STEEL CITY DERBY
…or as Nigel Adkins described it, the ‘Sheffield Steel Derby‘ (it’s incredible that he never endeared himself to DEM BLADES fans.) It’s come about quickly and I hazard a guess that very few fans would’ve predicted a 15-point haul at this stage of the season. But there it is, like Paul Coutts, and the Derby is just days away.
It’s a match of binaries: good versus evil, red versus blue, tuna versus real estate, Wilder versus Carvahlo, Knill versus Bullen. Perhaps it would favour us to decide the outcome by drinking contest instead; whilst Wilder’s an obvious winner it could be Bullen one, Alan Knill – so maybe let’s leave it to football.
As tension rises throughout the city we can only refer back to previous Derbies as a guide to this one. Everything else is unknowable. Come Sunday, as Coutts himself pointed out, “half of the city will be happy, half the city won’t be so happy…
…unless it’s a draw.”
DEM PIGS know how to spunk moneh and as a result, their bench represents the equivalent of almost £20 million or 112,000 tins of Tuna Chunks (brineless variation) or 134,000 of Chuna Tunks in brine. Jordy Chodes, as he’s affectionately referred to, is suffering a goal drought that is as long as his game-time has been short. This means he is almost certainly guaranteed to score. [Note to football gods: by writing this and tempting fate I’ve surely now ensured that he won’t score, and by writing that I have ensured that he will, so now I am just perplexed.]
Carvarliho has not enjoyed the consistent backing of DEM PIGS fans in recent weeks and they have actually played their best football with their Assistant Manager on the touchline. Could that be a good sign? Carlos’ tactics cannot be defensive and he will surely set up in an attacking, bullen-a-China-shop fashion. It’s a Derby, they can’t sit back, can they? I hope they do.
Without a doubt, the biggest threat associated with DEM PIGS is the plausible scenario of a minor earthquake brought about by bouncing. They are statistically the most obese set of fans in the country – that’s a fact. Stuffed with Beres, beers and a healthy diet of jealousy, bouncy opposition fans could conceivably deliver a seismic shock that will make Hillsborough Stadium more of a derelict mess than it already is.
In terms of players, the Easy Riding Dennis Hopper has been on fire in recent weeks. After a brief spell in hospital to recuperate from minor burns, I expect him to return with the same hunger for goals that has eluded Jordy Chodes.
Battles and predictions
Jordy Chodes and Adam Reach versus Money Saving Expert: 0-10
Jamal versus kicking out of his hands: 0-5
Bricks versus Jack O’Connell: 0-2
Donaldson versus hamstring injury: 3-3
Enjoying a Derby versus Bouncing like a goggle-eyed runt of the litter on a pogo-stick: 4-1
After beating The Trotters and offering a willful display against Norwich, can DEM BLADES go the whole hog and beat DEM PIGS?
At the start of the week, things looked a tad gloomy. The manager was going to have to sit in the stands, our best midfielder was going to be suspended, every striker on the books was going to be injured (I don’t count Evans as a player let alone a striker).
Luckily, Chris Wilder will be on the touchline and Paul Coutts will be available after his obvious arm to the face of a Norwich player did not merit a suspension. The FA have deemed the incident acceptable on the grounds that the Canaries players were time-wasting arseholes throughout the match and at least one of them deserved a dig. I rarely praise the F.A but this is the funniest decision they have made since appointing a man to the England job who’s most notable career experience was getting Middlesbrough relegated.
I’m nervous and I don’t know what to predict in terms of scoreline. But performance is everything and Chris Wilder said it all,
“We haven’t taken a backward step since I got here and we won’t start now.”
Some people don’t like my use of “DEM BLADES” and the process of repeatedly typing “DEM” whilst holding the SHIFT KEY with my little-finger has caused me no end of jip, so I’m no lover either. By way of a disclaimer, should my arthritic joints and muscle spasms become too much of a handicap, I may delay publication, or indeed scrap my post-game analysis. THIS WILL HAVE NOTHING TO DO WITH THE RESULT.
….and one from the opposition forums: