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Thursday, March 30, 2006

Football, Football...continued

I am now in a mental war with myself to see whether my footie management addiction will overcome my blogging addiction. As usual with me, mental wars are a bit like turtles mudwrestling, but I do feel the conflict.

You, the tall blond-headed bloke in Montreal with the insubstantial goatee... I heard that snide comment suggesting that the world would be better off if footie management won. The ruddy nerve...and shave your face! You look like someone hit you in the mouth with a small, yellow cactus

I will say, for those who happen to be desperately interested in my gaming progress, please seek psychological help. I will let you know anyway that I decided to play Kansas City in the MLS. Why not take on Arsenal right away, you ask? I want to earn it. Plus Arsene's done such a great job, the supporters are bound to hate me if I just come in and snag the job.

No, I'm determined to prove myself, to pull together this little MLS squad and win the World Club Cup or something a bit smaller perhaps, like the Eastern Division, whatever that is. Then, I'll try and jump to the Championship in England, maybe bag a team like Barnsley or Derby County or even Leeds. Finally, when Arsene retires in 2020 (fingers crossed) I'll graciously offer my services.

Anyway, we did win our first game against New England, 4-1 and I chalk it all up to my decision to up the pace of the game slightly, and also to let my assistant manager pick the squad, as I'm still getting familiar with them. ("Jimmy who? Oh, you're a starter.") I need to build up the squad but unfortunately, while in the real world Eddie Johnson is playing for Kanasas City now, in my simulated world he's still in Dallas and costs about 50 times my transfer budget. I had no idea Lamar Hunt would be such a tightwad in the game.

Also, Virtual Josh Wolff is telling me off for not letting him transfer. Allow me to present you a generalised version of the conversation the game says we had in my office:

Josh Wolff: I'd like to transfer to a bigger team.

Earl Fando: Has maintenance had a chance to get my name painted on my private parking space outside? I always feel that gives a sense of permanence to a new post, don't you?

Josh Wolff: I feel I should be playing for championships.

Earl Fando: How do you like my framed picture of the 2004 Arsenal Undefeated squad behind the desk? Too obvious? Maybe on the wall just there by the door? I wonder if I can use my new position to get this signed by the players there? Care for a biscuit?

Josh Wolff: I need to test myself in a bigger league.

Earl Fando: Could you run and get me a cup of coffee? I don't actually drink the stuff, preferring tea and bottled water, but I've always wanted to have a professional athlete get me coffee, and as Mia Hamm in a bikini isn't available...

Josh Wolff: I can't be happy playing at a club that doesn't share my ambition.

Earl Fando: Two lumps of sugar with that... oh, and some milk too, if you can manage it.

Josh Wolff: I really...

Earl Fando: (Puts hands over ears and begins to sing MacArthur Park in a loud voice... The Richard Harris version.)

Notice how I bamboozle him with Socratic dialogue.

I'd never be that rude to Josh Wolff in real life, as he seems a nice bloke. In the game though, I don't take crap from players, especially not now, since I spent the pre-game run up to the New England match lavishing praise on Steve Nicol so he'd lose focus. I'm a bit cranky now from all the fake sucking up. If Wolff's not careful, I'll sell him to Carlisle.

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