DURING the final stage of the Tour de France it’s customary for the cyclist wearing the yellow jersey to toast his journey into Paris with a glass of champagne.
Even though there are still 100 or so kilometres to go at the start of the day, a challenge for the top spot in cycling on such a flat leg is considered over after a month of punishing mountains, gruelling time trials and simple French country folk. It’s also considered ungentlemanly.
Ironic then that the man who killed the chivalrous spirit of the Kenna by discovering the sharp practice of tactical Brambling finds himself in a similar champagne finish in the league this week as his team march inexorably towards the elysian fields of an unprecedented second Kenna double.
A goal from Juan Mata and two from the irrepressible Edin Dzeko saw FC Testiculadew beat Northern Monkeys 3-2 in the Canesten Combi Cup final this week. FCT now only have one more match to negotiate until adding the league title to a groaning club trophy cabinet.
Barring an unlikely 12 goals on Saturday from second-placed Piedmonte‘s Shane Long, the FCT manager will pick up two Kenna doubles in three seasons, potentially making him the most successful Kenna boss of all time.
Agonisingly for the Piedmonte manager, the fact remains that getting rid of Samir Nasri at the February transfer window cost him the league.
JPF were in the top three for 13 weeks until now, but are in danger of dropping even further down the table if Team Panda Rules OK striker Olivier Giroud can continue his streak this weekend, or in the remote chance Ahmed Elmohamady and Laurent Koscielny have the game of their lives for Pikey Scum.
In the jostle of the peloton no amount of substance abuse will make the season anything but an exercise in mediocrity.
Bringing up the rear in Bramble Jerseys, the bottom three found themselves aching and tangled in a barbed wire fence on a rural roadside in the Auvergne sometime ago. P45s await, or in one case was an early Christmas present.
|1||Still Don’t Know Yet||Pete||55||6|
|3||FC Testiculadew||James N||37||3|
|4||St. Reatham FC||Mike||36||2|
|6||Sporting Lesbian||Ben M||33||0|
|7||Team Panda Rules OK||George||32||0|
|9||Just put Carles||Carles||31||1|
|11||Headless Chickens||John N||29||1|
|13||Lokomotiv Leeds||Ben S||28||1|
|17||KS West Green||Stix||20||1|
|18||Rapids De Cullons CF||Jorge||18||0|
|19||Judean Peoples Front||Sholto||17||0|
|21||PSV Mornington||El Pons||14||1|
|22||Dulwich Red Sox||Luke||10||0|
|23||This is Sparta…Prague||Rich||6||0|
|Player of the week||18||Zabaleta, P – MCY – DEF|
KEVIN Mirallas and Christian Benteke may be a mini Belgian injury crisis for FC Testiculadew, but the club still moved one step closer to a second Kenna double in three campaigns this week with an assured display.
On his way to the physio’s bench winger Mirallas notched two goals to put the side managed by the founder of tactical Brambling both in the Canesten Combi Cup final and extend their lead over Piedmonte to 36 points.
Hopes of snatching the title at the final fence look even more remote for the Piedmonte manager even though his side put in another solid week led again by Jason Puncheon. If only he’d kept Samir Nasri – the Frenchman picked up a goal and an assist to help Bala Rinas into fourth place.
With just four weeks left of the season and relegation all but rubber stamped for the bottom three clubs, the race for the Wenger Trophy is shaping up to take centre stage in the league’s remaining narrative.
Just 30 points separate the five clubs floating around the final prize spot, and the cast are varied: Sporting Lesbian are defending champions, Team Panda Rules OK debutants and the other three managers are league committee members yet to find silverware in the quagmire of political intrigue at Kenna HQ.
Another subplot is the miraculous cup run of Northern Monkeys. The manager voiced concerns over the ability of Samuel Eto’o and Fabio Borini back in February, but the pair earned the Monkeys a place in the final at the expense of a toothless St Reatham FC.
It seems unlikely the Monkeys’ luck will continue into the pageantry of that May afternoon. With David Silva possibly out injured for the rest of the season, the midfield consists of Antonio Valencia, Stewart Downing and forfeit player Stuart Hazell.
No amount of cash in the attic could buy a goal for that lot.
