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Ok, I admit that I've failed somewhere before. But anyway welcome. Just a brief intro on what you should expect here:
1. Football. Not gonna post much of that any soon since season is over. :S
2. Anime, Games, etc. Just abt anything conceivable under the Japanese radar barring anything and everything Rule 34. Now that's illegal. Period. -.-;
3. Music. Everything to do with it is listed under the tab.
5. Unacceptable humour: Anything and everything is fair game here. As long as I don't get rounded up by the ISA. -.-'

6.
The Known World=Fantasy world building in process. I: Used to be glossary, now devoted to random rambling; II: Character Concepts; III: Lore.
7. der Wolf=my Fictionpress account under the moniker Tsumujikaze no Soujutsu. A Ranger's Tale is hosted under this page. :)
8. New section now upped. Maybe I should also gun for upping A Ranger's Tale here since I do have this funny feeling that traffic coming to here is way more than whatever I'll get in FP.

Statement of intent: Everything said here is a figment of personal opinion, be it me or anybody commenting. I try to be responsible, but my parents=/=parents of the world.

@Druid of Luhn: Crap. Should have remembered far earlier to give you the credit for your CSS text box code. :(

A/N: But sadly, it seems that your CSS text box code has now been halved efficiency wise. :(

That most important note I should have added: Any images posted in this blog are NOT my own stuff. I got them from Google image search, I don't earn any shit by being a thief and liar. Those responsible for the pictures, rest assured that you all are great artists in your own regards. Sadly, we all know what limited space means in terms of posting.

Latest Note: Changed alignment for my page widgets due to my worry that I can't centre align the thing.

Note on A Ranger's Tale: In case any complaining fella wants to have a legal case with me, let this be known that A Ranger's Tale is rated M by default. I've upped the swearing and somewhat a bit on the dark/gritty factor. You all have been warned, let no little boy and girl enter the forbidden realm.

Latest on ART: A Ranger's Tale now starting to kick back in gear. But I really hate the insanely fluctuating climate here in S'pore.

P.S: Oh, and one more thing. Vid below is yet another ideal OP for A Ranger's Tale.

Friday, 14 December 2012

Personal assessment on North East football thus far... (Finale)

Foreword: This time round, no more Mr Nice Guy for this post means no censoring of all the wrong words. Proceed with caution 'cuz the line break aspect of the interface got screwed.

In the Spirit of 1986 we still trust...

Lowdown on Boro's (fucked) history

Hit with a 3 points ban over some decision made pertaining to that Blackburn match N years ago
Verdict: Might have been fucked
(I don't really have a clear idea on that episode to be fair)

Aliadiere got red card, Lampard Y U NO RED CARD???
Verdict: Confirmed fucked
(I have a clear cut idea on that episode)

Mido got racially abused, a gay Geordie bastard responsible went unbanned
 Verdict: Thoroughly fucked
(Although this had nothing to do with our fierce rivals collectively)

Gibson fucked it by appointing Gareth Southgate, we got relegated as a result
Verdict: Mightily fucked
(Although I still have to laud Southgate for being a worthy stalwart as a player)

Southgate got sacked, we got a Strachan-saurus instead
Verdict: Still remained fucked
(Although I'll have to admit that Strachan's only problem was down to a few wrong decisions made)

Strachan-saurus invoked an intentional suicide through a comet summoning ritual
Verdict: At least Scottish dinosaur knew we couldn't afford to remain fucked
(Tore up contract, said "fuck myself, I'm gonna man up" #RESPECT)

Mogga came out of the mountain, Gibson asked him to
Verdict: Recovering from getting fucked
(Liu Bei can't do any shit they said, got Zhuge Liang coming from Longzhong they never said)

Mogga saved our ass, pundits predicted we would be fucked next season
Verdict: Pundits got fucked
(Mogga managed to pull off vengeance Fa Zheng style b/c of one ranting episode as WBA gaffer)

10 players gone adrift, Mogga signed 12 blokes soon to be lads of steel
Verdict: Someone apart from the Boro needed to be fucked
(Come December... MOGGA Y U SUDDENLY LOOK LIKE XUN YU???)

Got Manager of the Month they said, it will kill our season they also said
Verdict: We could have gotten far more seriously fucked
(MOGGA Y U STARTING TO LOOK LIKE ZHAO YUN???)

