The Premier League 2011/12 – How the season unfolds
We are regularly told that the Premier League is the most unpredictable league in the world, but is that really true? Because through a weekend of watching golf on the sofa, I think I’ve got it nailed.
P.S. It can’t be biased if you have a go at everyone.
With the transfer window closing, Steve Bruce announces the signing of his 15th and 16th players of the summer. After losing their opening two matches, Bruce declares that “these players are taking too long to settle in. I’m looking forward to January. It’s revolution not evolution.”
After a disappointing window of signings, Stoke fans are appeased by the news that Olympic Javelin champion Steve Backley has been recruited as a set-piece coach.
After an opening day 0-0 home draw with Sunderland, Liverpool fans concede it probably won’t be their year.
Carlos Tevez admits that he had forgotten that Spanish wasn’t the spoken language in Brazil. “Add to that the fact that it rained last week, and I think you can see my difficulty in settling,” Tevez whines.
With an average attendance of just 1,069 in their first 6 home matches, QPR owner Flavio Briatore admits ticket prices might be ‘a tad high’.
Mike Ashley attempts to pacify fans concerned with the lack of investment in the club by offering free Sports Direct gear to fans. He later clarifies that ‘gear’ consists of size 13 Reebok Classics. In black.
Harry Redknapp comes under increasing pressure as Spurs can only manage three draws in their opening eight games. “Listen, when I took over we only had two points from eight games, so it’s clear there has been an improvement,” he explained.
Newly-formed paper the Sun on Sunday runs an exclusive: “Despite claiming that he is not a puppet, Alan Pardew filmed swinging from a lamppost drunk singing ‘Sports Direct dot com, UK’s number one’. Immediately resigns to be replaced by the Messiah, Joe Kinnear.
Mick McCarthy, sacked by Wolves after a dreadful run of form and red cards, is controversially replaced by Alex McLeish. In his first press conference, McLeish simply shouts out “House”.
Carlton Cole, Bolton’s summer signing, criticises the club’s medical staff publicly after they reveal that the striker has broken his leg in training. “It’s ridiculous,” says Carlton, “I can’t believe they are questioning my injury record. It looks like just bruising to me.” After attempting a comeback earlier than advised, Cole is ruled out of the rest of the season.
Rio Ferdinand tweets his disappointment at receiving only two Christmas presents. “It’s a dicshunairy and a fuhsawrus. Not exactly braaap tweeps.”
It is revealed that the early New Year’s Eve kick-off between Liverpool and Newcastle is a Premier League and Merseyside attempted sting operation to land Joey Barton. “We thought if we told Liverpool to let Newcastle win, then JB would be on it”. Barton, to his credit, sticks to the Babycham and all is well.
After a miserable run, Steve Kean is sacked by Blackburn. Owners Venky’s state that they want a manager with January transfer window experience. Immediately appoint Bryan Swanson from Sky Sports News on temporary contract, with Alan Curbishley to replace him after the window shuts.
Roy Hodgson expresses his disappointment at being forced to sign Ruslan Rat, Ricardo Rocha for West Brom by the chairman. “I’m pretty sure he just ordered it to hear how I pronounced the names,” he protests. Ex-Forest striker Robert Rosario waits by his phone.
Everton announce the signing of Lee Trundle from Neath. “Fans will say that we are not being progressive enough in our signings,” Bill Kenwright predicts. “But we have chased Trundle since his Swansea days, and getting rid of Yakubu created a perfectly-sized gap for Lee to fill.”
Carlos Tevez announces his desire and intention to leave Corinthians. He states his intention to use his savings to create a stadium and club in his back garden, allowing him to be closer to his children.
There is an unsavoury incident in the QPR v Blackburn match when Neil Warnock approaches Alan Curbishley and kicks him in the genitals. “This is for Tevez. It may not have been you but I will have my revenge, and Kia is avoiding me.” Warnock is immediately cherished as “a legendary character” by the tabloids.
Arsenal go 4-0 up away at QPR, only to draw 4-4 after a second-half slump. Arsene Wenger claims to have not seen the game, but insists that his philosophy is still working. Fans are told that this season is about progression with a young squad.
After exiting Champions League at the quarter-final stage, Roberto Mancini is sacked. There is amazement when Roy Keane is appointed manager, but the confusion is cleared up when it emerges that Keane has agreed to change his name to Etihad Emirates Abu Dhabi.
With Wembley busy for the Monster Trucks, the FA decides to host the Newcastle v Sunderland FA Cup semi-final at Home Park, Plymouth. The FA declare that they understand the difficulty of a 700 mile round trip for fans, but that the decision has been made.
With Norwich needing a win to survive and trailing 3-1 at half time, Delia Smith enters the field of play, pants round her ankles, singing “City ‘til I die” at the top of her voice into a microphone. She is escorted from the pitch.
Michael Owen is seen at Chester races celebrating United’s derby win. “I really feel part of the first team squad now. I saw it on telly and everything,” he says.
Chelsea win the Premier League and Champions League. Andre Villas-Boas is sacked by Roman Abramovich after goalless Fernando Torres is substituted after 83 minutes in the final game of the season.
With Wigan relegated and Wolves needing a point to stay up, the attendance at the DW Stadium is calculated as 3,969. This comprises of 3,968 Wolves fans and Roberto Martinez, who is sent to the stands halfway through the first-half.