The first six months of the 1939-1945 conflict was known as the phoney war. War had been declared but very little actually happened during that period. It gave Britain a chance to accelerate modernisation of its war machine to cope with the inevitable matters to come.
Quickly of course it became all too real for many of our fathers or grandfathers but for that period of time, it must have felt like preparing for the unknown. That’s what my dad Lenny [Royal Engineers 1942-46] told me anyway.
And I can see a parallel with our return to Premier League action in just under a fortnight. Not in the gravity of the situation of course, just in the general sense of waiting for the kick-off whilst training, training and yet more training. Training for who knows exactly what, yet.
In some ways both situations seem like incipient madness, but if it has to be done, apparently it has to be done. And we all know why.
There used to be a TV programme called That Was The Week That Was, aka TW3, back in the 60s. Regular MFW readers such as Ed, Alex B and Jim Davies will remember it well. As might a few others, too. David Frost hosted and Millicent Martin [who?] sang at the end.
So, here is my take on TW3.
The fixtures for the resumption, such as they are, have been announced. City have avoided any possibility of playing on neutral turf which is not unexpected, but welcome nonetheless.
MFW, in the shape of Stewart Lewis and South West Canaries in the form of our very own Martin MacBlain, were invited to a Zoom meeting with Stuart Webber, Ben Kensell and Zoe Ward and thoroughly enjoyed the experience.
Stew said in an MFW comment that as a fellow over-60 he was called by a club official, which reminded me to check my Mundesley answerphone where I too had received a lovely call from a guy called Phil – the message broke up at the precise point he revealed his surname so I’m none the wiser but it was a great gesture. Thanks Phil.
I’ve claimed my pro-rata rebate and as soon as it comes through there’s £50 winging its way to the Community Sports Foundation. The process could not have been easier and it’s so simple to donate to the CSF online too.
Jamal Lewis has split his time between training, committing to a pretty serious online financial studies course, and dissing his team-mates for their personal lifestyle choices – haircuts, fashion sense, busting moves, etc. One smart cookie is our Jamal. And humorous too.
Along came young Josh Martin, who has said how proud he was to earn a contract with the first-team squad. Just like Adam Idah, he’s no longer technically a part of the under-23 set up, although of course, he might well play at that level again.
Josh also took the time to offer support and advice to seven of our academy lads who have been released. Nothing cheesy about the way he said it either. He’s been a bit media central this week, has young Josh, but I doubt that’s of his own making. Fair play to him.
Max Aarons has been doing the hokey cokey in an indirect kind of way as in “It’s the Tottenham in, the Arsenal out, let’s get the bids in and then we’ll sort it out”.
And everybody except the unfortunate Sam Byram is back at Colney in full contact training. Literally everybody from what I can gather. Sorry about the canteen restriction lads, but I can’t go to the pub so it’s fair enough really.
Enter the national media where it would seem that FA chief Greg Clarke suggests that should neither the PL or EFL be completed he would no longer insist on relegation. And several PL clubs are behind that suggestion. Yet another crazy wait and see.
Gobsmack moment of the week has to be BVB’s Jadon Sancho being fined some £10,000 for having his hair cut during lockdown and publicising a social media photograph of the event, saying he only took his mask off so he was instantly recognisable for the brief seconds it took to take the pic.
Fined by the German DFL, not his club Borussia Dortmund. My mind is really boggling with this one.
And Chelsea might well be lashing out £106million on Timo Werner. My brain hurts.
But, of course, our phoney war goes into it’s crowdless, soulless second phase on June 19. It’ll be strange folks.
I’ll leave y’all with this which sums up the whole concept up perfectly. You’ll all know the song but surely not this version from 1967. If anybody can tell me who is acting the part of the professor there’s the usual MFW prize. (Clue: about two pars up)…