…And so it begins…nearly

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On the Lichfield road sat in the van. There is traffic. The dogs are hot. I’m hot. Everybody is hot. But not Linda Lease-Audi in her white Audi 4×4 who is aggressively dinking around inches off my back bumper in some hurry to do whatever Linda does in her 40k white fat arse carrier. Of course in another world I would have gently tapped my brakes and annoyed her a bit but Linda isn’t important today. She can wiggle her eyebrows all she wants. Now she’s shouting something but my exhaust has fallen off and it’s noisy and the van is full of fumes. She has got purple hair. Nuno has signed a contract extension. I’m asking the woman in Tesco for a pouch of tobacco..

‘Have you got the dead mans leg?’

‘No only Hole in throat and open lung surgery’

‘Ok can I have the Hole in throat packet please’

There is a dichotomy here, I can feel it in my balls. It was sunny last year when our team buggered off to mountain land to do some of that sexy stuff we watched on a shitty GoPro somebody had wired up. Memories eh? They did double team sessions and then went out to dink the ball around some other Euro knobhead team we’d never heard of. It’s happening again. I watched Jota skilling up wearing a pair of flip flops. I saw Costa looking like he had found a magic crystal of henchness and was waxing around with his new muscles. He’s had the Coady trim. Short, business like. A fighting trim.

Coady looks cored up to fuck, looks like he has taken on some advice to ditch the muscle and concentrate on the mobility angle. But you wont move him off the ball. We will see Coady making attacking runs into midfield this season. Trust me. Mobile? He was quite nifty any way but now? Has Nuno given him the green light to impose himself on the upcoming seasons fixtures? I think he has. What does that mean for the team? We may see him chasing down potential attacks from faster opposition players. I see this. Linda Lease-Audi reminds me of a Moth booping a lightbulb. What’s the matter with her. Fucking Star Trek eyebrows, Jesus Christ.

Rui Patricio has come to our club. I’d never heard of him before but he is a goalkeeper and Portuguese so of course I wouldn’t have. He’s very handsome and debonair of course. We have a great looking team apart from Doherty who constantly looks like he just remembered he’s left the cooker on. Patricio eh? I watched some YouTube videos which is the extent of my ‘research’. So automatically I get gigabytes of these graceful, beautiful swallow dives to all areas of his goal. Brave and creative movements where he saves the day again and again for his team. I like him straight away of course. Whatever incentives Uncle Jorge and Uncle Jeff have given him it worked. At least he wont get attacked at Molineux by masked thugs waving belt buckles around. It will be Brian and Gary with a protest bed sheet waving it around shouting incoherently about…something. The biggest injury will be sheet burn. Welcome Rui.

The other addition that thine hand of Nuno the wisest one rested upon is Raul Jiminez. Back to YouTube. Whoah. He can bang them in. But he does other things too. Sexy things with his feet. This lad looks up as well. Gareth Southgate. Shit. I’m struck by that hollow feeling in me belly remembering last nights match against Croatia. God almighty. Croatia Modric is spouting his propaganda on the TV. We ‘underestimated’ Croatia. Fuck off. England beat themselves, we always do. You lot are just bystanders to the greatest tragedy drama in the world. That of the ‘English Footballer’. It’s a dramatic live production of many acts and characters. In some of the most beautiful parts of the world and on the grandest occasions.

Alas my friends, the beauty of it all. Who would fucking swap being a participant in one of these displays? Who would give up the chance to feel this way? We lost but fucking hell we lived. I read the joy of Scottish and Irish fans, the Welsh too. How they bray and celebrate the loss of this team of men who at least kissed the sweet lips of that most troublesome, coy and shyest of Championships. The denizens of those countries may laugh and carouse. But at least we loved and hoped, just for a second. While you distil your bitter thoughts under cloud filled skies and in the greyest of lives.

The close season was filled with this madness. I mean those dull rumblings from last season are still echoing off the houses around here for me. The ghosts of those Championship teams still wail around. I’m sure that when our season kicks off that the wails will be silent for a while. I mean, Cardiff excepted. I don’t see them adopting any philosophy beyond the snap, crackle and pop of last season. I wonder whether I may like to see Cardiff play us again. I have a strange affinity to them I think. Their ugliness makes my team more beautiful. We play a team in Switzerland. Basle. They are a nice team and nice players. Their supporters are nice and everything is still sunny I suppose. We beat them 2-1. Willy Boly clearance at one point. That man knows football. I see him, after football studying in some beautiful European University, sipping coffee outside a Café. But our team are having fun. They are laughing. They look chilled out. Nuno looks pensive. But Nuno? We have your back. How could we not after last season? What you did for us. How you made us feel.

Why did Pickford keep booting the ball upfield? Was it a collapse of our midfield? Would you have taken Kane off? Stirling? Post Mortem football. I was very proud of the team and Southgate. Losing in the semi final is the most English of things. The world cup is a brilliant thing. But why would you need a Cup made of gold to underline that you played some teams and won against all of them. Who were the best team? Belgium? Spain implosions. Argentina. The cup doesn’t represent anything but a very abstract idea I suppose, that through some variable route the team managed to win most of its matches and lose none or one. I’m starting to warm back up now. Soon it will be the opening day. The end of the tabula rasa of everybody on nil points. What stories will it have for us this season? It fucking terrifies me to be honest. I’m not scared of the other teams. Not a bit. I’m scared at what amazing or terrifying things will happen as we traverse the country watching Wolves. Last season was fucking crazy. Now? In the Premier? The volume of insanity will be cacophonous. OK I’m warming up.

