Sticking pins into a doll wearing a smart suit


As New Romantic scousers Echo & the Bunnymen once crooned: “Nothing ever lasts forever.” Especially nice things. It’s just the way it is, like that time when somebody got in touch by email to praise that good Fiver cgjo we once did, only to respond to our “thanks” with a gif of a cartoon donkey being subject to a nasty – and quite probably illegal – surprise. Oh the hurt. All that hard work. And for what? A slap in the chops. Damn you cruel world!

Claudio Ranieri may well be rubbing the tender red mark on his swollen cheek today too after N’Golo Kanté’s decision to do one from the champions of England, spurning Big Cup football and the chance to add an addendum to Leicester’s fairytale in his role as a kind of tireless, fantastical ball-winning warrior, in favour of a £32m move to mid-table London outfit Chelsea. In fact, Ranieri can thank compatriot Antonio Conte in Italian for effing things up for him after Kanté revealed it was the Chelsea manager’s red-hot persuasive chat that made him do one. “The club’s project and the coach’s speech have convinced me to join this new ambitious adventure,” cooed Kanté, while perusing RightMove. “I am now waiting to see my new club and give everything for a successful summer … and season of best canada goose jacket for women course!” A reported trebling of his salary may also have helped Kanté’s decision to hop aboard plucky Chelsea’s tour bus for their “ambitious adventure”.

Antonio Conte convinced me to leave Leicester for Chelsea, says N’Golo Kanté Read more

“It can happen that you lose an important component of your squad, but I had hoped everybody would have stayed and listened to my advice, which was for us all to experience this [Big Cup] adventure together,” sobbed Ranieri, possibly while sticking pins into a doll wearing a smart suit and perfectly coiffed hair and kicking himself for letting Andrea Bocelli sing Time to Say Goodbye quite so emotionally at the end of last season. And it’s not only Kanté who may be playing football somewhere other than the King Power Stadium next season. The PFA Player of the Year, Riyad Mahrez, would quite like to follow the trail of dust left by his former team-mate – if his Mr 15% can locate a suitor that is. Barcelona and Arsenal are waiting, hammers in hand, to smash their way into Leicester’s changing rooms and make off with the club’s creative hub.

And in a move that is so lazy yet shrewd that you call it positively Winston Bogardian, Everton have decided to not even bother making any advances for actual Leicester players and instead try to woo the man who spotted them all, chief scout Steve Walsh. The Toffees want to reward Walsh handsomely and install him as the club’s director of football which is a bit like being thirsty and nicking the well instead of the water. Still, Leicester’s new record signing, £16m striker Ahmed Musa, is not letting talk of a talent exodus dampen his expectations for the new season. “My target here is to win the league again and I believe we can. I started my first session and I was like ‘wow’. Because I have never seen that intensity and tackles flying in Russia. But now I am getting used to it – even Marcin Wasilewski,” he yelped.

If Musa isn’t immediately the subject of an offer from Chelsea, he’ll be joined on Leicester’s pre-season tour by Nampalys Mendy, Ron-Robert Zieler and Luis Hernández, Ranieri’s other new signings who The Fiver has handily listed to save lazy scouts the bother of best place to buy a canada goose jacket having to Google them next summer when Leicester have upset the odds, proved The Fiver wrong and made Gary Lineker say yet more bad words on Twitter by winning Big Cup.


“[It was] a house that needed to be knocked down and [started] afresh. So far I have had very good nights’ sleep. I’m generally an optimistic person” – Aston Villa boss Bobby Di Matteo offers an insight into canada goose coat 1000 calorie bariatric diet the state of the club when he took over.

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‘And another thing …’ Photograph: Gerry Shih/AP


“Please stop referring to my team as Taxpayers FC. It was a vaguely funny reference (to our renting of the Olympic Stadium for around just 25 days out of the 365 that there are available in each year for its use, for a rather large sum of money, ensuring that the £99bn of public money already spent on the Olympics would not be a total waste) the first time I read it, but the continued use of this mocking term does nothing to enhance your reputation as a wit of the highest order. Rather, it shows a lack of canada goose coat 1000 bulbs imagination and insistence on using the same gag over and over again until it raises not even an eyebrow, like Michael McIntyre’s only funny period when he banged on about ‘the man drawer’ for three years before being discovered as the answer to the BBC’s Saturday evening prayers, meaning he had 956 scriptwriters now working for him can i wash my canada goose coat to produce a single funny line with which to introduce each of his ‘variety act’ guests. Get a new joke, or some new scriptwriters and pick on someone else. Besides, there will be plenty attending matches there who have never paid, nor do they ever intend to pay any tax whatsoever” – Andy Marriott.

