Thursday, 28 April 2011
Our season's about to go nuclear
A preview of Spurs away to Chelsea is like one of those accidentally amusing Protect and Survive leaflets from the '80s - and about as much use: you know that there will be carnage and devastation, so why worry about whether or not you've got tin foil covering the windows/who's at right back.
Better to do what I usually do for visits to Stamford Bridge: curl up on the floor, put your hands over your head and sob until the pain hits and death follows. This is in the privacy of my own home, incidentally, not in the middle of the the away end. I'm not mental.
I was actually at Chelsea the last time we won, in 1783. Gary Lineker grabbed us a late winner. It went in off his horse's right fetlock. Back then the game was still played on horseback, with a goose's head for a ball. If I'd known it would be our last ever win there I'd have maybe grabbed a souvenir. Or killed myself.
Stamford Bridge was also the only place I ever saw the late great Spurs fan and occasional comic revolutionary Peter Cook. I'm pretty sure we'd won that day as well. Certainly E.L. Wisty seemed well-refreshed and happy with life, plus I'm sure we shouted something celebratory at him, to which he replied with a louche if unsteady wave of the hand and a slightly slurred, 'Ah, hello boys. Up the Spurs!'.
I've more chance of seeing him again on Saturday than we have of winning.
In their last eight games, Chelsea have won seven and drawn one. In our last eight we've won two, drawn five and lost one. That's 22 points compared to 11.
At the start of that run, we were neck and neck with them. It was us, Chelsea and Man City in a heavyweight clash for third, fourth and fifth.
Somehow, since then, after playing almost the entire bottom eight, we've ended up in an unseemly scrap for sixth. ('The Unseemly Scrap For Sixth' is, incidentally, a title I've offered Sky to use as billing for any of their live games involving us and/or Liverpool. I've yet to hear back).
The one bright spot about Saturday is that Torres has already scored. Prior to that I'd established half a dozen false identities in order to secure a string of loans, thereby raising £342,000 to bet on him breaking his duck against us. It was such a sure thing. I mean he'll still score, obviously, but it won't be quite such a big deal.
Anyway, enjoy the game, but make sure your standing under the frame of a doorway at kick off.