Temporary Rules In Effect
All Player Please Observe Until The End Of The Season
Rule 1. Promotion celebrations are to be kept to a minimum until the end of the Season. Consumption of alcohol is banned.
Rule 2. Extra training sessions are mandatory. Anyone who leaves training early is out of the next match day squad. No exceptions.
Rule 3. Fast food is strictly prohibited, with the exception of McDonalds salad, which Crouchie assures me is healthy and nutritious.
Rule 4. Spend 5 minutes every day imagining the feeling of triumphing over Bourg-en-Bresse and lifting the title. Picture their faces. They’re livid.
Rule 5. Are you religious? Great! Pick a Bourg-en-Bresse player and pray that he breaks his leg.
Rule 6. Kill Bourg. Bourg die. Bad Bourg.
Rule 7. *Illegible scribbling*
Rule 8. I am the King. Bourg are the not.
Rule 9. All beer and no fast food makes Bourg a not King.
Rule 10. *More illegible scribbling*
Rule 11. *More still*
Rule 12. *A crude drawing of Abel Xavier*
Rule 13. I am not Tiara
I jump, dropping my pencil. I wasn’t aware that my assistant had appeared and was reading over my shoulder. “Yes, Crouchie?”
“Those rules… Do you think…”
“I can only think of about 15 but a lot of them are sort of conceptual. Did you see the diagrams?” I get no response. “Have you got any ideas?”
I turn and look at Crouchie, who shifts uncomfortably. “It’s just that those rules might be a bit… Strict. Don’t you think?”
“We can’t take our eyes off the ball now, mate. We’re so close to the title! We can’t get complacent.”
“I get that part.” Says Crouchie, still looking massively uncomfortable.
“Ask Abbey if she’s got any more ideas will you?”
He starts to nod but quickly stops himself. “… No. The thing is Boss that they’re really fucking inappropriate and… Just odd.”
I look at him, puzzled. Then I look at my list of rules; The fruits of my night’s work. Then back at Crouchie. “I don’t see what you mean.”
“Have you slept here, Boss?”
I laugh slightly more maniacally than I intend to. “Crouchie, I can’t sleep! Not while there’s rules to be written! Not while there’s order to be kept! Not while there’s a title to be won!”
Crouchie watches me with a concerned look on his face. “It’s 9am!” He says, exasperated. Come on, I’ll give you a lift home. You need to sleep.”
Begrudgingly I take my rules, stand and follow him out of my office. “Make sure the boys see my rules.”
As we exit the Centre de Formation, Crouchie grabs the sheet of paper and crumples it up, before stuffing it into his back pocket. “Why don’t I type them up? Make them a bit neater?”
I laugh again as he unlocks the car and we climb inside. “Good luck. Most of them are conceptual. Did you see the dia…”
My eye lids haul themselves shut with such force and ferocity that I have no power to stop them. I’m asleep within seconds.