Pass that extra-strong gravy, the turkey is particularly rubbery this year. (c)Richard Croft
Thanks to the ever-growing pile of hate mail accumulating in my dog’s bed, I am once again forced to apologise, this time for my vaguely scatological assessment of the other weekend’s footballing events. I now understand this ain’t no Saturday morning kids’ TV show, so the cheap and thoroughly disgusting toilet humour must cease.
By rights, we should have shifted into middle-of-the-road teatime dramatics and gravy-flavoured nostalgia by now, so eyes down, look in for an (allegedly) entertaining game of festive bingo. Yes, it seems we’re really doing this, so ready your mouse pointer over the ‘x’.
Well, in the absence of goals, we have to make our own entertainment like Dickensian Christmases past. We might be poor, Tiny Tim, but this turkey of car tyres shall sustain us until well into the new year. Hurrah! Now if only I could get my barbecue to light…
Men in Tights: Emmerson Boyce rallies his Merry Men.
Pocket billiards aficionado Steve Davis might describe the first 45 minutes of this leftover sproutfest as ‘interesting’, but then he always did enjoy Christmas sock folding. I suppose you have to do *something* outside of the snooker season to prevent your cueing arm seizing up.
But jealous(?) ex David Jones almost returned to gatecrash the Christmas party with some David Brent breakdancing on the stroke of half time. His attempt rebounded off the underside of the crossbar via Al Habsi and a flailing Barnett, who lay prostrate in the South Stand netting like a pig in a blanket having smashed his leg on something. He’ll be okay, folks! Yes he will. (Oooh no he won’t!)
Though the second half was far more one-sided, the visitors carved out (heh, like a turkey, geddit?) its best opportunity when Danny Ings had a free shot at a frozen Al Habsi’s goal. Sadly for Burnley, his efforts were thwarted not by animal, but vegetable as a solitary misplaced blade of grass caused the mischievous ball to bounce funnier than a budget Christmas cracker joke. Which, I must admit, isn’t that hard, but I think I can get away with such an analogy given the circumstances.
No lines yet? Have mercy…
Wigan were in good seasonal cheer, passing the parcel (i.e. ball) amongst themselves and exchanging stocking fillers as the Clarets indulged in a spot of midfield Twister. However, Wigan’s play in the final third was as thin as those paper hats that catch fire on the candles when you lean over to pinch another roasted potato. Yule have to manufacture some better crosses than that, Perchinho! (Ho-ho ho!)
Father Christmas poses for his mugshot after raiding the Wigan branch of Argos.
To find a testing Latics shot, one has to rewind one’s mental video tape of the afternoon all the way past Eastenders Omnibus to 3.26pm. Jordi Gomez clattered the stanchion with a dubiously-awarded free kick, a narrow miss that delighted the enormous travelling contingent populating the stalls. As 5,000 Burnleyites were poised with specially printed songbooks to hand, the DW Stadium was a single goal away from a suitably festive (if highly explicit) Christmas carol concert.
The visiting fans did not get the chance to unveil their particularly witty Grant Holt song, however, as Rob Kiernan was the man to make a surprise début with but seven minutes to endure. The highly commendable Chris McCann left the field to a chorus of pantomime boos from the North Stand, but then this had been occurring all afternoon.
Following 94 minutes of ‘this definitely won’t end scoreless’, the scoreboard indeed displayed two fat goose eggs. It looks like we’ve all been particularly bad boys and girls because Santa won’t leave us any goals whatsoever this Christmas time. Oh well, the two juicy points are something of a consolation, and I’m not talking about those oranges they use to make Nick Powell’s half time soft drink. Wait, is there actually any orange in Irn Bru?
Agh, enough seasonal references. I submit, I submit!
Okay gentlemen, this concludes the festive bingo! I note nobody has claimed their prize of a J.D. Wetherspoon ready-made gravy sachet… Wait, where did everybody go?
Ack, that’s right – everyone left early to beat the taxi price hike at 5pm. Yeah, it was nothing to do with the endless barrage of puns that even the mainstream media would consign to the already-overflowing waste paper basket of tacky wrapping paper.
At least I’ve worked all that out of my system before 2014 is upon us. Have a Happy New Transfer Window!