The Independent teased us with what sounded like an arty documentary when describing the Chelsea manager’s efforts to navigate his team out of the doldrums. 'Conte’s late-night blues’ BBC4 at 22:00; perhaps with a soothing Bob Harris narration and a large dollop of archive footage.
The Mirror were having none of that. A big splash on Daniel Sturridge combined with a riff on the nickname of his loan club gave us ‘Sturridge Has His Baggies Packed’ and normal service was resumed. Extra points should go to The Mirror for not saving all their punning efforts for the top six. This could be the biggest news of the season for West Bromwich Albion fans.
West Brom stayed in the news (even if it was only by association with Liverpool) when the manager of their opponents claimed that the video assistant referee system was cheating us all of minutes in the game. This is a story that isn’t going to go away and neither will the various uses of VAR we can expect to see into the future.
Possibly just around the corner, our headline writers are salivating at the prospect of having a certain Dortmund player to conjure with. I hope someone is keeping all these back pages away from Pierre. He might decide he doesn’t much fancy England after all.
Midfield General. (Ret.)