If you enjoy these blogs then click the picture below and peruse the book of this thing. 265 pages of me ‘Going on a bit’ about what happened last season and more.

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Exclusive Jorge Mendes Interview (Part 1)

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“Being a sexy Spanish man growing up in Bilston, a small town on the outskirts of Wolverhampton was a learning experience for me. A baptism of fire”
Jorge Mendes April 2018

I had heard that Jorge Mendes. Super football agent, former nightclub owner and scourge of the boardrooms of the EFL was at Atherley Junction in Pendeford. A canal basin built in 1869. I was intrigued. Of course walking through the Pendeford estate you could see his £200,000,000 yacht from miles away. This beautiful craft had a full sized football pitch, a series of swanky nightclubs, a rocket pad for when his good friend Elon Musk drops by. It had five hundred cabins. It was a big boat. What was he doing here? I had been invited aboard this illustrious craft and I thought while I was walking the dags I would drop in…

Jorge was expecting me and was waiting at the passenger entrance surrounded by his coterie of twenty heavily armed ex Israeli female commandos clad in camouflage latex who looked at me and me dogs with suspicion as we shook hands. Jorge was wearing a Leopard skin cloak and a Hugo Boss Captains uniform. Glittering on his head was a massive diamond studded crown. What a beautiful tan he had. Like a beer garden table, dark oak. His teeth flashed as he smiled. What brilliance they were. Like stars in the sky they shone with an unholy glow almost radioactive. Jorge ushered me in past the solid gold statues of footballing greats that lined the cool corridors of the yacht to his antechamber of opulence. Here and there were dotted signed photographs from famous celebrities. Des O’Connor. Roger Moore, Sid James. Also football memorabilia. A signed shirt from Lee Naylor, and the ubiquitous Steve Bull signed program a little dog eared and battered. Amazing. The carpet was that thick it was like wading through it. Two of his bodyguards lifted up the trail of Jorges cape and I followed him through corridor after corridor filled with paintings of ‘tearful boy’ and ‘green skinned woman’ and those paintings of the dogs playing pool in a pub. At last we reached the centre of his craft. In the middle of the room was an enormous throne. opulent and rich made of solid gold carved in the shape of half naked women and demons. Around him were screens showing share prices, football matches around the world, and cartoons.

Jorge sat down at his throne and the place where he does all his deals. The dogs ran off around the legs of his bodyguard and I sat down on a Polar Bear skin rug in front of him and took out my stolen Ikea pencil and a peeled beermat ready to take notes. A phone rang somewhere and from the floor came a golden phone. Jorge picked it up, it was Donald Trump.

Jorge: Donny baby I can’t talk at the mo, I’ve got that lad from Southbank Resistance here to have a chat, I’ll ring ya back promise.

Jorge put the phone down and smiled at me…

Me: Fucking hell Jorge this is a boat and half ay it?

Jorge: Yeah, I wanted something I could sail across the Med while I’m chilling but ya know, this job. You never rest really. Always on the fucking phone setting up deals with European clubs, chatting to Ron… er Ronaldo. Cost a fair few quid as well. Bought it off a Russian Oligarch at auction. Steal at 200 Million to be fair, 60 nautical miles, 12 months MOT and a full service history. You can’t complain at that. I don’t mind boats always fancied a narrowboat but fucking hell imagine trying to squeeze twenty beautiful killer assassins on it. Fucking nightmare ahk. So yeah a few good deals paid for it. I’m the most powerful football agent in the world I ay going on holiday to Barmouth am I?

Me: Taking the piss though ay it Jorge? I mean you know all these clubs in the EFL and the Premier league are biting their palms and getting sweaty about your involvement with Wolves…

Jorge: Mate I couldn’t care less. I grew up in the Lunt selling scrap copper we nicked off the railway. I’m a poor boy done good and of course they don’t like it. People like me are never invited into the clubs where the rich men sit. Fair enough I walk around in these six thousand dollar suits but fucking hell mate, I’m happy with a pair of grey joggers and a Lonsdale wifebeater…

Me: Crazy ay it Jorge, fair play ahk. I mean it’s lovely don’t get me wrong. It’s like a canal narrow boat but upgraded, I know where your coming from but mate. The fume over you and Wolves eh?

Jorge: Ah I don’t give a shit really. I mean everything was above board and everything dotted and signed. Influence? Trust me, I’m chilling out on me yacht in the med drinking cold beers in the sun, I’ve got me girls, me pet Anteaters, me air rifle to pop seagulls. Sometimes I go to a local Italian chip shop I mean it ay Majors chippy but it’s ok. Why would I want to get involved in clubs day to day business? I’ve done my graft over the years. I can’t be arsed. I just point people in the right directions. Why wouldn’t I look after Wolves? They are my club, I remember the Bully years, the Southbank, everybody standing, knees up Mother Brown. Six pints in The George then amble down to watch the lads. Fucking great. Now I’ve got lads under me..

