First day of the season time. What a joy. So to bring you down to earth Jon Rogers speaks to Blackburn fan and writer Mikey Delap about sad faces, blackbirds dying, abusing statues and old men drowning. Here we go again.
Jon: Last year Norwich fell out the league like a little pathetic blackbird out of a nest...Not only have I got all the bird puns out of the way, blackbird sounds a bit like Blackburn. It’s the first game of the season! Are you in the camp of ‘Cant wait!’ or ‘Here we go again’ with a sad emoji-esque face?
Mikey: I’ve got the sad-faced emoji in a prime position in my iPhone dictionary of facial fun ready for near constant use again. Sadly it’s not shaping up too well – we’re a good four players short of looking something like a squad and the fanbase enthusiasm levels are shrinking by the minute. Oh for a little bit of hope from somewhere, anywhere…
Jon: Who’s the one player Norwich fans should go OH GOD, NOT HIM. And the one player we should go OH HIM! Basically, who is good and who is not good?
Mikey: Good - Ben Marshall. For some reason he’s still hanging around the place, which seems to be testament to his mental strength and tolerance levels more than anything else. Oh and he’s not wearing an Alice Band too, so you can’t miss him. Thankfully he’s also good at football, unlike some of the others we have…
Bad - well Chris Brown left in the summer so there’s the obvious pick out of the way. So we’ll have to go with Liam Feeney, who has been at the club before and resigned on a free this summer from Bolton. Possibly as some sort of running joke, I can see no other reason other than maybe to torment long suffering fans.
Jon: Clubs like to do that. It’s their way of showing who is boss. Keeping the little man down. As we're a Norwich site - let’s talk Norwich. I would never do this, but if I put a gun to your head and screamed PICK ONE CURRENT NORWICH PLAYER YOU HAVE TO PUT IN YOUR TEAM, which one would it be and why?
Mikey: Martin Olsson. Martin Olsson. Martin Olsson. Sorry there are other options? He’s an ex-Rovers lad and I loved him when he was here. Both for the dolphin-shaped head and for the energy/enthusiasm he bought as well.
Jon: Well, he is battling with the club so he can rot on the bench at West Ham. £5m and he is yours. He can jump through hoops now. Talking of Ex-Norwich and Rovers, Paul Lambert left to manage Celtic (the world assumes) and didn’t get it. What was he like for you?
Mikey: He was ok. He didn’t have the impact we all expected and he was a mild disappointment, all in all. It would have helped his cause if he didn’t blab on about his vomit-inducing spell at Aston Villa all the time and intimating he’d want £3bn to spend in the summer given the chance. I didn’t mind him, but some went off him in record time. Which is fair enough.
Jon: You mentioned earlier you need some hope, and luck - have you ever rubbed the groin area of Jack Walker's statue? I don't know a lot but I do know for a fact that sexual abuse of a bronze figure brings football team luck.
Mikey: I can’t honestly say I’ve ever done that to Jack. Nor have I heard the saying about that bringing luck. I’ll reel off the line from Titanic for Mr. Walker… “Come back Jack, come back!!”.
Jon: I can just see his face disappear into the cold water, now. What an awful start to a season. Finally, what's the score going to be on Saturday? And where will each team finish?
Mikey: What’s the score going to be? I’d suggest you’ll win - I don’t want you to and you really shouldn’t if God is on my side but I’ll say Blackburn 1-2 Norwich. As for where we’ll finish? I’d say you’ll finish 6th. As for Rovers anything less than first should be considered failure… Or. 15th or so.
Mikey Delap is a Blackburn fan and writer. You can follow him on Twitter at @MikeyDelap