“Your tale of Jordan Ibe (Friday’s Fiver) and his penchant for full-fat Fanta dragged from the very depths of my canada goose coat 1000 bulbs garland soul the memory of a girlfriend who, after stomping on my heart, moved on with her life and found a new partner. I can’t now remember how I know this, but the new partner had Coco Pops and full-fat Fanta for breakfast. For all I know they are still very happy together, but it took me a long time to recover from being dumped in favour of someone whose breakfast choices were quite so, well, odd. It is strangely cathartic to relay this memory and I like to think that sort of thing would not happen again – but I read The Fiver so I wouldn’t bet a large sum of money on that” – John Stainton.

“Re: succinct record reviews (Fiver letters passim). In 1981, Smash Hits did a review of the classic Earth Wind & Fire dance-floor-filler Let’s Groove, which went: ‘Let’s not.’ And that was Smash Hits” – Kevin Watts.

“Peter Connelly (Friday’s Fiver letters) may be interested to learn that time and the release of Bob Geldof’s second album did little to improve attendances at his concerts, if my wife is to be believed. In the early 90s she went to see Sir Bob play at the 21st Century Club in Frankston, near Melbourne. She was one of about 10 or 12 people there when Bob walked on stage ridiculously late, after deliberately stalling on the off-chance that more people would turn up. He then complained that such a small crowd was disrespectful to a singer of his standing, before leaving after only a handful of songs, none of which were the Boomtown Rats’ classics that most had hoped he’d perform. Still, a bad gig in that venue didn’t seem to have such a disastrous effect on his career as it did on poor Betty Boo’s” – Tim Grey.

“All this talk of NME reviews has reminded me of this gem. Admittedly not as succinct as those previously covered, but a splendid read nonetheless” – Dave Form.

“In the Venn diagram of NME and football, from 12 May 1979” – Roger Mart.

“With all the music reviews happening, it got me to thinking: why don’t we have reviews of The Fiver? That should be simple enough. I’m guessing the reviews won’t be that long, if any words at all” – Nigel Assam.

“The Fiver: five too many” – Matt Dony.

• Send your letters to And if you’ve nothing better to do you can also tweet The Fiver. Today’s winner of our letter o’the day is … John Stainton, who receives a copy of The Unbelievables, by David Bevan. We’ve got more to give away all week, so get typing.


Chances are that if you’re reading this tea-timely football email, you’re almost certainly single. But fear not – if you’d like best ideas about canada goose parka on pinterest to find companionship or love, sign up here to view profiles of the kind of erudite, sociable and friendly folk who would never normally dream of going out with you. And don’t forget, it’s not the rejection that kills you, it’s the hope.


Having been used by a tonne of other players to smoke out flashier deals so far buy canada goose jacket nyc this summer, Taxpayers FC [uh-oh – Fiver Ed] are now going to help Toulouse’s Wissam Ben Yedder get the move of his dreams.

Augsburg centre-back and GoT series three victim Ragnar Klavan is heading for Liverpool in a £4.2m move.

Bayern Munich’s Mario Götze has held talks with Borussia Dortmund over a potential return. “I am not surprised that Götze wants to leave,” sniffed Bayern chief suit Karl-Heinz Rummenigge.

More than 4,100 people were arrested in co-ordinated raids across 11 countries during Euro 2016 in one of the largest global police operations against illegal gambling in Asia.

And Will Grigg has been nominated – along with 36 others – for Uefa’s Best Player in Europe Award, failing to make the final shortlist of 10 but still managing to get the same number of points as Paul Pogba.


Proper Journalism’s David Conn on the planned takeover of Nottingham Forest by a banned Greek tycoon.

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Evangelos Marinakis, earlier. Photograph: Giorgos Mattheos/AFP/Getty Images

How £30m-plus fees have become the norm in the Premier League, as explained by Alan Smith.

Claudio Ranieri’s blue sky thinking can keep Leicester City’s dream alive, writes Paul Wilson.

Get your weekly Major League Soccerball update here.

If you still haven’t noticed, it’s quiet. So here are some archive pieces well worth revisiting, or simply discovering for the first time: The Joy of Six, one-on-one finishes; the latest of our football grounds then and now quizzes; and this from the late, great Steven Wells in 2008: have we gone soft on football’s fascists?

Oh, and if it’s your thing … you can follow Big Website on Big Social FaceSpace. AND INSTACHAT TOO!