Me: Oh ar hahahahahahaha

Jorge: Cheeky bastard hahahahaha anyway yeah, lads who want to play sexy football, something nice to look at. I know Jeff Fosun from when he had a family Chinese restaurant down the Willenhall road. Another lad done well. Jeff used to razz around Bilston on a Mountain bike I nicked him delivering take aways to the pissheads. Did well. Now he’s a multi billionaire football club owner. I represent loads of sexy footballers of course he would come to me, I’m his mucka. Like I say we go a long way back from when we used to play football for the Merry Boys pub on a Sunday..

Me: Mad ay it how all these personalities come from Bilston and Wolvo ay it?

Jorge: At I suppose it is, never thought about it really. Take Nuno for instance, he was coaching Tipton Inebriates Utd in the Darlo league. I knew straight away he was special. I used to own a nightclub in Wolvo called Jinglies. We used to meet up every Thursday night (Shots for a quid) and have a giggle. When Jeff Fosun bought Wolves the first thing Jeff did was ring me up and say ‘fucking hell Jorge I ay got a clue sort me out ahk’ and of course I did. I don’t mind helping muckas out. Jeff had just brought in this lunatic from Coseley called Zenga. I day know him. But he didn’t half fuck stuff up. Didn’t have much of a clue bless him. As soon as I put the phone down on Jeff I thought about Nuno so it was putting two and two together like..

At this moment Jorges Israeli Woman Commando bodyguards brought in a huge dish of chips, some black pudding sandwiches, cheese and pineapple on sticks and a slice of quiche together with a steaming Sports Direct mug full of proper Yorkshire Tea.
Jorge: Get in dahn ya neck son then we’ll continue chatting…
End of Part one

When Ruben Scored That Goal

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I saved this unedited piece about Rubens goal against Derby for my book about the season but I though why not share it now.

Douglas puts in a corner, it’s the second half. I’m not sure what to expect. Those corners Duggo sticks in slices the air always, Afobe stands ready to flick on for whoever has thrown themselves into the box. The air is misty with pyro madness, smoke and mirrors this side. Who knows what to expect. The ball hangs for sure. Time is just slices and moments of anticipation with this team and we stand and observe. Our hearts are nailed to these moments. Every part of these divine seconds is heavy with anticipation of course. We demand it. We require the magical and the esoteric. We need these moments to exist and the holy movements are writ again large on the field of play. It is as if these moments, heavy as they are have their own ethereal existence and the quantitative empirical permutations of the act of winning are thrown down at our feet. But Neves is aloft from this, he see’s the magical art and the possibility of novelty and creative passion restored to the turf, to the shuffling feet, the expectation is magnificent and holds on to your belly in a tight grip. No way, surely not, not today, this is not us, this is us, this is them, these are our days…surely not.

A Derby defender heads away out of the box and everything is still. You see I’m on my feet by now. Bones smash against bone. Fractured legs are nothing compared to this…something. What is about to happen? I’m not sure but I can feel it in the pit of my stomach. Something is going to happen. Intuition or something. Deja Vu? I’m not supposed to stand up but here I am. That pain is nothing. Because Neves. Our Ruben is in space. All the Molineux is a stage right now but the spotlight is on him. There is a strange silence. I am sure I can here the flags flapping on top of the Steve Bull stand. The ropes tapping against the flag poles. Is it not said that in battle often there are quiet moments? Precious moments where the world stops for a second? I think God goes to sleep during those divine slumbering seconds, Gods eyes are shut and what dreams that goes through Gods eyes are possibly made real here in this world we inhabit. These dreams that God has are writ on the green grass where the wafts of pyro smoke linger as a mist almost. Subtle but magnificent dreams they are for God at least. But they are made real here tonight.

He is in space because that is his place here. Everything is channelled into this moment. The culmination of Nunos Heresies. The epitome of delights. We have suffered have we not? Have we endured the pain of the past for this one moment? The days shuffling out of the Southbank for beauty such as this? The Lamberts, the Saunders, the players who came and refused to believe in anything apart from themselves. The Morgans and the Moxeys, Sir Jack broken by strife his heart still full of love but his mind broken by this insane love of Wolves we have in which he shared totally.

I suspect as that ball hangs in the air that even the Gods stop their governance of the universe and pause for a second to cast an eye upon him. The ball falls. Every player is motionless as they are about to witness something they will never see again. We stand motionless. Watch the video replay. Watch the crowd. Listen to the audio. There is a hush. There is a moment of intense anticipation and time is flowing on but slower and more refined in some ways. It slows down because for some reason we have already anticipated something divine and magical. Wizardry this is. Not Harry Potter bollocks but something deeper, something more divine.

Something is happening to the universe. Something is different in the wide schemes of surviving and eating, fucking, working, drinking, looking, hearing. Something is going to happen. We knew it and everybody knew it. His first touch is errant. A fumble if you will. It’s the dark side of the whole thing but an integral one. I alluded to the shadowy parts of our play. Sometimes you have to see the darkness for what it is to recognise the light. The errant touch that Neves had moved the ball slightly behind him. It was not optimal, it was not perfect but it was right in the wider scheme of things. It was a part of the whole delicious thing, the experience. He drifts his right foot back pivoting a little. It is the chaos variable, the crack we hardly see in a marble carved by Michelangelo This tangle is , an errant slip of Gods chisel perhaps. But we must have these gentle reminders that even within the most beautiful things there is a thread of angry imperfection in which Mankind struggles. An errant brush stroke hidden in the canvas. But Ruben already knows. He has already seen the final product because he is the artist.

