Yo beans, it's theme-posting GIMP-editing EUPD guy a01chtra here. More analytical than Phil Neville, sexier than Suarez, and just too good to be engaged to Sab. Willkommen, as our stratospherically inclined assistant manager might say, zur Frühstück.
Today I'm going to be looking at the big ass news that we should be focusing on in the wake of our
inevitable defeat victory (is it too late to jinx that now - can I say we won or will we have a points deduction?) against Woolwich Wanderers.
Theme this week will be nautical, because we are obviously looking at unbelievably easy "plain sailing" to our traditional 16th placed finish. Haaa.
Thrown in the brig:
Everton's Maoam Fellaini shares a beer and a chinwag with his ear-biting racist buddy Damian "The Omen" Suarez.
I think that it's probably now safe to say that Everton (9 point gap; Spurs Arsenal, City, Lolpool and Chelsea still to play) and Lolpool (11 point gap; Spurs, Chelsea, Neufchateaux and Everton still to play) have run out of games to catch the teams ahead of them. Either side would require to make up points on all three of the London clubs even if Spurs manage to Spurs it up, and I just can't see all three London clubs Spursing it up at this stage. So, while I won't stretch as far as to say that they're both definitely mathematically out of the CL race, they are sufficiently dark horses that I can't see them when it's a bit dark outside and they have consequently escaped from my... ?ship stables? of analysis and drowned overboard like that scene in the Ring (a film which changed the careers of both Naomi Watts and a young gorilla who worked on The Ring as a consultant for the screenplay, but subsequently went on to star alongside Watts in King Kong). Basically, unless the Premier League implodes, they're done for this year. Not enough points in Davy Jones' locker.
Man City are 5 points clear of Spurs, and patently too good not to finish in the Top 4. While they might be caught by one of the other Top 4 sides if they royally Spurs it up, they'll be in the CL next season. It's overwhelmingly likely they'll be the owners of the (Long John) Silver medals this year. So they'll be following the horses in walking the plank and... not being... included in this post.
What News From The Crow's Nest, Lad? What Do You See?
That's right, Tom the cabin boy! You really do have excellent vision.
via BBC Football
So we have the fixtures, looming up ahead in the distance. Two of our ships are going to make it and plunder and pillage and get all the treasures and Damiaos we can carry. One of us though is going to fall short, and possibly - in the long term - sink, under siege from pirates and plunderers and Krakens and that. This would be particularly hazardous for Arteta, Parker and Lampard since pirates are fond of "pieces of 8". Which pieces they would lose is not yet clear, but judging from Lampard's contract negotiations and the black spot on Parker at present, I'm guessing it's not going to end well.
Now, my view is this: I think that Spurs and Arsenal will fall out of the Europa League/CL in their respective ties this week and next. Inter are a good side, and Spurs are preoccupied. Arsenal are also - forgive me for becoming over-technical here - not good at football, which significantly hinders their hopes of overturning a two goal deficit to last year's Champions League winners. Chelsea won't lose to Steaua because I'm pretty sure the domestic-reigning Romaniacs have more consecutive vowels than they have world class players. Fortunately, even if Chelsea win the Europa League, they don't knock 4th place out of the CL, so the only impact is in glory and in fixture congestion.
With that in mind, I think that Chelsea (still in FA Cup, Europa League) have the toughest run of fixtures. Next I think is Spurs (still in Europa League) and then Arsenal (whose trophy hunt is finally ceremonially ended tomorrow, having been over since they drew at home to Sunderland in their first competitive fixture in mid-August). I think all three clubs will drop points, and probably quite a few (n.b. this is also true of the Mersey-sides).
- Chelsea: 12-23 points, most likely 19 (5W, 4D / 6W 1D 2L / similar).
- Spurs: 14-24 points, most likely 18 (5W, 3D, 1L or 6W 3L / similar).
- Arsenal: 7-25 points, most likely 19 (5W, 4D / 6W 1D 2L / similar)
This gives a possible spread of points of:
- Chelsea: 64-75 points, most likely 71
- Spurs: 68-78 points, most likely 72
- Arsenal: 54 - 72 points, most likely 66
On reflection, I think the narrower distribution of Chelsea (11) and Spurs (10)'s possible point-gain relative to Arsenal's (18) pretty massive one is a reflection of the inconsistency of Arsenal's performances this season. It's hard to predict how the impacts of the cup defeats, CL exit and Spurs defeat will impact them - or whether they turn it around against Bayern and the subsequent impact on morale/fixture congestion. A lot of the teams they're coming up to play will fancy their chances while they wobble a bit, and most have a lot to play for. I think QPR and Fulham will turn up against Arsenal because they have such strong Spurs cores and ex-Spurs managers. Too much to prove there. Fulham when they do turn up are an excellent side, as we saw in the reverse fixture. Totally different side to the one that routinely turns up against most teams.
I'd have to say therefore that I think Spurs are "most likely" to finish 3rd this season of the three sides, with Chelsea coming in 4th depending on results. This prediction allows for Spurs-ups leading to Arsenal finishing 4th on 72 and Spurs 5th on 68 but also interestingly for Chelsea to finish on 64 points and Arsenal and Spurs both to qualify. To some extent, it comes down to luck of the draw. If Spurs beat Chelsea, I think we take 3rd. That said, if you don't put away the easier sides, we might find ourselves all at sea. We are, after all, mast-ers of Spursing it up. It's also possible that Chelsea's petroroubels have been rigging the league all along and only Roman is controlling our emotions. It would explain all that Benitez Torres nonsense. That or scurvy.
Didn't even use a Bale-out pun.
So, who do you think will finish outside of the CL spaces? Has AVB finally shored up our leaky vessel? How do you pi-rate our chances? Cast your votes while I fish for comments as I'd like to sea what you have to say - but this reporter thinks that while we didn't qualify for the CL last season... this season we ARRRR!
(going to qualify, probably)
Peace, love etc., will take any image requests within reason in comments. I hope you enjoyed this post!