Well, that's the internationals over with for a while, so back to proper football. Which must come as some relief for Spurs striker Freddie Kanouté, who after missing a couple of chances for Mali against Togo faced rioting supporters who threatened to kill him. Coming back to England to face the moaning masses at White Hart Lane should be a breeze after the last week, but first it's off to Birmingham for the striker and his Tottenham team. Brum are still far from safety but their home form is excellent and Spurs will have to be somewhere near their best to come away from St Andrews with all the points.
It's been another fun week for Chelsea-watchers this week. First we had Mourinho reported to have admitted that he didn't see Frank Rijkaard go into referee Anders Frisk's dressing room at half time in the Barcelona game. This, in case you need any reminding, comes after him telling Portuguese newspaper Record Dez: "When I saw Rijkaard enter the referee's changing room at half-time I couldn't believe it."
Mourinho had been in Tel Aviv this week apparently telling, or at least giving hints to anyone who'll listen that he didn't see the alleged incident. But Chelsea then came out to deny his comments, or at least the ones attributed to him in Barcelona daily La Vanguardia on Tuesday, by issuing a statement saying: "Mourinho confirmed he did not give an interview to this newspaper on this matter."
The case was finally heard yesterday at a UEFA disciplinary hearing in Nyon, Switzerland where Mourinho was given a two-game touchline ban and ordered to pay a fine totalling peanuts for bringing the game into disrepute. Anyway, Chelsea also have a team who play football. They'll be heading for the south coast on Saturday (kick-off 5:15pm) where they'll be picking up an easy three points against Southampton.
Let's be 'aving you! Yes folks, Delia's back in town with her Canaries who'll be facing (a heavy defeat against) Arsenal on Saturday. Charlton are also at home at the weekend - they'll be taking on Stuart Pearce's Manchester City. After their awful defeat to West Brom a couple of weeks ago, the Addicks need to win this one to stay in European contention.
Further down the table, Crystal Palace are fast running out of games to get themselves out of the relegation zone. The Eagles are at home against a good, if inconsistent Middlesbrough who themselves need a win to keep their European ambitions on track. And finally for the Premiership, Fulham are at home to Portsmouth on Sunday (kick-off 1:30pm). That'll be fun.
The play-offs appear to be slipping from the grasp of West Ham, QPR, and Millwall. With Reading finally remembering how to win games and with Preston, Derby, and Sheffield United all looking stronger, it's looking like they'll be no London promotions to the Premiership this season. But what's disappointing for QPR and Millwall, is potentially disastrous for West Ham. Despite the post-Premiership big-name sales they still have a relatively expensively assembled squad and with the parachute payments due to end, the Hammers board will have to move quick to avoid 'doing a Sheffield Wednesday'.
The Hammers are away to championship-chasing Wigan, the Super Hoops are home to table-toppers Sunderland, and the Lions are away to erm...just-above-the-relegation-zone-but'll-probably-stay-up Leicester City.
Before the two week break Watford were a club who despite a recent poor run of form had had a very decent season considering the limitations of the playing squad. It's rare, if not fairly extraordinary for a lower-league sacking to get quite as much condemnation and outrage from fans, players, writers, and fellow coaches alike as Ray Lewington's dismissal got last week. New manager Adrian Boothroyd has seven games left to get the couple of wins needed to avoid the drop which isn't a massive task, but you suspect his biggest challenge will be to do as well as, if not better than Lewington to avoid the drop next season on an even tighter budget. The Hornets are away to Burnley on Saturday. The Londonist isn't putting it's life savings on an away win.
In Division Three, Brentford are another club whose form has deserted them at this vital time of the season. The Bees are level on points with sixth-place Bournemouth and on Saturday travel to bottom club Stockport - a game where they must pick up three points.
And finally in the Fourth they'll be queuing round the block to see Leyton Orient at home to Northampton. Or is that just cobblers?