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Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Saturday, Wednesday and the Chicken Wings Incident

With odds already being quoted on which Premiership manager will be the first to be given the sack it's seems only sensible for Pards to reassure us, just 3 games into the season, just what's going on in our more sombre neck-of-the-woods.
Pards gives a frank review on the season so far and while the fans continue to be mystified about what's happening to the players that seem to have been forgotten, Pardew increases the mystery by forgetting to mention Sankofa when discussing the injury to Yassin. Apparently, he's looking to get a "loan player in or I'm going to play one of the squad, such as Semedo, at right-back." Whilst we have at least seen a brief glimpse of both Faye and Gibbs during pre-season, poor old Osei has been conspicuous by a complete absence, on the pitch anyway.
Meanwhile, news emerges, right at the bottom, that our new Frenchman Therry Racon hasn't yet got international clearance and therefore couldn't play for the reserves last night. Lets hope it's not another case of Christian Bolanos and the refused clearance, although with Racon coming from within the European Union its does seem unlikely. Strange then that the International Clearance should take over 10 days as he signed for us on the pitch before the Iron game on the 11th. But then its August, French holiday-time.
So with our, current, winless League campaign and with the pressure building, perhaps its time to consider Saturdays game against the once-mighty Sheffield Wednesday. Its revenge time as the last game against them was at the Valley in the last game of the 1998/99 season in the Prem. We needed a win to have any chance of avoiding the Big R by overtaking Southampton. Of course, we lost 0-1 and the memory was not improved by the fact that we effectively swapped places with Wednesday the following season as they themselves were relegated with only 31 points along with the Dons and Watford.
Regrettably for the Owls, its all been downhill since then and after 4 years in Tier 3 they are now enjoying, or not really, their second year in the fizzies.
Just two games in and they've scored the same goals as the Addicks, but have rather mucked up at the other end by conceding 7 - in games at Ipswich 1-4 and home to Wolves 1-3. The well-known American from Missouri, Frankie Simek, and Yorkshireman Richard Wood have formed the central defence in both games so they are obviously blaming the midfield for their appalling defending.
The manager, of course, is Brian Laws, most famous for the "chicken wings incident" when as manager of Grimsby, he "reportedly" threw a plate of chicken wings at Italian winger Ivano Bonetti which fractured his cheekbone, after a 3-2 defeat away to Luton Town in February 1996. Perhaps that's why he now employs mainly Englishmen with number 26 Wade Small, number 10 Deon Burton and number 23 Jermaine Johnson - another player from the quaintly-named Tivoli Gardens team in Jamaica just like last weeks Stoke goal-scorer Ricardo Fuller - the only ones for us to worry about.
And if you were relishing the opportunity for some gratuitous booing at our old favorite (!) Francis Jeffers, it must be said that it's not looking so good. Although for some unfathomable reason he is now Wednesday's current number 9 and has started up front in both League defeats he unfortunately suffered a calf injury during the game with Wolves last weekend and it seems he's unlikely to play on Saturday. Still searching for his first goal of the season perhaps he was saving himself for the Valley, where his altitude didn't exactly endear him the Addicks back in 04/05.
As mentioned, and in true Yorkshire fashion, they're mainly a team of Englishman with even the foreign-sounding Marcus Tudgay hailing from Shoreham. Sadly, he's another one due to be missing after picking up a knock against Rotherham in the League Cup following former Owls Graham Coughlan's attempted assault of the forward forced him into an early exit. Coughlan was Wednesday’s captain and Player of the Year in 2005/06 before Brian Laws arrived later that year. After returning to Sheffield Wednesday from a months loan at Rotherham in 2007 he was told by manager Brian Laws that he had no future at the club, was made available for transfer and returned to Rotherham.
Seems Curbs is not the only one to have a problem with players, ex or otherwise.

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