The January transfer window: a mid-campaign silly season to send even the most sensible commentators doolally. Andy Carroll back to Newcastle? Sure, why not. Lionel Messi to West Brom? You heard it here first! January always lands a few surprises, but here are some of the storylines I'll be keeping an eye on over the next few weeks.
OK, so we all feel very sorry for Wayne Bridge. The mother of his child, Vanessa Perroncel, and John Terry allegedly had an affair. Terry is not just Bridge's former teammate at Chelsea; he is also his teammate on the England team. And, until Terry was stripped of the England armband last month -- as a direct result of his alleged affair with Perroncel -- he was the national-team captain, too.
Bad boys. No, we haven't been holed up in Castle Limey watching tepid Will Smith action movies from the mid-1990s. Instead, we've been musing about the bad boys who are the subjects of the two biggest stories that have hit the headlines in the last couple of weeks.
David Beckham's return to the English national team for Friday's game against Brazil and next Wednesday's vital Euro 2008 qualifier in Estonia has dominated the headlines this week. The setting couldn't be more fitting: The return of the glamour boy of English football in a glamour friendly against Brazil at the new Wembley Stadium.
I am not impressed. Not at all. Don't get me wrong, I'm not necessarily unhappy. Parity can be a wonderful thing, it leads to all sorts of glass half-full, half-empty arguments. It's either a sign of mediocrity or competitiveness and it leads to endless debate.