Wednesday, 29 February 2012

What Not To Wear

Members of The City Fans United are finally seeing the fruits of their £5 investment with the launch of a poll to decide how wide the stripes should be on Christian Smith's shirt.

"I'm excited to be further shaping the future of football in Chester. The membership fee is coming in as great value for money," said Grant Growly, member of The CFU.  "It's just a privilege to be able to vote on this sort of thing.   Same as when we vote in the people who vote in the people who run our club.  You feel like you're really making a difference."

"You can have it in any colour you want, so long as it's blue and white stripes," confirmed well-known popular club director Neil O'Noel.

Shareholders are being asked to choose from a set of four designs, ranging from 'retro' to 'classic', and club historian Jazz Trumpeter explained why;

"Basically, we just asked everyone in the Former Players Association to bring in their old shirts.  The four on the website are the ones where we got a full set of fifteen back".

"Quick blast of Febreze and it's all good.  We'd have had a fifth option on there too - the Millennium season one, timeless - but no-one could get hold of Goran."

The current front-runner is rumoured to be a 1970's blue/white striped effort, but this may yet prove to be a logistical headache for Neil Young's men.  During a behind-closed-doors friendly to gauge player feedback on the 'new' design, the increased amount of white on the shirt was enough to confuse Chris Simm, who spent the game repeatedly trying to dispossess strike partner Matty McNeil, believing him to be an opposing centre half.

Further problems have become apparent with the goalkeeper's shirt as new signing Matt Glennon had difficulty squeezing into the heavy cotton top.

"He was showing a couple of inches of midriff," reported gaffer Young.

"We could try stretching it in the wash, maybe, but Gren Millington has put his hand up and said he'll play if needed."

"It might work, to be fair.  He's been hanging around looking for a game for ages now, and Matt didn't look like the goalscorer we believed him to be on Saturday."

In other merchandising news, Neil Young has recently taken to wearing a thin, waterproof jacket to his post-match interviews.

"Joma have stopped making puffers," despaired the Blues maestro.  "That's why we've sacked them off as a supplier.  I'm freezing in that dugout.  Gaz Powell is gutted, as no-one else makes hip high socks, but I'm the boss and what I say goes."

Tuesday, 28 February 2012

Ritual Humiliation

Matt Glennon has today spoken of the gruelling rituals through which his new team mates have put him as part of his initiation at Chester.

Riled by the departure of their close friend Adam Judge, Neil Young's squad spent Monday playing all manner of practical jokes on the new shot stopper.

"Michael Powell told me to go to the end of Bumpers Lane for a long stand," recounted Glennon.  "I was waiting there ages, then Michael Wilde turned up and hit me with a long stand."

Glennon returned to the Exacta to find his car on top of the Harry McNally Terrace, Iain Howard having hired a crane especially for the job.

"I know some guys in the trade," explained plasterer Howard, with a knowing wink.

Later, during the afternoon training session, Wes Baynes smashed a ball 80 yards into Glennon's face, leaving onlookers to debate whether or not he meant it.

Predictably, Scary Alex Brown took things too far, kidnapping Glennon and locking him in a darkened room with a pack of sleeping rottweilers.  After informing Glennon that there were five alarm clocks in the room, attached to a series of pressure pads underneath the floor boards, Brown left the room cackling at the top of his lungs.

Worse than the physical jokes, perhaps, were the verbal taunts that the new goalie was forced to endure.
"They found out that I played in the Scottish Premier," sobbed Glennon.  "I've never been so embarrassed in all my life.  I mean, these guys are semi-pro, but they do have some standards."

Another new face at the Exacta is Marc Williams, but he has largely avoided the Glennon treatment, by virtue of meeting up with former Wrexham colleagues Christian Smith, Wes Baynes, Levi Mackin and Chronicle busybody The Tall Peacock.

"Yeah, Peacock used to report on Wrexham games," said Williams.

"Oh, sure, he gives it the big 'I'm a Chester fan' routine now, but he used to be a red.  Sharks Prowling, he's the real deal, but Peacock's a shady mercenary.  Believe me, first chance he gets, he'll be working for the Liverpool Echo and that Twitter feed will be full of stuff about Gerrard and Suarez.  Goes where the money is."

Meanwhile, speaking out about the depature of Judge, Neil Young has described the decision to bring in a replacement keeper as “the hardest of my career.”  He did, however, go on to qualify this statement.

"In football, I mean.  The hardest decision of my working life was when the Wirral Line went down at Christmas back in ’99."

"I had to cancel all the trains, and some people couldn't get home. One guy came into my office and screamed at me about how he needed to get back to give his son his Christmas present - a train set. Struck
by the irony, I burst out laughing.  The fella hit me, and I regained consciousness just in time to sing Auld Lang Syne with Gary Jones. Bit of a tradition, like."

Monday, 27 February 2012

Chester FC 4-0 Buxton FC - Match Distillery

Chester endured a comfortable afternoon as they swept aside struggling Buxton 4-0 at the Exacta Stadium.

On a Saturday where Junior Blues members were allowed to help out with key roles around the ground, Chester fans were given a shock when the starting XI was revealed, with The Jestrian's Thursday exclusive on Adam Judge being replaced by a small child winding up comically close to the truth.

Judge was axed from the team with Neil Young favouring new signing Matt Glennon, a goalkeeper he found on Friday night whilst idly clicking the “random page” button on Wikipedia.

Glennon joins Chester following a career in the lower reaches of the Football League as well as the less remarkable Scottish Premier League, his most notable achievement being a goal scored for St Johnstone, going upfield in the last minute to lash home from six yards.

"He's more prolific than Judgey, and if nothing else he'll provide competition for Simmo" explained Blues gaffer Young, who confided that Judge broke down in tears upon being given the news and that even the tried and tested "it's not you, it's me" consolation failed to comfort the cast-aside stopper.

"It's like that episode of Thomas the Tank Engine.  Thomas broke a wheel, and Percy was excited to step up to the challenge.  But then the Fat Controller brought in a more experienced train to do Thomas's route.  It was hard on Perce, but the big man felt it was a decision he had to make," explained rail enthusiast Young, unusually sporting a top hat.

"Oh he's always doing this," grumbled wife, Mrs Young.  "One time we had a fire at our house, and we had an extinguisher in the kitchen, but Neil said it wasn't up to the job, so he went to B&Q to get another one.  By the time he got back, half the house had burnt away."

On the field, Chester broke the deadlock early when Chris Simm scored past Scott Hartley, a man who suffered the second-worst afternoon of any goalkeeper in the Chester region.

Simm wheeled away trying to remember how to celebrate a goal but was left hanging when he looked to milk a high-five from an empty South Stand.

