Neil Humphreys: Why we miss EPL daftness
In his humour column, our writer lists the things that lit up our weekends
Football isn't important right now, but there's no harm in hoping that the English Premier League will eventually come back.
We miss football because we miss a normal life. With that in mind, here are the daft stuff that we miss most about football.
1) OLE'S WITH US AND AGAINST US
Imagine schizophrenics with a touch of Tourette's sitting in front of a TV screen, watching Manchester United matches and screaming, "Yes! No! Yes No! ******* Yes! ******* No!"
Those are the Red Devils' fans since Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was confirmed as United manager. I miss those guys. They change direction more times than a kite caught in a hurricane.
They love Solskjaer. They hate Solskjaer. They're like hormonal teenagers on Instagram lamenting their Norwegian crush.
And the mood changes are viciously quick. They can switch from one to the other at a throw-in. Before the EPL was postponed, love was in the air, again.
So here's hoping for a couple of United defeats once the season resumes, allowing the fetid air of decay to return.
The day will come when Solskjaer finds himself loved and loathed again - all at once.
2) PUNDITS CHOKING ON VAR
Since retiring as a one-club legend at Southampton, Matt Le Tissier has reinvented himself as a pundit who's a cross between Nostradamus and Mr Bean.
He predicted that the video assistant referee (VAR) would be a success. But then, he also predicted that Covid-19 would be no worse than the flu.
Still, he has been consistent on VAR. He loves the tech. Others have wavered.
Gary Lineker was pro-VAR initially, but then saw the light after seeing too many lines on screen. Indeed, those lines were the turning point.
Middle-aged pundits exploded as they obsessed over lines like a wayang actress.
The likes of Graeme Souness and Roy Keane already combusted over any midfielder that didn't track a winger, hack him down at the neck and parade the decapitated head around the stadium.
Once they started raging at the machines and the VAR offside lines, we reached TV nirvana. Watching adults burst blood vessels as a line was drawn over a striker's elbow hairs was daft before, but it's positively endearing now.
The idea of returning to a world where the position of Roberto Firmino's armpit actually matters seems appealing. Anything's better than having Le Tissier drone on about the flu.
3) SATURDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL FEVER
Some people will tell you that the greatest thing about living in Singapore is a first-class education system, impeccable health services, safety, security and a wise, reassuring handling of a pandemic that is the envy of the world (I'll stop there before I stand on my laptop and sing Majulah Singapura).
But they're wrong.
It was having live football on Saturday nights.
Afternoon games in Europe are just not the same.
There's nothing better than putting the kids to bed and settling down for a twilight game - just me and my nuts (the edible kind, my weekends aren't that exciting).
So we must never take our Saturday night football for granted again - or our nuts.
4) THE SPECIAL ONE NOT BEING SPECIAL
We've all had an elderly relative with a fuzzy, fantastical memory.
We tolerate him, laugh politely and say: "Yes, Uncle Mourinho, of course you were the Special One. I mean, Tottenham are out of all the cups and haven't won in six games, but sure, you're still special. Now, sit quietly and eat your porridge."
I miss Jose Mourinho like I miss a cuddly uncle. He lives in the past and complains about absolutely everything, but he's our funny EPL uncle, an endless source of amusement.
He's like a dog chasing its own tail. He's not going anywhere, but he's always fun to watch.
5) JUERGEN KLOPP'S TEETH
Those beaming blinkers are like the Raffles Lighthouse. They could guide ships into a harbour. At the weekend, Klopp's teeth revealed themselves once again and it was like catching up with old friends.
Naturally, Klopp's recorded interview with Liverpool was dignified, empathetic and perfectly judged. But it was just good to see those teeth again.
When that man smiles, he lights up a room. When I was a kid, English managers used to light up a cigarette. Klopp is a different species.
His insouciance, joie de vivre and uncanny knack of remembering that he's paid a fortune to do something he'd happily do for free is what we desperately need now.
Klopp has already proven that the EPL craved an eternal optimist. Who knew that the rest of the world did, too?
We want football back, sure, but I'd settle for Klopp's goofy grin and his insatiable lust for life.