Lucas chimes in on the hypothetical/delusional question of a transfer window-less world.
Before I get to an otherwise meaningless piece, I want to talk a little bit about Liverpoolâ€™s victory over Chelsea. Though I have myself criticized Liverpoolâ€™s new owners and the money they will bring in, the fact remains that they still have what is, with the exception of Steven Gerrard, Jaime Carragher, and I suppose Xabi Alonso, a decent-but-not-great squad. The fact that a team who regularly play Bolo Zenden, of all people, have a decent chance at winning the Champions League (just as this same team won the Champions League playing Djimi Traore two short years ago) speaks of a character and style of play that I fear may be falling by the wayside. To beat Chelsea, the unsightly stain on the otherwise clean linens of the Premiership, is as big a victory in and of itself as any result they could accrue in the final. All the mercenary stars and asshole managers in the world are nothing in the face of passionate football and a pure, unadulterated love for the game. Thank you, Liverpool Football Club.
And now that Iâ€™ve filled my quota of jokes about semen stains (or have I!), we can move on. So taking a cue from a previous CaughtOffside article – if the Premiership Transfer Window was open right now, which three players would I sign for the final run-in?
As I support Tottenham Hotspur and have a pretty big distaste for Chelsea and Arsenal, my selection becomes a little more limited. Iâ€™m also going to try to leave out the obvious superstars from Man U and Liverpool, which of course takes away the rest of the big four. John Terry, Cristiano Ronaldo, and Kolo Toure are out, and not being allowed to select Frank Lampard does bother me, because it would be nice to see a player actually eat the food thrown at him.
Without further adieu, then, here are my selections:
Leighton Baines, Wigan– Heâ€™s young and English, which the team loves, and he can take an excellent free kick. Weâ€™ve been starting a combination of Ricardo Rocha and Phil Ifil at left back, which just will not do. Iâ€™ve got to figure heâ€™s due for an England call-up sometime, and we might just wind up with him for next season anyway if Wigan are relegated. Also, his arrival on the team would free Jermaine Jenas up from being the ugliest man involved, which Iâ€™m sure would boost his confidence.
Jussi Jaaskelainen– For me, the best keeper in the league after Van der Sar and Peter Cech. Heâ€™s been stalwart at the back for Bolton, helping an otherwise unimpressive team scale the ramparts of the top-six. Also, maybe Teemu Taino wouldnâ€™t be so damn angry if one of his countrymen were to play alongside him. Either way, heâ€™s better than Paul Robinson.
Joey Barton– Bear with me, now. True, heâ€™s an unbelievable prick. And true, Manchester City will probably let him go after he put one of their players in the hospital. But he provides the bite in the midfield that every team needs, a certain air of toughness that Spurs have sorely lacked this season. If he could keep from punching Martin Jol, heâ€™d be a star for us.