Last week, Fraser James used the power of Lawro to good effect, scoring a highly respectable 3 out of 5. After Sarah Johnson had hit the same score the previous week, we felt that the 'FPP' (as it's known in the corridors of power) was beginning to reach new heights of prediction excellence and consistency. Sadly, our balloon of complacency was soon pricked by the following missive...
"You recent guest predictions have been disappointing, to say the least...3 of 5 is your best result? How about, one of these weeks, letting a Yank take a crack at it? I guarantee at least 4 of 5."
Ahhhh, the rugged individualism of the American internet prediction pioneer! One can only sit back and admire the show as we watch an individual stake a claim to his manifest destiny and show us pathetic limeys just how this game should be played. As (I'm told), they say in the states....game on!
Your name & occupation?
Barry Petchesky. I'm a student at Temple University, but only for another three months, after which I hope to gain a foothold in the highly profitable world of predicting Premiership results for blogs.
Where do you live?
I was born and raised in New York, but for the past four years I've been attending university in the hellhole that is Philadelphia. For 300 years this city has been milking it's association with Ben Franklin, who if you'll remember, was instrumental in convincing theFrench to enter the War of Independence. Sorry, just had to throw that
Have you ever been to London?
It would be rather pointless of me to have Londonist bookmarked if I hadn't, yeah? I've been a couple of times, the most recent being summer of 2004, which I spent studying in London. I love the city - other than New York, it's the only place on earth I could ever live.
Define, in no more than 11 words, the magic of the FA Cup.
Leyton over Fulham. Burscough over Gillingham. Grimsby over Spurs. Enough said.
How will the US do in the World Cup?
Italy are overrated. The Czechs are too young. Ghana couldn't make it out of the first round of the African Cup. That being said, my Yanks won't make it to the round of 16, and I'll be forced to go watch my DVD of Victory again.
Explain this ....
Football will never make it big in my country. NEVER. Perhaps it's a shrewd marketing tool designed to bring in the gay male audience. After all, they drove Pop Idol to the top, yeah? (Please, no comments about my unfortunate choice of shirt in the above picture.)
Which team do you support?
Chelsea! In my time studying in London, I lived off of Earl's Court, so the Blues were my local club (If you ignore Fulham, which most do.) Additionally, when I was on holiday in Amsterdam, I spent days doing my
damndest to charm this bird from Brixton, and only succeeded after we watched Chelsea top Liverpool to take the Carling Cup. So that pretty much sealed the deal.
Your favourite player?
Frank Lampard. The poor guy came in with such unrealistic hype because of his father, and was roundly torn apart by the media for the first five years or so. Then after joining Chelsea, he took more crap for the huge transfer fee. But once Abramovich showed up and finally surrounded him with decent players, he's shown everyone that he just might be the most complete player in the world.
If Joe Cole was an American President, which American President would he be?
None too bright, but charismatic, Joe would have to be compared to Bill Clinton. And just like Clinton, Joe has had his success on the left, but would prefer to be seen as a centrist. Besides, that whole row over Keeley pretty much seals the comparison.
Your favourite place in London?
The Victoria Embankment, between Westminster and Charing Cross. It's got the best views of the Thames, the best upscale bar (Tatershall Castle), and may be the most romantic spot in the entire city.
If Brian McBride were to accidentially shoot you in the ass whilst on a hunting trip, could you forgive him?
If you saw the Americans' 2002 World Cup games against Portugal and Mexico, you'd know Brian McBride doesn't miss.
Have you ever been sick on the sidewalk?
I'm a student - what do you think? And hey, it's called the "pavement" in your backwards country, innit?
Thank you. And now for your predictions........
Bolton v West Ham (FA Cup)
Haven't the Hammers lost to Bolton twice already? And there's no way the Wanderers are losing this game at The Reebok. Home win.
Charlton v Brentford (FA Cup)
First off, Alexei Smertin's got it right: England would be daft to tap Alan Curbishley to manage the national team. That being said, this is around the time of the FA Cup when it becomes very unwise to bet on League One squads, even if they're soon to be promoted. Charlton will be looking to let out some aggression over a close loss to Man City. Home win.
Chelsea v Colchester (FA Cup)
You've got to be kidding me. Home win.
Tottenham v Wigan (Premiership)
In the interest of full disclosure, I hate the Spurs. HATE them. Robbie Keane's goal celebration is nauseating. I pray Ledley King jumps ship. I would give my left arm to see Arsenal take the last Champions League spot. But it's not going to happen. Tottenham have taken only two points in their last six matches, and to me that just means they're ready to put together a good run through the last few months. A win over a scrappy Wigan is a nice start. Home win.
Newcastle v Charlton (Premiership)
Newcastle will have a nice little tuneup against Southampton to prepare for this match, and it'll allow the Magpies to come into this on a three-game streak. Charlton meanwhile will have an emotional letdown after advancing to round six of the FA Cup. These two are fairly evenly matched, but the Toon Army makes the difference. Home win.
Thank you Barry, and good luck. No really, good luck to you.
If YOU would like to have a pop at the famous FPP, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will jim'll fix it for you. You stay classy, London