West Ham is the biggest club in England


It’s Friday afternoon and raining. More importantly, I have now avoided Premier League football for an entire week.

It hasn’t been easy and involved all manner of weird evasion tactics. It’s also led me to the startling conclusion that West Ham is actually the biggest club in England.

How can I say this? Simple. This is a list of all the football snippets that have snuck under my radar since last Saturday:

  1. West Ham are near the top of the league.
  2. Jose has shouted at someone.
  3. De Gea is refusing to play for Man Utd.
  4. Big Sam doesn’t like West Ham.
  5. Joey Barton is going to West Ham.

See. Who knew, eh!? Those craft cockney street urchins.

I’ve also discovered that The Sun is basically a football newspaper. Today’s front cover splash was ‘I Don’t Wanna Play’ alongside a picture of David de Gea. Their website is also stuffed full of footy gossip and half-truths. So from now on I will have to avoid the site and the huge stack of copies at my local supermarket.

My other big discovery is just how amazingly good those pesky Internet marketers are at targeting you. How else can you explain English football stories randomly appearing on a US magazine website? As I work for the US magazine in question it makes life extremely tricky. It also poses the question of why they think I want to read about Man City instead of the latest hit movie in America?

Either way it’s something to keep an eye on. Will they come to realise that they’ve missed the boat and I’m no longer interested? Or are they going to continue flinging pictures of David Silva at me on the basis that I am: a) a man; b) British?

On a more inspiring note, I have already started to fill the football-sized hole in my life with other sports. The past three days have been all about Chris Froome, Carl Froch and Sam Burgess. I have no idea what will follow, but it’ll hopefully be more of the same.

As for this weekend: well, it’s going to be my first big test. The first round of games were pretty easy to avoid but this Saturday I will be visiting my dad and our usual routine is to drink red wine and poke fun at Newcastle’s suicidal defending on MOTD. So, I am going to have to somehow divert him onto another path with a movie or game show. Or I may just have to get so drunk I don’t remember any of the games. Which is generally what happens anyway.

One other thing’s for sure: it’s not going to get any easier. On Tuesday night I dreamt about footy and every day this week I have stumbled onto some form of footy-related gossip. This is only likely to increase as the season really gets underway and the news gathers momentum.

On Tuesday I had to make an evening visit to the supermarket. As I reached for the radio I noticed it was precisely 8.59pm and the news was fast approaching. So I sat in silence the whole way there and the whole way back (just in case). Such is the stupidity that has already started to infect my life.

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