I can still smell the FIFA World Cup 2018, can’t you? That’s why it feels quite strange to be thinking that the Premier League season kicks off in about ten days time. On a Friday night, of all things.
The summer nights are still long but before we know it we will be slap bang in the middle of another domestic season.
I thought it might be the right time to dust off the Super Six column and poke some fun at recent Premier League antics.
#1 Jose Mourinho
You will have noticed that Jose seems a little tired and grumpy at the moment. It might be jet-lag or, more likely, it is the fact that he is in his third season at the club (any club, actually) and transfers are not being made fast enough. Or at least, that is the excuse he is giving. Mourinho is moaning that Liverpool have made many high-profile signings. Last season he was moaning that Manchester City were paying striker fees for full-backs. Come December, he won’t be moaning as he will be counting up another super-sized pay-off as United wonder whether Nicky Butt might be able to look after the shop for a while.
#2 West Ham fans
Folks, I can understand your excitement. I really can. You have a manager in charge that has won the Premier League before. You look like you are making some very decent signings. But we have been here before, have we not? Well, OK – maybe not the title-winning manager bit, you had David Moyes last time after all. But we know how this goes folks, we should be able to see it running at us a mile away by now. Your signings are great on paper but sadly you do not play football on paper, you play it on an athletics track. Calm down.
#3 Liverpool fans
Equally, I can understand why the Liverpool fans are getting excited. They do appear to have strengthened the squad in the areas that needed strengthening (yes, we are all looking at the goalkeeper) and they’ve even perked up Shaqiri’s career. But, dear Liverpool fans. Enough of the bullshit. It’s not the Coutinho money. You are spending big. That’s absolutely fine, you need to. Just own it.
So, Everton have paid Watford about £40m for Richarlison off the back of him playing four half-decent games for Watford last season, all of which happened under Marco Silva. That’s about £10m per performance. Everton are becoming living proof that it’s not just enough to have some money to spend, you’ve actually got to know where to spend it. Especially when you have better talent at the club already and you want to sell him at a loss. If RB Leipzig want to sign Ademola Lookman permanently having had a six-month look at him, that should be a clue, Everton.
#5 Wolverhampton Portugal FC
When I was a kid growing up, you often had local sporting clubs that represented sections of the community that had moved to Blighty from another land. For example, there were some Italian only football teams. Aldershot West Indies were a local cricket team, as were Aldershot Indians. You had London Irish in the rugby and many more. Therefore, in the days of commercialism etc, I applaud Wolves for giving local Portuguese footballers a chance to get together on a Saturday (or Sunday, Friday or Monday) to have a bit of a kick-about.
Jean Michel-Seri. Andre Schurrle. Alexandr Mitrovic. Fulham are having the kind of transfer window Newcastle United can only dream of. Will it be enough to keep them up? I think it might be.