Fucked Sunderland, narrowly fucked by Swansea

Verdict
Got Nicole Scherzinger in Boro jersey they said, Park Shin Hye and BoA will never don the red they (?) also said


Manager of the Month=Will it kill our season?
Firstly, let me say that I believe in science where superstitions are concerned. Even if we're talking about a jinx, we really had to be thankful that the award came for the month of October. December can wait all the way until April next year. Because come March 2013, that's where the real fun starts.

So what's your take on last season, SSB Kuok?
Firstly, let me say that I'm mightily chuffed for Mogga and our lads if we're talking about all that pre-match doomsayers. Interestingly enough, Mogga actually lost it during his only Premiership season with West Bromwich Albion. A lot had changed since then. Mogga had wised up immensely, Mogga had exacted revenge on the couch potatoes righteously. But while any SSB will take a 7th spot at any day, I firmly believed we could have fared better. But it's not really the team's fault to be fair.

So who's fault was it then? 
The most obscene word ever present might not be consistency or even quality. It's called depth. One season will always be extremely damning worst come to worst. In fact, this is the current choice faced by our fiercest rivals across the Tyne due to a dual front fought atm.

Simply put, we're screwed by this very d-word. We didn't have the depth necessary to last the distance where it mattered the most. Prior to the March fixtures, we're still holding on with a decent chance still beyond mere stats of points. After March, everything was only possible upon merits of theory and sightings of Aeranath lurking around. [1] Most notably, Rhys Williams sporadic appearances due to injury could be deem as the most significant factor.

So what contributed to that WTF season thus far?
To be fair, the couch potatoes would have sounded far more creditable if we're talking about talking cock for this season. [2] But no matter what, the start of this season didn't seem that bang off the tracks. (Not so) Amazingly enough, the season is a marathon, NOT a sprint. [3] In fact upon signing 12 new players to replace the other 10 cutting themselves adrift, the sight of far lesser opposition during the pre-season friendlies [4] didn't seem that exciting. But yet, I believe I know why. The key was:

1. By arranging such fixtures, this was Mogga's way to settling the squad far more gradually due to the massive turnover of players, old and new.

2. Another half of the key lies the very fact that Mogga didn't want the media to take any notice of who's playing who where the true blue Red Lions [5] were concerned. And herein, we could really see the marked improvement on how Mogga handles the press. Simply put, any publicity is good for celebrities, but definitely not for any football team. [6]

Life ain't a bed of roses, lads. That's the Teesside way
1986 should be remembered as a year of miracle. We weren't supposed to survive that liquidation shit, but we did anyway. We dropped down immediately after clawing back into the First Division (which was basically the prototype of the Premiership we all know so well of now), but there's no need to feel butt sore over this. Because we could have gone "bamf!" like Nightcrawler himself bar the result of appearing back again somewhere nearby. Steve Gibson deserved the best plaudits for having the kind of passion and humility so sorely missing from the current world of English football. [7]

1986, we have two key men to note. Now since I can only write this much, I can only do unto here. Bruce Rioch needs no introduction. Mogga is still the man. He once said a few weeks back that football in Teesside has never been about trophies and silverware. The good people at Teesside basically have a common identity called football.

Giving your best is the only way to repay them, Mogga said. We won't be mocked by idiots, Mogga never said.

And speaking of Mogga, I'll have to say that he's a different Mogga compared to his years at West Bromwich Albion and Celtic. When he first made his name known, it was actually quite a good number of years after he took the plunge into football managing. Imagine the shock the local press must have received back then just because the lads at Hibernian suddenly looked weirdly like a bunch of auld enemies hailing from Saltburn-by-the-Sea. That was when Mogga's stock hit the shelves (as the Hibs' gaffer, he actually won  the SFWA Manager of the Year 04/05. Something that truly created a WTF trend in the Old Firm itself). But yet, his tactical naivety caused WBA's relegation into the Championship after it's first season in the top flight post Bryan Robson.

And as if things couldn't be worse, his tenure at Celtic was equally, if not more disastrous than ever. Apparently, it might be a case of the Old Firm dressing room disagreeing with his own football philosophy since everyone had gotten used to the Martin O'Neill's Monster Brand and Gordon Strachan's Strachan-saurus Brand. Neil Lennon's own brand is basically the same thing anyway. Lost the dressing room, you're fucked.

