Sometimes The Diggity Doc and The Wildcard talk to each other...
Diggity Doc - The Wildcard, the most high, how go thee? You've been all over this Under 20 World Cup, how's it been for you? The vibe, the skill, the teams, the overall package.
Wildcard - Mate, it's been fantastic. A wonderful standard of footy and some real positive styles of play too. Even despite the rain that keeps falling across the damn nation. The crowds have been good, and some of the goals even better. I've enjoyed it all the way.
DD - It feels like everyone is out to bang a few slick goals in which probably comes with the Under 20 aspect. Who, whether it's teams or players, has caught your eye?
WC - Yeah, call it youthful exuberance or whatever. Ah, teams it's mostly the usuals. Brazil, Germany, USA, Ghana, Portugal and the likes that always have solid teams at every level are pretty fantastic. Players, there have been a few. All of those teams have at least a couple players who you can easily envision playing Champions League someday. The one guy who's stood out above the rest of them, though, is Angel Correa from Argentina. Just signed with Atletico Madrid, he's an absolute master. The best touch in the tournament, plus superb vision and an eye for goal too. I can actually believe he might be one of the best in the world someday. Just a shame about the whole early elimination thing...
Right, a question for you now, Doc. Don't you think the Queensland media are hammering Daly "The Filthy Cockroach" Cherry-Evans just a liiiiiittle too hard?
DD - So you're telling me that Arsene Wenger should get this Correa bloke to partner Zelalem in the Arsenal midfield?
Mate, in my eyes everything that DCE is copping is too harsh. But the Australian media seem to be much more interested in the off field stuff anyway and now they have a villain to go along with that. It won't impact DCE and you can expect Manly to climb of the bottom of the ladder within a few weeks
WC - Don't get greedy there, chief. Zelalem's a fantastic player in his own right, you can't have Correa too. Anyway, he'd only get sold again in a couple of years, that's how Wenger does it, isn't it?
Yeah, it's been a slow time since origin, with teams having byes and players backing up, so this really wasn't a great time to announce such a big decision - no that he had a choice over timing. Hopefully they implement the new rule changes over that round 13 bollocks, DCE's a prime example over why it isn't working as well as it should. Like, if he's backing out now, why did he sign the contract in the first place? Strikes as DCE not thinking things all the way through or maybe signing a contract he wasn't 100% sure over. From what I gather, it was a fall out in negotiations with Manly that led to the Titans deal, there's bound to be more to it that I realise, but it seems reckless of him. Not the backflip, that ha to be done in his mind so fair enough. If he has until round 13 to renege on it, why even bother signing it before round 13? It certainly didn't end the speculation as contracts are meant to.
Origin two in Melbourne... will the QLDers be booing him?
DD - Aslong as the price is right mate. The only club I'm really hearing mentioned with Raheem Sterling is Manchester United, what ya reckon?
Yeah I think it is a lot more complex than it seems because there's so many variables: Manly's owners, Kieran Foran, Nate Myles, the agent/s who have both DCE and Myles on their books etc but it should all be over. They might, but come State Of Origin time they won't care.
Who ya got for the NBA Finals?
WC - From what I've heard, Sterling to Arsenal is a done deal if Arsenal want him and offer a half decent fee. But that might have changed with Theo Walcott's late season resurgence probably causing a few rethinks. I can't imagine him going to Man Utd - Liverpool-United transfers almost never ever happen. There are like 2 examples in the last 40 years of a direct move between the pair. It's gotta be a massive troll, surely.
I kinda do expect him to hear a few boos, it's all a media beat-up but the media is powerful. People fall for that junk.
Ah, the Golden State Warriors for my money. They took game one in entertaining fashion, and it just seems like they have a little more in the tank, with Kyrie limping around and LeBron carrying everyone on his back. But based on that first game, we can expect one hell of a series. I'll say it goes six games, and I'm pumped for each one of them.
