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Tea and Crumpets with The Blackpool Offside

l to r: Ed, Noel, and Max of The Blackpool Offside sit down for a bite and a chat

Looking ahead to Sunday's match, The Liverpool Offside recently sat down for a chat with our Blackpool counterparts

over a plate of foie gras d'oie on Cointreau seared figs and fennel leaves with a huckleberry reduction au jus over a perfectly airy crumpet, all toped with a single white truffle shaving infused with green tea. Needless to say it was a quite delightful gathering, so, without further ado, let's get on with the recap:

I suppose I should admit to not knowing a whole lot about Blackpool right off the top. I know they have "pool" and "FC" in their name, which does go some way towards endearing them. Though I also know that orange is their primary color. So, is there some vaguely worthwhile, historically relevant justification for inflicting those cornea searing shirts onto the synapses of the masses, or have you slowly numbed yourselves to their hideous luminosity over the years in order that you might sit there having a pint and a smirk while the rest of us writhe in pain?

Former director of the club Albert Hargreaves, who was also an international referee, was so impressed by the orange of the Netherlands after he officiated a game of theirs that he persuaded other directors that they should adopt the colours. They have been wearing the deep tangerine since 1923.

Also, I noticed that you have a player named Ishmel on the squad whilst perusing the interwebs for faith-based smut to satisfy my particular sensibilities. Do you know if your Ishmel happens to be any relation to that Ishmael bloke from the Bible? And is there any chance of him scoring, followed by the supporters doing some big song and dance number comparing his heroics to the creation of the 12 Tribes of Ishmael? Or failing that maybe just something out of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat? I really do think that would be fantastic to see, even if it meant conceding. Anyhow, on the off chance he's not likely to see the pitch come Sunday, any guesses on which Blackpool players are the most likely source of Old Testament pain for both our lot and yours?

Harewood: Fan of partial nudity. Could score.

As far as I know, Ismail Demontagnac is as directly related to Moses, or Adam, or God, as any of us. I don’t think there is any explicit blood link there. However, if he sticks one in then I shall be conducting some more research. Judging by your previous run of form, my suspicion is that (The Pace, The Power, The Presence TM) Marvellous Marlon Harewood could end up bothering your backline somewhat. But putting one in, I don’t know. As for you, I think your midfield mobility could end up exhausting us over 90 minutes.

Speaking of corneal insults, I just noticed that I somehow still have a Maroc Select clementines sticker clinging to the back corner of my desk from when they were in season late last year, and it strikes me that I hope both you and the Blackpool players, management, and support staff do enjoy tasty Moroccan clementines. Perhaps even in the change room after a bout of physical exertion. After all, they really are one of the tastiest snacks out there, wouldn't you agree?



Anyhow, let's get back on track: if Sam Allardyce thinks he's got what it takes to manage Real Madrid, is Ian Holloway under the impression he's next in line for the Barcelona job if Pep Guardiola ever decides to become an exclusive tailor to upper crust Catalan fashonistas, crouching hermit-like over his work in a dusty basement shop hidden amongst the bustle of La Ribera? Moreover, is it in fact the case Holloway has already spent the bonus he recieved upon Blackpool's promotion to secure just such a location and has since offered it to Guardiola gratis in an attempt to steer him towards just such a future?

I think Holloway pointed to an uncomfortable truth when he said Allardyce could manage anywhere. His brand of hoof-ball, however aesthetically unpleasant, wins games. If Barcelona ever stopped winning, he could make that happen, to a point. I can’t imagine Holloway himself being as comfortable anywhere as he is at the moment.

Many of those who follow Liverpool have recently been put on suicide watch, though even with our newfound love for all things velcro we're keeping hold of the self-importance that invariably comes with following the biggest name in club football. After all, some people who we mostly haven't heard of from before we were born didn't work their asses off so that we could be quietly content with our history and acomplishments. Now, while we do know that the world still clearly revolves around us, there has been a worrying trend so far this season with the way some of those bothersome little clubs have been setting up: namely, they don't seem to be parking the bus with quite as much zeal any more. Some are even coming out and trying for points as though they honestly think they deserve a shot at them. With that in mind, just how much blood do Blackpool FC and its fans and followers and the blind, wizened eunuchs who dye the kits seem to think is in the water as the match approaches?

I think we could perhaps get a draw or more. True to recent form, ‘bothersome little clubs’ like Northampton Town have shown that if anyone turns up and has a go, then they have a decent shot. Following the players recent ‘debate’ with the managers negative tactics at half-time when they were loosing 2-0 to Chelsea last weekend, it is clear we will play in our normal attacking style. After reverting to this we drew the second half with Chelsea, and play with little fear or respect for names.

As an outgrowth of the Schrödinger's cat thought experiment, the concept of quantum suicide and immortality suggests by way of the many-worlds interpretation of quantum mechanics that if one were to place oneself in a position where with every passing second there was a 50-50 chance of either death or survival, that with each subsequent observer-moment's passing one branching universe would be formed wherein the observer was alive and a second where the observer was dead. As such one might suggest that sport, which on top of a great deal of skill also deals in large amounts of pure chance, contains throughout the course of any given match many such observer-moments from whence parallel universes might come into being. From that one may posit a reality where Blackpool won the top flight in 1956 and went on to establish themselves as a power in English and European football to eventually, in some universe(s), be watched by an individual born of the same pairing of sperm and egg from the same parents as the "you" reading this in your perceived reality. In light of this, do you put stock in the Everett many-worlds theory, or do you instead believe reality to be a singular existence where non-deterministic events nevertheless can only ever lead to a single outcome?

As a Blackpool fan, I think there is one entirely deceptive reality that we exist in.

Never forget.

Also, seeing as Blackpool are currently everybody's favourite overachieving recently promoted darlings that they picked to finish dead last while noting that it would be nice if those plucky attack-minded kids could somehow make a little noise club, and given that some might even try and imagine a vague thematic connection between Holloway's verbosity and Phil Brown right this very second in part because they're desperate to have Gloriously Tanned Leader back on a Premiership touchline, are you expecting a Hull City-like implosion at some point in the near future? Or has there been a moment so far this term to convince you that by god there just might be a chance to secure a spot above Liverpool in the final table of the season?

I don’t think that we are moulded in the same shape as Hull F.C., but our future may well be. To be successful you either need intense levels of investment, or you need to adopt a pragmatic way of paying football; happily, these are two things that are entirely incompatible with Blackpool or the football club under the present management.

I know it's all a rather pedestrian way to wrap things up, but I do have to ask at some point: just what do you expect your mood to be at the end of the upcoming match, and are there any unlikely wagers you'd be tempted to make a quick buck on in relation to said match?

We will be proud. I’d stick a fiver on a score draw.

Well, that makes one of us who's sure that Liverpool will score. In any case, thanks again to Max of The Blackpool Offside. I also answered a set of questions for him, so if you've got the time (and I know you do on a Saturday where Liverpool aren't playing), you should check things out over at his blog for the other half of the conversation.

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