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FIFA glitch
If FIFA Soccer were real life, football would be much more entertaining.

Enjoying your pristine boxed copy of International Superstar FIFA Fever Pitch Striker for the Segabox Supertendo? I thought so – it is, after all, the most sought after computerma-vidja game of Christmas 2016. Allegedly, Lionel Messi queued for ten hours outside his local Poundsavah (Buenos Aires) to get it, fighting off two old ladies and a dodgy comedian in the process.

Oh sorry, I think that might have been Jingle All The Way.

Anyway, here’s a game-breaking tip: sign Yanic Wildschut and place him at centre forward. Whenever you gain possession, quickly give him the ball and have him run straight for the goalmouth. This will lead to a one-on-one with the goalkeeper on 88% of occasions, resulting in a goal 75% of the time.

Effectively, Mr Ostrich’s ten team-mates will be mere accessories to his ever-increasing (max) power. Would-be assailants will instantly drop to the ground in his presence, glitching into unrecognisable immobile mutants.

After about 15 minutes, the opposition will octuple mark your man. At this point you can simply pass to a goal-hanging Billy Grigg, who is on the pitch for just this instance, to effect a simple tap-in.

Ah, how I wish real football were as easy as a video game…

See also: Football League Championship Hints and Tips Guide

Darwin’s Pro Evolution Christmas

Flattened coyote
Let this image represent Wigan Athletic in the first half.

A large problem with non-virtual football is the inability to reload the game and start afresh if you concede early. Hence, Aymen Belaid’s 9th minute tap-in was most definitely recorded on the scoreboard… and Latics could not cancel the hosts’ exuberant celebration, no matter how many times they frantically mashed the circle button.

The orange-coloured ‘Yanic button’ was well and truly depressed with a sweaty palm, which brought into effect the aforementioned ‘give it to Wildschut’ strategy. But it took half an hour for this to force ‘keeper Lewis Price from his comfortable rocking chair and reduced sugar hot chocolate drink. Even then, it was Gomez that effected the strike… which landed comfortably in the goalie’s (allegedly) hairy chest anyway.

The marauding Millers, recognising this semblance of a threat, quickly smushed the labouring Latics to a small piece of dirt like one you might find beneath your gunge-encrusted toenails. Granted, Danny Ward’s Jussi-conquering strike may have been of fortune’s making (as opposed to Marco Antoine Fortune’s making).

But the 2-0 scoreline was certainly no Dickensian Christmas miracle, no matter how hard those ardent Ticsmen protested to the contrary. That an exasperated Tom Adeyemi struck the crossbar only minutes later was proof enough that the visitors were sliding down Rotherham’s throat more smoothly than a well-gravied slice of roast turkey breast.

By first half stoppage time, Wigan had already been converted to a disgusting waste product fit only for the smelliest of compost heaps. Ward’s initial shot might have been proficiently expelled by an over-eager Jussi J, but ‘Super’ Dan Burn arrived just in time to push the ball into his own goal and award the hopping hosts a monumental 3-0 half time lead.

Last night I dreamed of Caldwell-o…

(Alright, I said I wouldn’t mention him again, but I can’t help the things I type in my sleep.)

Instead of writing a letter to Santa Claus, Warren Joyce spent Christmas compiling a long list of strategies in his exercise book. As the second half began today, he had already crossed out the first 28 – the 29th read ‘Burn Baby Burn’.

As if to atone for any blame surrounding the Millers’ third, Burn burst free of his central defensive prison cell to fetch Wildschut an unexpected bonus through ball. Gleefully obliging, Yanic dinked a one-two with Master Grigg just moments before burying the ball in many folds of elasticated netting. Oh, er… great work!

Well done! Now do it three more times.

World's Largest Potato
Just try to peel this one, sucker!

The game’s fourth goal signalled a period of intense Latics pressure, as an increasingly laid-back Rotherham issued a cheeky ‘come and get it, fatties’ challenge.

The emergent Jordi Gomez was first to try his luck, with great success. As he expertly converted Andy Kellett’s layup for 3-2, there remained more than ten exciting minutes of a game filled with defensive follies and extreme moodswings.

And those ten minutes were indeed intense, with Bilbo Grigg forcing the ball into Price’s net on one occasion… but illegally so, since Michael Jacobs assisted him with a volleyball punch. One might term them the desperate tactics of a desperate side, but not I, because they’re plainly good enough for Maradona.

Another individual might even suggest survival may now require a touch from the hand of God. Or rather, a Special One…

But your small time internet weblogger might suggest that notion is as silly as another of his obtuse metaphors embedded within all-too-subtle subtext. Kindly disregard that Twitter.com copy-paste job and go about your Christmas duties as if nothing transpired in New York (Rotherham) today. Cheers.

Second opinion

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