Oh, hello there, how are you doing?
I had a bit of a slack day yesterday. I try blogging every day about general random football-related thoughts, but yesterday was a bit of an off day for me, on account of the fact I had some serious hanging to get through. I went to an awards evening on the Thursday and holding myself composed on the Met line hurtling towards work yesterday morning was just about all I could muster I’m afraid. But after a day of removing the toxins from my body (toxins which I will no doubt have re-inserted back in by the time today draws to a close), I’m back and feeling rather chipper. It’s amazing what a good night’s sleep can do for you.
It’s also amazing what football can do for you. As an Arsenal fan, I took some sort of vague masochistic pleasure in blaming all of the ills of the first half of the England game on the fact that it was all the fault of a manager intent on picking a team full of Spurs players. Genuinely. I texted my cousin and told him to dust off the old “we’ve got German heritage” line from when we were kids, because England were going out and I would be able to get plenty of digs his way because he happens to be a Spud. The life of a football fan, eh? We’re either happy or sad, nothing in between.
But England did eventually pull it out of the bag, which of course means Woy’s a genius and Jamie Vardy’s release clause has now sky-rocketed to £30million. I have a few thoughts on that, but the underlying message I hope I get across is “what a load of utter tosh”. Supposedly it’s after a set period of time that it increases. Let’s just play the game for a second here though. Let’s say his value does rise after a certain period. So what? Arsenal triggered the release clause before that period anyway, which had to be accepted by Leicester. It’s not actually Leicester that can move the goalposts. That surely can only happen if Vardy rejects the offer and Arsenal have to go back in for him. Which of course they wouldn’t do, because if a player rejects you once, why would you re-bid for him?
Also, it was an Italian website who broke the story, and a website known for a little bit of embellishment in the past. But hey, this is an angle nobody has mentioned and guess what? They’ve had plenty of hits, clicks and other media sources picking up their garbage. If this was a well-known element to a contract, do you reckon only one Italian website would know about it? Nah, not for me, Clive.
I speculated with somebody on Twitter yesterday that I think this is all just a PR exercise now. I suspect the deal has been done and now this is just an exercise in making it as painless as possible for all parties. We’ve already seen that Leicester had bid for Deeney. And Watford have bid for Berahino. The dominoes are being lined up and Leicester are ready to go when anything becomes public. It’s exactly the same as us with Giroud when That Dutch Bloke left. I still think that even though the Leicester vice-chairman has said he expects Vardy to stay. It’s like I keep saying to people – take the two names of the club out of the equation. Ignore the fact it’s Arsenal and I have a personal bias. IF I was a footballer I’d sign for the bigger club, with a bigger global presence, who regularly compete at the top of the league (yes, I know we haven’t exactly come close to winning the darn thing yet, but we’re still up there) and are more likely to be there in a couple of seasons time. If I was in Vardy’s shoes the first thing that pops in to my mind would be “what happens if we lose the first couple of games and all of a sudden confidence drains out of the team?”. This is a no-brainer. So if Vardy choose Leicester over Arsenal, you have to wonder where his is at. Like I say – I have nothing against Leicester, in fact I’m trying to prove that by suggesting that we ignore the two names of the clubs and just look at history. It just doesn’t make sense to stay. But hey, i’m not that guy and he’s the one that needs to make the decision, and live with it.
Personally though, if it does fall through, after seeing Alvaro Morata notch up a couple of goals for Spain against the Turks last night, I’m hoping that we go after him instead. The guy looked good and I Whatsapped Ben and Steve last night with a sad face emoji and a sarcasm-laced statement that it’ll be great fun watching Chelski get him and see that he turns in to a goal machine next season for the team with no soul.
Today it’s Belgium versus the Republic, Iceland versus Hungary and Portugal versus Austria. My ideal scenario would be a Republic and Iceland win, plus another frustrating evening for Ronaldo. I love the Portuguese – I go there nearly every year – but to see that guy angry and frustrated as he tries to do everything himself without realising that football is a team game, is really quite delicious.
Catch y’all tomorrow, when we can all hopefully point and laugh at Cristiano.