I still can't get over the hilarity of Southampton firing Nigel Adkins after Wednesday's 2-2 result at Stamford Bridge. I mean, I know he was all Happy Gilmore and smiling just a bit too much for a man whose team was barely above the relegation zone, but still. Were they really expecting anything more than that? How bizarre. SOUTHAMPTON ARE RUINING FOOTBALL!
Oh well. Next!
Busy day of non-Chelsea football on this Saturday that sees most of Britain and Europe in the clutches of Snowmageddon. One place where there's no snow: Africa! South Africa, to be precise, where the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations kicks off. I wonder if Tshabalala will get to tshabalalaaaaaaaaaaa another one into the top far corner in this opener? Love that goal.
South Africa vs. Cape Verde Islands, 11 A.M. EST
Angola vs. Morocco, 2 P.M. EST
I'm thinking of rooting for Cape Verde just for the awesome names they have. There's a dude named Fock, another one called Nhuck, a Gegé, a Nando (oh, Torres jokes), and, I kid you not, a Platini. Boy, I hope he's good. But with just 1 cap at age 26 for Cape Verde, I'm guessing he's not.
This is Group A, the first of four total groups in a World Cup format, and Morocco should really walk this one. Younes Belhanda is quite something, even if Montpellier aren't exactly repeating their own Cinderella story from last season.
For those of us in the States, ESPN3 will carry all matches live!
There's also the Premier League, which, you know, best league in the world, etc, etc, etc. None of Chelsea's close challengers are in action, although if Manchester City drop points, 2nd place will once again start winking at us tantalizingly.
Liverpool vs. Norwich City, 10 A.M. EST
Manchester City vs. Fulham, 10 A.M. EST
Newcastle United vs. Reading, 10 A.M. EST
Swansea City vs. Stoke City, 10 A.M. EST
West Ham United vs. Queens Park Rangers, 10 A.M. EST
Wigan Athletic vs. Sunderland, 10 A.M. EST
West Bromwich Albion vs. Aston Villa, 12:30 P.M. EST