The Blues doubled their advantage in bizarre fashion on the half hour mark, Wesley Baynes angering fans by launching a free kick into orbit from just inside the Buxton half, before watching it finally land in the corner of the goal.

"But did he MEAN it?" demanded furious and confused East Stand regulars.

Hartley was in the thick of it again just before half time, when he handled outside the area without the officials taking any notice.

Blues Assistant Gary Jones politely put his hand up and pointed out Hartley's crime, causing the referee to profusely apologise for the mishap before booking the keeper, the incident in no way similar to events at Northwich when the Vics management team were accused of harrassing the referee's assistant into the sending off of Michael Powell and his quiff.

Further salt was rubbed into Judge's gaping wounds when half time arrived, with a man who once scored a couple of goals for Ossett Albion welcomed to the Exacta Stadium like a returning war hero.  Despite having kept clean sheets in crucial wins at Clitheroe, Chorley and - most importantly of all - Skelmersdale, his contribution to Chester's championship is now eclipsed by that of Danny Toronczak, who was introduced to the crowd as "the man whose goals won us the title last season".

Michael Wilde's protests went largely unheard as he was later found gagged and bound in a Yorkshire-registered car blocking an emergency exit, whilst Michael Powell, dropped to the bench to defend Chester's fair play award, muttered something about scoring in every game of the final month, but was drowned out by Judge's gnashing teeth.

Into the second half, Chris Simm netted another by slotting under the increasingly tragic Scott Hartley before Chester rounded off the scoring in the 64th minute when Hartley came tearing off his goal line to impressively intercept a through ball, before tooting a comedy horn and laying the ball off to Baynes who lashed the ball into the empty net from distance, whilst Hartley retreated on a unicycle.

Following the match, Young praised the reinstated Baynes, telling Chronicle big dog The Tall Peacock that if he had scored those goals in the Premier League, "we'd be watching them for years." 

"Actually, we should be watching them for years regardless of context, but I'm not paying thirty quid for all that Blue$ Player nonsense - Youngy's no mug."


And in breaking news, Adam Judge has announced that he is to leave the club.  In an exclusive interview, the disappointed net guardian explained his reasons.

"It’s like being in a relationship that you know is doomed, but then she shows you some attention, so you get your hopes up, before she finally twists the knife in and dumps you for Stockport’s reserve goalkeeper,” frowned Judge.

Friday, 24 February 2012

Chester FC vs Buxton FC - Match Filter

Chester welcome Buxton to the Exacta stadium tomorrow, in a reverse of the tie that saw the teams draw 1-1 at The Silverlands, on one of them weekday nights where even the most ardent of football fans wished they'd stayed home.

"No amount of Bovril could have saved me that night," admitted super fan "igotoallthegames" off of The Devachats.

The Silverlands match-up was also the stage upon which John Danby's record-breaking run of clean sheets finally came to an end, as Buxton's Josh Wilde smashed home a goal in the second half.  Most of the Chester players and fans were gutted, whilst a select few Blues followers decided to get their money's worth from their "Wilde Thing" t-shirts, and celebrated Buxton's goal as though it had been scored by Michael himself.

After the game, Chronicle word-smith and podcast rent-a-guest The Tall Peacock described the encounter as a "blood-and-thunder clash" - a claim notable for its apparent lacking in irony.

"Well, we've got a bit of an injury list, so hopefully this time it'll be more like a graze-and-drizzle kerfuffle, eh Peacock?" chuckled a mischievous Chester manager Neil Young during his press conference. 

"Or maybe a bruise-and-breeze skirmish?  I hope so.  I don't want to lose any more players to injury, and Gary Jones is scared of thunder and lightning.  The weather phenomenon, that is, not the Gladiators.  They were boss."

The press conference took a slight detour as Leader stalwart Tennis Ball disputed the existence of a Gladiator called Thunder, but Young insisted that there was one in the Australian version, and was subsequently proven correct by Google.

"Don't quiz me on the Gladiators, bro," glared a deadly serious Chester boss.

Buxton's witty and intelligent followers are famous for having discovered the Jestrian long before most Blues fans jumped on the bandwagon, and also for having had their fans' message board raided by an abusive Blues "supporter"  whose embarrassing behaviour was thankfully hidden from a wider audience by the stringent privacy settings in place on the forum.

"We don't let just anyone post," said regular contributer Ginny.  "We've seen on The Devachats what happens if you let certain sections of society have an opinion."

The travellers who had set up camp in the Exacta car park were moved on earlier in the week, drawing a mixed reaction from the board.

"It caused us a headache briefly," admitted The Dark Owl.

"Then we realised that the parking situation couldn't actually be made any worse, and it might be handy to have people put off stopping in the car park.  Or at least to have them blame someone external.  By the time we realised this, the travellers had left the premises.  We tried to get them back, but it was too late.  Wounding."

Thursday, 23 February 2012

Those pesky kids

The Junior Blues are set to take over at the Exacta on Saturday in a spate of unpaid child labour long thought to have been eradicated in the UK.

Match day duties such as selling programmes and hissing details of substitutions over the PA system will be carried out by children, which sounds nice but will probably get a bit annoying for anyone who doesn't have kids after about five minutes.

Concerns have been raised that the club have gone too far with the scheme.  Neil Young was seen storming from the Exacta last night, having been told that he has been replaced as manager for the day by "Young Neil", 8, from Blacon.

"The gaffer's seething," confirmed Gary Powell.  "To be fair, though, I think we'll adapt to the change pretty well.  Young Neil is similar to Neil Young in many respects.  He loves Thomas the Tank Engine."

Meanwhile, the Bipkiss family have spoken of their excitement at their son Harry, 6, being allowed to partake in matchday activities.

"My little lad, walking round the pitch with a clipboard, booking people on his Trunki for the Frickley trip?  I've never been so proud," beamed his father.

It's not all good news, however.  With kids staffing the Blues Bar, there will be no alcohol sold, and takings are expected to plummet.

"I don't think they've thought it through," said new Blues Bar manager, Raving Larry.  "I'm gonna be broke before I'm in the door."

Adam Judge is also distraught, having been told he has lost his place once again to a 7 year old named after every member of the Conference title-winning side, whilst Grenville Millington has forged his birth certificate so that he can participate.

"There's nothing I won't get involved with," smiled Gren, who'll go by the name Tyrone for the weekend.

Whilst the whole "JB Day" is being presented as an advert for the Junior Blues and a drive to get more youngsters to the Exacta, conspiracy theorists have an alternative idea. "It's a ploy by media-velcro Jiff Bricks to name the day after himself," murmured the shadowy outline of a shark, prowling in a smoke-filled room.

"He'll stop at nothing with his shameless self-promotion.  He couldn't get his name on it, so he settled for his initials.  JB Day sounds all nice and happy, but it's one man's attempt to hijack the match for himself.  He's been dreaming of a JB Day at Chester FC since he was a lad.  And now he's making it a reality as we all stand back and let him."

