Football. Blog. Football blog.


End of year round-up/predictions...

Perhaps 2005/06 is all about Jose, but here's a broader view of what's to come (from the dubious perspective of El Tel)...






Winners: Chelsea.

Man Utd to pip Liverpool to 2nd spot. Arsenal, Bolton and Spurs to make up the rest of the top 6 - in that order.

Relegation: Sunderland, Birmingham, West Brom.

NB/ Final day fixtures include:-
Everton v West Brom
Portsmouth v Liverpool
Bolton v Birmingham
Aston Villa v Sunderland

FA Cup: Man Utd.

Carling Cup: Blackburn.


Winners: Reading.

Also promoted: Sheff Utd and Leeds Utd (play-off winners, defeating Crystal Palace).

Relegation: Millwall, Crewe, Brighton.

League One: Not that bothered, though it'd be nice to see Hartlepool improve.

League Two: Not that bothered, though it'd be nice to see Macclesfield steer clear of relegation.

Conference: Accrington Stanley (champions) and Grays (through play-offs). Would love to see Nigel Clough's part-timers at Burton finish in the top half of the table.

Scottish Premier

Winners: Celtic.

Relegation: I really couldn't say...

Any thoughts on the likely winners and losers of the 2005/06 season, do share...

El Tel won't be posting much to this blog in 2006, but will he will be pursing the CUAS title with vigour! On a related note, 'Footballist' lies in a very respectable 24th position in the Challenge Lawro league table. A top 20 finish would be nice!

Thanks to those of you who've dipped in occasionally, your views and witticisms have been appreciated. Hope you are well, and are set for happy endings to the season and everything else that you've got going on.


The George Burley saga, the admirable resolve of Alex McLeish, it's all having a strange effect...

I've got a sudden urge to go and watch Scottish football... what the f*** is wrong with me?


Burton in the FA Cup, and the Stoke City Zoo

Burton v Burscough was postponed. 'Bit of an arse' I thought, 'will have to wait until Tuesday'. And then I realised, 'By then, the third round draw will have been made... interesting'. And it happened:

"Burton Albion or Burscough Town will play... Manchester United"

What a sore texting thumb that led to!

So where did El Tel & Co. get to instead of Burton v Burscough?... Stoke 1 - 2 QPR.

And after witnessing the QPR 'keeper being attacked and related debacle, I have some thoughts/questions to share:-

- Why are the stewards now allowed to spend the game watching the game?
- When did stewards monitoring the crowd become unfashionable?
- Why did a handful of drunk teenagers manage to get onto the pitch unchallenged?
- What level of drunkness or aggression would a fan (or fans) have to demonstrate before being asked to leave a ground?
- Is the policing approach of non-confrontation (filming incidents from a distance then mopping up afterwards) acceptable?

The atmosphere at the Britannia on Saturday was simply nasty - far from 'family-friendly'.

- When your community of 'football fans' features apes, what kind of a joke does this make of such schemes as 'Football in the Community'?

That is all.

It's gonna be mayhem at Burton on Tuesday...


Oh happy day...

Doncaster 3 - 0 Aston Villa

Villa line-up (an appropriate term): Sorensen, Hughes, Mellberg, Ridgewell, Samuel (Phillips 59), Milner, McCann, Davis, Barry, Angel, Baros. Subs Not Used: Hendrie, Taylor, De la Cruz, Moore.

O'Leary said: "...Good luck to Doncaster, they're a good footballing side and try to play football. They've beaten Manchester City and ourselves..."

Weak. Reminding us that the Yorkshire puddings have beaten another Premiership team, implying that this result shouldn't be regarded as a big statement against the hapless Villa. Weak.

And next up for Villa?... A trip to Geordieland... "Memories..."

...and Lee Bowyer £170,000 lighter following this week's out of court settlement. He should be on sparkling form.



There's a lot of things that a lot of people could learn from George Best...


1946 - 2005



Fookin' hell.

He's gone!

Truly, the end of an era.

What chance of a major midfield signing for Man Utd in January?


. . .


Bulldogs United

Mike Tyson preaching about his admiration for Wayne Rooney's temperament.

No. That's just too ridiculous.


I'm feeling

...frivolous. Maybe it's because I can't be arsed to work, maybe it's because I'm dizzy with my rise to 21st in the Challenge Lawro Premiership table, who knows. Anyway, yesterday I was asked how many football grounds I'd been to, so I thought I'd count them. In order of position in the football league(s):-

Wigan (Springfield Park)
Man United
West Ham
Newcastle (with terracing)
Aston Villa
Sheff Wed
Crewe (the most bizarre - 3 tiny stands, and a big 'un)
Port Vale
Hartlepool (the coldest)
Milton Keynes (bad football politicking)
Darlington (Feethams)

Gone from the football league, but not forgotten...


As for non-league, far too many to remember.

And finally, 3 personal 'must do's:-

Man City

If you've never visited before, then I strongly suggest you do. It's a fantastic site.



After a bad weekend of score-predicting, that included Mr and Mrs El Tel missing out on the Charlton-Bolton classic (but managing to get to Barnet-Rushden and Diamonds), 'Footballist' is now down from 16th to 28th position in the Radio FiveLive 'Challange Lawro' competition...

This is not good enough.
I demand improvement.
I give myself a... oh no... a vote of confidence.

A sacking looms (?).


The Inevitable Return of Gazza

Gazza - hopefully not a George-Best-in-waiting, but a character who has given cause for concern - and not just because of his accent.

I was glad to hear of his managerial debut victory with Kettering Town, thanks to a goal from the very sharp Christian Moore. However, upon seeing the blond one's Saturday evening post-match interview, I thought his slurred speech and general Gazzaness was again a cause for concern. Reminded me of his horrific performances alongside a hand-holding Terry Venables as ITV World Cup football pundit in 2002 (or maybe it was Euro 2004). Anyway, I hope that his Saturday slurriness was simply a brief spell of nerves, or the result of a rare celebratory tipple. Football is richer for having a happy and healthy Gazza involved.

I hear that bookmakers are offering short odds on Gazza departing Kettering early. No big surprise there, but I don't reckon it'll have much to do with a move up the managerial ladder (odds of 100/1 to become England manager?).

Thoughts on The Latest Return of Gazza?...