Getting rid of this appointment post was not among my New Year’s resolutions.

I am overwhelmed by the amount of good stuff floating up to the surface of the Twitter toilet bowl today. Anyway, here it is, with minimal commentary.

Woah, calm down there, Luke Edwards! The Telegraph columnist goes positively apeshit over Demba Ba’s almost certain move to Chelsea following a triggering of a clause after an approach. Here he goes:

I can still vividly remember the first time I met Ba. It was an interview only a few hours after he had signed for Newcastle and I wanted to know why he had turned down offers from elsewhere.

Did he know about the region’s passion for football, the fans and their love for a striker? Did he like the stadium? Did the manager say something that helped make up his mind?

There was no excitement. No emotion. “I asked my agent, which club has made me the best offer? He said Newcastle so I signed for them.”

Ba is the ultimate football mercenary. He does not make emotional decisions, he is not hindered by a sense of loyalty, he plays football to earn a living for himself and his family.

The next sentence is basically, “Not that there’s anything wrong with that.” And the final four paragraphs or whatever essentially say, “There is something deeply wrong with that.” The reason being that his contract is a “distraction in the dressing room.”

What does this mean though? Does Fabio Coloccini ask him when he’s going to finally drop these triggering clauses at half-time? Edwards tries to make a case that Ba ‘forced’ Alan Pardew to shuffle him around to a more favourable position, but this is no different than players who aren’t as honest as Ba about what they want from football.

Every time I see these stories about bad apples in the dressing room, I’d like to know, in concrete terms, how a player’s open affection for fame and fortune affects their team’s position in the domestic table. Without that, this article is one long character assassination.

Anyway, do you want to know how useless Lawro’s Premier League predictions are? Here you go. This is not, by the way, to take the piss out of Mark Lawrenson. This is to make a greater point: that one should never, ever, punt on the blind predictions of pundits.

Michael Cox tweeted out this article, and I’m going to link to it solely based on who’s in the Number 2 slot.

If you’re going to read a single post on the transfer window (including the fourteen or so I wrote today), then let it be this one, by Prozone’s Blake Wooster.

I STOLE this video from Reddit (see! He admits it!), but I’m only doing so to make a point about things that are stupid. It is

  • Stupid to use a single instance of a single manager making remarks about a single player who would later go on to be quite good to draw conclusions about that manager’s ability to scout players
  • Stupid to use a single instance of a single fan saying things that later turned out to be very stupid to draw conclusions about fans of a particular club or fans in general

Got it? Good.