Blues in Brief

Keep on travellin'
The Exacta Stadium is now a traveller-free zone, following the eviction of some gypsies who had settled on the club car park.

CWaC had moved quickly to settle the dispute, amid fears that the travelling community could provoke a furious reaction from Blues supporters. With the law not applying to Chester FC supporters, some had promised to verbally abuse the travellers which could have prompted violent behaviour.

"If I can’t park on double yellow lines, spew some vile abuse towards people en route to the turnstyle, then vilify a semi-professional referee for 90 minutes then what else am I supposed to do with my Saturday afternoons?" gargled Gary Sidewinder, of H Block.


Chasing the game
It has been widely reported that Neil Young's men missed a hatful of chances last weekend at Chasetown, and locals have confirmed that Chris Simm has been spotted in the area, still desperately trying to find a winner.

Local media identified the striker early on Sunday morning, looking distressed and dishevelled, as a mazy run resulted in Simm clipping the crossbar before bowing his head and trotting off to retrieve the ball for another attempt.

Stranger still, one travelling supporter - donning an Evo-Stik winter jacket - stayed behind to try and "suck in a winner" and bellow "Simmoooo" in a rather grating way. The striker finally cut his losses somewhere mid-evening, ambling over to applaud the travelling support before legging it to the car park to get home in time for Wild At Heart.


Hitting the Marc
The official website recently broke the news that former Wrexham striker Marc Williams has joined the Blues in order to bolster the struggling strikeforce.

Finishing has been an issue recently, with sources close to Michael Wilde confirming that he even struggles to complete his lunch these days, and this has prompted Young to sign Williams, a former Wales
Under-21 international.

The Wales U21 tag does sound initially impressive, although investigations have revealed that the criteria for selection are less than stringent.

"If you're Welsh, a Wrexham player, under the age of 21 or if you attended an Eisteddfod once then the chances are you'll be called up to the squad at some point," admitted Dafydd Welshie, who is manager of the Welsh Under-21 squad, probably.

Naturally, Williams is expected to be irrationally hated by some during the early stages of his Chester career, due to his Wrexham past, but once he scores a goal this will all be conveniently forgotten.  Despite players such as Christian Smith and Wes Baynes having shaken off the stigma of their past, former Wrexham and Chester defender Gareth Evans warned Williams that Chester fans never forget.

"I'm still getting hate mail and abusive phone calls, even though I'm in the States," grumbled the centre back.

"The joke's on them though - it's absolute extortion to call here from the UK."

Wednesday, 22 February 2012

BiG Lupus is still about

BiG Lupus yesterday finally crawled out from whatever storage room he's been living in to take a trip to Grosvenor Garden Centre.

The lovable mascot - provided and sponsored by self-storage company Safestore - was wheeled out by The City Fans United in an attempt to promote the club.

"Where better to pick up football fans than a garden centre?" enthused Lamb Shanks, the official face of The City Fans United.

"We even found former Chester City right-back Simon Marples down there.  Well into his gardening, that lad.  He had no choice though, to be fair to him."

Lupus - provided and sponsored by self-storage company - wandered around the garden centre for a bit, nudging elderly patrons and saying "come the Buxton game, you know you want to."

There was a brief commotion as one 78-year-old customer, who only wanted to buy some chrysanthemums, mistook the friendly Lupus - provided and sponsored by self-storage company Lock Stock Self Storage - for an altogether more vicious type of wolf.

"Ooh, I was petrified," said Gladys Potterabout. 

"At first I thought it was a dog.  Or maybe a squirrel.  Then I thought it looked like it might be a fox.  Eventually, I decided it was a wolf, and ran screaming."

Lupus sported a never-before-seen yellow shirt, in homage to the company that provides and sponsors him - The Big Yellow Self Storage Company.  Asked why, given that he was promoting CFC, Lupus hadn't been provided with a classic blue and white shirt, Lamb Shanks muttered something about it being laundry day.

Lupus himself was unavailable for comment, as he is a wolf, and wolfs can't talk.

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

I'm on board, I'm not bored

Chester FC today unveiled the co-opting of two new board members who will occupy the position previously held by Steve "strength of two men" Ashton.

Despite rumours that this happened last week, The Jestrian insists that the announcement only took place today, confirming that by no means did they forget to write about it in all the commotion last week.

The two new men who have joined the board are Council Official Neil O'Noel and some other guy.

O'Noel works for Cheshire West and Chester Council as Head of Service in Facilities and Assets, which seems less like a genuine job every time you read it.  He will provide a direct link to the council.

The other guy is someone else.  He'll be Director of Football.

"We felt that we needed to replace Steve Ashton as Youngy has started getting a bit reckless in the transfer market again," said Blues Chairman, The Pilsbury Dough Beard.

"It'll be the job of the Director of Football to sit on the gaffer if he threatens to sign another left winger or brings another player in for a game then forgets all about him."

Meanwhile, scouse comedian Alan Tarbuck has been co-opted again as the representative of the Former Players Association, whose membership includes Grenville Millington, Gary Talbot and nobody else.

Also new on the board is a man who was actually elected, rather than getting in by virtue of being a mate of someone already in power.  Bust Fuse sat in on his first CFC Board Meeting in the last few days, but no-one expects him to do anything interesting, really.

"There's about four hundred people working at the club these days, but people still reckon Jaffa Cakes and The Dark Owl do everything," said CEO Pet Husky.

On an international scale, there are now so many unelected members on the board that even Robert Mugabe has raised an eyebrow.

Monday, 20 February 2012

Chasetown FC 1-1 Chester FC - Disappointment Report

Chester drew criticism this weekend after failing to beat Chasetown in what had promised to be a walk in the park.

The 1-1 draw was particularly galling, given Chasetown's recent run of form.  Before Saturday, The Scholars hadn't so much as scored a goal in the Evo Stik Northern Premier this year - an achievement matched by, amongst others, Vicars Cross Under 13s, The Chester Chronicle 5-a-side team/menagerie, the 1954 Plymouth Argyle squad, Harry Potter's Quidditch team, the cast of Friends, the RSPB, Elton Welsby, a tree and those two Jack Russells that were being walked around Grosvenor Park earlier today.  As such, it shouldn't really have been a tricky game.

The day started with CFU media lightning-rod Judge Philip Banks accusing The Jestrian of being obsessed with the ongoing issues regarding the Blues Player.

In response, the Royal Institute of Trivial and Probably Inaccurate Statistics pointed out that subjects that have been mentioned more often on the Jestrian include Michael Powell's quiff, Michael Powell's yellow cards and Michael Powell as well as Christian Smith being overly laid back, A Tall Peacock, A Prowling Shark (and his flowing hair), The Deva Chat, Matty McNeil being both old and a postman, The Dark Owl's almost questionable affection for both Blacon and Northern Soul, Elton Welsby, Neil Young's insistence on talking for hours and the overuse of stupidly long lists for comic effect.

