O Ye of little faith
No, this isn't a sermon opening, although for some my topic is about an all-consuming passion, the stuff of life.
I'm referring, of course, to tonight's match between Chelsea and Charlton. Biblical comparisons can be made, however. I'm referring to David and Goliath or the miracle of the Five Loaves and Two Fishes, which in the case of Charlton is actually only one Fish as the other isn't in the squad anymore.
By now, it's common knowledge that compared to Chelsea, Charlton are small fry
with a squad that, at £14.5 million have been assembled at a mere 10th of Chelsea's.
It's inevitable, it seems, that soothsayers belittle the Addicks. Some say
that the title race is already over as Chelsea are currently where they were at the end of last season, sitting at the top.Played five, won five. Goals for, 10. Goals against, nil. Clouds on horizon, also nil. And what it feels like is this: for the first time since the championship came into existence, the title race is over before the leaves have turned brown.
Charlton, take note, are currently second in the table
(played four, won four; goals for - 8, goals against - 1) and also with maximum points from a game fewer,
(so) the hard-working Charlton players probably stand as good a chance as any of causing the sort of upset produced only once last year, when Manchester City prevented Chelsea from emulating Arsenal's unbeaten season in the league. But to take the bet, you would need to have money to burn.
Well, that's patronising, isn't it? Just because "history suggests"
we should enjoy our lofty status while we can, doesn't mean that a precedent has been set. As an eternal optimist and unashamed idealist, I have never believed that 'nice guys come last'.Statistics can also lie
!Warwick University's Decision Technology Group gives a 47% chance of a Chelsea win at The Valley today with a less than one in four chance of a Charlton victory.
What is undeniable is that everyone, except for Chelsea staff and supporters, want the Addicks to win.
This afternoon's game has come to represent more than mere points: a home victory would not merely take Charlton to the top of the Premiership, but would lift football's hearts
We have a steely-hearted defence, the current top scorer in the Premiership ~ step forward Darren Bent
~ and some of the best fans in England (and Indonesia). Valley Floyd James
is predicting a 2-1 victory and Zebulebu
forecasts "an entertaining 1-1 draw".
Me? I'll settle for an entertaining match on TV7
at 9pm, local time, as advertised. And if, as seems to be the norm, we have a dumb-shit kung fu slam fest instead, expect me down the Blok
in front of a big screen.