A second trip to L’Arse this month for a competition named after an animal I didn’t even know existed until they slapped it on a can of energy drink that tastes of piss. I figure I will just bash the Goons as much as I can in the next 3000 thousand words because it will make us feel better. 

In the News: I’d not be doing my job properly if I didn’t start by savaging Ronaldo. Who took the physio’s phone out so he could check out his reflection after he picked up an injury at the weekend. You’re still vain and over-tanned. And your cemented down hair has still not moved since the last time you looked. Because you weren’t hit with a sledgehammer. You’re just a bit dirtier than usual. The yoof are the only academy left in the EFL Cup after smashing Oxford to make the semi-finals. Watford sacking Silva because he looked at another girl (Everton) and then trashing her online might actually surpass some of our manager dismissals. But they are basically the two whiniest clubs in the league so it is to be expected. And they are welcome to each other. The Daily Fail’s “Three Wise Men” have been at it again. Chris Sutton has been waffling about what a big hole Hazard is going to leave behind when he goes. He is that uninformed about what is going on in the world of football right now that he is writing articles (supposedly it’s him)about things that haven’t even happened. Redknapp Jr. says that Sanchez was born to play for United because he can handle pressure. I’d argue that he was under pressure at Arsenal seeing as they never win anything meaningful, and that they still didn’t win anything meaningful even after he was proclaimed the Messiah. He walked away from that pressure. He also walked away from the pressure at Barcelona when it meant trying to win a place in the team. Not to mention he couldn’t handle the faintest bit of pressure on the back of his leg from JT when he went to the floor like he’d been felled by a rampant wildebeest in 2012. And Phil Neville has been called out for making funny funny jokes about beating his wife. Speaking of, for those that so kindly contributed to our charity drive for women and children at a domestic violence shelter near CFC for Christmas, whose lives have been wrecked by it, do head over to my twitter feed to see the thank-yous and cards we’ve been sent by some of the children and their mothers. Maybe Phil should look too before he makes a joke like that again.

Transfer B*llocks: Dzeko isn’t Andy Carroll, Peter Crouch, Ashley Barnes or Emile Heskey, so I’ll take him. I think we’re determined to spunk money this month to stop Conte from spontaneously combusting in a press conference, regardless of whether he intends to stay in the summer or not. (Hence why we are sniffing out someone on the cheap) So the other Edin is the lesser of all evils. In the meantime the nonsense names continue to spring up – we’re on to Slimani now. I love that the bellends in the media seem to have one criteria for linking us with a striker. Is he big? Does he jump? Do it! Write that sh*t up! Re: the two Roma players, we’re still talking, but it isn’t done yet. (Blue Squirrel) 

Mrs Brown (sitcom alias) sent me a text before kick off:
“Uninspiring stat coming out of Roma. Dzeko has scored only twice in his last 17 games.
Me: He’ll fit right in with us then. 
Happily he scored tonight.

After long being linked with the Toon, Kenedy has departed north on loan. Would Conte be letting a left-sided player go without a replacement being lined up/a shoe-in to arrive? I think not. If we are to trust the Red Swarm, which of course would make us stupider than leaders of nuclear powers baiting each other on twitter, we’re not the only ones having spasms of desperation. Whinger is apparently so desperate for a proper defender/to get rid of Mertesacker that he’s willing to pay £25m for Jonny Evans. Who’s 30. And not that good.

And so it begins. Pogba wants his wages doubled to £450k a week because Sanchez’s pay packet is going to be so disproportionate to everyone else’s. United are morons. Not to mention irresponsible. They’ve made their bed so now they can lie in it, while we laugh at them. They’ve joined a gang previously only populated by desperado clubs from the Chinese League who would offer you enough money to feed a small nation to go and play for them. We would have to buy Andy Carroll for something in the region of £80m to match their stupidity. Speaking of stupidity, I love Sanchez’s claim about always supporting United. He’s obviously been to the Robbie Keane school of bullsh*t for newly signed players. They’ve even photoshopped an old picture of him to convince us all. Alexis’s love is clearly fickle, as it took three times the amount he is worth in wages to get him there when he was a gnat’s fart away from signing for their biggest rivals. Meanwhile back at Arsenal, Whinger’s obliviousness to his own plight will never die, and it will never cease to be hilarious. He can’t understand why anyone would ever want to leave L’Arse. Because of  you, Arsene, you fool, because of you.

The Others: There’s nowt so good as laughing at the misfortune of those you can’t stand. Harry f*cking Kane (not possible to say it without inserting the swearword) could do nothing to orchestrate a win against Southampton, whilst at the other end a teenage debutant could have nicked all of the points for the Saints. And Klippity Klopp is being touted as the Robin Hood of the Premier League – robbing points from the rich (City) to give to the poor (Swansea) Carragher has warned the the red gits that Virgil Van Dijk is not capable of fixing their shambolic defence on his own. Something everyone else figured out while they were bouncing around after signing him telling everybody that next year going to be their year. Meanwhile in this competition, how you can laud City as the most incredible team ever seen, anywhere, when they conceded two goals against Bristol City is beyond me. A spirited performance from the underdogs but nonetheless Pep and his prima donnas are through to the final.