"In many ways, there's far more that we could have written about the board's biggest gaff to date," muttered The Jestrian.

The Chasetown encounter kicked off at the usual time, and within ten minutes, most were wishing it hadn't.  It was a terribly dull affair and literally nobody remembers anything that happened in the first half, besides the part where Blues captain George Horan got his nose shattered.

"It's a good job that happened in many ways," said CFC fan Gilly Firewarden.  "Otherwise, I'd be convinced that there wasn't a first half at all."

Antoni Sarcevic definitely scored a goal early in the second period, a fine finish which briefly piqued the interest of the small gathering of supporters who'd bothered to show up.  Unfortunately, Chasetown net guardian Ryan Price also perked up at this point, and made a string of impressive saves.  With John Danby out of action, last season's logic was back in force, with fans suggesting Young should sign a keeper who's had a good game against us, even though that's how we came to sign Adam Judge, who was standing at the other end.

For a game that had been so miserably boring, the last ten minutes were as incongruous as a moose on a stag party.  First, Matty McGinn missed a penalty, then Chasetown scored their first goal since the war, Jerome Wright had a goal ruled out for being too onside, Chris Simm missed a sitter and Michael Taylor scored an own goal which was stricken from the record as it was a bit embarrassing and the ref was feeling generous.

In his post-match interview, Neil Young had a moan about the match officials.  But to be fair, that sentence could go on the end of any match report since Chester FC reformed and it would still be true.

Friday, 17 February 2012

Chasetown FC vs Chester FC - Match Chase

Chester hit the road tomorrow as they travel to The Scholars Ground to face Chasetown FC.

Young’s men emerged victorious over Chasetown following the encounter at the Exacta Stadium, with Michael Wilde netting a later winner, back in the days when he used to do that kind of thing. However, Wilde is now a doubt for tomorrows clash having picked up an injury during what we must assume was a very important mid-week friendly against Christleton, for goodness' sake.

Christleton, renowned for being a reasonably posh area with a decent pub, isn’t exactly a football hotbed and critics have commented that a more suitable exercise might even have been a FIFA 12 sesh round Christian Smith's gaff.

“The boss thought it would be genius to go and play a team of clobbers with nothing to lose on a cold Tuesday night.  To be fair to Youngy, it’s not like we’re coming up to an important stage of the season where we need to keep our key players injury free or anything,” rasped jowly Gary Jones.

Another notable casualty is that of goalkeeper John Danby, who is certain to miss a few weeks of action with a broken hand. This has presented an ideal opportunity to reserve stopper Adam Judge to step up and Danby's understudy has struggled to stay sincere with his messages of support.

"Oh, I'm sooooooooo gutted for John," read one Judge Tweet.

"Oh no, now *I'm* going to have to play.  So sad for Danby," read another.

"I definitely haven't been waiting to something like this to happen all season," insisted a third.

All of these messages were then undermined as Judge, thinking he was sending friend Luke Holden a private message, publically declared "I was gonna stamp on him in Cruise anyway."

“Judders has been trying to injury Danby on the sly for weeks now - he was getting desperate.  At one point, he spiked John's drink with laxatives before a game, but then forgot which bottle he'd laced and drank it himself.  Classic!

"He can’t believe his luck that some opposition dude has gone snapped Danby for him. Oh, and Neil Young is a wazzock,” said Holden, probably.

The hosts are languishing in the lower reaches but have recorded some impressive one-off victories against some of the top teams in the division, and Young won’t be underestimating The Scholars.

“We’ll have to be at our best, get the three points, then go home and organise a midweek friendly against AFC Handbridge in order to try and get Sarcevic and McNeil injured,” said Young.

Chasetown have historically been one of them teams that do quite well in the FA Cup, thus earning the opportunity for a live televised game on ITV where they get patronised by silly people like Clive Tyldesley and Andy Townsend.

“I wasn’t aware that I could actually pass that well and trap the ball competently,” said previously patronised player Ben Steane, a customs officer whose surprising failure to be dreadful was noted by Tyldesley.  The ITV commentator then went on to produce one of his famously brilliant puns, bellowing that "Steane's exported the ball well there and will be seeking to restrict access for the opposition's strikers.”

Jumping on the sparsely-populated Tyldesley bandwagon, Neil Young joked that Chester would tomorrow be attempting to smuggle some illicit cargo past the Chasetown keeper.  At this point, all journalists present stared blankly at the Blues Chief before walking off shaking their heads.

Thursday, 16 February 2012

Oh when will we play Chorley again?

Scientists at the Royal Institute of Obscure Parallels have today confirmed that Chester's away clash at Chorley has officially been re-arranged more often than the bookcase of an OCD sufferer who likes his things to be in alphabetical order, but also likes them to be in order of size.

The game was originally scheduled to kick off at 3pm on February 4th, but this itself was changed to a one o'clock kick off, as police deduced that last year's trouble was caused by fans protesting the all-too-traditional kick off time.

Irritated by this logic, the weather got involved and froze the Victory Park pitch, causing the game to be postponed.

"I'm sick of the cops and their daft schemes," muttered a passing cold front.

The game was initially re-scheduled for the following Thursday, before Neil Young remembered that he had a few of his old mates from Train School coming round for dinner that night.

"I remembered just in time.  The missus had promised to make us all fajitas, and there was no way I was going to miss that," explained Neil Young.  "I left Gary Flitcroft a voicemail to let him know we weren't going to make it."

Meanwhile, Chronicle journalist The Tall Peacock has denied rumours that he illicitly gained access to said voicemail.

"Do one, Leveson," said The Peacock.

The league then stepped in, scheduling the game for Saturday 10th March, booting the away clash with North Ferriby United to a Tuesday night.

"That's just not cool," said Ferriby boss Billy Heath.  "Tuesday nights is karaoke night down The Red Ferriby and I'm a regular.  I like to do a bit of Justin Timberlake, or a bit of AC/DC if I wanna rock out.  I hate Tuesday games, they ruin my week."

Upon hearing this news, Neil Young tried to get the Ferriby kick off shifted to an earlier time in order to allow everyone to attend the karaoke night with Heath.

"Me and Gaz Powell do a cracking version of Elton and Kiki's Don't Go Breaking My Heart," enthused Young.

Meanwhile, the police were getting involved with the Chorley encounter again, deciding that it would be far better to stage the match on a Wednesday night right at the end of the season.

"We think it's the perfect," said Police Constable Brian World.  "Turn it into what could be a title-deciding game, late in a day where people have either been in the pubs all day, or in the soul-crushing reality of their jobs.  What could possibly go wrong?"