Another thing he couldn't play that well is a game of mind games. During that infamous moment of batshit craziness in the build-up of WBA's match against Fulham, he truly lost it and Fulham promptly made smoked ham out of the Baggies. Not a pretty sight and things never got anywhere better from henceforth onward.

Fast forward to Gibson's decision and what we see right now is a new and far improved Mogga. If the Mogga of old was a firm believer of swashbuckling fencing, then the Mogga of now is far more of a grizzled ranger who can combine a fluid swordplay with the type of mental steel so typified by our very own unique tendency to survive like a bunch of resilient mutants post-radiation apocalypse. [8]

In fact, I can pretty much liken Mogga with Guo Jia as in both are exceptional planners who can turn the opponents onto the backfoot through preemptive strategy and unexpected in-the-middle measures.

Which basically comes to mind a marked improvement in playing mind games. I really have to take my hat off him because right now, he understood how the rabid media hounds work in the business, he truly able to use these very same hounds out for blood to his own advantage. Simply put, if you can't silence them, redirect them.

And the Sky pundits said it's down to a deadly blend of experience and youth? Utter bullshit then!
Well, to be fair, I actually enjoy seeing whatever Sky Sports has to say on any footballing reports/articles thus far with the only issue being that we can only see the starting 11 with nothing said on who got subbed down by who during when. Coupled with the fact that whatever you'll see in the formation might not be the one starting the match [9], things are bound to get a wee bit complicated if your brain can't turn itself around fast enough. It's like telling Lionel Messi to dribble the ball past 5-6 players without telling him which bloke wearing what number is capable of what.

But yet, there are certain things that you will understand provided you really know your layman stuff, team specifically wise of course. If ESPN Soccernet is for those within the layman circles, then Sky Sports is something for those who have progressed far enough. Neither should be seen as better than the other [10] apart from understanding the difference between a primary school education and a secondary school education, i.e. if you can't even grapple whatever being said in Soccernet, it means you're an idiot.

So onto the matter at hand. When Peter Beagrie heaped immense praises on the whole "experience and youth, he wasn't exactly lying. Or rather he didn't talk any pointless cock. But yet, without a decent depth to say the least, we wouldn't reach even three quarters of what we're capable of now. Which comes to mind on what I've said in terms of Mogga's choice of pre-season friendlies. Apparently, he's way far cleverer than your stereotypical Teesside mutant and certain blokes are quite obviously dumber than your stereotypical mutant. Which comes to mind this:

ROCKLIFFE Y U SO GAMBIT????

There's a particular character always getting nerfed in terms of badassery. Yes, we all know Wolverine, Cyclops, Jean Grey, Storm, yadah, yadah, yadah... but someone forgot to inform the film makers that they should just say "fuck it, let's just include Remy LeBeau just because he's a badass Cajun". And to think Taylor Kitsch only made a sidekick appearance in the Wolverine movie. [11]

Now just like Gambit himself, our very own local talents have more often than not been overlooked by the media hype. A fortunate thing I will say because no one gives a single two shit about Middlesbrough. Which means our lads can just concentrate on their football.

In fact one interesting fact I'm seeing from Dave Parnaby's lads is this: back during the years where David Wheater, Tony MacMahon, Andrew Taylor and Adam Johnson, our Academy team were marching like a well organised Elven army decked in shiny armour, equally shiny weapons and shinier magic. But now, our youths seem far removed in terms of material glory. It's like witnessing an ethnic devolution where the current Asrai [12] are concerned. But that doesn't mean any shit. If there's anything to go by, one of the biggest dangers posed forth in the modern English game is the "fuck the process, fuck the age levels, just go for three points or at least one" logic.

Case in point: Have we ever seen the Barcelona B team owning the rest of the Segunda División bar the occasional rare moment?

Parnaby Sr is no fool. He knows that if you're totally result oriented at the non-professional stage, you'll end up going rigid mode. No bollocks to take the fall. no bollocks to even try a shit. Pre-adult status is all about learning. If you don't know how to fall, you'll never know how to walk. Let alone trying to run and soar.

Again case in point: How long did it take Lionel Messi to take the world football by storm? His talent has always been so glaringly apparent, even Los Blancos got blinded by his Blaugrana glory. But yet, it seems that La Masia's órdenes sagradas has a very special rule. And it's called órdenes escondido.

So it's truly a combination then!
So far so good, bar our professional signings, we have quite a few promising lads managing to impress thus far.

