Tuesday, June 17, 2008

A quick thought on the kit...

For those whining about our kits next season (for heaven sake, it's a bloody football kit, it doesn't matter that much) here's the genius way Conference side Stevenage Borough are advertising their new kit...

Stevenage Borough are pleased to confirm the arrival of the new home kit for the forthcoming season.

Doesn't that make the heart beat that bit faster?

Monday, June 16, 2008

Fleetwood confirmed on fixtures day

Fixtures day's just magic, isn't it? Suddenly, the pain of last season fades, and the bright optimism of a shiny new season takes centre stage. Swansea, under bright blue skies, at The Valley on 9 August. The unlikely seems just a tad romantic. Heavens, even having Yeovil in the League Cup's started to make my mouth water a bit. (Hey, we'll probably lose.)

Indeed, the return of the Swans for the first time since 1983 still feels a bit shinier than, say, Hull's debut match in the top division - at home to Fulham. Pass the Pro-Plus, would you?

Slightly annoyed that Doncaster Rovers is a midweek trip, and that hopes of a summer trip to Blackpool have been dashed again, and Palace on a school night... twice? Oooooh. Anyhow, there's some interesting stuff about how fixtures are compiled on the Football League website.

Close-season business continues with Forest Green Rovers' Stuart Fleetwood joining us for a fee to be decided. Let go by Cardiff a couple of years ago, he returns to the Championship after tearing up plenty of Conference trees. Like Chris Dickson - who cost us a pittance from Dulwich Hamlet but must surely be worth £200,000 or so now - he should be a shrewd bit of business at the very least.

Not much big money to splash around, of course, but the undisclosed fee we're getting from, er, Crystal Palace for Paddy McCarthy will do its bit. A nice guy who's a real presence on the pitch, he simply didn't put in the performances across the season to make himself indispensable. Hopefully he'll do well... and move to a proper club soon.

Finally, I've decided to put my money where my big trap is this season. Get yourself to Ladbrokes, and stick some money on us to win the League. The Magic Sign is currently rating us at a mighty 18/1. It was just too tempting for me...

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

'Wake up! Wake up! It's Monday morning!'

Oh, my, was it all a dream? The last time I was awake, I was reading this...

The loan signing of Scott Sinclair from Chelsea could turn out to be a magnificent piece of business. He’s a young lad, but he’s unbelievably talented and will be a serious asset for us in the remaining games. His pace, skill and eye for goal will frighten other teams... (more)

... and then that was it! Gone! Out! Sparko! Then I wake up, it's not even Monday morning, it's Wednesday night, and it's raining at Euro 2008! I remember the season ending, and it all being rubbish, and being carted away by the doctors after seeing Fulham win - but Chris Powell leaving? Say it ain't so!

And Osei Sankofa? And... and... Cory Gibbs?! Noooo!!

My oh my, what to do next? How to cope with us signing Crystal Palace captain Mark Hudson? And the news that we've mended Svetoslav Todorov? Well, by extending a warm welcome to our former foe - get the feeling we've signed someone who'll be here for a while yet? - and promising to learn how to spell Toddy's first name properly, of course. And it's good to see the MK Scum friendly was binned in favour of one down at Brighton. Hurrah.

So, welcome back to All Quiet In The East Stand, lurching back into life after a few weeks off to recover from a thoroughly miserable end of season. Of course, there's bugger all happening at the moment, but I've been getting a little bit into Euro 2008, forgetting about domestic football and reminding myself that the beautiful game doesn't have to be dominated by small-minded cynics who are only happy when everyone else is as down as they are. Dare to dream? It's what we're here for, isn't it?

And what do we need for a brave new season? A rubbish kit, that's what! Come on, that away kit on young Wagstaff doesn't even look like a football kit, does it? It looks like something that's going to be stretched around bulging beer guts in Dartford in months to come, covered in beer and sweat. Because that's what it is. And that home kit? Feh. And just to rub it in, we're now sponsored by a sub-brand of JD Sports which sounds like a girls' drink. Oh, and club press office - the nearest branch of the JD Sports is actually in, er, Charlton. Never forget your roots, eh?

Actually, we're not the only one with kit woes - Arsenal have lost their white sleeves, prompting one fan to wail to the Telegraph: "Can you imagine Nike messing about with Barcelona's shirt or Man United's shirt? We will look more like Charlton Athletic next season." The pleasure is all ours, lads. Do you want Jerome Thomas back, while we're here?

So, that's the 2008/9 season coming up - like last season, but hopefully less crap. Now, what's the odds on Turkey to win the Euros, with Kazim-Richards to score the winning goal, eh?