The news that the game would now take place on Wednesday 18th April went down badly with some Chester FC "Exiles", with one "Exile" even taking to The Deva Chat to announce that it is "impossible" for the "Exiles" to make midweek games.

"Everyone is aware the Watford Gap heals over during the week, right?" asked Bobbie Exile. 

Away Support Co-ordinator and all-round legend Barry Hip-Hop was first to sympathise with the "Exiles".

"We feel bad that it's 'impossible' for them to attend, and we totally understand.  As a community club, CFC needs to reach out to those fans who live in places like Luton and Torquay.  We're dreading the day we get back to the Football League and find we can't travel beyond Walsall after 6pm.  None of us from Chester have memories of having gone to Bristol Rovers on a Tuesday night. Or Grimsby. Or Northampton." said the Honorary Life President on Saturday, during his 16th lap of the pitch.

"None of us ever did Southend on a Friday either, that definitely never happened.  Impossible."

Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Young Love

Neil Young is today facing up to disharmony within the ranks as reports have surfaced that the Blues Chief forgot to send Valentine’s Day cards to Chris Simm and Adam Judge. Young sends yearly cards to all his players in order to “make them feel appreciated” but the two fringe players slipped his mind and Simm is said to have been "left seething".

“It’s bad enough that Chrissy’s not getting a game, but he was really looking forward to his card and the lad is hurting right now,” said worried friend Amos Archibald.

Young has admitted that Adam Judge escaped his memory when it came to writing the cards, but the shot-stopper has been appeased by the promise of a guaranteed starting place for the foreseeable future following John Danby’s injury lay off.

“The gaffer has forgotten me, which is upsetting but I do understand.   I didn’t even recognise myself in the hat I wore on Saturday.   But Youngy says I’m playing for the next few weeks, and the Christmas card he sent me was handmade and everything, so I’ll let him off this time,” grinned Judge.

The card sent by Young to Michael Powell resembled a thinly-veiled warning over the languid midfielders style.  Printed on yellow card, the message read “Roses are red, violets are blue, your quiff is unnecessary, your bookings are too.”

Meanwhile, Blue$ Player Apologist Jaffa Cakes also got into the Valentine spirit, though faced an awkward moment when he had to explain to his wife that “the brooch isn't for you, it's for Colin [Murray].”  Mrs Cakes was instead treated to a meal at the Cock O Barton before being subjected to video re-runs and tactical analysis of each goal from the St Milner's Day clash all them years ago, when Chester City famously drew a match.  Meanwhile, Famous Colin Murray is expected to sport his brooch during the next edition of Match of the Day 2.

Not all club officials were so prepared.  Programme editor Bob Ashcloud clean forgot about Valentine's Day.  With his wife staring down the barrel of not receiving a card, Ashcloud had a last minute brainwave, tearing the middle page spread out of a back issue of the Cestrian that he had lying around, and scrawling his message in the autograph box beneath a photograph of Michael Wilde.

Meanwhile, postman Matty McNeil is now a doubt for Saturday, having put his back out delivering cards to the Chronicle office addressed to ladies' favourite Sharks Prowling.

Tuesday, 14 February 2012

A tale as old as time itself

True Love:
 Chester's own Milk Tray Man
Today marks the seventeenth anniversary of St Milner's Day,  so named by Chester fans following Andy Milner's spectacular equaliser for nine-men Chester away at Wrexham on 14th February 1995.

One the one hand, it was a 2-2 draw against Chester's nearest rivals awarded vaguely cringeworthy significance by nostalgic and over-dramatic Chester fans.

On the other hand, it is a golden reason to completely ignore the more cringeworthy scam that is Valentine's Day and, most importantly, is a fantastic excuse to wind up those sensitive beings from Wrexham in a way that they don't fully understand, bless them.

The setting for the most beautiful equaliser of all time was a very grim Racecourse Ground.  Supporters of most clubs like to believe that their rivals hail from a dreadful town, but Chester fans are lucky in that Wrexham truly is that dismal.

Those who turned up to support the teams watched on as 22 aggressive men charged round a filthy mudbath, when they went to Central Station post-game.  The match itself meanwhile, was played on a pitch that looked like the groundsman had phoned in sick.  For three months.  Then finally turned up and been sick on the pitch.

The early stages of the game were hilarious enough as Chester-legend-cum-massive-turncoat Gary "Psycho" Bennett had a goal disallowed before missing a penalty.  Bennett took a lot of abuse from Chester supporters for having crossed the border but, as a psychopath, one must assume that the forward had a complete disregard for the feelings of his former fans.

"I imagine he must have obtained an official diagnosis," said Dr Eric Foreman from the Countess of Chester neurology department.

"The only other explanation is that he's used a truly crippling mental illness as an ironic nickname, and what kind of person would use such a debilitating condition as a punchline?  I'll tell you who.  A psychopath."

Following this, Eddie Bishop, brother of shiny toothed, cliché-spouting comedian John, netted a penalty for the Blues, before Wrexham scored twice, through Bennett and Karl "not that good, really" Connolly.  No-one really remembers any of those goals, and they merely set up what was to happen next.

Before the half time whistle had even sounded, Chester found themselves down to nine men, with Bishop and Chris Lightfoot finding themselves ejected from the 'field' of play.

Any other home team leading 2-1 against a team with nine men with 45 minutes remaining would have gone on to win comfortably.  Fortunately Wrexham, being the joke that they are, conspired to spend the entire second half not scoring.

Now, the words "beautiful" and "legendary" are much over-applied in modern society.  However, with five minutes to go, something happened which hit both of these words full on.  Picking the ball up on the halfway line, Andy Milner waltzed through the Wrexham defence in a show of skill literally never before or since witnessed at the Racecourse, even doing the last defender twice for a laugh.  He then swept the ball into the top corner, guaranteeing himself a unique place in Cestrian football folklore.

The draw was comically confirmed as Gary Bennett bagged another disallowed goal in stoppage time.

In remembrance of their team's achievement that day, Chester fans acknowledge the date every year as being Andy Milner's day.  Meanwhile, in an attempt to shed the horrifying memory of their team getting shown up as the jokers they are, Wrexham fans throw themselves headlong into Valentine's Day, only to watch the flowers they buy wither in the foul atmosphere that engulfs their non-city.

Happy St Milner's Day.

Monday, 13 February 2012

Chester FC 2-0 Stafford Rangers - Match Evaluation

Chester strengthened their grip on the top of the table on Saturday, by virtue of being the only Evo Stik club to manage to get a game on.

Thanks to the reluctantly-deployed covers, the pitch passed inspection, and ensured that Stafford Rangers hadn't had a wasted trip.  In spite of this, many of those connected with Rangers took it upon themselves to brand CFC "unwelcoming", with one Stafford FM representative tweeting that the press area was particularly unpleasant.

