Broken fantasy

Elf fair

Summer daze: What looks amazing in late August will often show severe cracks three months on

THERE COMES a time in most Kenna managers’ careers when they know that chances of winning the league are all but over for the season.

Despite the customary early-August, post auction-night complaint that the evening’s excess led to poor decision making and an impending mid-table finish, the pilot light of hope cannot but be ignited when Martin Skrtel starts a potentially record-breaking run by nodding in a couple of summer goals or Peter Crouch begins making runs as darting and incisive as a deer fleeing from an aggressive deforestation programme.

As any experienced boiler room Kenna sheepskin will tell you, these wholesome facades are quickly dashed in autumn, once the new guy who signed the most precocious and unpopular talent emerges as the favourite. The old adage stands firm: no one ever wins buying players they like, especially if those players are English.

So as the rugby club fireworks fizzle out and the giant green shopping centre reindeer go up, here are the warning signs that your chance of winning the league may not be all you think it’s cracked up to be:

  • You celebrate every one of your player’s goals so wildly the other half pops in to check you haven’t stepped in a bear trap
  • Two of your five signings in the first transfer window are yet to score, and unlikely to feature any time soon
  • Each time Wigan Athletic go one up you convince yourself it’s Emerson Boyce, only to be disappointed yet again by the vidiprinter
  • You’ve earmarked Jason Puncheon as an excellent way to strengthen your midfield in the February transfer window
  • Of your own free will, you bought Titus Bramble
  • The PSV Mornington manager phones to tell you how well his team are doing
  • When given the chance to discharge her at the transfer window, you opt to keep missing Cameroon Olympic women’s football team reserve goalkeeper Drusille Ngako
  • Watching Match of the Day is a constant reminder that everything you think you know about football is wrong.

Goal watch

The Canesten Combi Cup starts this weekend, with eight matches going on in the four groups.

The team scoring the most goals in each match will take three points.

“The new cup format, exclusive to the Kenna, encourages managers to take an active interest in the weekend’s goal action,” reads the condescending league-branded bumph.

“We suggest you check out your opponent’s team ahead of Saturday and feel everything scored going in, whether that be pleasurable or an unwanted surprise.

“And remember that own goals count against you.”

Group  A

Bala Rinas v Woking

Greendale Rockets v Still Don’t Know Yet

Week off: Dynamo Charlton

Group B

Hairy Fadjeetas v Northern Monkeys

Vasco De Beauvoir v Judean Peoples’ Front

Week off: Headless Chickens

Group C

Pikey Scum v FC Testiculadew

Sporting Lesbian v Spartak Mogadishu

Week off: Newington Reds

Group D

PSV Mornington v Lokomotiv Leeds

Just Put Carles v Piedmonte

Week off: Wandsworth Window Lickers

League table

Week 11 - 13 November 2012

Week 11 – 13 November 2012

Weekly scores

Manager Points Goals
1 FC Testicluadew James N 38 2
2 Lokomotiv Leeds Ben S 32 2
3 Vasco De Beauvoir Stix 27 1
4 Northern Monkeys Hugo 25 2
5 Still Don’t Know Yet Pete 25 2
6 Spartak Mogadishu Abdi 25 1
7 Just put Carles Carles 25 0
8 Pikey Scum Jack 25 0
9 Sporting Lesbian Ben M 24 2
10 Dynamo Charlton Alex 23 1
11 Piedmonte Phil 22 1
12 Newington Reds Dudley 21 1
13 PSV Mornington El Pons 20 0
14 Bala Rinas Lewis 19 0
15 Judean Peoples’ Front Sholto 18 1
16 Wandsworth Window Lickers Will 18 1
17 Headless Chickens John N 15 0
18 Hairy Fadjeetas Aiden 12 0
19 Greendale Rockets Stu 10 0
20 Woking Mike 9 0

 

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Hairy Fadjeetas

Manager: Aiden (Yorkshire)

Since: 2011 (committee member, Director of Wry Tweets)

Last season: 15th

Trophy cabinet: Empty (highest league position – last season)

Sympathies: Sheffield Wednesday

Darts music: Hawaii 5-0 theme

Outlook: Up there amongst the best all-time Brambles when the hapless Marouane Chamakh replaced £33m Carlos Tevez, but the Fadges boss recovered well to bring some solid purchases to the club’s Bikini Lane stadium. Paid through the nose for Eden Hazard, but on the evidence of the first game he looks an exciting prospect. Manager yet to prove himself in the domestic arena.

(B) = player awarded under the Titus Brambling ruling

Mignolet, S SUN £5.5m
Skrtel, M LIV £20m
Vidic, N MUN £16m
Williams, A SWA £3.5m
Hughes, A FUL £4m
Hazard, E CHE £26m
Ben Arfa, H NEW £6.5m
Hoolahan, W NOR £2.5m
McCleary, G REA £0.5m
Mirallas, K EVE £18m
Defoe, J TOT £13m
 Total £115.5m

Second transfer window – 1 February 2013

Out     In
Lescott, J MCY £12m Skrtel, M LIV £20m

First transfer window – 26 October 2012

Out     In
Warnock, S AVL £2m Vidic, N MUN £16m
Chamakh M (B) ARS £16.5m Mirallas, K EVE £18m

Newington Reds

Manager: Dudley (Wolverhampton)

Twitter name: @dudleyben

Since: 2005 (co-founder and committee member – charts and graphs)

Trophy cabinet: Empty (best finish – second in 2005/06)

Last season: 3rd

Sympathies: Liverpool

Darts music: Forever Young – Alphaville

Outlook: Fans of the club were resigned to the manager’s lack of silverware at this level, but after some competent signings at auction expectation is growing in N5. Light in midfield, but with the potential for goals from defence and up front, could this finally be their year?

No Brambles.

Howard, T EVE £8m
Samba, C QPR £17m
Vermaelen, T ARS £17m
Kolorov, A MCY £0.5m
Smalling, C MUN £0.5m
Sessegnon, S SUN £6.5m
Jarvis, M WHM £7.5m
Sissoko, M NEW £14m
Adam, C STO £0.5m
Sturridge, D LIV £43m
Long, S WBA £1.5m
 Total £116m

Second transfer window – 1 February 2013

Out     In
Skrtel, M LIV £17m Samba, C QPR £17m
Rangel, A SWA £3m Kolorov, A MCY £0.5m
Mulumbu, Y WBA £1.5m Sissoko, M NEW £14m
Torres, F CHE £37m Sturridge, D LIV £43m
Adebayor, E TOT £1m Long, S WBA £1.5m

First transfer window – 26 October 2012

Out     In
Nelsen, R QPR £0.5m Smalling, C MUN £0.5m
Etherington, M STO £6m Sessegnon, S SUN £6.5m
Miyaichi, R WIG £5.5m Jarvis, M WHM £7.5m
Milner, J MCY £0.5m Adam, C STO £0.5m
Dembele, M TOT £2.5m Adebayor, E TOT £1m

Lokomotiv Leeds (second window)

Manager: Mr Ben Silver (ENG)

Since: 2011

Trophy cabinet: empty

Sympathies: Leeds United

Foster, B WBA £4m
Skrtel, M LIV £18m
Bardsley, P SUN £5m
Simpson, D NEW £0.5m
Sagna, B ARS £14m
Howson, J NOR £0.5m
Toure, Y MCY £16.5m
van der Vaart, R TOT £5m
Moses, V WIG £3m
Hernandez, J MUN £21m
Sturridge, D CHE £0.5m
£88m