Silky saxaphones at the ready ???‚¬??? it???‚¬?„?s time for a sultry round-up of festive Predictorship blues …
As Predictors around the globe cheered in the New Year to their medley of Abba hits, only a solitary Ted Warland dusted down his Billie Holiday collection to soak up the ???‚¬??festive seasonal blues???‚¬?„?. All this is no surprise given Ted???‚¬?„?s disappointing form this season as he shuffles soulfully around in 32nd place.
But swinging to a much more up-tempo beat is former champion Chris Butters. Losing only one point of her 6-point lead since week nineteen, Chris???‚¬?„?s ???‚¬??Super Blues???‚¬?„? Manchester City are still strutting around ???‚¬??manfully???‚¬?„? on top of the table, in the manner of Guy Mitchell (unlike Mark Hughes who looks more likely to be skulking out of the stage door).
Soul sister Cathryn Gregory has also slipped into her silver Lurex to reveal a natural rhythm, as she rises up the chart faster than Whitney HoustoN on acid: top scorer in Week 19 with 11 points ???‚¬??? climbing 10 places to 10th, and again in Week 21 with 10 points to raise her up to 5th place.
Blue is definitely this season???‚¬?„?s colour ???‚¬??? also picked by ???‚¬??Stato???‚¬?„? Matt White to skilfully modify the Predictorship table with a little extra colour coding. Look out for the ???‚¬??funky???‚¬?„? blue boxes to denote seasonal highs, and you will see champion Mike Dufficy???‚¬?„?s return to form with scores for Week 19 of 10; highest point-scorer for all 20 Christmas fixtures with 18 points and a more than creditable 9 for Week 21.
Other predictors crooning over their seasonal highs are: Janet Roberts, Nick Watson, and Mark Young (fresh out of rehab and inspired by the pickled onions in his Salvation Army food parcel) in Week 19. Alex Iskandar Liew (last season???‚¬?„?s FA cup winner) in Week 20 and again in Week 21 along with Cathryn Gregory.
Queuing up in the chorus line wearing their spangly costumes, our weekly Star Predictors step forward to receive their applause:
In Week 19 for Blackburn 3-0 Stoke: John Collins (unfortunately not matched by the rest of his scores); Fulham 3-0 Middlesbrough: Mark Young (a remarkable feat given that Fulham hadn”t been involved in a Premier League game this season in which either they or their opponents had scored more than 2); West Brom 2-1 Manchester City: the ubiquitous Janet Roberts.
In Week 20 for Aston Villa 2-2 Arsenal: Patrick Bevilacqua, Cathryn Gregory and Rob Molloy; Blackburn 2-2 Manchester City: Mark Lawrenson and Dave McAleer; Fulham 2???‚¬???2 Chelsea: Ted Warland; West Bromwich 2-0 Tottenham: (no surprise) “Baggie???‚¬?„?s Boy”, Mark Young.
In Week 21 for Arsenal 3-1 Plymouth: “soulful” Sally Moon, “Jumping” Janet Roberts and “swinging” Iain Starr.
But before the gospel choir in the roomy smocks even think of entertaining us… there???‚¬?„?s a host of points still to play for in 2009 (even for red-carded Gabe Bevilacqua). So a toast to you all from Predictorship House with our finest Babycham and may the best predictor win.