June 18, 2024

Oh, there’s absolutely nothing to worry about.

As Wigan’s major conspiracy debunkist, I am happy to confirm that all sightings of ‘crazed clowns’ in the local area are hideous fabrications by (un)popular hamburglar outlets. Reports that Marouane McFellaini ‘turned evil’ are erroneous – he has simply returned to his favourite bench in Salford for Bovril milkshake and a side of crispy orange salad.

Suffice to say that by 31 October, it shall be revealed as our solar system’s greatest viral marketing campaign since that cheeky little scamp Guy Fawkes razed the HP Sauce factory to the ground. I probably needn’t remind you that the smell of burning malt vinegar was subsequently imprinted upon the unsuspecting masses’ collective nostrils for over 37 years and 368 days (Bayesian estimate).

You needn’t worry about Wigan Athletic either – there are no ‘killer clowns’ roaming the DW with buckets of fake water that gets between your fingernails. There are no beeping miniature cars with massive horns. There are no guys with crazy hair tripping over… their own… er, boots. Ahem. Honestly.

Commercial break sponsored by Barry’s Burgers, Winstanley

Burn Factor

One could rightly brand Dan Burn many things, but one could not accuse him of starring in a glorified one man circus act – at least not in the first twenty minutes today. Fortunately (or perhaps skilfully) enough, his legs were just the right length to block a Lucas Akins back post free hit AND narrowly dispossess Lloyd Dyer mere millimetres from the byline.

And for a (non-comedic) encore, he stretched acrobatically to bump Chris O’Grady’s 40-yard boomer away from his gaping goal line. Adam Bogdan sheepishly treaded back to his mark, for it was he that sprinted halfway across Wigan in an attempt to nod clear. It was he that vacated his goal, offering a free invitation for the infamous ‘Figueroa Challenge’.

Football chickens
Bog Man’s six yard box chicken: “That’s a strange egg you’ve laid there, Winifred.”

Once the hosts had greased their laces, passing became a much slicker operation. Still not the slickest, but enough to stop a decidedly grumpy West Stand screaming ‘get it forward’ on a minute-by-minute basis… for the time being, at least.

Michael Jacobs and Yanic Wildschut were the primary outlets of ‘carefully planned’ counter-attacks that, er… certainly weren’t reliant upon Burton errors. That said, John Brayford’s more delicate bits are still stinging after his Dan Burn-esque blockage of a Jacobs shin-splinterer.

Speaking of delicate bits, referee Mr Andy Davies took an unfortunate bonk in the badgers that would ensure an entire half time break on the masseur’s table. Which is probably better than having two pairs of boots and half a [brand name removed] pastie thrown at you in the Wigan dressing room (allegedly).

Lip-biting tension

Early politics of the second half centred on exactly when Will Grigg would replace Adam le Fondre. I say ‘politics’ because there was much discussion and little action – but that’s exactly what keeps the country alive… or not, as the case may be.

Nathan Byrne was first to be replaced, however – by Craig Morgan. Graham Barrow foist himself to the touchline, holding up two fingers to indicate the number of cheese and tomato pizzas he required. Oorrr maybe just two men up front.

Huge pizza
Your pizza is ready now, Mr Barrow.

Almost immediately, this bold new strategem played Nick Powell in for a lip-biting headed opportunity. I won’t describe exactly what happened, but it is enough to reveal that said striker spent over 54 seconds with his head in his own lap.

Probably because he bit his own lip.

The Grigg Threshold

On this afternoon, 77 minutes proved to be The Grigg Threshold™ as le Fondre did indeed depart. And when Craig Davies also smuggled himself onto the field in the vague hope Burton wouldn’t notice, three pizzas was Barrow’s revised order.

But all the cheddar in Cheddar wouldn’t have been enough to give the Brewers unusual dreams. This 0-0 draw, like their defence, was as secure as every crystal in Richard O’Brien’s maze of extra large padlocks and no keys.

In the end, the vaunted ‘cluster of clowns’ theory proved highly effective as it distracted all attackers *just* enough to stop them threatening those not-so-endangered goal lines. Bear in mind again, however, that it is only a theory and there certainly were no clowns on the field today.


And with that, dear reader, I leave this final word of advice: never fear the clowns… even when they’re on your football field. Except when they’re in a frightful cluster, of course – then it’s time to make them disappear with a magical cabinet.

Second opinion

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