1. Seb Hines. His own goal killed us at the Liberty Stadium, but he still a good lad at the centre two. In the past, his progress had been stalled by freak (?) injuries. Yet, I do believe that his biggest issue was far more into the maturity end. Now come post jaw op, he made a comeback that's pretty much absurd so as to say. You can virtually call him that comeback bloke where I should just proceed to draw a somewhat similar parallel with how Jaime Lannister coped with the loss of his right hand. [13]

His strength: One word. Physical presence. He's the kind of guy who can win you some vital 50-50 aerial balls and given the fact that he can operate alternatively as a defensive midfielder, it's pretty much of a no brainer that decent mobility and tackling ability is truly there.

2. Adam Reach. Granted I'm not too sure what happened to him thus far, but I'm at least pretty much sure he wasn't loaned out. Mogga won't be that stupid anyway. So far this season, he has justified the tag of being George Friend's closest competitor by default for the leftback role. In him, I'm seeing another Andrew Taylor so as to speak. Although I can't be that sure on whether Taylor is the kind of player relying on pace or acceleration, one thing I can be very sure is that Reach belongs to the latter mold. And in a fullback position, it means that he's far towards a defensive leftback rather than an overlapping offensive fullback like Joe Bennett last time round.

His strength: Perhaps it's not really down to how he can surge up and down the field. Perhaps it's not even down to a crossing ability that is pretty deadly (which also constitutes to a certain ability on dead ball/set piece taking). But rather, Mogga actually stated that this kid is absurdly versatile. Not only can he played at the left wing as well as an orthodox out-and-out winger, but at the same time there's a possibility that he can play on the right where cutting in and shoot is an equivalent to a ranger's assault in your typical epic fantasy. Mogga has said that he still need more time to decide where is his best position. My take here is rather different: Try not to shoehorn his own mentality where everything is like "oh, this-or-that position is your best position, bai". It will kill his career for good because the greatest problem with English players is that they tend to see themselves in the whole 'my best position" self-suggestion. This is utter bullshit and it will be a tragedy if I'm to see this kid going down such a path.

3. Luke Williams. The attacking equivalent of Adam Reach so as to speak. Like Marvin "Fantastisch" Emnes, he can operate anywhere in the forward line.

His strength: Winger only in name at first, he can play at either wing or a central striker role. To me, the only difference between him and Emnes is that Emnes has the gift of better ball control while Williams has a far better tendency to go mano-a-mano. Simply put, it's down to the basic difference of an out-and-out player and a player who can drift in between the flank and centre.

And if we're talking about experience...

1. Scott McDonald. When the internet warriors declared that he wasn't good enough,that he's just a big fat Aussie leech drowning his wages into bottle after bottle of Foster's [14], I laughed at them. The only reason why they can say McDonald couldn't be arsed to do anything was down to the fact that he didn't really score enough last season. The only catch? He didn't play that much as well due to persistent injuries. I've seen far more than enough to suggest that the predator in him has yet to say "begone!"

His strength: Firstly, if the rumours behind some Arab team is true, then I'll really have to give him two thumbs up. He knows that there's plenty to offer from his finishing, that there's not much point earning loads of oil dollars where in fact staying put and knuckling down is still the best option thus far. One of the most poignant moment must have came during one particular match (I forgot which one though) where Mogga told an orthodox striker/forward to play *gasp* at the left wing! Of course Scott never made a single complaint because Mogga must have given him the kind of lecture that only Professor Charles Xavier can truly afford to Scott Summers himself.
...that McDonald scored from the left, dongsaeng. *GASP!*

2. Marvin Emnes. I really like this fella taking the black. Brendan Rodgers actually tried persuading him to stay. Once during Mogga's recall and the second time when he and Leroy Lita were linked to Swansea. Yes, we're talking about the same ol' Northern Irish Jack who became a Scouse. [15]

His strength: My take on him is pretty simple. He's far more of a winger/wing forward where a far more central role should be something reserved for someone like Luke "I'm your father..." Williams. Granted both can slot into the front two at any given time, but due to the difference in play, I would prefer to put this Dornish lad in a withdrawn position just behind the main striker. He can dribble, has a good turn of pace and speed plus scoring the goals and assists as well. Coupled with the fact that together with Emmanuel Ledesma, an inter-switching wing forward play will be devastating indeed.

