Spud Watch – The Irish Abroad 14.12.10

I FEEL sad my friends. I feel very sad. I can’t shake this melancholy. Another pitiful weekend for our lads over in foreign. There is going to be a serious amount of Irish players moving in the January transfer window, the type of movement not seen since the time I licked a raw chicken fillet when I was 5 years old.

Stoke – Blackpool

Walters and Whelan came on as subs and did little to help as they lost at home to the mighty Blackpool. Marc Wilson was unused.

I know a lot of the Irish lads will be knocking on their managers’ doors about now threatening to leave if they don’t get games, but in the case of Stoke City, it’s hard to see them going anywhere. Who’d take them? I wouldn’t think Tony Pulis would be too disappointed if Glenn Whelan came into his office threatening to leave? Like if a fat mess threatened to walk out on Brad Pitt? He’s not going to care because he can get all the fat messes he wants, because he’s Brad Pitt. I’m not saying Tony Pulis is Brad Pitt but I am saying Glenn Whelan a cut below a fat mess, who will struggle to find a club.

Fulham – Sunderland

Zero minutes again for Damien Duff and Stephen Kelly. If Christy Moore was still writing songs I bet he’d write something very sad about the Irish players abroad right now, and make that funny noise that he makes where it sounds like there is a shite taking a shite in his mouth.

I often wonder what does be going on in Damien Duff’s head? And I wonder what he does in his spare time for fun? He doesn’t sound like he’d be much fun. He seems like the kind of lad who downloads “the best of the weather forecast ” instead of porn and drinks chocolate milk from a flask while hiding in his cupboard. What next then for Duff? Does he stay and try to fight for his place? West Brom? Villa? Wolves? Bolton? Or even back to Blackburn? He used to love it there – he always got picked there and he was allowed to download as much weather forecasts off the internet as he wanted. I really hope he comes good again soon because no man should be finished at 31 years of age, except maybe Ray Darcy.

Some good news though, David Meyler is back – the one bit of joy I’ve received in the last few months after Coleman – like a homeless person receiving a hamper full of cakes and herbal pills at Xmas time. Meyler was a shock starter and stayed on until early in the second half which was brilliant to see. We need this right now. I need this right now. Seeing his name on the team sheet on BBC 1 teletext on Saturday afternoon made me weep a tear of joy, as did Michaela Strachan on BBC.

I’m delighted for young David Meyler as I genuinely feared the worst for him when he did his knee in and I thought he was destined to fall away like so many other promising young people who got injured young and drifted off the radar. Remember Colin Healy? And Stephen McPhail? And that girl from the exorcist, I always wondered what happened to her…

Everton – Wigan and West Ham – Man City

Coleman was mesmeric at times for Everton and did everything but score. He looks a player beside Cahill and Pienaar and doesn’t look out of place like a lot of Irish people when they go abroad. Normally you can spot the Irish lad a mile away with his ill-fitting GAA jersey, his U2 T-shirt and his hurl.

Shane Duffy was an unused sub on the Everton bench, not bad for a lad who was almost clinically dead 6 months ago – though you feel that, heaven forbid, even if he had died he would have more of a chance of getting a game than…

Shay Given. Yes Shay looks like a man now (as Bod Dylan said) “who walks along with a parrot that talks.” The depression is etched all over his face. Not one of those parrots from those parrot machines that used to be outside of Heatons and Quinnsworth back in the late 80s. Remember those yokes? They were scary and they use to say bizarre things like:

“I like the sound of MONEY”

“HELLO, WOULD YOU LIKE A PRESENT?”

“I know what that PRIEST did to you”

Aston Villa – West Brom

Another Irishman who could be on the move in January is Richard Dunne. He was an unused sub for Villa as Gerard Houiller continues to set his rot into yet another club. What a b*llocks. How does a defence that was so good for the last few years get coached into a crumbled heap? No Stephen Ireland or no Ciaran Clark who was missing through suspension – Petrov will be back soon so Clark needs to find a place, ideally in beside Dunne at centre-half, but in beside Dunne right now means a place on the bench as he has been dropped for an apparent bust-up with the gaffer. Gerard Houiller was a 2 bob manager who brought Liverpool more woe than joy – and now he’s giving me more woe than joy like the time I rid an STD-riddled, cross-eyed hooker with a perforated Johnny.

Wolves – Birminghman

A plethora of spuds on display in Wolverhampton like the Clara mart in Offally. Stephen Ward, Kevin Foley and Stephen Hunt for the home side, while Keith Fahey started yet again for Birmingham, without setting the world a light but it’s game time in the Premiership and that’s as good as it gets for the faaawking Oirish at the moment. As did Stephen Carr who was as steady as ever in his recent rejuvenation, but it doesn’t matter. He’s gone. I have to let him go. It’s like when Bobby died in Home and Away. I thought she was just having a laugh, but she wasn’t. Stephen Carr is not just having a laugh and I have to accept that he is never going to return to work in the Diner.

One man who wouldn’t look out of place at the Clara market in Offaly is Stephen Hunt. He harried and hassled the opposition throughout and was a constant nuisance climbing over every man on the pitch. His endeavours were rewarded with a neat finish before half time that decided this one. Interestingly, Kevin Foley and Stephen Ward were adopted on the left and centre of midfield respectively. Well I thought it was interesting anyway.

There was also a place for young Matt Doherty on the bench for Wolves. A very interesting stat this next one. Well not really a stat, more an observation. Wolverhampton/Birmingham/Aston – The Black Country area is where the vast majority of our Irish Premiership players operate. This includes: Dunne, Clarke, Ireland, Fahey, Carr, Doyle, Hunt, Ward, Foley and now Matt Doherty. What is it about this grim industrial wasteland that is ravaged by down-and-outs – lads who work in Dexy’s Midnight Runners tribute bands. Or is it the romantic notion that, in this area, Irish players feel most at home because it’s a lot like Ireland?