Road to the Canesten Combi Cup final
|1||Sporting Lesbian||Ben M||60||5|
|2||KS West Green||Stix||48||2|
|4||FC Testiculadew||James N||41||2|
|5||Team Panda Rules OK||George||41||1|
|7||St. Reatham FC||Mike||35||0|
|8||Lokomotiv Leeds||Ben S||34||2|
|9||Just put Carles||Carles||30||2|
|15||PSV Mornington||El Pons||25||0|
|16||Headless Chickens||John N||23||1|
|17||Judean Peoples Front||Sholto||20||1|
|18||Rapids De Cullons CF||Jorge||17||0|
|21||Still Don’t Know Yet||Pete||16||0|
|22||Dulwich Red Sox||Luke||14||0|
|23||This is Sparta…Prague||Rich||13||1|
|Player of the week||24||Podolski, L – ARS – STR|
BLUNDERING blazers at Kenna HQ are desperately scrabbling to find a tie-break solution after chances mounted this week that the top two clubs could end the season on the same points and goals.
Another notch from in-form Jason Puncheon and an assist from Steve Gerrard helped Piedmonte close the gap on league leaders FC Testiculadew to just 25 points. With five weeks left of the campaign only two goals scored separates the sides.
What’s now being billed as the closest Kenna title race ever could turn into a shambles as bungling officials at league headquarters admitted there was no contingency plan should two sides end level on points and goals scored.
An extraordinary committee meeting was convoked earlier today to discuss a solution.
Leaked minutes revealed the Kenna executive is considering a number of tie-break options, which include going down to points scored in the final week, ranking the teams on the number of clean sheets kept or declaring the 10-month competition a draw.
One committee member even suggested managers sending in a one-minute video plea for the championship so the rest of the league could vote on the most deserving.
The news will be of severe concern to both the Piedmonte and FCT managers, the former hoping for his first title in nine years of trying and the latter in the hunt for an unprecedented second Kenna league and cup double.
Should the FCT manager win the league outright, he could rue his team’s Canesten Combi Cup semi-final performance this weekend. The former cup winners failed to register an away goal in their sibling derby with Headless Chickens.
The second leg will take place this weekend.
Canesten Combi Cup semi-final first leg results
Northern Monkeys 2 – 0 St Reatham FC
Headless Chickens 0 – 0 FC Testiculadew
|1||Team Panda Rules OK||George||32||1|
|2||Sporting Lesbian||Ben M||29||1|
|3||Lokomotiv Leeds||Ben S||26||0|
|7||Rapids De Cullons CF||Jorge||24||0|
|8||KS West Green||Stix||23||0|
|10||Judean Peoples Front||Sholto||20||1|
|11||St. Reatham FC||Mike||20||0|
|13||Just put Carles||Carles||18||0|
|14||Dulwich Red Sox||Luke||17||1|
|15||PSV Mornington||El Pons||17||0|
|17||This is Sparta…Prague||Rich||15||0|
|19||FC Testiculadew||James N||13||0|
|21||Headless Chickens||John N||11||0|
|22||Still Don’t Know Yet||Pete||7||0|
|Player of the week||12||Fabianski, L – ARS – GK|
WAY past midday on 1 April the FC Testiculadew manager is still making fools of the rest of the Kenna League.
Goals from Kevin Mirallas, Juan Mata and a brace from Edin Dzeko saw the sinister, handwringing cackle of the Bramble Baron move one step closer to an unprecedented second Kenna double.
Sweeping aside bottom-of-the-table PSV Mornington 5-2 in the Canesten Combi Cup quarter final, the FCT manager has set up a juicy semi final against his sibling at Headless Chickens. The tie is a replay of the May 2012 final FCT won to claim the league and cup double.
Despite a midfield boasting convicted child murderer Stuart Hazell, Northern Monkeys clinched their tie to set up a semi final with St Reatham FC. Kenna HQ detractors will be pleased to see them move ahead at the expense of two committee members.
The free-scoring form of Peter Odemwingie means second-placed Piedmonte are still in with an outside chance of challenging for the title, but with seven weeks left in the season the trophyless manager is fast running out of time.
