Adams has revelled in a
    pseudo-intellectual rebirth since undergoing treatment for alcoholism.

    While Early Doors accepts it is probably better for Adams to
    be devouring Marcel Proust than Stella Artois,
    this new-found cerebral side never really translated itself to the

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