Friday 18 October 2013

Week 7 - A-Grambling we will go

Question: Why is Big Wean Rooney wearing that stupid looking black headband?  He takes it off at the end of every game and there isn’t a mark on him; so why?  Is it to prevent his hairweave getting damaged if he heads the ball?  Wimp.  I heard the whole team is a bunch of wimps.  Apparently, they all got a touch of the sniffles so the team was renamed Man Flu-nited.  Boom boom!  Hey that is worthy of our esteemed founder that one is.  Anyway, time for a song -

I love to go a-grambling
Along the mountain track
And as I go, I love to sing
My knapsack on my back
Grambleee, grambleah
Grambleee, grambleah,
Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha
Ha.  Ho ho ho.  Hee hee hee etc. etc. ad infinitum

Thank you the Obi wan kenobekirchen Children’s Choir who start us off this week with a happy toon.  Why so happy?  Because last week’s Grambler predictions gave us a fine return of 14 point zero 8 of your British pounds.  And that made The Grambler’s Kick Cancer’s Arse Fund happy which in turn made the Bobby Moore Fund happy.  So everybody’s happy!

Will this week’s predictions make everyone so happy?  There is only one way to find out…

GRAMBLE!!! (Even Harry Hill’s getting in on the act)

This week we are able to choose from 56 games.  Only 56, I hear you ask (I don’t really hear you. How could I hear all 7 of you at once. That would be silly! Mind you we could all be in the same room.  But then, some of you would have to have travelled across continents to get here.  A rather expensive way of taking what I say literally, don’t you think.).  But last week there were 71 to choose from.  Why so few?  Well, dear reader, I make it a point that the only games for The Grambler to select from are those in the senior leagues (Yes, I know. But last week was an exception.) and only those which kick off at 3pm on a Saturday.  Yes Saturday Mr Sky.  3pm Mr BT.  Not Friday evening, not Saturday evening, not Sunday at any time and definitely not Monday evening.  3pm Saturday.  Not any other time.  Do you know how many Premiership games are on this Saturday, the 19th of October at 3pm?  Six!  Six!!  Can you believe that?  Out of a possible 12 games only six take place at what is the traditional and, in my view, correct time of 3pm on a Saturday.  The rest are earlier, later or on Sunday.  Flipping TV companies!  I don’t know!  They think they can give these clubs millions upon millions of pounds and expect to get something in return!  Soooo selfish.

Game – Result – Odds

Oldham Athletic vs Carlisle United – Draw – 5/2

The first prediction from The Grambler takes us to Boundary Park where the Latics (short for Athletic.  Why not Letics, then?  That would make more sense.) play host to the Cumbrians.  The Grambler reckons that Oldham can take a point from this game and why not?  Having drawn two of their past three games, it’s a possibility.  They are not a team used to winning, having won only twice this campaign; the last time being on the 24th of August.  Carlisle, on the other hand, are on a bit of a run right now with their past four games being three wins and a draw.  The teams seem fairly evenly matched; Carlisle currently sit 15th in the table with Oldham four places down at 19.  At the end of last season just two places separated them (Carlisle 17th and Oldham 19th).  Previous meetings between these clubs are also evenly matched – over the past dozen games (Why a dozen, you ask?  Why not, I answer.  It’s as good a number as any.) Carlisle just edge it with 4 wins to Oldham’s 3.  That leaves 5 draws.  Another draw today would make us and The Grambler very happy.  However, last season’s meetings finished with Carlisle the victors on both occasions.  Can they keep it going this season?  Hmm.

Portsmouth vs Bury – Home – 10/11

Not them again!  Yes we are off to Fratton Park where Pompey play host to the Shakers.  The Grambler seems to like Portsmouth; third time they have been selected in five weeks.  He/she/it has yet to predict that Portsmouth would lose.  Like the last prediction, The Grambler reckons that they will win and who can doubt it after what happened?  Remember the resounding 3-0 victory against Rochdale two weeks ago?  It is quite possible given that Bury are as crap as Portsmouth – they both got relegated from Division 1 (Or 3 if you live in the real world.  Premiership indeed.  Has nobody realised that premier means first?  As in first division!).  Sorry.  My usual rant.  I do apologise.  Where was I?  Oh yes, both teams are crap.  Yes.  Let us just hope that Portsmouth are the less crappy in this one.

Motherwell link: Yassin Moutaouakil – used to play for the ‘Well.  Told you that two weeks ago.  You remember?  You do.  The fans sung the View to a Kill song.  I told you.  The James Bond theme.  I did tell you.

Kilmarnock vs Ross County – Away – 9/5

Our third selection takes us north of the border to the land of kilts, shortbread and entrepreneurs who can sell such tat to the visiting English.  And it’s off to Rugby Park where Killie (Home of the famous Killie pie.  Mmm.  They’re delicious.  Now available at a store near you.  I don’t get paid for this, you know.  So, if anyone wants to let the Killie pie company know that I am promoting their absolutely mouth-wateringly scrummy pies, I don’t mind.  Might get a freebie or two out of it.) play host to the Staggies.  Are you looking Watford fans?  Their emblem has a stag on it so they are called the Staggies.  Not the wasps or bees.  Bloody great moose on your emblem and you call your club the Hornets?  I don’t know, I really don’t.  Sorry, getting carried away there [You should be – Ed].  Right, to business; The Grambler has predicted that County will beat Kilmarnock.  Hmm.  Last season’s three meetings went twice in Kilmarnock’s favour with 1-0 and 3-0 scorelines and the other game was a 0-0 draw.  So, going by that, it would seem unlikely that Ross County would win this.  But, judging by the way this season has started, The Grambler might well have this one correct.  Kilmarnock sit in 11th place on a measly three points, still to win a game.  Only the fact that Hearts began the season on minus 15 points and have so far only clawed back 8 of them keeps Killie from bottom spot.  Ross County haven’t had a great start to this campaign either, but they have at least got a taste of winning having taken maximum points three times so far.  Yes, I think I am with The Grambler on this one.