"There was a Tall Peacock in there, spreading its tail all over the place.  No room for the rest of us," moaned the Stafford FM guy.

In spite of these complaints however, Stafford FM were on hand to bail out absent Chester fans, as the previously free and functional Blues Live failed to work, despite promises it would be improved once the club began to charge for the service.

"The Blue$ Player is the price we have to pay for being allowed to have a website which is 90% adverts, where you can't find anything," explained media-lackey Jiff Bricks.

"It's so important to have such a website, apparently, that it's worth alienating those who can't attend every game.  Sure, when free, things like Blues Live and NATV allowed 'exiled' fans to still feel like they were part of the club, which can only be profitable moving forwards, but it's much quicker to get money by having adverts for Cannonball by Little Mix obstructing your hunt for the league table on the club website.  What do you mean, ‘that flies in the face of the idea of a community club’?"

The match itself was short on incident.  Chester were a rampant, but only took the lead in the second period when Scary Alex Brown frightened the ball into the net via a deflection.  The lead was doubled shortly after when Christian Smith nodded home from a Matty McGinn corner, after the goalkeeper had turned a shot round the post using his legs, like you often see a lacking-in-confidence Sunday League keeper do.

With the score at 2-0, Chester's season took a turn for the worst, as John Danby, a man as inexplicably unpopular with certain sections of Blues support as Neil Young, had his little finger obliterated by a challenge from an over-zealous Stafford striker.

"You should have seen the X-Ray," said the multi-record-breaking Danby.  "It looked like a tube full of cous-cous."

Michael Powell was allowed to return for five minutes at the end, as Neil Young attempted to show Stafford, who were bottom of the fair play league for January, what a genuinely dirty player looks like.  However, Powell failed to pick up his customary yellow, and will be unusually available for Chester’s next game.

Manager Young was delighted with the win and revealed that the secret to eventually making the breakthrough lay in his half-time instructions that the team should keep giving the ball wide.  Leader stalwart Tennis Ball took this chance to remind the Blues Boss that after the last home game, he had commented that Chester shouldn't play with wingers and Young responded by coughing, muttering that he and the missus had dinner reservations, then hurrying off down the tunnel before any further questions could be put to him.

Friday, 10 February 2012

Chester FC vs Stafford Rangers - Match Freezeview

Chester welcome Stafford Rangers to the Exacta Stadium tomorrow, hoping to further strengthen their position at the top of the table.

Due to the cold snap, a pitch inspection is rumoured to take place around 11am, and the club have reluctantly used the expensively purchased pitch covers.

“These things cost money, we don’t want to jeopardise the condition of the covers just to get a football match on. And anyway, do you know how long it takes to fold them up after? It's a nightmare,” ranted the normally cool CEO Pet Husky, trying not to sound like he’d rather see the game postponed so that he can keep up with the Rugby League season.

The weather has affected everyone recently, and the club shop has reported increased demand of Youngy Puffer Jackets. Spotting a marketing opportunity, The Blues Supremo is now expected to sport various other bits of cold weather clothing in an attempt to popularise them amongst fans. Long Neils are expected to go on sale in the shop soon, although an order of Gaz Powell Man Tights has been shelved in order to protect masculinity.

Evening Leader stalwart Tennis Ball caught up with manager Neil Young who let slip that “we must now win as many games as we can”.  He also confirmed that no clubs win silverware in February, forgetting the imminent Carling Cup final which Liverpool will probably win, much to everyone's disappointment.

The Blues welcome back Michael Powell to the squad, a move which will ensure that the club's recent Fair Play award remains an isolated incident.  Meanwhile, Wesley Baynes also returns, having served a suspension for attempting the festive decapitation of a Northwich player on Boxing Day.

With Jamie Rainford slinging his hook, only three strikers now remain at Chester and hopes are high that Chris Simm may begin to resemble a footballer again. With McNeil and Wilde expected to start up-front, assistant-to-the-manager Gary Jones has hinted that the game plan will mainly involve the full backs "blasting the ball into oblivion in the vain hope of finding the heads of the big boys up front”.

The Blues have faced Stafford, who are managed by Greg Clowes, on two occasions already this season, triumphing over the Marsden Road outfit both times. Perversely, this has prompted an air of confidence from the Stafford camp, with Clowes declaring that “it will be like taking candy from a baby” (although that is harder than it sounds), and “they’re not that good really”.  Meanwhile, Blues chief Young commented that Stafford are a team that “get in your faces”.  This seemed like an innocuous footballing cliché, but Young wasn't finished.

"No, seriously, they stand too close when they're talking to you. It's really annoying.  Youngy needs his personal space, man.  Sometimes you even get spit in your eyes."

With Young visibly upset by the topic, his press conference concluded.

Thursday, 9 February 2012

Rainford does one

Jamie Rainford has finally left the Exacta after a turbulent time at Chester.  The decision has been criticised by fans who believe that whilst the club's other forwards are "mis-firing", it is important to keep a striker who has scored three goals for the club, of which one was a penalty and another was reported as an own goal in certain media outlets.

Rainford arrived from Marine in pre-season with an impressive goal-scoring record.  Having failed to reproduce this at Chester, and after branding certain sections of the Blues faithful as "muppets", he was subsequently villified by a number of CFC fans, who did their best to justify the 'muppet' tag.

"We own the club he plays for," said one of those fans who has gotten a bit carried away with the idea that they own the club.  "Once I put that £5 in, I'm basically Roman Abramovich.  It's a full time job, this being part of The CFU malarkey.  And I don't want to listen to anyone who suggests that as the club's owner, I shouldn't be slagging the players off to start with.  I had the RIGHT to go on Jamie Rainford's Facebook and call him bobbins, and he should have just taken it because he is a professional footballer, and I own him."

Rainford also made some comments on Facebook that could be construed as offensive to Neil Young, but no-one really cared about that, as despite the fact that Young has won one league and is now leading another, he's really not all that popular amongst Chester fans, and when push comes to shove, they'd probably side with Luke Holden, a player who was at the club all of two months, in any given dispute between the two.

"We should be in the Football League by now," said Bryony Metatarsal.  "Young is a joke."

With supporters threatening to fire elastic bands and blow raspberries at Rainford should he ever feature for Chester again, The Blues Boss was left with no choice other than to farm Rainford out on loan.  At the same time, Young brought in the above-mentioned Holden, feeling it necessary to have at least one player in the side who mouths off on Twitter.

Rainford's progress at Halifax was watched closely, and as he scored a number of goals - often in lost causes - for the Shaymen, Chester spent his entire loan period going unbeaten.  As such, Blues fans reached the obvious conclusion that Rainford was needed at Chester and clamoured for his return, which eventually coincided with Chester losing two on the bounce, including their first home defeat in over a year.

