Talking Sport: Winners tagged with ‘boring’ label

Trevor Watson
Trevor Watson

It was ironic that two of the weekend’s big winners should be labelled boring.

Chelsea, who became Premier League champions, and boxer Floyd Mayweather, crowned undisputed world welterweight champion, were criticised for the predictable way they ground out victories.

A manager once said: ‘If they want entertainment, let them go to the circus,’ and that’s how the professionals see it. How many sports supporters would prefer to see their team entertain and lose or bore and win?

Derby County scored 85 goals in the Championship and didn’t make the play-offs. They’d have settled for 20 less and a place in the top six.

Chelsea can’t be that bad. They are 13 points clear and only Man City have scored more goals. When they lost 5-3 at Tottenham in the new year you could almost hear them say that’s enough, give no more away and we win the title.

I’m no fan of Jose Mourinho, The London media pay too much homage to him. His statements are like hand-downs from Mount Olympus, but he knows how to win and is a superb organiser, I’d be happy with him in charge of my team.

Mayweather clearly thought the same as Mourinho before his fight: ‘Nowt daft and I win.’ He was bigger, faster and stronger than Manny Pacquiao and rarely gave him a chance. So the so-called Fight of the Century could add the word ‘Tedious’ in front of it. But winners can laugh and losers do what they like.

There was entertainment of a sort at Blackpool when their game with Huddersfield Town had to be abandoned after supporters invaded the pitch and refused to move.

Two reasons spring to mind. First is that the interlopers were Town supporters dressed up as Blackpool fans hoping to get the game called off and then claim the three points which would take Huddersfield above Leeds. The second is the state of the pitch made spectators think they were going on the beach.

You look at Blackpool’s ground and the one at Wigan, where football and rugby league are played, and compare them with Huddersfield which looked a picture against Leeds Rhinos. Somebody there certainly got something right when the pitch was laid and since cared for.

By the way what has happened to the penalty kings in recent weeks? Match after important match and penalties are being missed by top players. Superstar Lionel Messi blundered in a European tie against Man City.

Last weekend Steve Gerrard and Robin Van Persie missed from the spot while Eden Hazard at Chelsea needed to score from the rebound after his miss.

At one time a penalty was regarded as a free goal - older generations might recall Aston Villa full-back Stan Lynn getting a hat-trick of them in one game. Now it’s become a lottery. At least it’s not boring.

England’s cricketers lost to the West Indies and the reaction really was boring: ‘Bring back Kevin Pietersen’.