Motherwell links: Ross County’s manager Derek Adams played for the ‘Well from 1998 to 2004 making 159 appearances and scored 19 goals.  Brian McLean played in defence for Motherwell between 2005 and 2009.  Goalkeeper Mark Brown Spent a couple of seasons with the ‘Well from 2001-02.  He only played 19 games though;  Stevie ‘Teflon’ Woods was number one choice throughout his stay.  Talking of goalies, Ross County second choice Michael Fraser also spent some time at Motherwell – mainly sitting on the bench – thanks to the arrival first of John Ruddy (sometime England international) and then Darren Randolph (Ireland international).  No wonder he moved on!  And we’re not done yet.  Defender Steven Saunders began his career with Motherwell in 2008 and was getting a regular start until injury problems.  This year he was finally released and moved to Ross County.  Blimey, half the squad is ex-Motherwell.

Hamilton Academicals vs Raith Rovers – Draw – 13/5

The fourth of The Grambler’s predictions takes us to New Douglas Park where the Accies play host to the Rovers.  Did you know Hamilton Acedemicals are the only British professional football side to have originated from a school football team.  Did you also know that there is no such place as Raith?  At least not related to this football team.  They come from Kirkaldy.  How interesting…yawn.  This looks like an interesting encounter, though.  Accies have had a brilliant start to the season winning 6, drawing 2 and losing only 1 and sit top of the table.  Rovers have not had too bad a start either losing only 1 of the 8 so far played and sit in 4th spot.  Both teams are free scoring this season – Rovers have scored 15, Accies 13 – but Accies are better defensively, having shipped only 4 compared to Rovers 10.  How did results go in previous meetings?  The last two times they played Hamilton won both games 2-0.  The two games prior to that went Rovers’ way 1-0 and 2-0.  Accies finished last season only two spots above Rovers.  Two evenly matched teams then but, the way Accies are playing at the moment, I would reckon the home advantage will see them take all points.  But, hey, what do I know?  The Grambler has humbled me a few times over the past few weeks – if he/she/it has got it right again, I am happy to be humbled.  Again.

Motherwell link: Rovers forward Callum Elliott spent some time with the ‘Well back in 2006 when he was loaned out by the Jambos.

East Stirlingshire vs Queen’s Park – Home – 8/11

And Finally, Cyril?  And finally Esther (Now do you understand what I am on about?  No?  Oh well, that’s life I suppose.) The Grambler takes us to Ochilview Park (yes, Stenhousemuir’s ground.  East Stirling groundshare with them.) where the Shite…sorry, Shire play host to the Spiders.  Now last time The Grambler picked Queen’s Park they were slap bang at the bottom of Scottish Division 2 (4!) and on that very day they picked up their first point.  Where are they now?  Er…sitting at the bottom of Division 2 (4!) on one point.  Can this be the same Queen’s Park that finished last season in 3rd place.  What of East Stirlingshire?  They finished last season in 10th place (of 10) so they must be pretty crappy too…Oh, currently sitting at the top, eh?  Hmm.  Amazing though it may seem, the Shire have had a brilliant start to this season – 7 played, won 5, lost 2.  They must be getting dizzy being that high in the league!  In fact, in seven games so far this season they have amassed almost twice as many points as the East Stirlingshire team managed in a full season of 36 games back in 2004 – during their spell of propping up the league five years running – when they got a grand total of 8 points.  No doubt their nickname was indeed the Shite back then.  That was then, things are different now and in my humble opinion, The Grambler has called it right.  Come on the Shite!

Well, there you have five predictions and no clunkers amongst ‘em.  Unfortunately, by playing it a bit safer this week The Grambler has kept the actual odds quite low.  Notice there are no 5/1s or 6/1s in there.  So the odds this week are a fairly low (no fanfare required) 116/1.

Of course there is the cowardy bet – you know 10 doubles – which, if The Grambler gets everything spot on will give odds of 71/1.

Thus, if my 20p accumulator and 20p doubles bet comes off, it will net The Grambler’s Kick Cancer’s Arse Fund £37.61. 

Not exactly a fortune, but if we all won and put that money into the fund….

And so ends another week’s Grambling.  I am going to end on a sober note.  Hic.  I have been reading through Stewart’s (our esteemed founder) posts and happened upon the one he wrote on the 12th of January.  It was written the day after he was told that he had only days, perhaps hours, to live.  It is poignant, yes.  It is written by someone who thought this would be his final post.  But it is still full of humour – the payoff is perfect.  Please read and smile.  And realise that this was written by a 27 year-old man dying of bowel cancer - a disease that the government tells us should be checked out by over 50s.  Tell everyone you know about Stewart.  Tell them that young people can get bowel cancer too.  Add that 21 teenagers are diagnosed with bowel cancer every year.  See

And while you're about it, get everyone you know to read and learn from this blog.

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