Friday 31 August 2012

Week 3: Deadline day drama for The Grambler!

Yes that's right, we have an EXCLUSIVE! deadline day transfer to inform you about!  Maicon to Man City? Nah! Berbatov to Fulham? Pah! Moutinho to Spurs? Splah!

Nope... For you see, and you heard it here first remember, I can report a transfer which will surprise, excite and arouse in equal measure.  The Grambler has moved from Microsoft Office Home 2010 to Microsoft Office Student 2007!  Exciting stuff, eh?

Well I hope you are all enjoying Deadline Day as much as I am.  The closure of the window   may prove to be the right time to change your fantasy football team or reconsider your regular  normal-people bets, but it has no bearing on The Grambler.  The draw has been made and I shall stand by the results until Sunday evening when I shall once again be cursing all fourteen teams involved for not fixing the games for the sake of my bet.  1:Onto business then...

Game 1: Leeds United vs Blackburn Rovers

Prediction: Home win
What is going on here!?  Three weeks of Grambling, three appearances for Blackburn Rovers!  The good thing is that one of these predictions was correct and the other was very close to being correct, if it weren't for the part where it was wrong.  Both sides have won two of their three games this season, although Blackburn sit higher in the league.  But Rovers have not won an away game since the 10th of March, against fellow relegatees Wolves (more on them later.)  Leeds have not been too busy in the lead up to the transfer window closure.  They have managed to extend the contract of prize asset Ross McCormack and added an experienced goalkeeper in Paddy Kenny and a horrible, horrible, horrible, horrible, horrible, horrible, horrible twat in El Hadji Diouf.  The Chickenmeisters have added a number of new faces through the summer and have today finalised a club-record deal for Huddersfield goal-machine Jordan Rhodes and the Scrabble-winningly named Grzegorz Sandomierski .  Hopefully they will have woeful d├ębuts.

Reliability balls: 5/10
Odds on this result: 13/10

Game 2: Cheltenham Town vs Acrington Stanley
Prediction: Draw
Another familiar name popping up here in Acrington Stanley .  It is a random selection, I swear! Once again, the two sides have won two of their opening three games, with Cheltenham higher in the league due to a draw in their other match.  The transfer window has a lesser effect on the lower leagues, with loan signings still a possibility, but Acrington have managed to re-sign former midfielder and Benin internationalist Romuald Boco today.  Interestingly, the last three times that these two sides have met at Whaddon Road, there has been a win apiece and one draw so one could argue that they are evenly matched.  Even more interestingly, Cheltenham's manager once played guitar for 90s pop-rockers Terrorvision.  Either that or two people may have the same name, which is a ludicrous suggestion!  

Reliability balls: 6/10
Odds on this result: 11/4

Game 3: Airdrie United vs Cowdenbeath
Prediction: Home win
Scottish football returns to The Grambler!  The original Franchise FC and disturbingly-meaty-sounding Cowdenbeath have each amassed six points in their opening three games with both teams having lost to Dunfermline this season.  Airdrie have won four out of their last five home games whilst the 'beath remain unbeaten in their last five away games so this could be close.  Not a great deal of activity from either side on transfer deadline day... Airdrie have added nine new faces (along with other body parts) over the summer, including Jersey Premiership player of the year Jack Boyle.  Wow.  They also appear to have a player with the surname Sally.  Meanwhile, Cowdenbeath have gone for Championship Manager tactics and signed a bunch of foreign players because they have cool names.  Theses include Pablo Navas, Zephaniah Thomas and Ruben Garcia Rey.  In conclusion, I don't have a clue.

Reliability balls: 6/10
Odds on this result: 6/4

Game 4: Celtic vs Hibernian
Result: Draw
Staying in Scotland, we have our least likely result of the day.  Celtic are fully expected to ease towards the SPL title this season following the demise of Rangers and have thus far won two and drawn one.  Hibs had a poor season last year; despite reaching the Scottish Cup Final, they finished in 11th place in the league.  They have had a good start to the season with two wins, one draw and one loss.  They have also been known to turn on the style in the past when playing either half of the Old Firm, so who knows?  Celtic have however just qualified for the Champions League and so their players and fans will be full of confidence.  No new signings for Hibs thus far on D-Day but Celtic have added Nigerian Efe Ambrose.  A bit of a risky signing as I hear he was previously in custardy (Ambrose... Ambrosia... Ach, never mind!)

Reliability balls: 4/10

Odds on this result: 5/1

Game 5: Rotherham United vs Bradford City
Prediction: Home win
A second appearance for Rotherham United, and Grambler fans may remember that the previous prediction involving them was correct!  The Millers have had a reasonable start to the season with four points from their opening three games.  However, Bradford sit ahead of them in the league with six points from their opening trio of matches.  Rotherham have won four of their last five home games whilst Bradford have lost four of their last five away games, which makes this prediction sound promising.  The corresponding game last season finished with a 3-0 victory for the home side, so let's hope for more of the same!  Neither team appears to have put in any effort on deadline day which limits what I can actually write here... Did you know that the Chuckle Brothers hail from Rotherham?  I didn't know this.

Reliability balls: 7/10
Odds on this result: 4/5

Game 6: West Ham vs Fulham
Prediction: Home win
Woohoo, a Premiership game featuring two teams who have been busy before the transfer window closes!  The Hammers started the season with a win but then followed it up with a 3-0 humbling at the hands of Swansea.  They have reacted to this by adding Liverpool outcast Andy Carroll to their ranks.  In case anyone thought it was a dream, Kenny Dalglish genuinely paid £35 million for him...  Fulham had a great start to the season with a 5-0 win over Norwich but lost at Old Trafford last week.  They have had a busy day, signing Dimitar Berbatov and Keiran Richardson.  West Ham fans will be hoping that Fulham's midweek sale of Mousa Dembelle to Spurs will have weakened the team.  The Hammers faithful will also expect to see a massive switch in tactics this weekend, as Sam Allardyce uses all of his management nous to change from lumping the ball up the park towards Carlton Cole to lumping the ball up the park towards Andy Carroll.

Reliability balls: 5/10
Odds on this result 6/4

Game 7: Cardiff City vs Wolverhampton Wanderers 
Prediction: Away win   
Our only away win prediction this week comes from Wales, where perennial play-off-pushers Cardiff face perennial relegation-sufferers Wolves.  Neither team has had the start to the season that they would have hoped for, each winning one, drawing one and losing one.  Cardiff have not lost in their past five home games but have drawn in three of those.  Wolves meanwhile have lost three of five away games.  However, this stretches back to their Premiership campaign where they were quite frankly awful.  Cardiff have one deadline deal to tie up, with the BBC declaring that they aim to 'capture' West Ham's Nicky Maynard.  Malky Mackay has been spotted outside Upton Park with an oversized fishing net.  Wolves may choose to start their new French signing Bakary Sako... Employing my constantly developing linguistic skills once again, I can confirm that his name translates to 'bakery sack.' 

Reliability balls: 5/10
Odds on this result: 5/2

Quickly tallying things up on the Grambulator (a modified calculator), I am told that the total odds for this week's bet shall be...


The Bobby Moore Fund will surely be chuffed with this donation which is certain to be heading their way!  

I shall be glued to Sky Sports News over the weekend, hopeful of my first sweet, sweet taste of victory.  I hereby invite you to join me for the results and analysis on Sunday evening. 

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