Any concerns that we may be entering next season with our talismanic captain, as a result of a suspension from the spitting row with Hull, have finally been ended with confirmation that there was no evidence in the first place. That it has taken the FA a little over two months to determine that, when we all knew within hours, is baffling yet somehow exceptionally unsurprising.
As we all know, Phil Brown changed his story quite dramatically after the game, whilst making easily disproven accusations of our manager not shaking his hand, so he was discredited from the start. But that hasn’t stopped the FA taking a whopping ten weeks to sort this out, and decide that there was no case to answer. Ten weeks??
Amusingly, Brown himself has to face an FA hearing next week regarding his conduct in the same game, and there would be some beautiful poetic justice if he were to be found guilty days after his club go down. It is clear that he was attempting to deflect attention away from his ailing team, a tactic that backfired badly, and if it weren’t for the complete hopelessness of Boro and Newcastle, they would have been relegated long before this weekend. As it is, survival is still in their own hands.
I’m really torn about what I want to happen on the final day – I like Boro as a club, so I wanted them to stay up, but realistically that isn’t going to happen, so only one of Newcastle or Hull can drop. I think I’m leaning towards the Geordies going down, and Hull sticking around to get annihilated next season and get relegated with a points tally Derby or Swindon would be ashamed of. How quickly the popular ‘plucky small club’ fall from grace.
Elsewhere, as expected, Wenger has confirmed that he will not be joining Real Madrid. It baffles me that the media could all be fooled into believing this to be a story, when it clearly had no legs from the beginning. Wenger, incidentally, seems perfectly happy to burn his bridges with the Spaniards, clearly not wanting to be involved with them any time in the future, by digging at their recent record:
“You speak about Real Madrid – they waste a lot of money and they have gone out in the last 16 of the Champions League for five consecutive years.
So we’re nearly at the end of the season now, just a home game with Stoke left that I can’t get excited about even though they beat us earlier in the campaign. The summer has effectively begun already. Unfortunately, that also means the traditional transfer rumours have been restarted – give it until the end of the weekend before we’re linked with Yaya Toure.
This could be a long three months.