The Spoiler’s Summer Awards – Part One
And the award for most unnecessary caps in a headline goes to…
Apologies once again for the lack of activity on The Spoiler this summer. To compensate – or punish further, depending on your view – we’ve crammed about seven stories into two with a review of some pre-season highlights…
Best Saga – Joey Barton and Newcastle
How many off-field dramas can boast the involvement of Twitter and the US authorities in addition to timely quotes from George Orwell and The Smiths? It’s not quite the people’s hero versus evil establishment feud that Barton has tried to portray though, with Mike Ashley being all too easily prodded into the role of scapegoat when for once he doesn’t appear to have done too much wrong. Are we allowed to say that?
Worst Saga – Cesc Fabregas
It was salvaged slightly by the glorious image painted in the tabloids of the Arsenal team having to pose for two team photos, one with Cesc Fabregas taking centre stage proudly wearing the captain’s armband and another with him nowhere to be seen as he calls Gerard Pique to tell him that it’s his turn to tell the Catalan press how much his life sucks. However, the inevitability of the conclusion, regardless of whether it happens this summer (as even some Arsenal fans must now be hoping), and the lack of any obvious plot twist means that this one needs killing off.
Most Entertaining Team – Liverpool
The Spoiler is in a minority, at greater risk of abuse than West Ham players on Twitter, who expects Liverpool to flop this year, at a time when even most neutrals predict big things for them. Obviously, you can’t read too much into friendlies, after all the aforementioned Irons didn’t lose in pre-season last year before being relegated, but it has been slightly strange seeing the Reds spend £43.5 million on midfielders without yet signing a defender despite shipping three goals in five straight games.
Most Entertaining Manager – Roberto Mancini
In addition to seemingly giving Sky Sports News hourly updates about Carlos Tevez’s future, Roberto Mancini has amused this summer with self-effacing responses to the tests of authority that Tevez and Mario Balotelli have flung his way. As his English improves, his personality shines through more and this could be the season that the resistance of those so reluctant to accept an evil, pragmatic Italian in their beloved Premier League caves.
Stay tuned tomorrow for Most Entertaining Off-field Personality, WTH Moment and Least Active Website (Spoiler: it’s not us!)…