Saturday's local "derby" (the magnitude of which slots in comfortably somewhere between Fulham and Brentford) was a mostly tepid, lackluster affair. It was certainly no Arsenal. Actually, that's a not a bad thing: I wouldn't want Harry Redknapp exerting himself with too much pushing and shoving. That can't be good for your health in your mid-to-late 60s, right, Arsene?
In any case, ol'e 'Arry -- at whom we can never be too mad thanks to his legendary Frank Lampard press conference -- saw fit to finally reveal before the game that he once tried to wheeler-dealer himself an Eden Hazard. Unfortunately for the then Spurs manager, he was at, well, Spurs. And we know how that drill goes, though I think we paid for Hazard's flight just to be sure in this case.
Harry Redknapp has revealed how he spent four hours in a Paris airport hotel trying in vain to persuade Eden Hazard to become his player just a few weeks before he eventually joined Chelsea for £32 million.
"I think he was dead keen to come at that time," he said of the player who was then with Lille. "Joe Cole said he thought he was the best player he ever played with. He's a fantastic talent and a great player. We pushed on for him. We just couldn't get it over the line."
Perhaps stemming from his adoration of the Belgian wonder, Harry tried to not accuse the Chelsea man of diving to win the decisive penalty. Whatever you do, don't say the d-word! Of course, it would've been a false accusation, but that's never stopped any manager before, has it?
"The referee has made a decision he thinks is right. He's made an honest decision, I just felt it was a bit soft."
"I wouldn't say he [Hazard] went down easily, it was a shoulder barge and they both hit each other."
"They're two tiny little guys [Vargas and Hazard]. Our guy is very strong, powerful and they've hit each other and he's [Hazard] bounced off. I wouldn't say he dived, no."
-Harry Redknapp; source: Goal
Translation: that blasted dishonest referee awarded a softer than uncooked bacon penalty to that little divey cheat Eden Hazard.
And did you catch that quick physics lesson in there, the one on Newton's Third Law, which states that for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction? So you see, when Vargas barged into Eden Hazard in full flight (with a buy one barge get one free leg-trip bonus as well), the force of Vargas's hit was counteracted by an equal and opposite force. This is just basic science; come on, referee!
Here's a diagram, if you're a visual learner:
Thanks, Mr. Redknapp! I look forward to our next lesson later this season after the reverse fixture. (If you're still in charge, that is.)