It has been widely reported that Jose Mourinho is set to return to Chelsea in the near future, but Matt Stanger ponders whether this is really a good thing for the Blues and the PL...
Roll up, roll up to have a good laugh at your Football365 scribes, as we look back on our pre-season predictions to see who was wrong, who was right and who was stupid...
Everybody loves an underdog, apparently. Perhaps that phrase should be changed to 'everybody loves an underdog except Sarah Winterburn, who gets rather bored by the whole thing'. Or does anybody want to join me in being left lukewarm when Barnsley humiliate Chelsea, Northampton triumph over Liverpool or Bradford beat Arsenal on penalties?
While others in my profession are rushing to calculate just how many Bradford players could be paid with the money shovelled into Gervinho's bank account every month, interviewing men wearing 'Keep Calm And Take It To Penalties' t-shirts, compiling their 17th list of 'The Greatest Giantkillings Ever' and frantically searching for a player who may have once, however briefly, been a bricklayer or a car salesman (not you, Kolo), I just shrug and say 'well, that's football. Now what's next?'
Football is sodding fantastic. One of the reasons why football is so sodding fantastic is that - unlike rugby, test cricket or any number of other inferior sports - it is perfectly possible for a less talented collection of players to occasionally beat their superiors. The same 22 players could meet a week later and the result could be entirely different. On another night, even Roy Hodgson's Liverpool would have beaten Northampton, Kayode Odejayi (now at Rotherham) would not have been briefly famous as Barnsley's conqueror of Chelsea and Arsenal would have taken one of their 427 chances at Valley Parade.
"Why don't they play like this every week?" is the question hysterically posed by people like Alan Green just before you scream and punch your radio. The answer is simple: They are lower-league footballers precisely because they do not and cannot play like this every week. They have had a collectively good night and their opposition have either had a collectively bad or collectively unlucky night. Every dog, tiger and bantam has its day.
Does this make me a curmudgeon? I don't begrudge them their celebration; I just don't want to be invited. I have stood on the seats at Stamford Bridge hoarsely singing 'Can't Help Falling In Love' with tears running down my cheeks when Huddersfield Town beat Chelsea. That was my team and my celebration. I didn't want that moment to be hijacked by the media any more than I want to join Cheltenham in their joy if they beat Everton next month.
FA Cup third-round day - with its TV trips to butchers' shops in provincial towns to document commemorative sausages - is particularly painful for those of us who don't embrace the giantkilling spirit. I say 'those of us' in the hope that I am not alone in finding the whole 'this team was bought for the price of Charlie Adam's left testicle' schtick more than a little tedious.
Judging by the LOLs and hilarious banter every time a big club is beaten, I suspect I may be having a meal for one while the rest of you gatecrash the giant-slayers' party.