The world is watching. A huge weekend for…
It is an interesting model of football ownership. Get rid of a reasonably successful manager (albeit one that players football that makes your eyes bleed), appoint someone who hasn’t held a senior manager position, have more patience with him than you showed with his experienced predecessor, get relegated.
Venkys have done brilliantly well with the first three stages, so just the final one to go.
Blackburn’s fate is still in their own hands, but Saturday’s home game against rivals Bolton is must win, especially when you consider that their opponents have only won one of their last ten away games.
I have said it before and will say it again: It is not Steve Kean’s fault that he is the manager of a Premier League club, but it is his problem. Because if Rovers are relegated, his managerial career may be over.
They may never get a better chance to pull themselves clear. Stoke have taken one point from their last eight Premier League away games. The injury to Matthew Etherington on Tuesday may make Tony Pulis consider putting out an understrength side in preparation for the FA Cup final, particularly now their Premier League status is secure.
However, Blackpool have won just one of their last ten home games, and this run includes defeats to Wigan, West Ham and Sunderland, three sides that haven’t exactly set the world alight on the road.
Interesting to notice that Holloway’s guff chat has subsided recently. Almost as if he has realised that he is managing in the Premier League.
A change of philosophy for Wenger? Evolution or revolution at Arsenal?
More on that question next week, but all trophies are over for the Gunners. It is now about pride.
Nothing would feel quite like a shot in the arm than beating Manchester United at the Emirates. And if they don’t win, whose fault will it be this time?
Games during the middle of the season concerned the question of whether Liverpool would finish in the top half or bottom half.
If Liverpool beat Newcastle and Chelsea beat Spurs (not an unthinkable eventuality), the Anfield side will be level on points with fifth place Spurs. Spurs will have a game in hand, but the clubs are going in different directions.
It may be the fight to be the bridesmaid rather than the bride (first and last Royal Wedding reference), but Europa League qualification is better than nothing.
Probably a less than warm reception from the away fans at Anfield on Sunday.
Only one way to respond to the criticism, and it isn’t by physically assaulting their female townsfolk.
The neutral viewer will hope that the Geordie striker will recover from his knee problem.
There is one thing better in being a Birmingham City fan on Sunday than the knowledge that your team will survive relegation.
And that is the realisation that your team has the opportunity to hammer another nail in the coffin of one of your closest rivals.
The armchair fan (part 2)
Clear your plan for the weekend, because its a good weekend for Premier League fans. Four games on television in 24 hours, including all of the top four in the division.
The Championship playoff race
Leeds play Burnley, Milwall play Swansea, Hull play Crystal Palace and Forest play Scunthorpe.
Five teams separated by five points.
Which is worse, the vain hope or the assumption of disappointment?
Image: Musgrave Archive