The rest of the league’s top half can only hope to secure the Wenger Trophy.
|1||Just put Carles||Carles||53||2|
|2||Lokomotiv Leeds||Ben S||53||2|
|3||Sporting Lesbian||Ben M||52||2|
|4||St. Reatham FC||Mike||50||2|
|5||FC Testiculadew||James N||48||4|
|7||Team Panda Rules OK||George||44||1|
|10||Judean Peoples Front||Sholto||39||4|
|11||Headless Chickens||John N||34||1|
|13||KS West Green||Stix||29||0|
|14||PSV Mornington||El Pons||28||2|
|15||Rapids De Cullons CF||Jorge||27||3|
|16||Dulwich Red Sox||Luke||27||1|
|17||Still Don’t Know Yet||Pete||27||1|
|22||This is Sparta…Prague||Rich||21||1|
|Player of the week||17||Dzeko, E – MCY – STR|
IMPERIAL aggression, hasty plebiscites in obscure lands and a Christian Benteke goal mean history looks to be repeating itself both in European geopolitics and the Kenna League.
Just as it turns out that inside every Ukrainian there’s an armed Russian wearing a balaclava just waiting to get out, so FC Testiculadew have emerged from the pack as favourites to lift the title.
Despite plenty of goals for Piedmonte (Long and Odemwingie) and Judean Peoples’ Front (Eriksen x2 and Rodriguez), the second and third place teams are being made to look like squabbling Western appeasers as ‘the villain of the Kenna‘ marches towards domination.
With just eight competitive weeks left, FCT’s impressive form and 28-point buffer means nothing short of World War Three will stop the manager claiming his second Kenna championship in three years.
Whether the red card is rescinded remains to be seen, but Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain’s lucky escape has put KS West Green above Headless Chickens and Hairy Fadjeetas – both early front runners of the campaign whose managers now seem to have run out of ideas in the league.
The Chickens boss is left to focus his attention on the Canesten Combi Cup, where his side took a three-goal lead in the quarter final first leg at West Green.
FCT look set to annex a badly-organised and ill-equipped PSV Mornington in their tie, although unlike Vlad they’ll need two weekends rather than one.
|1||Just put Carles||Carles||48||4|
|2||Judean Peoples Front||Sholto||39||3|
|3||Headless Chickens||John N||37||5|
|4||KS West Green||Stix||37||2|
|6||FC Testiculadew||James N||33||1|
|7||Lokomotiv Leeds||Ben S||32||2|
|8||Sporting Lesbian||Ben M||31||1|
|10||Dulwich Red Sox||Luke||29||4|
|11||This is Sparta…Prague||Rich||26||3|
|14||Rapids De Cullons CF||Jorge||24||1|
|16||St. Reatham FC||Mike||21||2|
|17||Team Panda Rules OK||George||21||1|
|21||PSV Mornington||El Pons||15||0|
|23||Still Don’t Know Yet||Pete||4||0|
|Player of the week||20||Suarez, L – LIV – STR|
|Club||This is Sparta…Prague|
GOALS from the unlikeliest source saw Piedmonte climb to second with just nine weeks left in the season.
More than a year since suffering an horrific injury sustained while sleeping in his car outside Loftus Road, Peter Odemwingie appears to have recovered his fitness and confidence to score twice this weekend.
Until last month’s transfer window, the Nigerian had been passed from club to club, unable to build any sort of momentum and at one point considered less reliable than an email from his home country.
Piedmonte put £5m worth of faith in the striker in February, set club doctors about treatment of a sore neck and some discomfort in the buttock where he’d slept on his wallet, and the manager’s already got back three goals and an assist.
Whether Odemwingie can go on to inspire his team to glory, much as Ian Botham did with bat and ball against Australia in 1981, remains to be seen.
Canesten Combi Cup holders Spartak Mogadishu were dumped out of the competition on the weekend, but reports filtering out of Somalia suggest the club’s manager has other priorities.
Upon learning a Boeing 777 could be floating around in the Indian Ocean last week the Somali immediately put out to sea.
Visitors to the club’s Spyglass Hill training facility found the site deserted, save for an elderly, khat-chewing groundsman who talked of an entire community swept up in the swarthy promise of hundreds of untouched Halal meal options.
