Though Manchester United’s 1-1 draw at Blackburn may well have allowed Chelsea back into the title picture, Russell Brand (currently starring alongside Kristen Bell in “Forgetting Sarah Marshall”) is still pining for deposed manager Jose Mourinho in Saturday’s Guardian. “The only thing I can remember from all the press I’ve read about Avram Grant,” mused Brand, “is that his wife once drank urine on an Israeli TV show.”
When Mourinho left Chelsea he did it in the certain knowledge that he was irreplaceable. It would’ve required a manager with the looks of George Clooney, the brain of Richard Dawkins and the charisma of Charles Manson to assuage the sentimental tumult inspired by his departure. I do not like Chelsea but I was sad to see him leave and I think that I exemplify a common phenomenon in my admission that I put aside my disdain for the Blues whilst he was at the club. He made Chelsea palatable.
Figuratively the scenario is reminiscent of a girl I once dated who had an atrocious personality (cruel, racist, joyless) but a really nice arse. She was like her own arse’s irritating best mate – I had to tolerate her to get to the arse. The arse in its spellbinding beauty made her many flaws tolerable – she later revealed she’d only gone out with me because she liked my cat so don’t feel too sorry for her.
Mourinho was like that girl’s beautiful arse – while he was at Chelsea few cared that they played stifling football for a humourless billionaire, we were too busy ogling the arse. Now that gorgeous set of buns has been replaced by the saggy rump that is Avram Grant no one gives a monkey’s that the results are quite impressive, we still mourn the departure of the tanned hide of the Special One – “I hate it that you’re leaving but, boy, do I love to watch you walking away.”
I hear that some regulars at the Bridge would prefer Chelsea to be knocked out of the Champions League and to drop out of the title race just to be rid of Grant. Astonishing. As he himself pointed out, who would’ve thought when Mourinho wiggled off that Grant would still be in the running for major honours this late on in the season?
I’ve a friend who’s a season ticket holder in SW6 who swears blind that during matches Steve Clarke and Henk Ten Cate conduct tactical powwows, literally, behind Grant’s back as if snogging out of sight of an unwanted chaperone. Players are breaking ranks to announce to the press that they never would’ve joined the club to play for him and more childishly that they call him “the professor”; not in the way ArsÃ¨ne Wenger is called “the professor” – affectionately, because of his keen, tactical mind – but because they think he is a right dickhead. A dickhead professor who no one likes.