Monday 22 January 2018

New boys hoping to be top of the class

Weird Wide World of Sport

Dave Devereux

Spurs and Everton were involved in a tug of war for Moussa Sissoko
Spurs and Everton were involved in a tug of war for Moussa Sissoko

The youngest of the clan started school last week. It was an emotional morning, with all the tears, tantrums, and tugging of the trouser legs, pleading please don't go.

But enough about my carry on, it was the little lad's big day after all.

Of course he took it all in his stride and wondered what all the fuss was about, although he did have quite a bewildered look on his face, similar to Jose Mourinho when a decision goes against him, when trudging with his schoolbag in tow, through the gate at the end of his first sojourn into life in the classroom.

Maybe he was just acting like pampered, prima donna footballer and wasn't happy at having to carry his own bag.

Strangely my biggest worry on his first day was that he might be shy about using the toilet in his new environment and would emerge from the school doors, red-faced and fit to burst.

It was a massive relief for me (and him I'm sure) to learn that a mid-morning trip to the jacks was done without any fuss.

The young fella's giant leap into his new adventure happened to coincide with the day many footballers get to start with a clean slate and sprint gleefully to pastures (and pay cheques) new - yes the wondrous event that is transfer deadline day.

For reasons that weren't immediately obvious Moussa Sissoko seemed to be the popular kid in class with Everton and Tottenham fluttering their eyelashes to try and impress the Newcastle man and lure him to join their gangs.

Eventually Spurs threw in an extra lollipop in the party bag and the promise of better playgrounds and the bright lights of the big city was too much to turn down.

His exams results at Newcastle hardly ever climbed above an E grade, although incredibly the Merseysiders and Londoners were prepared to pay A grade money to acquire his services.

Obviously a clear sign of the inflated prices of sending a kid to school these days!

There's no doubting who the cheeky chappy of the class is - none other than Jack Wilshere, who left Arsenal for Bournemouth on loan. Certainly when he puts his mind to his lessons he is capable of being the star pupil, but he won't always do what he's told and is prone to taking a crazy number of sick days.

In fairness to Joe Hart, who is more than liable to drop a few clangers, at least he doesn't shy away from embarrassment and will have another go if the jigsaw ends up in pieces on the ground.

He could have hidden at the back of the class - a difficult task I know considering he is head and shoulders above the rest - but he decided to take the brave step of making the move to Torino so he could play with the lads at break time, rather than be stuck on the backside-breaking classroom bench.

Pep Guardiola also cleared the bench of a few of the biggest messers and wasters in the class, sending Mangala to Valencia, Nasri to Sevilla and Bony to Stoke on loan.

At least now those with a thirst for knowledge won't be distracted by the blackguarding bunch.

The poor lazy boy of the class Mario Balotelli has been kept back in the same year for so long he just had to be shipped out.

His brooding, off the wall image has grown tired, so if he can't mingle with his new classmates in Nice it looks like he'll be lost to the education system altogether.

David Luiz have come in the opposite direction across the channel, leaving Paris Saint-Germain to return to his old familiar stomping ground Chelsea.

The boy can certainly play ball, but finds it hard to shake the schoolboy trait of running around like a headless chicken.

Switching to a footballer who had his emotional last day at school during the week, Robbie Keane certainly deserves all the praise he gets for his dedication to the Irish shirt, not to mention the goals.

Quite simply in a class of his own.

Wexford People

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