In a classic top-versus-bottom clash, FC Testiculadew will take on PSV Mornington after Hairy Fadjeetas added to their recent league woe by losing on points in the second leg of their match against a side managed by a cardboard cut out of Pep Guardiola.
|3||KS West Green||Stix||32||0|
|5||Lokomotiv Leeds||Ben S||28||0|
|6||Team Panda Rules OK||George||26||0|
|7||Sporting Lesbian||Ben M||25||2|
|9||Headless Chickens||John N||24||1|
|11||St. Reatham FC||Mike||24||1|
|12||PSV Mornington||El Pons||23||1|
|13||Still Don’t Know Yet||Pete||21||0|
|14||Judean Peoples Front||Sholto||19||1|
|15||Rapids De Cullons CF||Jorge||18||0|
|17||FC Testiculadew||James N||15||1|
|19||Dulwich Red Sox||Luke||13||0|
|21||This is Sparta…Prague||Rich||11||1|
|22||Just put Carles||Carles||11||0|
|Player of the week||12||Odemwingie, P – STO – STR|
CALLS for an official inquiry have been heard around the Kenna after teams led by two high-ranking league officials registered resounding cup victories in what was otherwise a quiet week for goals.
In the first leg of the Canesten Combi Cup last 16 fixtures, KS West Green and Bala Rinas – managed by the Kenna chairman and treasurer respectively – both scored four shots on target, or ‘got an Oscar’s night‘, as it has recently become known.
A hat-trick for Andre Schurrle and a rare Curtis Davies strike secured a vital away win for the chairman’s side over Judean Peoples’ Front, whose manager is best known for looking like Norwegian mass murderer Anders Breivik.
Johnny Heitinga, Romelu Lukaku and a brace from Moussa Sissoko saw Bala Rinas cruise to victory over a lacklustre Team Panda Rules OK performance.
No doubt spurred on by either ongoing events in Ukraine, a faction led by the Young Boys of Vauxhall manager has questioned the integrity of the league and called for a full investigation.
“You see this? I wouldn’t wash my car with this! And not only because it’s a piece of paper,” he fumed at his chamois.
The Chairman’s response was uncharacteristic, but made clear upon watching the YouTube video below. He said: “Yo, you want fantasy football? I got fantasy football. I got the best fantasy football.
“This area’s dry, man. You know that. I know that. Ain’t nobody arranging fantasy football but me.
“I got auctions, I got transfer windows, I got pub crawls. I’ve got the finest cup competition this area has seen in years. You need me and I need you. Let’s make this work.
“You buy entry to the league, you get entry to the cup totally free. Gratis.
“I got everything. Even a World Cup fantasy auction, baby.”
Canesten Combi Cup last 16 first leg results
Rapids De Cullons 1 – 0 Northern Monkeys
Dynamo Charlton 0 – 2 Newington Reds
St Reatham FC 0 – 0 Lokomotiv Leeds
Team Panda Rules OK 1 – 4 Bala Rinas
Judean Peoples’ Front 0 – 4 KS West Green
Headless Chickens 0 – 0 Spartak Mogadishu
FC Testiculadew 2 – 1 This is Sparta…Prague
PSV Mornington 0 – 1 Hairy Fadjeetas
|1||KS West Green||Stix||33||4|
|5||FC Testiculadew||James N||25||2|
|6||Lokomotiv Leeds||Ben S||25||0|
|7||Team Panda Rules OK||George||25||0|
|10||Just put Carles||Carles||20||1|
|11||Still Don’t Know Yet||Pete||20||0|
|12||Rapids De Cullons CF||Jorge||19||1|
|13||Sporting Lesbian||Ben M||19||0|
|14||This is Sparta…Prague||Rich||18||1|
|17||PSV Mornington||El Pons||14||0|
|18||Judean Peoples Front||Sholto||13||0|
|20||Dulwich Red Sox||Luke||11||0|
|21||St. Reatham FC||Mike||10||0|
|22||Headless Chickens||John N||8||0|
|Player of the week||17||Schurrle, A – CHE – MID|
|Club||KS West Green|