"In fairness to the lad, many strikers have made a niche out of scoring goals for under-achieving football clubs," said pundit Darth Hooks.  "You just have to net a load of goals to mask the fact that your all-round game actually isn't helping the team.  It's known as the Ruud Van Nistelrooy Paradox."

"Emile Heskey managed to use the discovery of this concept to his advantage by leaking the idea into the brains of managers and fans that whilst he doesn't score many goals, his all-round game enables others to be at their best.  He managed to substantiate this with statistics by only making himself available for games where Michael Owen was fully fit and the opposition weren't very good."

Despite the fact that Rainford's departure comes across as nothing other than the best move for all parties concerned, it is inevitable that every game he plays will be mentioned on Intelligence Emporium The Deva Chat, and every goal he scores considered proof that Neil Young doesn't know what he's doing.

"If we don't go up, and Rainford scores the odd goal for Halifax, then it's only logical that Young should be given the boot," said Tim Carwash, P Block regular.

Neil Young was unavailable for comment, as he had to pull a night-shift on the trains following the unexpected resignation of a ticket inspector who is a big fan of Rainford.  However, Young's assistant Gary Jones did admit that "it's nice to offload a player that isn't Bradley Barnes.  I've received no death threats over this one, yet."

Wednesday, 8 February 2012

And if you know your history...

Chester fans are up in arms over the announcement that Club Historian Jazz Winter's forthcoming book is entitled "Why Sealand Road wasn't that great".

Winter, famous amongst Blues followers for his book "On the Washing Line", has controversially penned a 300-page rant about why Chester's old stadium wasn't as good as people make out.

"I had the idea for the book when I was standing on the terrace at Sealand Road, and a bit of rust fell in my eye," explained an embittered Winter.  "It's taken a while to get there, but it's finally ready for publication."

Sealand Road is remembered affectionately by those who like to believe that their memory of the ground makes them better than those too young to have visited it.  Such fans often write the Exacta off as being "made of Lego".

"Lego is preferrable to scrap metal as a building material, to be honest," said a builder we asked.  Though he was Danish.

However, this isn't enough to silence furious Chester fans.

"I can't believe Jazz Winter has done this. I'd rather he slagged off my kids," raved Gerard Baker of the Senior Blues.  "Sealand Road was like a home from home to many of us.  Giles Brandreth probably claimed his second home allowance on it when he was in office."

CFC Board Member The Dark Owl was asked for his opinion, but it was clear that he was going to go on for ages about how ace Sealand Road was, and our reporters left him mid-flow.

"Doubt we'll beat the Giles Brandreth reference anyway," remarked The Jestrian.  "Who'd have thought he'd get a mention?"

Winter has confirmed that he is currently writing other books, offering the working titles of "Stuart Rimmer needed six chances to get a goal", "The Macclesfield exile was a right laugh" and "Them five strikers who scored 100 goals between them - how I bet half of them rebounded in off their shins, were wildly deflected or pennos."

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

I feel like Chester Tonight, like Chester Tonight

As the frost continues to wreak havoc on the footballing fixture list, Blues officials have moved quick to alleviate the boredom that has set in since the postponed Chorley game.

In order to provide the Exacta faithful with a weekly fix whatever the weather, the club have launched new podcast, named ‘Chester Tonight’.

“It’s definitely different from the Dee 106.3 football show and the Seals Podcast,” revealed suit-toting media personality Armitage Shanks.

“We decided that those shows with their comprehensive interviews and coverage just aren’t enough, and Chester Tonight even lets you pick your own music.  You know, like a less user-friendly Spotify.”
The show will air on Thursday and is available exclusively to Blue$ Player subscribers.  Ironically, the first episode features NATV mastermind Dave Beech, who used to provide his services for free from the goodness of his own heart, and some bloke called Jeremy Jones, who has never been mentioned before but is something to do with Blues Live, apparently.

Also on the bill is The Tall Peacock, an unusually popular local journalist propelled to celebrity status by The Jestrian.

"Obviously if it was on TV, we'd have gone for the Chronicle's Sharks Prowling, so as to attract female viewers," said Shanks.  "But as it's not, we've gone for the Peacock instead, as he has more Twitter followers."

Whilst news of the show has excited some fans, CFU member Regi Groaner was less than impressed.
“I’ll probably save the subscription fee, download an album off iTunes that I can keep and play whenever I want, and listen to Youngy and co saying similar things on the free outlets”.

Since the blank weekend, many club figures arre struggling to find things to occupy their time.
“I’ve backed up my pc and ironed my boxers and socks – what next?!” yelped Christian Smith.

Blues Supremo Neil Young has also complained that he is short of things to do.

“We’ve gone through our Sky+ and watched the Mike Bassett Football Manager boxset,” confirmed Young. "I turned the TV on last night frantically searching for something to occupy my time, but only came across Gary Neville trying to work a gigantic iPad so I took the dog out for another walk.”

"I'm exhausted," complained Young's pet husky.  "I can't keep going for walks just cos the gaffer is bored.  They better have those pitch covers on for Saturday, or I'm gonna bite the stuffing out of Neil's favourite puffer jacket."

The office staff have now run out of tasks and are frantically searching for ways to make the working day go quicker. Barry Hipkiss has confirmed that he spent most of Monday morning ringing future match ball sponsors checking that they were “still cool” with the package they’ve taken out.

“If anyone fancies a pint, give me a bell. But not after eight, yeah?” suggested the Coach Commander.

Monday, 6 February 2012

Injury woes for Neil Young

Neil Young has an injury crisis ahead of Saturday's game against Stafford, as several of his players hurt themselves copying the American Football they watched on TV last night.

A tournament called the Superb Owl was played out between two teams, one of whom won.  Unfortunately, no-one at the Jestrian cares enough to find out anything more than that about what happened, as watching adverts, briefly interrupted by rugby with forward passes, until 4am is not a good use of anyone's time.

Nevertheless, a number of CFC players ended up watching the bizarrely popular spectacle as they were all round CFC Publicity-Gatherer and airplane-botherer Jaffa Cakes's house watching Bomber Boys, and didn't turn the TV off before the Superb Owl came on.

"Once a programme has started, I've gotta see it through to the end," said Chris Simm.  "So I made the boys watch it with me."

Only Joe Ormrod from the first team squad left Cakes' Ivory Tower before the "game" started, as it was his bedtime, and his dad came to pick him up.

Meanwhile, the rest of the Blues sat trying to figure out why anyone would enjoy this most stodge-ridden of sports.  However, as one player (don't know any names, sorry) got heftily wiped out, (we're assuming this probably happened at one point?) John Danby suggested that "maybe it's the violence that makes it fun."

