It’s probably wrong to be getting excited about going to see an FA Vase Quarter Final between two teams you’ve never heard of, isn’t it? In spite if this, I am looking forward to the match between Whitehawk and Truro City this afternoon, even though there’s been enough rain in Brighton over the last twenty-four hours or so to float a battleship, and I’ve got a horrible feeling that we’re going to turn up there only to find that the whole thing has been postponed. With this is mind, I have a cunning back-up plan which involves going to a Conference South match between Eastbourne Borough and Newport County, but I’m hoping that it won’t come to that.
The big news of the last couple of days is that West Ham United have been charged by the Football Association over the signings of Carlos Tevez. Bearing in mind AFC Wimbledon’s eighteen point deduction for a minor administrative error, what should be the correct punishment for failing to hand in paperwork confirming that his registration was held by an agency rather than them, in contravention of league and FA rules? The issue of whether West Ham will be deducted points or not is an interesting one. After all, they’re making a pretty good job of relegating themselves as it is, without needing any assistance from the game’s authorities. I would prefer it if clubs weren’t docked points for breaking rules. It often makes scant difference to them, after all. At the top end of the game, where the only real concern is money, the correct punishment should be that which hits them in the pocket – but only if they’ve been proved to act in a deliberately deceptive way. You could argue that a points deduction will have the same effect anyway, but I’m fairly certain that they’re headed for the drop anyway.
At The Emirates Stadium, meanwhile, the whining noise is becoming a crescendo. Arsene is holed back up in his little bunker after the FA handed out a three match suspension to Emmanual Adebayor. Wenger is doing more to “bring the game into disrepute” than almost any other individual in English football that I can think of at the moment. He’s already accused a linesman of lying about what he saw of the incident in last weekend’s Carling Cup final, and now has has stated that he believes the whole system to be dishonest. Tell you what, Arsene, how about you spend some of the time that you devote to these pronouncements sitting down with your team and telling them to behave when they’re on the pitch, and not to raise their hands at opponents? While you’re about it, perhaps you should tell them that, whether they’ve been sent off rightly or wrongly, they’re doing more to “bring the game into disrepute” by refusing to go and shoving the fourth official around. You’re fooling no-one, Arsene.
It’s things like these which remind me why I choose the lower division game over the Premiership. These people are supposed to be adults, for Christ’s sake. Sheesh.