What should he do? Pass? There is a tangle of players in the box. He has to shoot, it is ordained in the wider topics of this season that he shoots or has a pop. He has to adjust his weight, it is too far forward now so his weight is balanced by swinging his right foot back further than it should comfortably be so his left leg and foot is now off the floor to give him the freedom to move that foot back to connect. He swings his foot in a beautiful arc. This arc has it’s own mathematics and I am reminded of the ‘Golden Mean’ the beauty of nature and of the natural world. It swings easily. It connects. These seconds are hours to me and I can watch every delicious movement, every sinew and muscle stretch like a ballet dancer. Balance and poise but more importantly belief and effort. He sees it. He knows it. It’s there Ruben in every gasp of the crowd and the urge for you to unleash that belief at last. To make history and to stamp your existence deep into the Molineux turf.

The thing is my friends we knew straight away that it was a goal before he had even connected. Why? Because it was such a beautiful goal carrying such pathos and gravitas that time flowed forwards to a split second after the ball had hit the back of the net and recoiled back through time to the moment he hit it with his foot. My arms were aloft. Ruben isn’t even looking at the goal. There is nothing except him and the ball. He could be in the middle of a deserted landscape. The smoke dissipates a little and he is shining gold and black. There is only him in focus on the pitch, only Ruben exists. Only the ball too. I see the ball, his foot, his whole existence personified by this moment. The blood roars through my ears as I haven’t taken a breath for a few seconds. My hand is halfway to my face to push my glasses further up my nose. It will never get there of course. I am too slow, too material. This is a Holy communion between Ruben and the dreams of God and I am not invited yet. The arc of his movement has begun and it’s not a prelude, not a beginning yet but as his foot and leg begins that beautiful arc it’s like an orchestra slowly building to a crescendo of sorts when the conductor holds his baton still and then slowly it rises as he controls and defines the explosion of sound.

The bones creaked, here was the moment of course. He hits and the ball flies in slow motion. There isn’t much spin on the ball but it revolves slowly. Time is relative now and flexible. It seemed like twenty seconds to me as I wasn’t allowing myself a breath but I was filling my lungs ready. Intake the air, the sour smell of the pyro, the stink of somebody vaping nearby, the stink of the brackish water that collects at the bottom of the North bank concourse. This air filled me. The ball arced and fell as all bodies must do under the dominion of gravity but only enough, only the amount it needed to creep under the crossbar and beyond the outstretched fingers of the Derby goalie. My arms rose too, did everybody else’s? I’m not sure, my eyes are on the ball. Faced with such magnificent beauty for a second I didn’t believe it. I didn’t recognise it at all and there was a second where all the negative energy rolled around my soul. Of course no, not here, this is Wolves mate. You might have seen some good football this season but are you taking the piss? This isn’t for you imbeciles. Goals like this are what you watch on telly where beautiful players score, where beautiful stadiums erupt. Where other people reach those ecstatic heights. This isn’t for you mate, this isn’t yours and never will  be.

A frozen tableau. Players static and unconnected with this event. We were too and then an eruption, a moment when all those dark days of the past were obliterated by such an intense burst of light that it seemed like the demons were blasted out of every dark corner of Molineux in that moment leaving the ghosts and us, the team and Nuno. This was the act of baptism, a cleansing of the soul, total immersion in the waters of football so gracious and holy that no evil could withstand it. It was our moment, we could also take part in the communion between Ruben and the nap of God, the dreams, the sense of belonging to both and they too belonging to us. Ruben beckoned to us to join in with the joy of it.

Neves wheels away pointing to his head. He does that because he knows that beauty lies in creative though, in the dynamic and the novel. Three pounds of meat. That is what the brain is. It nestles inside bone and defines our lives with moments such as this. What is promotion? What is going up as Champions? What concepts could be greater than this goal? I turn to Horace and just say ‘Fucking hell’ because that is all in my infinite ignorance I could say. The stadium erupts, the flags wave..We’ve got Neves…Ruben Neves, I just don’t think you understand….

Who can understand this? Who can make any sense out of it? I can’t. I’ve never seen a goal like it. I’ve never been dumbstruck by anything, I’ve always had an opinion or some fucking senseless waffle to give out to anybody that would listen. But this I can’t. It has happened a lot this season. You know the stories, you can read them here. But this? No fucking way. Every moment in the future when I am watching football I will think of this madness. This interplay between Ruben and the ball. Every movement is scored into my brain and I think everybody’s. The benchmark of a beautiful goal of course. We will wax lyrical in the years to come to younger people and we will be old and slightly insane with life. They will have the blood and the fire in their veins as they watch a goal scored in the future and they will grab onto us and say have you ever seen anything like it?