Studies at the Royal Institute of Feeding the Daily Mail have shown that people are entirely influenced by what they see on TV, so what happened next was inevitable.  Putting on an old cricket helmet found in his spare room and stuffing a cushion underneath his suit, Cakes invited the Chester players to smash the living shades out of him, NFL-style.

Michael Wilde and Antoni Sarcevic were first to take up this offer, and knocked Cakes clean out.  After shifting the unconscious Media Magnet into the kitchen so that he could 'sleep it off', the rest of the players took turns in the makeshift armour.  Liam Brownhill was rendered unavailable for the weekend's match, as Wes Baynes slammed him into a wall.

"He jibbed me at Trivial Pursuit in the week," said an unrepentant Baynes, alluding to the pair's ongoing board game feud.

Meanwhile, Michael Powell suffered a gashed head, as he was unable to fit the helmet over his impressive quiff and Matty McNeil suffered a hip injury, because he's old.

Upon hearing of the evening's goings on and his unexpected sick list, Neil Young rolled out his current buzzword, commenting that that the boys had been "sloppy."

"Not playing American Football in someone's living room is something that we'll have to work on.  It's my job as manager to make sure they stop doing it, but the lads will also have to take some responsibility."

Friday, 3 February 2012

Chorley Town FC vs Chester FC - Match Preview

It's definitely not going to happen, is it?  It's ridiculously freezing and Rugby League Loving Chester CEO The Pet Husky wants to keep up with the first weekend of the Super League season anyway, so it's just best all round if we say no game this week, thanks.

Neil Young doesn't have a puffer jacket big enough to thwart this kind of cold, and has announced that he "really can't be doing with a game this weekend."

"I'd have to wear a hat to keep my head warm, and I look silly in hats," said the Blues Boss.

"We could all do a Gaz Powell and pull our socks up so they look like leggins, but even then, it's baltic."

Meanwhile, Chronicle journalist The Tall Peacock is worried that he won't be able to do his fabled live tweets from Victory Park.

"You ever tried texting with cold hands?!" asked The Peacock, before cutting off the replies of those who hadn't clocked that the question was rhetorical. 

"It's ridiculous, your fingers are all over the place - it's like trying to text with someone else's hands.  I know, because we tried that in the office once.  The Hairy Porcupine tried to let his missus know he'd be late home, but he used Shark Prowling's hands to do it.  It ended up saying 'going to be latte'.  She was distraught, as she thought he meant he'd turned himself into a milky coffee.  Not sure how she figured that was even possible to be honest, but it caused a right kerfuffle."

Meanwhile, The Jestrian has decided to save whatever jokes it had about Chorley until such time as a football match is realistic.

Thursday, 2 February 2012

Don't let me know what you fine doubt

Following the recent discovery that Christian Smith operates on the policy “if in doubt, mess about”, The Jestrian has investigated and collated a list of variations on this theme, used by important figures at Chester FC and beyond.

"If in doubt, kick it out.  Even if 'it' is an opposition player."
Michael Powell

"If in doubt, it's probably best to sign out of Twitter."
Jamie Rainford

"If in doubt, sign another winger."
Neil Young

"If in doubt, do more research."
Chas Summer

"If in doubt, suit up."
Jeff Banks

"If you are in any doubt, you must find the defendant not guilty."
A Judge (accidentally interviewed instead of Adam Judge)

"If in No Doubt, leave and pursue a solo career."
Global Superstar Gwen Stefani

"If it doubt - WRESTLE!"
George Horan

"If in doubt, give it as a penner, ref."
Matty McGinn

Welshman, Ifan Dwt

"If in doubt, find a tout."
Bad advice for fans struggling to get tickets for the Chorley game

"If it doubt, use some grout."
Plasterer Iain Howard

"If in doubt, they're probably out.  Knock on the door, wait for three seconds, then take the parcel back to the sorting office and make them venture out for it themselves."
Matty McNeil explains the policy of the Royal Mail

"If in doubt, come up with a ridiculous idea for an article, involving several tenuous quotes about doubt."
The Jestrian

Wednesday, 1 February 2012

Young hits the deadlines

Neil Young has returned to normality today, after spending an excitable 24 hours glued to Sky Sports News absorbing reports surrounding transfer deadline day.

"It's well documented that I love transfers," said Young from the comfort of his armchair, having invited the Jestrian and some other guys round for a "couple of tinnies".

"I love signing players on the spur of the moment, and that's what deadline day is all about.  Imagine if I had to deal with a transfer deadline!  It'd be carnage.  I've made some good ones, even without the restriction of a deadline.  St Juste, Lennie, Mackreth... People think that Pat Nevin and Perry Groves are still in the squad because Famous Colin Murray paid up, but that deal finished at the end of last season.  I signed the pair of 'em at the start of this season.  That rush of ink on paper.  LOVE IT!"

The next few minutes involved manic laughter from the Blues Supremo before a confused silence fell in the room as it was reported that Tottenham Hotspur had signed Louis Saha.

"Taking it a bit far, that," said a deflated Young, with the air of a performer who has just had their act ruined by someone doing an over-the-top imitation of it.

Asked about transfers of his own, Young confessed that he has some players 'in mind'.  This is Young's standard answer to transfer questions, and no-one quite knows whether it means that he has a deal on the table for a player or that he has merely identified some players that he would like to approach.

It could even mean that he is replaying David Beckham's free-kick against Greece in his head, or day-dreaming about having hair like Carlos Valderrama.  However, the complete non-sequitur of a response is at least enough for Chronical fame-dog The Tall Peacock to stretch into one of those articles which doesn't leave you knowing anything more than when you started.

"We've had some crackers this season," raved The Peacock, sat in Young's antique rocking chair.

"We had Youngy saying that he wanted the strikers to score goals, George Horan telling us that the players weren't panicking, Jamie Rainford informed me that he wanted to 'do well' at Chester and there was that one where John Danby had just discovered that the Pope subscribes to Catholicism.  When I produce an exclusive like that one, the ladies sometimes tear themselves away from office stud Sharks Prowling for a bit and talk to me.  I'm excited today, as I've had a tip-off from Matty McGinn about the geographical preference of bears in need of the toilet."

As Ravel Morrison signing for West Ham continued to be one of the biggest stories of the day, everyone realised that nothing remotely interesting was going to happen this year.  One by one, Young's guests departed, despite their host remaining leant forward in his chair, begging the TV to bring forth news of Liverpool having spent a snot-load of cash on English players who don't even play for their country for the fourth time in the last 12 months.

Early reports indicate that Young was found asleep in the lounge by Mrs Young this morning, lying on his face, having fallen out of his chair, with Leader journalist Tennis Ball having also stuck around all night.

"I didn't want to set off the intruder alarm," explained Ball.