Them: No Sanchez, ahahahaha. No but seriously, it looked like the first team. But I can’t be sure because all of them just blend into one big red and white blur of wasted potential.

Us: Still no Cesc, and no Morata either. Big Willy would always have started I think tonight, and in front of him Conte had heeded Hazard’s cry and gone all out. The Belgian started up front with Willian and Pesto (yawn, autospell), and behind them was much as we would have anticipated. Someone near us complained that Barkley didn’t start. He’s got no match fitness, bellend, and it’s a cup semi final. This will become ironic as this article goes on, because this idiot said a lot more about Ross Barkley as the night went on.

The Goons would not shut up about their prematch light show. It basically consisted of turning lights on and off a lot and playing a selection of mid-90s dance music over the tannoy. Still a load of empty seats, despite that half a*sed effort. And it wasn’t Norwich’s fault this time. And so we began, with Shorta*se (special alias) threatening to hold up his little homemade A4 sign that read, “Hazard, can I have 1% of your wages?” Can’t blame a guy for trying.

Let’s face it we needed to do something different than the last two times we’d played them and happily we started pressing straight away. The first shot fell to Bakayoko and it deflected out for a corner in the fourth minute. The less said about what happened next the better. A minute later we’d had a goal chalked off as offside, and this was already a better start than any of our recent outings against these muppets. So far their biggest cheer had come when they won a tackle.

Moments later we were ahead when Pesto put the ball through to Eden and he banged it into the bottom left corner. Then it was like they suddenly started participating in the game. Nine minutes in and we required heroics from Big Willy, who nearly managed to break himself in the process. There was some panic. “I don’t even know what Eduardo looks like.” This from a genius in front of us. I’m sure he rates you highly too. By the end of the night Janice (muppet alias) and I were suppressing the urge to rip the cushions out of our seats and smother him with them. The idiot. Not Eduardo.

The Goons continued to come at us and the f*ckers got a lucky deflection. An own goal. Dammit. In general tonight was not Rudi’s finest hour, but that was unlucky. They’d literally only participated in about a minute of the game so far. And their fans were giving it like they had actually opened their mouths before the moment that ricocheted in. Greatest team the world has ever seen, they whined. Not sang. This is a Goon phenomena that’s an octave higher than at any other football ground and the more hysterical they get the more it reaches a pitch that only dogs can hear.

Then we were pressing again. On twenty minutes we sent an effort across the face of goal. Everything was happening down the other end, as we were attacking, so we amused ourselves with “He left cos you’re sh*t” and Arsene Wenger, we want you to stay.” Then our night began to fall apart. On 26 minutes. Willian pulled up. (all of these times are rough again, because of the pretentious b*stardry of them running their clocks backwards because they think they are intellectually and morally superior to everyone else in football) And then he limped off. That threw us a bit. Being the spoilsport w*nkers they are the Goons just passed it round aimlessly and wouldn’t let it go out of play. From the away end came cries of

We’ve got Ross Barkley
We’ve got Ross Barkley
He left the Scouse
Cos they robbed his house
We’ve got Ross Barkley 

For clarity going forward, the singers included the idiot in front of me and a gobsh*te behind. You need to remember this.

All the flow had gone out of our game and it took a few minutes before we settled down again and resumed pressing. With five minutes of the half to go they’d had 38% possession. They’d literally cheered twice. Once for the tackle and once for the own goal. Obviously Captain Jack had done a lot of whinging too but his voice is annoying and nobody f*cking cared. Also because he’s a moaning little runt version of Rooney. Both sides were just faffing towards half time now. Apart from a brief goal mouth scramble on our part little happened until injury time when they had a shot blocked. I sh*t you not, gobsh*te and the bloke in front were already moaning at half time that Ross Barkley hadn’t done anything. After a ropey opening few touches he had been fine. I am so tired of this incessant negativity, I can’t even tell you. Literally go f*ck yourselves. With a rusty claw hammer.

The first surge forward in the second half was entirely fuelled by Bakayoko, but our first real break came on 50 minutes with Hazard rampaging up the pitch; the ball just running away from him. They’d had the brighter start, but how Mustafi didn’t get booked for tapping Eden’s heel when he was scampering away towards the goal was mortifying. It was dead in front of me. F*ck what the replay and the W*nk Puppets say. The play was pretty end to end as the game continued, but they looked more dynamic. Pesto, as he does, faded as time progressed, and barring a barn storming run from Hazard, the only other person who tried to take the ball and propel us forward with any venom was Ross Barkley. Almost all of the balls he played went up the pitch. Not sideways or back towards Big Willy. They were different balls too. He definitely gives Antonio more options with his style of play.