We of course will just smile as our knees threaten to buckle and that pain in the hip cracks through us as lightning. We will smile and nod but I think we will keep the memory of that goal to ourselves and our minds will replay these moments as precious memories, glorious times in our past. Because the young will never understand what it looked like even if they watch it replayed on TVs and phones. They will never understand because the goal was an epiphany of enlightenment that only us that have suffered will understand. But we will look in those times for people that were there and they will be old like us and we will perhaps find some fellowship and share maybe a knowing wink at each other and say ‘good goal, but not a patch on Rubens against Derby’.

It’s England Time Again

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So the World Cup of Footyball is upon us. As we unleash the usual fan madness about certain players we wax within the confines of our own groups about the pros and cons of various Southgate choices. Myself…well I think Coady should have been picked but maybe I’m getting ahead of myself with him. I would have him as a Player Manager but I suppose you already know that. But as the flags get whanged outside windows and we plan some mad alcohol infused barbecue/world cup watching madness we have another crumpled and battered thing dragged out into the sun. No not the Missus…Piers fucking Morgan. A bloke that looks like he collects dead childrens shoes. Like he picks his arse and smells it. He’s the bloke in the next car eating his own snot and as he looks over at you looking at him, he smiles. He doesn’t give a shit the odious little bogie gobbler.

Raheem Sterling gets an M16 automatic rifle tattooed on his leg. All hell has broken loose. Well I say broken loose. Somebody has let Piers Morgan use the internet again. Now Piers Morgan is what he is. He’s definitely a Lizard, a media Lizard at that. So Piers has waxed his dumpy sad man lyrics in that epitome of journalistic delights ‘The Sun’ newspaper. Now he is annoyed. He’s somehow made a link between Sterlings fucking leg and the spate of mass shootings in the USA. Fucking hell, that’s a bloody cosmic extrapolation by any account. You might as well say that Prince whatever his faces wedding to Mega Murkle or whatever her face is may be a disgusting thing when hundreds of homeless are dying on our streets every Winter. It’s a big extrapolation isn’t it? Fair enough you could kind of tie the two events together in some sort of weird abstract way. You would maybe get a few to agree possibly. Those are the kind of people who when they connect two wrongs then it makes a right…or something. But it’s time to stop arguing with people that think two events could be connected in some way. It’s time to extend the arm, and slap them around the head until they stop being so fucking stupid.

Piers of course has blood on his hands. His coverage of a fake British Army mistreatment of Iraqi Shiites during Gulf War two…or one I forget, probably led to Bfritish Army casualties as the City of Basra reacted to his coverage. In fact I would make a bet it did. He’s not a nice person our Piers. Phone hacking of dead girls mobile phones, celebrities going through an addiction hell followed by Journos. More phone hacking. More shenanigans. The fucking doughnut needs to be in Prison I don’t know about spouting shite from the Murdochian dystopia of ‘The Sun’ Towers. They even let him on prime time telly. He’s on in the morning apparently but I haven’t watched non football TV since 1983. So I can’t comment on what drivel he ladles out to the prongs who actually watch ‘The glass tit’ when there are other far more interesting things to do.

But yes. A few weeks before one of the greatest football tournaments in the world. One in which OUR country is playing the media machine gets rolling. It’s the same every four years. Instead of happy, funky stories about the lads who have been picked it’s a case of ‘let’s really fuck up the vibe’ from the media. We’ve seen it before of course. Gascoigne and company. Or maybe Venables, Allardyce et al. They get picked up pretty quick by the reptiles in the press. You would think they had an agenda or something to quickly stamp out any feel good vibe the squad has before a tournament. Surely this should be the time when we all support the lads. I know Henderson is a doughnut, but I’m still going to cheer for him. He represents us (in a fashion) as does Sterling and any other England player you can pick out.

Raheem says he had the tattoo done because his Dad was gunned down and it’s a kind of statement. That’s ok. We know these footballing stars are lunatics, hidden away from real life they are exotic greenhouse orchids that are a bit weird, they behave strange, they get weird haircuts, strange girlfriends with big tittys and fucked up eyebrows, they act like rock stars and that’s the world they live in. They take a lot of nurturing these players. They are surrounded by sycophants and advisers. They are not normal people. They exist in a quantum state. We don’t know what the fuck is going through their heads at any given time. But what he does is entirely his choice and I haven’t got any rights at all to make any assumptions about what he does and why. That’s his business.

So we can maybe come to the conclusion that all these mega buck football players are lunatics in a fashion. That’s a hypothesis that sits well with me. I’ve met a few football stars. They are for the most part total fucking zoids. But that’s absolutely nothing to do with me, and there is the crux of the matter.

You see if Raheem wanted to tattoo his leg with a big fuck off Donald Duck tattoo I wouldn’t be much bothered. Probably because the greatest thing that tattoo would have made me feel was a burning sensation in my crotch as I spilled my cuppa while laughing at it. But I wouldn’t be extrapolating his tattoo as a piss take about the amount of Ducks killed in the USA by Duck Hunters. Because that’s silly isn’t it? Isn’t it?? But again, what the fuck has it got to do with me what he has tattooed on his leg? Absolutely fuck all mate. Loads of football players have Arabic ink jobs, loads have Chinese ideograms. Do they support Isis?? Do they support the Chinese Communist Partys massacres during the Chinese Civil war? Bloody hell.

I know the press have some sort of an Anti England agenda, I know the FA does too regardless of their ministrations. The England team always have two battles at a time when they play. The opposition and the English Press. But there is a simple way to deal with this assault on our countries players. Don’t partake of any media organ that steams into them. Don’t watch Piers Morgan on the TV. As soon as droves of viewers start switching off then he is fucked. Their mighty God (Money) is a powerful incentive to who they put on their crap shows. Same with the newspapers that like to get the odd foot in. Fuck them, don’t buy them, simple. Then they will go out of business. I mean reading about what tattoos they have, who they are shagging or who takes the odd rustly handshake isn’t massively important really, not to me any way.

I want to see the England team smash into Russia with an intent to fucking win the whole thing. Individually our team looks like a bunch of metro sexual weirdness. Collectively however I suspect they may have a few things to say in Russia this summer. I even think we may win it too, you never know. But I do know that if we do the press will be wanking themselves stupid over it, the reptiles will come out to bask in the reflected glory. That’s the nature of it. That’s how fucking low they are. They are the hackers of dead girls phones. They are the stalkers of the mentally ill. They are to blame for the murders of British service men and women. The Press mate they are the enemy.

What will I be doing? I don’t wave flags except my teams. But this summer I am thinking of getting a big fuck off Cross of Saint George and flying it outside my bedroom window. Will be people get offended by it? I couldn’t give a fuck. You offend me by being offended by it. I may even get an England shirt and learn who these players are so I can shout at them from my chair. In fact I fancy going over there now and wanging a few bottles around the streets of Russia for a giggle before a game. I’m provoked you see. I hope little Sterling bangs a few goals in, I hope our team takes this bullshit and shape it into a real zeitgeist around the England camp. I hope when we pick up the world cup and the reptiles start lathering themselves into a stupor over their IMacs that Sterling and company have a go back. Don’t talk to the press. Talk to us instead. Social media is a fucking powerful tool and they can get their message across without going through the Murdoch filter or the fascists at the BBC Match of the Day studios. Get on Instagram, get on Twitter. Tell us how you feel, what you are doing, how you did it etc. Let’s put the fucking Reptiles to sleep. It’s long overdue.

It’s Mental Health Awareness Week

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Depression is a weird beast isn’t it? That little tug in the pit of the stomach. Nothing interests you. Food doesn’t taste nice any more. Pain that bad you fancy a nap even if you don’t want one. Wolves win an important match and you go through the motions with everybody else but inside…well you’re dying, and you don’t want to tell anybody. You don’t tell anyone because you are a bloke. You probably have the tattoos and the muscles, the big friendship group, you’re popular, but inside, that familiar nagging depression smoulders away and you can’t wait to get somewhere alone where you can half deal with it. It’s shit being a bloke because we can’t share our mad shit with mates. We can’t share it because we are ‘programmed’ to hold it all in and just fucking deal with it. Well that doesn’t work any more. It’s time for new ideas, it’s time for talking, it’s time we took the power back and utilise the people around us to help us define what the fuck is going on.

Depression is weird…I choose that word carefully because in essence depression is just worrying about yourself or the people you love. Depression is trying to understand something as complex as say all the people packed out in Molineux by looking at lists of their phone numbers. Abstract and fucking impossible. But we try don’t we? We sit down with the curtains half closed and roll around in the mind all the bullshit and the variable until we become a gibbering wreck and the only wait out is to think about putting a stop to it all together in the most destructive of ways. But we are complex creatures. Mind and mental health issues are the prime cause of an early death in young men. It destroys me. My heart bleeds that often there isn’t any body to talk to, to chat with, to pour out the fucking madness that we have inside of us. We are complex machines and often the ‘magic pill’ we get from the Doctors is like using a mallet to repair a watch.

My friends and Co-Supporters of Wolves have got together and done something about this and have boshed together a website and a hashtag…

https://neverbeafraidtoask.com/

It’s time we actually start to reach out to each other in times of need. It’s time (in effect)we start to support each other too. We are a social animal and in todays insane world it’s time we took back the power and started to sort our own lives out by actually speaking about what worries and aggravations we have in our lives. This blog always expounds on Nunos ‘ideas’ and to be honest it’s time we started finding out what other ideas are out there especially when it comes to mental health. This is about empowering ourselves through our own shared experiences in a world where we are increasingly alienated by abstract memes and constructs of society. But we don’t have to take it you know. We don’t have to sit in half dark rooms nurturing our pain. We must get ourselves out of that chair and reinvent what we are, and we do that by talking with others. Listening to their experiences and tactics with dealing with it. I do it all the time. I talk to everybody and I don’t care what race, creed, colour or sex they describe themselves as. I reach out all the time, to strangers, to the old fart nobody talks to, the crackheads and the heroin addicts, the thieves and the destitute. I know multi millionaires, people with bank accounts that big they don’t know what being hard up is. But they share the same things inside of course. That confusion about the world and our place within it.

You see, we aren’t alone. We aren’t ‘special’, we aren’t suffering by ourselves. Now is the time to talk and to share, to reach out and let others take a little of the burden we all carry. I’m on Twitter. It’s the best place to find me if I’m connected. I’m probably not the best qualified to help but I can listen to what you have to say and by listening I can take some of that burden off you for a while I hope. Let you know that you aren’t alone. So follow me @petalengro or click on that link above. Let’s fucking talk man.

C O N S O L I D A T I O N

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C O N S O L I D A T I O N

NOUN
The action or process of making something stronger or more solid.

The action or process of combining a number of things into a single more effective or coherent whole.

‘Haven’t you gone to Dingle In the Park with the rest of the inbreds?’

That voice over the gate. It was Albion club shop man. He lives up the road. I was chilling in the front garden last Monday afternoon. We had come back from Sunderland that day. What a beautiful time we had apart from the score line…but I didn’t care much about that. I had busted my nut weeks ago and was inside the stadium of light with that afterglow groove going on. Smoking a fag and looking out of the window like a lovelorn poet. I’ve got a scrap of paper in my hand, a poem I have written, it starts…

‘Ruben your hair doesn’t move but your football has a full on groove’

I laugh at Albion club shop man. I tell him to fuck off or I’ll set the dogs on him. Gizmo the Staffy is growling at him. Gizmo knows. The poor Albion bastard. Tomorrow his club will be officially relegated to the Championship. They are dead men walking on this beautiful Monday afternoon. I’ve been watching videos on social media where everybody is thronging the streets, singing, flares, mad smoke bombs, the odd confused African or Chinese student weaving between the gold and black madness. The event, oh my days, perfect. The weather, the beautiful people, the flags, the scousers selling flags. The whole spectacle brings a tear to my eye even now. The man on the ‘oss still looks like Nuno to me, if I squint with one eye. I wonder about whether I should have gone. It would have been a thing, crutches, bad leg, loads of people. I know how cack it is trying to manoeuvre a wheelchair through the crazy people shit. Smashing into the back of legs. Not seeing fuck all because you are small.

‘We’ve got Neves! Nuno Neves!’

I didn’t go mainly because it was a chance for other people to enjoy the day. Buy the flags and wave them. Buy into the whole success thing get to learn who the players actually are. Have a fucking great day out in the sun celebrating the team and the whole beautiful saga that is Wolverhampton and Wolves. Two things that entwine and tangle within each other like mad jungle vines. In these sorry days we see clubs who have moved their stadiums to featureless retail parks and out of town diasporas of sunken eyed architecture, designed by people who will never live there. Never walk it’s cheap landscapes. We have Wolves within the hearts of us. We have it in our DNA and it effects us even if we deny it sometimes and for fucks sake how we choked those tears back over the years as those bastards down the road flaunted their status as hollow and bereft of idea as it was. It affects us deep inside because we are our town, so we are the club. We breathe it in every day. Every road, street pavement, canal towpath extrapolated from our veins and arteries. It’s trees our lungs, the traffic our tainted blood. The Molineux our beating heart.

‘That Nunos lovely isn’t he?’

Even these doughnuts walking around singing about ‘Nuno Neves’. They don’t care whether or not they are singing the right names, songs, insults. I don’t care either. Because I know the zeitgeist is real and it is lightning fast under the City. As we sleep we hear that heart of Molineux beating away and unconsciously they knew something had happened. These people who walk around in the last football shirt they bought. Maybe a Doritos one, maybe a Goodyear one, Chaucer? I don’t know. But I do know I was proud of them to flood out and be proud even if they knew little about the reasons. We know, you and me. You’ve read the posts here, the pain and the glory. We have been fellow travellers on that unknown road. Me and you.

On Tuesday I lay on my back in the front garden looking at the sun. It was a rare Sun dog event. A halo of ice crystals surround it like a ring and that halo was rainbow coloured and beautiful too. Reflected moods all around really and from the garden gate again, voices. More friendly and chilled out. Raising my head to look I saw Shane and Ferret. Crackheads from up the top of the estate. I got up and shuffled over to see what was up. They had been down Poundstretcher nicking stuff. They had a shit lamp, a leather look vinyl steering wheel cover, a screwdriver set and two tubes of Pringles. Sour cream and chives. I was all about Pringles. Even if Ferrets sticky germ ridden hand had been in it I accepted the offer of an inch or two stack of this tasty snack.

‘Am ya gewin to tha Wolves dinner tonight? Ade’s gewin, he works on the building and his gaffer is tekkin him, right piss up ay it? Am ya? Get Nunos autograph for the babby’

These Pringles were my dinner but I never said anything. I’m the only person around here who speaks to them and they admire me for some reason. I didn’t want to upset that groove at all. We chat about Wolves. What’s happened. I tell them some stories and we laugh. They are angry when I talk about other things and threaten retributions. But it’s all good. We wonder and we wax these end of path lyrics like skilled orators, because that’s what we are about. With Wolves there are loads of things to talk about. I have some more Pringles. Ferrety dude is talking and Pringle crumbs are flying everywhere. He is a way from his last smoke of that bad crack. His eyes are wide and wired up. Wolves man. But I’ve seen that look on other faces. Bristol, Leeds and Villa park, QPR and Fulham. He smokes the crack we run with the pack. Both take a toll on your health at times. The highs and the fucking lows.

You see I wasn’t lying in the grass thinking about what has happened through the season gone. It’s done and dusted. In ten years I wont remember a thing about it apart from a few key points, goals and incidents, some of the players too. What I’m thinking about is the future. Always the future. The past is for leaning onto somebody in the pub ten years down the line half pissed and going ‘That fucking goal against Derby eh? Eh? Eh?’.

Yes. I was thinking about other things. Our club have surpassed themselves this season and I suspect that everything is happening at such a rapid rate we’ve caught up too fast. It was a Three year plan to get us promoted once Jeff had sat down and learned some lessons from the Lambert period and the Zenga episodes. Jeff learned fast. As he learns so does the staff at Molineux. This club isn’t some freakish sideshow to the ministrations of the Scouse Satan any more. Not a bottomless pit of money making opportunities for fat sports management graduates. I don’t think people realise how fast this change has come about, this learning process. I would say Jeff Shi and company have brought us Premiership football ahead of schedule. Probably a season ahead. What does this mean? Of course Jeff has to go to the filing cabinet now and break the Red Dragon Seal of the parchment within. The Premier league plans. Early, but yes, the plans are in position and ready.

We have of course stopped at the end of line on this journey on the Nuno Express, the Fosun crazy train. Now we all get off. Our hair frazzled, the hangover kicking in and there’s a new journey to come on another fucking crazy train, but this one is a bit faster, maybe more plush, comfy seats, sexy shit. Fosun are a year ahead but that is no matter. Now Jeff can look at the names on the parchment that Nuno and Uncle Jorge, maybe a few others have already had little chats to. Do we think that Fosun would leave these transfer targets late? Do we think that Fosun and Nuno will wait until they come back off their holidays laden with beach balls, duty free fags, stupid shorts and a weird rash before looking at available transfers? Will they be looking at Steven Alikibi from Sierra Leone aged 16? A prospect? One for the future? A lively midfielder? Nah. Fosun and Nuno will have identified who they want probably last October. Then overtures would have been made over Christmas maybe. A few chats, a few tentative approaches under the greatest secrecy. Uncle Jorge picking up his gold plated telephone as he wrinkles his toes through a white tiger skin rug?

For Fosun are diligent men, honourable men. We don’t know anything. Nobody outside the Gold and Black Palace does. It’s a secret and Fosun will not look kindly on those who would speak about things that ‘go on’. Everybody stays quiet now at Molineux. Everything is under control. So we see that the players that will be joining us have already seen a DVD of a few matches we played this season. They have seen this beautiful football and have been inspired by it. More inspired by sitting on a bench for some major European team for sure. Perhaps a few of them sent Jota or Neves a text or two? Asking about Wolvo, asking about houses and schools maybe…

At Wolves these players will see the philosophy of football in real live action. An idea, thrust forth by Nuno into the minds of his players. The desire to improve, as a team. To thrive on that pitch and to enjoy the love of football through these ideas. These players we will sign already love us although they don’t know it yet. Maybe many of them will not be names well known to us. Maybe as last year we will be hunting YouTube for videos of their sexiness. But Nuno will know. Long past is the sheepskin coated trilby wearing football scout sitting in the rain at Scunthorpe watching a 24 year old non league player who traps the ball lovely, dinks a good pass, scores a few, has a bit of a drink problem. Now the scouting is done all over the world. The many arms of Fosun and the Wolves staff moving like the Goddess Shiva. Touching gently, moving on. Forever in flux, forever changing their ideas and their targets. Who will we sign? They have already signed, trust me. They are just waiting for the call now, the call to come home to Nuno and to finally flourish, bloom and explode, playing the football they have always wanted to play for a team few have heard of…yet.

I’m already forgetting about this season past. It’s done. Now is the time for laughter at the dogs in the dust below us fighting over scraps we have left in our wake. The play offs, God help those poor bastards..on second thoughts fuck them. Consolidation. We enter a new chapter now and a new landscape. We must consolidate our position of power especially our ‘Power of Ideas’. The Premier league clubs are shitting themselves trust me. Physical attacks can only do so much harm. Attacks from the media are fleeting and ineffective now, we have seen this with the ministrations of the media and people at a high level in football clubs who should have known better. Here we have the power of ideas and we will show them to the world next year. But the ideas are only as good as the foundations they have erupted from. Next season will be harsh to us at times. This season has been good and productive but we knew that when we faced the demons at Fulham and Cardiff and failed that we would stand tall again because we simply knew that the ideas of Nuno and his staff were stronger and more vibrant, more passion, more harder working, tougher, unassailable…eventually. Next season there will be losses, there will be days where we wonder at whether we belong there at all. Maybe we will remember the ghosts of McCarthy and McGoo wailing around the stands as we battled to survive in those days. At the moment we bask and sing the same hymns, shout the same platitudes, venerate the staff and players as holy men. But man, there will be days when we trudge out of these shiny stadiums wondering what the fuck just happened. This is ok, this is part of the growing process and that process is the consolidation of our position. As we evolve then we try new ways and new forms. Sometimes these new ways will be seen as useless or ineffective and cast aside for us to pick new ways of playing and new forms, tactics, positional strengths. It’s a learning process this evolution bollocks but underneath it always is the act of consolidation. Next season we learn and we grow, always. Us and the club will do that together, we will cry together and we will celebrate together but we MUST do it together. Support 100%. Sing until you can’t sing any more. Denigrate the opposition always, have no respect for their history or there position. Annihilate them with song. Destroy them with our creativity. The club will need us this season. I think the club are ready, are we?