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The Midweek Moan: Xmas is over but here comes the pantomine season

Fernando Torres (right) and manager Carlo Ancelotti (left) after signing for Chelsea on the final day of the 2011 January transfer window. Photo: Nick Pott;s/PA Fernando Torres (right) and manager Carlo Ancelotti (left) after signing for Chelsea on the final day of the 2011 January transfer window. Photo: Nick Pott;s/PA

Thursday, December 27, 2012
1:54 PM

Welcome to London24’s weekly column taking a frustrated look at the world of sport and having a good old rant to get it off our chests. This week, the January transfer window...

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"There’ll be buffoonery and slapstick by bench-warming Cinderellas who think they should be playing for Barcelona, while billionaire Fairy Godmothers will attempt to splash the cash on a goose to lay the golden eggs"

James Cunliffe on the annual transfer window pantomine

That’s Christmas done for another year then. And no matter how many of your meals for the next week consist of turkey all that’s left now is the countdown to pantomime season.

Sorry, I meant the January transfer window.

Oh no I didn’t.

Oh yes I did.

Oh give me strength.

It may be a Christopher Biggins and Widow Twanky-free zone but football’s month of madness is every bit as ridiculous.

It’s the annual tradition of seeing in the New Year by tweeting a first sighting of Lionel Messi hanging around Selhurst Park.

“He’s going to sign for Crystal Palace, you say?”

“Oh no he isn’t.”

Don’t get me wrong, on deadline day you can’t beat it for drama, but just like Christmas, does it have to go on for so long?

Of course, we’ll all partake for 31 days – heck, we’ve started already - but, still, all the action will take place at the last minute. It always does.

Take the festive season for example. It seems to start in July these days, but even so, there will still be blokes frequenting petrol garages on Christmas Eve, convinced that a bumper pack of air fresheners and some screen wash is just what their missus has always wanted.

So, however much Harry Redknapp says QPR will do their shopping early, you can bet your bottom dollar that he’ll conducting interviews through his car window at 11pm on January 31.

And, just like Christmas gifts, in the transfer window you’re damned if you do and damned if you don’t.

Arsenal fans will tell you what happens when the cheque book is kept closed.

Equally, throw £50million quid at a striker that largely plays like the back end of a panto horse for two years and countless managers will bite the bullet for a mistake they didn’t make.

Tis the season to make or break a season.

Players will come, players will go and others will be cast as the villain, making a song and dance about only earning £50,000 a nanosecond.

There’ll be buffoonery and slapstick by bench-warming Cinderellas who think they should be playing for Barcelona, while billionaire Fairy Godmothers will attempt to splash the cash on a goose to lay the golden eggs.

You know the drill, it’ll be the same old story just with different protagonists playing the parts.

And in between there might just be some football.

Oh yes there will.

See, it’s started already.

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