DD - Mate, he's all yours, we've got Theo The Great. Arsenal just need a decent run of health and they'll win the league, boom. Just going back to the Under 20 thang, are there any blokes who are already with EPL clubs who you think could kick on next season or the season after?
I'm torn between the two so I don't really care who wins, it's all about the basketball ain't it? Who is your favourite Aussie though: Andrew Bogut or Mathew Dellavadova?
WC - No, I don't want him! A Liverpool player is ineligible to sign with Manchester United, those are the unwritten rules!
Well, given most of them are teenagers, and that England didn't qualify, there aren't any playing regularly in the Premier League. But Gedion Zelalem of Arsenal has played off the bench in both the F.A. Cup and Champions League. There are a few Manchester City academy guys, Yaw Yeboah of Ghana the best so far, while Andreas Pereira was Man Utd's U21 Player of the Year and made his debut a few months back against Spurs. Speaking of which, there are a couple Tottenham guys too, a defender from Serbia and Carter-Vickers of USA, who played so well against NZ. One or two others as well, Emerson Hyndman (USA) and Tiago Casasola (Argentina) play for Fulham in the Championship too, Hyndman pretty regularly. That's off the top of my head, there might be more.
And definitely Delly. Bogut's a wonderful player, but he's still a clumsy big man. Delly's a genuine battler who knows it and loves it. Everyone loves that kind of guy, even if just for entertainment value. Bogut does his job expertly and consistently... it's pretty boring for all non-GSW fans.
DD - Well I'll stick with rooting for Zelalem as a Gunners fan, but I must say, besides the fact that they were playing against the kiwis, the USA team made me hate them. I switched it on and straight away I just felt this general disgust towards them, it was probably all the step-overs that led no where.
Bogut mate, after what he's endured, he thoroughly deserves a ring and I'm all in on him. Delly needs to earn a few more stripes, even though he's been playing like all he wants to do is earn stripes. How good is Australian basketball right now!?
WC - Funny, I felt the opposite. I really liked the way the Americans played, I thought they moved the ball well and showed plenty of skill. Anyway, Zelalem's an Ethiopian born in Germany, so you don't have to worry about him. All the crap about the USA growing in football... most of their players are of dual-nationality. They reeeeally chase up their Tommy Smiths and Winston Reids.
Oh, I have nothing but respect for Bogie. I just prefer to watch Delly is all, he's a little more fun. You're not wrong about Aussie basketball either, and right before we play them for Olympic qualification to...
DD - Chuck Dante Exum into the mix as well and that Baynes lad. Ah well we'll hang our hat on Steve for now. What's ya pic of the weekend's sport?
WC - Yeah, those muppets too. Bloody Aussies. The Under 20s, obviously, I reckon most people oughta be watching. Aside from that... well, I'll tell ya the one I'm most looking forward to is The Return of the Moz when the Dragons face the Bulldogs in the NRL. Could get messy. But the ultimate pick goes without saying. Except I'll say it anyway. The Champions League final, Sunday morning, Barcelona vs Juventus. Most people have an in-for Barca cruising to victory, spurred by the immaculate Lionel Messi. However I reckon Juventus are being way underrated. Not saying they'll win, but I am saying I think they've got a chance. I'll be cheering for them anyway. How about yourself there, Doc? Champions League pick and weekend pick, go for it.
DD - Juventus for sure, I had the pleasure of using them in FIFA15 and I'm Juve4life now. Paul Pogba to steal the show. Don't sleep on the Women's World Cup either, or the surfing, or the tennis, or the NHL Finals, or the Warriors in Perth, or Lydia Ko doing that golf thing, or the Black Sticks up against the Dutch, or the Super Rugby and ANZ Championship seasons are winding up, hence I can't decide. So, bye.
WC - Well, the great thing is we don't have to decide. We can just watch 'em all. In fact, it's kinda part of the job. Catch ya later, Doc, there's sport to watch.
RIP Jerry Collins