Returning to a full year format after a pandemic hit two seasons, nobody could have been sure what to expect from the UCD Superleague (other than hangovers, bangers and offensive names, of course) so to welcome the largest amount of teams in years and the return of 4 competitive leagues was heralded up and down the Clubhouse. Introducing a new format to keep all teams competitive long past the first four 10-0 games, this year will see a traditional league then breaking into a Champions league, Europa League and Conference League format as the graded knockouts replace the traditional second cup, meaning the team who claims the SuperChampions League can truly finally boast being the best of the sort of, sometimes, most of the time, unless Ive something better to do, best UCD has to offer.
In the Saturday divisions stalwarts have been joined by aggressive new comers to see two very competitive leagues. The Saturday (I-cant-believe-they-didn’t-call-it-a-midweek-league-its-really-a-midweek-league) A division is neck and neck between Finding Timo and Chelsea Daggers, this despite Daggers owing Timo a FIFA Facebook apology just a few weeks ago having been “closely” pumped 6-2. Timo’s GD (+57 -14) would suggest they will be one to watch when we break into knockouts. In the Saturday B (Saturday-played-on-Saturday) league, Superleague veterans PSGee threaten to pull away from David McCarthy’s “stylisst yet spent” Hop House 11 who have been described by many referees as being tactical innovators, not due to their adherence to 442 but their ‘astute or at-risk’ aggressive “annoy everyone at all costs” approach to verbal warfare during games, after games, between games, etc.
In the Sunday divisionS, it is a great please to welcome all teams to the returning Sunday B division, which has so far proven to be at-best charitably described as a league so much as one team+, as Kiddy Fiddlesborough could threaten to take an extended break forfeting games until the Cups just for a rest start owing to their mammoth lead. In the traditional ‘strongest division’ Sunday A, Young Girls have spent the season leading the way, having followed the SWOXI path to success finishing near bottom in their first season, then midtable + a cup win before putting together a seemingly improbable perfect-to-date season until the last round of fixtures saw them falter. The famous Futbolito remained well within touching distance throughout however and with the 'old boys' having over taken the Young Girls with the balance of the fixture list + the goals for and against column favouring the ‘UCD Superleague’s most decorated team’ it looks like Young Girls have it all to do. A new rivalry appears to be growing if Instagram interactions are to be believed and if someone can teach Futbolito how the internet and Instagram work it may really heat up.
The real action this year has been in the Captains whatsapp group, where casting tradition aside, league organizers have engaged in multiple spats with a variety of captains for a seemingly multitude of reasons. From captains casually casting aside the carefully planned fixture schedule to “a bit of the old covid” causing occasional disruption all the way to strongly worded requests for Government led inquiries into refereeing performances, how long can League management resist calls for the introduction of RAR? (referee assisted refereeing, involving a referee leaving the centre circle for big decisions)
So much lies in store for the second half of the season as we begin the hunt for prizes and with so many on offer, the UCD Clubhouse promises to be a raucous cauldron for the annual events ceremony at the end of the season. Who will be there? We wait to see.