The candid thoughts of Premier League referee Colin Preece, as recorded by our eavesdropping mole in the Duck and Peasant.
That’s right, Dave, I did indeed get away to the frozen north for New Year. Very nice, thanks. Very cold, Canada, although they were all telling us it was actually quite mild where we were, in Vancouver. They play football there, as you know. Vancouver Whitecaps, named for the snow-tipped mountains outside the city. Peter Beardsley used to play for them, in the NASL, and although that folded and eventually MLS started, the Whitecaps name still exists. No one I’ve ever heard of there now, mind you.
Didn’t miss much down here, did I? Van Gaal getting his knickers in a twist and reality beginning to call out to Leicester. You often find the second half of the season is very different from the first. Like last year, what people tend to forget is that Chelsea were red hot before Christmas but went into a slow dive after it, but they had built up such a lead that they could land the plane even with the engines failing.
It’s a metaphor, Baz, it sort of describes one situation by making you think of another. That’s right, and the engines were still knackered at the start of this season, exactly, but now they’ve had a good service and changed the oil and we shall see. And if we apply another, no not menopause, metaphor, to Leicester , they’ve been bombing down the M1 in an old Transit, passing all the flash Mercs and BMWs, but you can’t do that forever. Sooner or later they’ll pull in at a service station for a full English breakfast and when they go back out to the van it won’t start and when they do get it going it will be on three cylinders.
Cheers, Gary, you’re right, I do need a rest after that. Something English, my good man. Pint of your finest bitter beer, Sire. Have they got a local one? Pigs Tie? Yeah, go on. They must have confidence if they can call it that. And a bag of crisps. Cheese and onion, none of your fancy sour cream and bear-shit-roasted potato chips.
No, Dave, you don’t want my predictions for the rest of the season. Only a fool makes predictions, mate. But since it’s New Year, okay, Spurs win the Premier League narrowly from Man City. United finish mid table, just below Chelsea, and Leicester and Southampton scrape a Champions League place. Watford relegated along with Villa and Norwich.
And a happy New Year to all. May football be the winner, as long as your team does okay in the end.