Wednesday, August 29, 2012

The Incredible Shrinking League

Columnist Ed and his smaller friends like to taunt McDonalds
photo by david_shankbonevia PhotoRee

Despite what he says, Columnist Ed is not 5 foot nine:
Five feet nine inches is an imaginary height for men.  The only men that are five foot nine are those that claim they are five foot ten.  Everyone else who makes the claim is five foot seven on a good day.  With lifts.  And big hair.

Which brings us to Eden Hazard, Tom Cleverley, Shinji Kagawa, Joe Allen, and Santi Carzola.  None of these guys are five nine, although a few claim to be.  Some are about five six.  And a few of them can fit in your girlfriend's large Prada knockoff handbag.  “Com'ere Shinji...jump right in here...that's it, Santi...yep....good boy....”

But oh how they play!!  Short passes, brilliant footwork, elegant finishes.  They're going this way, then that, then back altogether, then the ball is . . . . gone....

Whoops, it's back!!  I hardly knew it was gone and he's got it again, but wait, now it's gone again!!Amazing!!!!!

This is the new face of the BPL.  The days of guys like Vinny Jones and of direct English football have become a novelty item, found only in ancient towns like Stoke City.  I mean, I admire what Stoke does -- very counter revolutionary, very old school, very vintage.  Tony Pulis might even consider dressing up like Elvis during games.  Couldn't hurt, right?  Well, let's put a pin in it, as the young people used to say about three or four text messages ago.

Looking back one might suggest that the new BPL all started with David Silva.  But of course, he wasn't really the start. The real start was Barcelona.

“We want to be like Barcelona,” said Liverpool's Jose Enrique yesterday, rather bluntly.  But Jose means it, especially after watching his manager's former team beat the mighty Citizens into submission last year, possessing the ball over sixty percent of the time with a line up that consisted largely of guys who used to work at the Petrol and Zip off the M-180 near Scunthorpe. 

Like it or not, the BMC's (Big Money Clubs) in the BPL all want to be like Barcelona, because if you're like Barcelona you win and win and win some more.  As Manchester City's Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan might say: “It's not fun to spend Three Hundred Million Pounds and then watch the guys you just bought for Three Hundred Million Pounds chase the ball around the pitch like a bunch of drunk Florida hillbillies trying to swat flies with rusty cans of paint.” 

Or if you're still not convinced, just look to that cheek-pincher Jose Mourinho.  You know, the guy that just paid Thirty Three Million Pounds for a tiny Croatian that ballerina'd his way through Spain (a/k/a Barcelona Light) in the Euro's.

The future is now in the BPL, or it least it was now until now passed a second ago.  Wait, let me sort this out.  The judge sits first, then counsel.  But counsel argues before the judge, not the client.  The client doesn't argue, counsel argues, but never before the judge sits.  Okay, I think I've got it. 

Anyway, sit back and enjoy as the new league gets quicker and quicker and smaller and smaller.  In fact, mathematicians predict that if the rate of growth . . . . or rather, shrinkage . . . stays constant, the average BPL player by 2029 will be no bigger than a bar stool.  And by the turn of the century, Manchester United's holding midfielder might just be the size of the question mark curiously placed at the end of next word.  Bloop? 

I can almost hear it on the PA system at Old Trafford right now:  “We'd like to introduce to you the new number ten for your Red Devils.  He dominated the Russian leagues at FC Lokomitiv Moscow, and now he's here to run between the toes of the BPL.  Give it up for Ima Tinytoddlerova!!!!!!!!!!!!”

Wait, who's marking Felaini again?

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