First, the good news. I have suspected this all along, and now it’s been proved: Playing in red can give teams a competitive edge in sport. This of course bodes extremely well for the cup final. With such categorical scientific evidence right before our very eyes, there’s nothing stopping us going out and sticking five thousand quid on us to win. Hmmmm.
Perhaps they should amend that slightly: “Playing in red can give teams a competitive edge, unless (subsection 1a) they have billions and billions of roubles, at which point blue works just fine”.
Now for the bad news: It’s going to be a paltry 13Ëšc on Saturday, and there’s going to be rain. This I am genuinely gutted about. In 2001 and 2002, it was a right royal scorcher in Cardiff, and this adds to the day no end. In 2003, it rained like the dickens, and the day just doesnâ€™t stick in the memory as a result. In fact, what a crappy month of weather we have had all round. I’m not too happy about it, let me tell you, though living in England as I do, I donâ€™t suppose I’ll get much sympathy.
In real news, Ashley Cole did a bizarre photocall mid-way through his hearing yesterday, posing for the cameras in a remarkably relaxed fashion. If it comes to light that he’s trying to change the face of football with his restraint of trade defence, he wonâ€™t be smiling so much I fear. I don’t think many football fans will have much sympathy for a player who, if the rumours we hear are correct, makes it perfectly acceptable to arrange a meeting with a prospective employer a few days before a big game.
Patrick Vieira has done what we wished he’d done at the beginning of last summer: Pledged his future to Arsenal. This is great news. “Of course I will be here,” he said. “I have every intention of being at Arsenal next season. First, because I have two years left on my contract and I really believe we are going to achieve something with this team. I believe the team can do much better with the way we play and the quality of the young players coming through. The next three or four years will be really important for this club and I want to be part of it”.
And Reyes starts. I suspect with Bergkamp, and van Persie on the bench. Which means a midfield of Ljungberg, Vieira, Gilberto and Pires. Yes? No?