There's a post tag in the system: Dirk Kuyt Can Score. Perhaps Ed put it there. Perhaps it came from those foggy days of internet prehistory before Ed existed, a time of legend though those who should know assure me such an age truly did exist. One way or another, though, it's there.
Dirk Kuyt Can Score, it says to me. Says at me. Every time I go to put his name in as a tag, the final step in putting up a match report or news roundup, so that perhaps once in a great while somebody can choose to see what posts have been made about him in the past and go rummaging through for some worthwhile nugget or other. Still, I've clicked those tags on occasion, only to find that posts I know I've marked fail to float to the surface, a sparse few from two or three years past popping up when there should be twice as many from the last two or three months alone. And so as much as anything the tags become an extra place to make comment, a bit of spare room to sneak in a final bit of snark or a muttered curse or a winking nod. Yet when it comes time to enter "Dirk Kuyt" as the tag, I always do. It is the sort of thing I suppose one is supposed to do, after all.
And whenever I do, the helpful little ghosts in the Word Press machinery offer up an option, an addendum. Would you like to add Can Score to that tag? they ask. Perhaps it even seems a touch accusatory, as like all sports fans I can be fickle and short of memory at times. Certainly I know Dirk Kuyt can score; and certainly I know he's popped up with more than his share of clutch contributions over the years; and the part of me that enjoys strategy and tactics appreciates his work rate and positioning, his defensive efforts and the need for graft amongst the glitter for any team that aspires to the top. He's been near the head of the teamsheet for three Liverpool managers who have been loved--and been considered competent--to varying degrees. He's been at the top of the teamsheet for his national side, displacing "better" flare players along the way as he uncouthly shoves his way into one starting eleven after another.
But then he thumps a cross into the first defender. Ignores an open teammate in his labourious attempts to accelerate past a fullback. Once again displays all the touch of a rented mule, for all that I may not be entirely certain what makes rented mules a more worthy target for derision than bought ones.
It can be easy to forget, sometimes. And likely I will need reminding once again, sooner or later. But the tag is right, the helpful little algorithm, reminding me every time I type his name that on top of all the things he does that have put him atop the teamsheet for a sting of managers, he also has a way of coming through with important goals when they matter most in a way few can match.
Or, put simply: Dirk Kuyt Can Score.