Or is it because all of these teams are middling to struggling sides in the Premiership and our players can’t get games anywhere else? I’m gonna go with the romantic notion because since resorting to taking Prozac through my eyeball the doctor wont give me any more.

This part of England has more pubs, more Irish community centres, and more GAA pitches than anywhere else in England. Not to mention knocking-shops where (as Dexy’s Kevin Rowland once sang), to “Come on Eileen” will cost you £20 sterling.

Spurs – Chelsea

To be fair on Harry Redknapp, he gave Robbie Keane almost 15 minutes this time though it’s not likley you will see him move to another top five club in January. Though, in fairness, you never really see this, a player moving from one top five club to another. It’s like someone from “Neighbours” moving to “Home and Away”. You’re much more likely to see someone from “Home and Away” move to “River Rats” or someone from “The Flying Doctors” move from crack to heroin. Robbie Keane will need to take a moderate step down, like when Morag moved from “Sons and Daughters” to a “Country Practice” in 1989 to play the role of a lovelorn goat. We all have to take a stepdown sometimes in life. I remember the time I got barred from Copper Faces Jacks for a year for trying to heal a woman’s vagina with my hand and so I had to go to lesser establishments for a while. But it’s only temporary.

Robbie’s been around. He’s kissed a lot of frogs over the years (at least he didn’t have sex with one, like that lad on the internet, not that French hooker who Ribery rid (allegedly), but an actual frog) – so he’s running out of places to go. You feel Blackburn/Bolton would be a better move for Keane because he’ll definitely keep his place while he struggles back to goal-scoring form. I still believe he will play in a top four team again some day. He’s only 30, and if he doesn’t I will have sex with that frog from the internet.

Man U – Arseanl

No place for John O’Shea on the Man U bench as he sat next to the Chilean miners beside him in the stand. I bet he would gladly take being trapped in a mine with 40 men, a vat of ice-cream, and a “Will and Grace” DVD Boxset.

This is getting a bit ridiculous now (not Spud Watch, that got ridiculous a long time ago) but the amount of Irish men hitting the road come January is going to be like something never seen before. It’ll be like the end of “Far and Away” when they all go off trying to find land on the new horizon.

The Championship

I wont lie to you, I hate this part.

A great day out for young Greg Cunningham and Sven as his Leicester City team put a donk in it, beating Doncaster 5-1 at home. I bet Sven was celebrating, 3ft deep in pussy Saturday night.

One man who wont have been 3ft deep in pussy is Roy Keane. His Ipswich side lost to bottom side Preston NE. Keane is likely to spend the Xmas w*nking into his P45 and sleeping in the kennel with Triggs after his wife throws him out for being a failed manager. But will she throw him out? Or will he walk away? Either way Sven is goin to end up 3ft deep in her. Sean St Ledger was an unused sub on the Preston bench – Funny how they kept a clean sheet without him in the back four. Hilarious, I think. That man can’t buy a clean sheet at the moment, though he did try as he spent Saturday afternoon on the Preston bench doin his Christmas shopping on Ebay bidding for second hand clean sheets from Amsterdam, which like him have an awful smell of w*nk off them.

No such problems for Moe and Larry at Hull. Paul McShane and Kevin Kilbane both came off the bench to change the game for the away side, grabbing three goals each and running the show from the flanks – This is the opposite of what really happened, as they did nothing.

Liam Lawrence continues to plug away at things for Pompey. He was instrumental in their 2-0 away win. He continues to tick over in the the Championship like a Datsun Sunny in a Stock Car race – it’s not exactly Formula 1 or the The Premiership but at least he is chugging along nicely, unlike Paul Green who is the proverbial sugar in the petrol tank footballer – He was on the losing side as was Andy “Minnesota Fats” Reid and Andy “I call myself Andrew now because it worked for Andy Cole though he was reasonably talented” Keogh. Shane Long’s goal drought goes on as he continues to be as potent as Ron Jeremy on yokes.

In Scotland

Spud-fish Conor Sammon is top scorer in Scotland and is very much the opposite of a-fish-out-of-water with more goals than Tony Stokes. He must be getting near an international call-up. If only Giovanni Mussolini would travel up north and take a look at him or, in true Italian style, send someone else instead to make him an offer he cannot refuse and hopefully clip a few lads round the Hull, Derby, Stoke and Preston North End area on the drive back down.

In Foreign

Cillian Sheridan scored the all important third goal for CSKA Sofia against Malesh in the third round of the Bulgarian cup. F*ck my life…

Songs on iPods of Irish players:

Robbie Keane

On the road again – Willie Nelson

Seamus Coleman

Make me Smile – Steve Harley Cockney Rebels

Damien Duff

Yesterday (I was good) – The Beatles

David Meyler

Back for Good – Take That

Lee Carsley

Devil’s Haircut – Beck

Stephen Ireland/Steven Carr/Andy Reid and Trapattoni

We Can Work it Out – The Beatles

Stephen Hunt

Stuck inside of (a) Mobile (home) with the Memphis Blues again – Bob Dylan

Roy Keane

Time is (not) on my side – The Rolling Stones

Go Move Shift – Christy Moore

Shay Given

Imagine (I got a game) – John Lennon

Non-Irish iPods

Wayne Rooney

Losing My Edge – LCD Sound System

Sam Alardyce

The Fat Man – Fats Domino

Career Opportunities – The Clash

Gazza

Happiness is a warm Gun – The Beatles

Ian Dowie

U Got The Look (of an ugly b*stard) – Prince

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