Then the tossers scored again. Yes, those gits that call us classless but boo their former players and accuse everyone else of cheating when they fall down easier than Bertie the kitten with all four of his paws tied together. Granit f*cking Xhaka. Whose parents are so imaginative that they named him after a rock. Where have all these Goons come from? Suddenly you couldn’t hear yourself think for all of the smug gittery. Pesto could have fashioned a shot from a great position straight afterwards, but he just chipped it high and it floated to Ospina. Obviously there’s always the chance he’d drop it like a dickhead, but no joy this time. On the touchline Michy was getting ready to come on. No pressure. We just looked ropey now, and I think we went about five minutes without touching the ball. Pesto made way for the Batman on 64 minutes, and we were just getting frustrated now.

Ospina is nearly as sh*t as the Red Scouse’s two clown keepers and we were just not putting him under any pressure. We weren’t getting anywhere near him. Let’s get Refwatch out of the way. Michael Oliver with Neil Swarbrick as his Virtual W*nk Puppet. Is this because nobody trusts Swarbrick to run around on a football pitch anymore? Because he’s been saddled with this crap at least three times already. Actually there are TWO Virtual W*nk Puppets now. Mick McDonogh, whoever that is. Just to muddy the waters of sanity a bit more. Thankfully they had little to do with tonight’s game. Much like Mesut Özil, most of the time they got paid for doing nothing. Oliver was OK. Pointedly looking the other way when they kicked the ball away and ignoring the odd foul were about the extent of his transgressions. But his ferrety face annoys me.

Zappacosta came on for Moses on 72 minutes. As good a shout as any, I suppose, as Victor had done little of note in the second half. But in truth, plan A was foiled by Willian’s injury, plan B didn’t pay off tonight and there was no plan C. It just didn’t look like it was going to happen. I don’t know what’s sadder, the fact that every time Ospina takes a goal kick they do a building shout of his name like he’s special; or the fact that when they do it he lifts his hand up to them as if to say: “that’s my name.”

By now idiot and the gobsh*te had collapsed into paroxysms of f*ckwittery. “Barkley doesn’t look fit.” And: “Barkley is sh*t, I don’t know why we bothered.” He was not sh*t by any stretch of the imagination. And of course he didn’t look fit. He hadn’t played a proper game of football for 248 days. That was May 2017. At no point was it part of the plan to give him an hour of football tonight. He was understandably blowing out of his a*se towards the end of the second half, and no, it was not because he is sh*t. It’s because he had to step up do too much too soon. I don’t think there were enough claw hammers to go round tonight. In the 86th minute I had all but lost the will to live on account of these two and because it seemed that we just didn’t have it in us now to come back and equalise. It was not to be our night. Barkley won us a free kick in Marcos territory, but the second half was summed up when the ball flew over the bar, soared past me and landed somewhere in Islington. Where I presume one of the locals stole it.

So: As soon as Willian went off the plan was f*cked. There was no like for like change to be made that would continue the same dynamic, which was working quite well. We had a good go up till half time, tried when the game resumed, then muddled along for a bit, but after they scored we just ran out of ideas. I can’t have a go at Batshuayi, it’s not like he got much service. Bakayoko was much, much better tonight. So the nappy sh*tters went hell for leather at another target. Some of the effluence about Barkley was as ignorant as it was petty. Mostly coming from entitled brats who forget that up till tonight we were on an unbeaten run of a dozen games. Jermaine Penis fanned the flames on TV; said Ross has to do more and that he needs to take responsibility. After watching him play his first hour of football in a cup semi final after an eight month hiatus. I like the comedic value of this, because on his best day, that gap-toothed moron wouldn’t have touched Barkley as a player. It’s why his career whimpered away to nothing.

Alex is going to be the voice of reason: Let’s not sh*t a brick. First time we’ve lost in ages. Yes, it’s frustrating because it was a semi final. Yes, if Willian hadn’t gone off and we hadn’t had to improvise instead of playing the game we planned, I think we could have won it. And yes, we fell off in the second half and were once again flaccid against the worst Arsenal side in years. But. Put yourself, if you can stomach it, in their retro 1930s shirts and poncey, highly polished, metrosexual brogues (with pointed toes) for a moment. They’re saddled with Whinger, who isn’t going to leave unless he’s dragged out by security or carried out in a body bag. We have a first team player that wasn’t out of nappies when they last won the league. And as for Europe, it will be at least September 2019 before they hear the strains of the Champions League hymn again. Unless they’re watching it on TV and sulking. And we don’t have to watch Lacazette every week knowing that we once thought of him as a world class footballer who was going to set our club on fire. Let them have their Carabao Piss Cup final. They’re singing about being the greatest football team the world has ever seen because they won by an own goal and are about to go to Wembley and get violated by City. And it is literally the only thing in life they have got to look forward to. Happy days.