Poch and Mr. Roy in happier times.Photo: Paul Childs/Action Images/Reuters
The Crystals cheerleaders are as much a part of Selhurst Park on matchdays as Mark Bright, sitting next to Steve Parish and looking somber, having not had much to wave their blue and red pom-poms this season. These entertainers, tasked with cheering up the crowd before kick-off before forming a guard of honor at the entrance to the narrow tunnel in South London, can at least be assured that, unlike the home team they on the pitch, in a solid performance of eight out of ten, regardless of the weather conditions. The sight of the Crystals strutting their stuff is probably the only thing tonight’s match between Crystal Palace and Chelsea has in common with last night’s Super Bowl, a spectacle that seemed to serve as little more than the prelude to a passionate post-match clinch . between Taylor Swift and her victorious Travis Kelce. It is unlikely that there is love in the air over Selhurst Park, given that both Mr Roy and Mauricio Pochettino have spoken in the build-up about the lack of affection they have engendered among their respective teams’ fans.
“No,” said Poch, when asked if Chelsea fans had grown to love him since his arrival at the club. ‘No, I have to be honest with you. No, because I understand they were winning [Big Cup], they won cups, the Premier League. Why will the fans love me after six or seven months? We are in the final, but we are not well ranked in the Premier League. I think at the moment I feel the respect of the fans, I see them on the street and they are all nice to me, but I can’t lie.”
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With Valentine’s Day approaching and Football Daily’s annual reminder of what it feels like to be completely unloved, we can certainly empathize with Poch, but at least he has a chance to turn things around. After his side’s unusually impressive performance against Aston Villa last time out, a win against a beleaguered Palace would further endear him to Chelsea fans, while a win over Liverpool in Sunday’s Fizzy Cup final would at least be the equivalent would be from a quick knee injury. trembler, with endless romantic possibilities ahead.
Unfortunately for Mr Roy, no such avenues for redemption exist as his on-again, off-again relationship with Palace fans appears to have come to an inevitable end. Out of both cups and with nothing more exciting than avoiding a relegation battle to look forward to, the 76-year-old manager appears to be business as usual until a newer, more glamorous replacement can be found. “It’s been the toughest period of my career for one reason,” he said ahead of tonight’s match, after apparently consigning the Icelandic fiasco to the vaults. “And that is that the fans have turned against us so much. They are the people we cannot afford to have turned against us because we need them.”
Palace also needs Michael Olise, Eberechi Eze and Marc Guéhi, three striking players who can make the difference against Chelsea, which is known for its sometimes warm, but mainly different degrees of cold. Unfortunately for Mr. Roy, all three are sidelined with talent, in a situation that vastly increases his otherwise good average team’s chances of being tonked. Should Palace lose in the same emphatic manner as last time against Brighton, we predict a quick divorce.
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QUOTE OF THE DAY
“To be a football supporter, especially at this club… I came back twice to get them out of relegation… there will always be bad times. Let’s face it, the last three years have been the best times West Ham have ever had. Sixth and seventh in the league, semi-final of the Europa League, a final of a European cup competition and I still think this club has grown. No doubt we’ve had a terrible day today and I understand [the fans] I’m leaving, but sometimes you have bad days at football clubs. Today we had a bad day and I certainly won’t forget the good one” – David Moyes asks West Ham fans to see the bigger picture after his side were embarrassed 6-0 at home to Arsenal. Not quite the Roy Hodgson level of ‘you’re lucky we’re still in the Premier League’, but not far off.
FOOTBALL DAILY LETTERS
Ifab’s idea of blue cards (Friday’s Football Daily) seems to demonstrate his ignorance of colors and how they work. You may need to consult a color expert (artist or designer). According to the plan, two blue cards would equal red, or a blue and yellow card would equal red. However, as anyone with knowledge of colors knows, blue and blue make more blue, while blue and yellow make green. Or maybe Ifab is just color blind, which goes along with the ignorance and arrogance behind this idea” – Nigel Assam.
Because of my sins, I referee football on Saturdays and referee hockey on Sundays. If my weekend is ruined, I’m happy to return the favor. In hockey, a green card is a sin bin of two minutes and a yellow card is a sin bin of at least five minutes. And in both games, red is red. In football, sin bins for professional misconduct and dissent (10 minutes) and for two yellow cards (20 minutes) are a long-awaited improvement. Brian from Northampton is a visionary and not a reactionary” – Roger Prowse.
Are the proposed maps for punishing dissent colored blue to represent the language they will punish? – Richard O’Hagan.
Just to take a look at the recent non-playing affair with Lionel Messi in Hong Kong. He couldn’t have seemed more disinterested throughout the trip. While David Beckham got involved in training sessions with local children and schools, pressing palms, kissing babies’ heads, signing autographs and generously spending time posing for selfies with fans, Messi remained cooped up in his hotel. While it was understandable that he was unfortunately gifted, he could have at least shown some interest on match day, said a few words (albeit in Spanish, but with a translation) and posed for photos and autograph books. He looked grumpy, bored and desperate to get out of town. His status and reputation here in Hong Kong could not be lower” – Marc Meldrum.
Re: Matthias Schill (and others) in Friday’s Football Daily letters. Abe Simpson enters and leaves not a brothel in the famous GIF, but in fact a burlesque house. The brothel, although mentioned in Bart After Dark, is never seen. And yes, I should get out more” – Adam Griffiths (and others).
Send letters to email@example.com. Today’s winner of our Prizeless Letter of the Day is… Richard O’Hagan.
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