3. Jonathan "Woody" Woodgate. He offered to play for us where in fact he could have stayed at Stoke. [16] I don't care who was the one making the first move, Gibson or Woody. All I care about are the most heartwarming moments where envisioning a hometown Anglo Saxon donning our red jersey is concerned. In a world where you can't really decide whether the FA should just let the agents be fucked on the spot [17], Woodgate's "Fuck agent, Fuck the money, Fuck the fame" [18] attitude is indeed the North East attitude of 1986.

His strength: A waste of time and resources, they said. 1st world status in reading of the game, they never said. That's the story of every couch potato that doesn't even look remotely like Wayne Rooney himself. I don't think I need to speak out the obvious, guys. If you all still don't understand the cold hard truth, here's something for you morons to chew about:
Can't do a shit, they said. Capable of bitch slap, they never said.
An eerie blast from the Far East past
Have to end this fast now. Mom's bitching from her room. >.< But anyway, I'm wondering if we can emulate the example of the King of Yue (越王), Gou Jian (勾践). You see, the State of Yue (越国) was destroyed by the State of Wu (吴国) back during the Spring and Autumn Period of ancient China. (春秋时代) Long story short, young Gou Jian was spared because the King of Wu believed him to be an insignificant gnat. Gou Jian forced himself to sleep upon a bed of firewood while tasting the bitterness of bile in order to persevere and not forgetting the humiliation. (卧薪尝胆)

In fact, I'm right wondering whether a zonal rule is possible. Simply put, Gou Jian's determination was forged by years spent in adversity and humility. Through able advisers, he's able to undermine the State of Wu subtly. If Gou Jian's mental resilience is something we're able to emulate, why not applying his latter means of actual undermining so as to speak?

Let's just see the concept this way. How/When should we control one half of the pitch or two third of the pitch? Be noted that this is just two of the overall fractional maths applicable. Ok, have got sleep now. ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ

[1]: And speaking of Aeranath, I need to kick myself up the ass in order to do some much needed reviewing at FictionPress since the Roadhouse Forum is getting a bit more livelier now. Plus you all should now understand why I implicate Park Shin Hye and BoA into the whole lulz. SHyn Corp and the Constricters will hunt me down like a cur for that.
[2]: Of course that doesn't mean anything on a major hindsight anyway. There are pundits who can talk sense, but not all of them. :S
[3]: Mr Eric "politically incorrect" Soh, you taught me this truth.
[4]: Apart from our 5-0 drubbing of the Spurs youth team.
[5]: No offence to my local national team this time round though since our local Lions do have a marked improvement so far in the AFF Suzuki Cup. I'm using the relevant context, you see...
[6]: Ironically, segregation of status between A listers and the rest applicable to football as well.
[7]: Just a shout out to Carl "Carling" Jan De Vries. You once said that you hope to see Steve Gibson go broke just because you can't stand this kid here shooting his mouth off years ago during NSF. It's fine. It's okay. We all do/say stupid things in life because life is all about learning. 1986 is the best proof of fortitude evolution. ;)
[8]: And the best proof comes from a strong team layout Swansea had set out for us. 4-5-1 is a bluff call and Michael Laudrup is no idiot to tell his Jacks "hey, let's play humchi football for today!"
[9]: Still remember how I was nearly conned in believing that Brendan Rodgers started with a 4-2-3-1 against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge where in fact he actually started with a 5-3-2 wtf show.
[10]: Although I had to correct a certain error made by the media during the last Euro's Spain vs France where someone said Debuchy was fielded as that extra righback in order to shackle Iniesta. And Soccernet became the first victim so as to speak.
[11]: And even then, Remy LeBeau didn't do any major shit as well. Damn, I missed Bryan Singer... >.<
[12]: This is only for those nerds who know the Warhammer Fantasy lore. Or maybe we can see things this way - Geordies=Asur (High Elves), Mackems=Druuchii (Dark Elves), we Smoggies=Asrai (Wood Elves)
[13]: The Kingslayer has Brienne of Tarth, I'm very sure that Seb will have a worthy girlfriend soon enough as well.
[14]: Wonder if this is truly something AnalAlex will drink though. I did hear that Foster's is a shit brew.
[15]: Although that was before Rodgers jumped aboard to the Kop stand.
[16]: And there's also another Robert Huth still there.
[17]: Or so dictated by Sir A.Fergie.

Some really badass clips in their own respect: