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Seasons Greetings: Are You Indulging?

The men of Real Madrid as well as we wish all our beloved readers the best of holidays. We love you all! Image Credit: We’re nearly there, Kickettes: are you getting any time off for the holidays? In this season of indulgences and excess, we would never deprive you. As a result we will still be posting gossip, breaking news on exposed six packs, and a Rear End Review of footy in 2011. Admittedly, we will be functioning on a more erratic scale than usual as we have scheduled extensive drunkenness for the next fortnight, but our helper monkeys are prepped and ready to snark. What are your plans this weekend or next, dear readers? Do you plan on indulging?

Good Week/Bad Week: Traffic News & Trophies

AP Photo/Christian Thompson. A tanker full of eggnog has just broken down outside our HQ. It’s just provocative really. GOOD WEEK Toure Treasure: Yaya Toure has been named ‘African Footballer of the Year’ for his performances for Manchester City in the EPL this season. Toure, whose brother Kolo also plays for City (when he’s not dieting), scored the goals that propelled City to their first trophy for 35 years and is only the second Ivorian to achieve the honour. The other, of course, was Didier Drogba in 2006. One Step Forward: For the first time in the history of the universe, the English FA have appointed a woman to their board. Heather Rabbatts is a former deputy chair at Millwall and will perform as an ‘independent non-executive director’. Usually we would follow this announcement with a series of facetious remarks about whether this will help us in our campaign to abolish base-layers, but you’re expecting it, and we hate to be predictable. Messi Magic: Amazing news for those of you hoping to meet, bewitch, marry and build a life with Lionel Messi. He likes to be fed Pringles! Leo was pictured earlier this week being fed the tasty potato-based snack by his niece. We felt it only appropriate to share it with you. - BAD WEEK Click here to view the embedded video. Seasonal Stomp: Unfortunately, it’s honours of a dubious kind that will be festooning Jermaine Jones’ mantelpiece this holiday. The Schalke and USMNT midfielder was filmed stamping on Borussia Monchengladbach midfielder Marcus Reus’ foot (above) during ‘Gladbach’s 3-1 cup win, despite Reus having a broken foot. He has now been dubbed ‘Evil Kicker’ by German newspaper Bild, and faces a long ban as he was not punished for the incident during the game. He was actually sent off for something else entirely. Bannan Boo Hoo: Aston Villa midfielder Barry Bannan has recently displayed his donkey credentials by getting busted for drink driving, so it comes as no surprise to find that he’s not exactly thrilled to be assisting police with their holiday campaign. Bannan was pictured next to a member of the Birmingham Constabulary earlier this week, looking like a Kickette staffer who had just been caught with her hand in the freebies draw. Silly boy. Thoughts & Prayers: Jermain Defoe’s 78-year-old cousin Allan Edgar has been stabbed to death during a robbery at his home in St Lucia. Defoe, whose brother Jade was killed just two years ago, has said “I want to again highlight the desperate need for us to pull together – the world over – to tackle knife crime and teach everyone how sacred a life is“. Our thoughts are with him at this terrible time. - Okay. We’ve taken control of the tanker and eggnog is now being pumped into the office at a rate of 50 gallons per hour. We reckon we’ll be awake by Tuesday.

Facts & Figures: Football-related Disorder Arrests ‘At Record Low’

Image via AP Photos. The UK Home Office, responsible for immigration and passports, drugs policy, crime, counter-terrorism and police, has been tooting its horn for all to hear today. The reason? Arrests for football-related disorders among English and Welsh fans has hit a new, all time record low. That would be 3,089 arrests, mind you, but still less than the +3,300 arrests recorded in 2009/2010. Because everything is always a ‘top of the table’ competition in football, Manchester United now holds the distinction of having the highest number of football related arrests in the Premier League with 276. Outside of the top flight in the 2010/2011 season, Leeds is next on the list with a tally of 149. Per the Manchester Evening News, last season went a little something like this: “The vast majority of the arrests were for alcohol offences (127), followed by violent disorder (63), ticket touting (26), pitch invasions (20), public disorder (15) and possessing offensive weapons (11).” Kickettes, your thoughts on this seemingly continuous trend of decreased football-related violence? Do you believe the substantial drop in off pitch crime is a testament to the fans of the game or the work of the police? And should The Home Office be so quick to celebrate this ‘major success story‘ or is football in the country still very much a league of shame? Oh, and one more: if you’re the numbers crunching type, do you agree or disagree with United’s mathematical stance on the matter? - CLUBS WITH MOST ARRESTS • Manchester United – 276 • Leeds – 149 • Sunderland – 126 • Newcastle – 123 • Manchester City – 108 - CLUBS WITH MOST BANNING ORDERS IN TOTAL • Cardiff City – 143 • Leeds – 106 • Chelsea – 105 • Manchester United – 101 • Newcastle – 98

Carlos Bocanegra: Happy Trails To Us, Until We Meet Again

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WAG & Bag Watch: Yolanda Ruiz

Modelled by Pepe Reina’s wife, we give you the Saffiano Lux Double-Zip Tote Bag by Prada. Nummy, yes? Her bag – not her husband, Kickettes. And it’s a steal at just 1,250 quid ($1,960)!

AC Milan’s Bubbas & Ballers Are About To Occupy Your Ovaries

The unfair distribution of superior genes is alive and well at this particular Italian football club, and in the name of full disclosure, there’s a few things you need to know about your ovaries before watching AC Milan’s bubba-rific holiday video (set to a banjo remix of Jingle Bells): 1. They are the 99 percent. History often repeats itself, so girdle your loins all you want but Zlatan’s blondies are coming to haul them away (0:11 & 0:40). 2. This will be a peaceful protest by your biological clocks. Sudden feelings of hatred for your contraception will be allowed to flood your main sexual chambers and set up tents, kitchens and a stuffed animal zoo (0:42 – 0:45). 3. During the minutes that follow your viewing of these babies, your bodies will be sent into a state of shock and ‘AWWW!’ (0:57 – 1:00 & 1:08 – 1:10). Click here to view the embedded video. It was nice knowing ya, Kickettes!

The Phestive Phwoar: Michael Ballack, Bayer Leverkusen

Michael Ballack was sporting this immensely fetching costume when he visited The Arts Club in Mayfair on Tuesday night. David Beckham & Prince Harry were spotted outside the same establishment as well – but just one night later.

Tick Tock: Time Wasting For Holiday Clock Watchers

Click here to view the embedded video. Cheers to Rebecca for the tip! Saturday is taking its sweet ass time to get here, a fact of life we can’t deal with right now. So screw work and take in these midday entertainment treats with us: 1. Tottenham Tadpoles Want You To Stand By Them What you’ve heard about grown women in their pajamas being virtually serenaded by boys half their ages is true. - Click here to view the embedded video. 2. La Roja Ringing In The New Year A select number of good looking Spanish national teamers. Singing slightly off-key for a new Adidas commercial. The ‘making of’ video is another gift that keeps on giving. - Click here to view the embedded video. 3. Shit Girls Say Are you guilty of any of the following, Kickettes? Join the club. - Click here to view the embedded video. 4. Juventus Jingles Their Bells We are mildly confused and wildly attracted. Part 2 is up there in the giggle factor as well. - 5. Portland Timbers Have A Player Named Futty Danso And he just made his debut with the Oregon Ballet Theatre. We learn something new everyday!

Esteban Alvarado: Overreacting Or Under Protected?

Image Credit: AP Photo/Stanley Gontha. We don’t often get to use the terms ‘mayhem’ and ‘drama’ when we’re talking about the KNVB Beker (Dutch Cup). That’s mainly because we rarely bother to cover it, but our attention was drawn specifically to the game between AZ Alkmaar and Ajax last night, when a fan onto the pitch and tried to attack Alkmaar ‘keeper Esteban. The incident took place shortly before half time with the score at 1-0 to Ajax, and as you can see from the photographic aftermath, Esteban’s response to the surprise attack was a reflexive leg lift, followed by a (slightly less reflexive) flurry of well aimed kicks. The referee clearly had no alternative but to send the player off, which angered his team mates and prompted the manager to take them off the field. The match was abandoned, and the world now waits to find out how the KNVB (Dutch FA) will deal with both Esteban and the result. It’s all a bit aggro for our delicate sensibilities. But once again, the issue of player safety on the pitch will get some attention. Do you think Esteban’s punishment should reflect his right to operate in what should be a safe environment? Or should he have shown more discipline as a professional? Have another mince pie and tell us.

Midweek Results, Pt II: Best Laid Plans

Don’t panic, Marek. There’s so much gel in there, the ball is more likely to burst than your hairdo suffer any damage. Image: Giuseppe Bellini/Getty Images. Y’know, this results post is about as far from comprehensive as it’s possible to be without actually failing to produce one at all. On the plus side, we’ve got most of our pressies wrapped, festive manicures booked and the power outages in the office due to cheap tree lights are down to about three an hour. Are you as ready for a break as we are? EPL Aston Villa 1-2 Arsenal Looks like we weren’t the only ones to be surprised by Yossi Benayoun’s appearance on the scoresheet. Image: REUTERS/Darren Staples. - Fulham 0-5 Man Utd At least The Berb made it look like his goal was part of a clever plan to enhance his cool quotient. Image: Clive Rose/Getty Images. - Man City 3-0 Stoke Mario Balotelli also had a clever plan, this one involving his hair. Unfortunately, it went horribly wrong at the last minute and he ended up with this monstrosity on his head. AFP PHOTO/ANDREW YATES. - Wigan 0-0 Liverpool Meanwhile at the DW Stadium, Luis Suarez had worked out that if he blended in with his team-mates, Wigan fans would find it hard to target him for abuse. Sadly, this worked a little too well as the entire team thought they were Suarez and joined him in missing the target. Image: Michael Steele/Getty Images. - Serie A Inter Milan 4-1 Lecce These two are developing quite the little goal celebration ritual, aren’t they? We’re keeping ‘em crossed that synchronised shirt removal is next on the agenda. Image: REUTERS/Alessandro Garofalo. - Bologna 0-2 Roma A tactic that might have been safer for the Roma team, whose ‘pile on and pray’ goal celebration looked likely to end in serious injury. Or at least a nasty skinned knee. Image: Mario Carlini/Iguana Press/Getty Images. - Feel free to fill in the blanks here.