Ah, pre-season football. That glorious time of year when withdrawal from proper football makes people invest far too much into the smallest development.
Has your team been linked with a player you’ve never heard of? You know everything about him now, from his passing stats right down to his star sign.
Never expressed an interest in MLS or the Chinese Super League before? Doesn’t matter, it’s July now so you’re a seasoned expert.
Seen your team lift a worthless pre-season trophy? It’s proof that this year will be your year.
Aston Villa fans have been getting excited about their victory in the It Definitely Counts Cup. Sorry, the Cup of Traditions.
Fresh from bringing in John Terry, Glenn Whelan and Chris Samba (combined age of 102), the Villans beat Hertha Berlin in the final to lift a trophy with a man bursting out of it. Because it’s definitely a real tournament that counts just as much as anything else.
If you thought the trophy looked strange, you’d be right. However, if you thought it was unique then you might be mistaken.
The Cup of Traditions featured 45-minute matches, which seems to be in direct violation of its name.
However, that might explain how they were rewarded for their victory with a trophy which may or may not have been designed for kids.
Need proof? Well here it is: you can buy the very same trophy from a website called allsportsawards.co.uk for £13.
Did Aston Villa’s senior team accidentally enter a children’s tournament and then just roll with it on the grounds that it represented their best chance of a trophy this season? That’s not for us to say.
(Images: Rex Features)