The fan - Hunter Davies praises Big Ron's new silver wig

Big Ron has become Herr Ron, with a sleek silver wig and new specs

Another season, another reason, for making whoopee cushions, which could come in handy, bringing us down with a bump of ridicule if we all get carried away, but so far, it's looking really good in the Premier League, with some new exciting players, lots of good games, great goals, big crowds, fab haircuts, making the disappointment of England's final World Cup game seem a lifetime away, not forgetting the unusual sight of Spurs being top of the league, blink and you'll miss it, despite mostly playing rubbish and being dead jammy, not that I've seen them yet, in the flesh, still being here, in Lakeland.

Goodness, that was a long sentence for a little boy. But I am genuinely enthusiastic about what I've seen so far and also trying to fit in more words, now that I no longer get a whole page. Something wrong with priorities here. Football is alive and well. Stuff like the theatre and politics, well, it's dead, innit.

First things, the haircuts. Bex has become a fashion follower, not setter. Those weirdly bleached-blonde streaks make him look like a World Cup leftover from the Korea squad. Is he taking his two weeks' paternity leave after the Portugal game? Fergie, being a known softy and trade unionist, must surely allow it. Love the name Romeo for his new son. They did think of Roman or Rome, then thought, nah, too macho.

Emmanuel Petit also looks weird, sans ponytail, not at all himself. I thought it was Mark Hughes at first, sneaking back into the Chelsea team, which is impossible. Chelsea is now completely a foreign team. No Brits need apply. I'm amazed they are still in an English league. They could easily trot out at the San Siro or the Nou Camp as the home team.

But the haircut and new look that has given me most pleasure is Ron Atkinson's. I clapped my hands in joy when I first glimpsed his makeover. Gone is the wispy, swept-over bit of grey hair and in has come an all-over, sleek silver wig, new specs and a leaner look. He could be a successful German banker. Herr Ron, not Big Ron, I intend to call him from now on.

Young players to watch include Carlton Cole of Chelsea, if he can change his nationality and get a run in the team, Jermaine Pennant and Jeremie Aliadiere of Arsenal, and Simon Davies of Spurs. This could be their big chance to establish themselves. I'm not quite sure about Wayne Rooney, the boy wonder all Everton fans are raving about. I suspect his amazing maturity at 16 makes him appear better than he really is. Titus Bramble, a boy wonder a year ago while breaking into the Ipswich team, looks lost at Newcastle. I also fear the Boy Wonder of all Boy Wonders, the Blessed Owen, is not the wonder he was.

Abroad, well, let's not look there, one glance at the Real Madrid team sheet could make any British manager give up. What is the point when they've practically cornered the market in world stars? So let's concentrate on home, keeping cheerful.

Among the crowds, I've spotted two Beatles references. Man U fans have been singing along to "Yellow Submarine", although I haven't caught the words yet, while a group of Blackburn Rovers teenage girl fans held up a banner saying "All You Need Is Duff". Which immediately made me think of words I've had lodged at the back of my mind for years but haven't found an event to fit them to: "Cheese Leaving Home". One of these days, players called Stilton or Cheddar will get transferred and I'll be able to sing along.

But not till January, now the transfer window has been closed. I wonder if it also applies to managers? Can they not be transferred to another club, either, or even sacked till January? Peter Reid will be pleased. Graham Taylor also.

And what about TV commentators? Are they safe until January as well? I do hope nobody tempts away Herr Ron, just when he's giving me so much fun . . .

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