The Joy Of Six

Six. It’s a little word, just three letters. It can be elongated, and stretched out. Go on, you know you want to…

Siiiiiiiiixxxxx….. And breathe.

There is no doubt that for Chelsea fans, these are wondrous times. We have seen the odd six goal victories over the years. I remember the six scored against Coventry, back in 2000 or 2001 I think, when their goalie (was it Chris Kirkland?) was sent off and it changed the game.

I remember the six against Crystal Palace on 11th March 1998. Mainly because I wasn’t there, having been persuaded by my family that a dinner with them was a more appropriate way to celebrate my birthday, a decision I have not ultimately regretted as my father died six months later.

He wasn’t a Chelsea fan, but I’ll never forget the last game of ours he saw on the TV against Blackburn, the famous 4-2 with Roy Hodgson going into meltdown on the touchline. Expect to see a few more of those if Liverpool continue with what we shall generously call their indifferent start to the season.

I also remember the six versus Derby on 12th March 2008, in a game re-arranged due to our cup tie with Barnsley. Was I there? Was I heck. With no Champions League games scheduled that week I’d arranged to celebrate my birthday in Venice.

At least I got to watch the match as it was on Sky Italia, I also got to see Luca Vialli and Paulo Rossi doing their best Saint & Greavsie act. Bizarrely I also saw Francesco Totti going in the Italian version of the Big Brother house. I couldn’t see Shrek doing that somehow.

I spent the 6-0 home win over the Baggies soaked to the skin following the pre-match monsoon, and slightly drunk after miscalculating the time I’d be spending in the pub due to the late kick off.

I was on day release to the Harding Lower from my usual seat in the morgue that constitutes the West Lower (I used to have a seat in the MHL, but we’ll leave that story for another time), habituated as it is mainly by corporate types, tourists and people who’d rather be having a nice chat about something else rather than getting behind the team.

There are occasions when I am literally the only person there singing (those of you who were unlucky enough to frequent the So Bar in the days of the gang known as the Bog Enders may recollect my Zigger Zagger). Unfortunately I reverted to type for the Wigan game not being able to afford the Virgin Trains rip-off and unable to face the coach.

You really wouldn’t want to be sitting next to me on a coach as the claustrophobia and fear of getting hit by a petrol tanker kicks in, and I ended the day slightly depressed as I’d missed the previous six away from home, the legendary training session at the Lane as I couldn’t get one of the tickets, scarcer as they were than the egg of the Great Auk.

Of course the only thing better than scoring six is seven, or indeed eight. Of course this is where Carletto has completely done Jose’s legs. In recent months we’ve seen the Special One’s references to “my Chelsea” dwindle.

That’s probably because under him against the likes of Wigan – and of course it’s worth remembering that a home draw against Wigan two years ago actually cost us the league – we’d shut up shop at 3 and be lucky to see 4.

Whereas the Extraordinary One has had the boys put the boot into all comers to the stage where even the hacks seem very nearly to like us.

I honestly believe the day is coming when some poor sods cop the biggest thrashing from us that the Premiership has ever seen.

Blackpool, anyone?

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