Tomorrow at Loftus Road, hands will be shook. Chelsea coach Roberti Di Mateo has all but confirmed that Ashley Cole at John Terry will be in the lineup against QPR, saying, “They’ve recovered, had a couple of days training and we expect them to be available for tomorrow.”
One doesn’t need to be especially perspicacious to understand the tensions surrounding the customary pre-match handshake; Terry will be forced, for the first time since his racial abuse trial, to confront Anton Ferdinand face-to-face. “Choc-ice” Cole will also be there, and since footballers generally act like children (it’s part of their charm?) there’s no telling what will happen when the anticipated moment finally arrives.
I would say “all eyes will be watching,” but I don’t plan on tuning in to see the match. I’ve got bigger fish to fry, and by “fish to fry” I mean beers to drink during the Sunderland-Liverpool match, what with Steven Fletcher and Adam Johnson looking solid for the Black Cats, who have taken two of their last three against the wayward Reds. I’ve picked ‘Pool to pour on a 3-0 display in honor of the 96, but I plan to drink just in case. (Okay, I planned to drink anyway.)
Hopefully someone at the pub will describe the handshake heard ‘round the world to me at halftime. And hopefully that person tells me it went off without a hitch, and that we can finally put this whole mess behind us, with maybe everyone coming out a little wiser, a little richer for the experience. Yes, I’m being sarcastic (misanthropy is evidence-based), but if nothing else the handshake, if it occurs, would be the bright spot on an otherwise dark week for the FA, what with all the coverups and negligence and greed to weigh on everyone’s hearts.