It's international week, and the entire Manchester United-supporting world is as one in hoping and praying that nothing happens to disrupt the team's momentum. After all, it's been a while since the team had any momentum, and it would be exceptionally annoying if it were ruined by Sepp Blatter's malignant meddling.
But for those of you that can't bear the suspense, we are here to help. TBB has dusted off the crystal ball and we can exclusively reveal what is going to happen to each and every one of United's international footballers over the next week or so. Put your mortgage on it.*
* WE CANNOT STRESS THIS ENOUGH: DO NOT PUT YOUR MORTGAGE ON IT.
Wayne Rooney is going to score twice against Lithuania, bringing him to 48 goals for England, level with Gary Lineker and just one behind Bobby Charlton's national record. Much ink will be spilled in anticipation of him equalling or even surpassing the great man. He will then fail to score against Italy as an injury-weakened England get outpassed and outclassed, everybody will feel vaguely cheated, and he'll get banned for two games.
As for United's other Englanders, Phil Jones will limp out of the Lithuania game with an injury, Michael Carrick will limp out of the Italy game with an injury, and Chris Smalling will limp out of the plane home with an injury. Luke Shaw would have done the same, had he not already withdrawn from the squad a few days previously with an injury.
No Belgium call-up for Adnan Januzaj this time around, but United's Most Improved Player (non-Ashley Young category) is off for two crucial qualifiers against Cyprus and Israel. Last season, while he was labouring at United, Belgium were very good to Fellaini, supporting him and taking him to Brazil, where he repaid them with some decent performances and a crucial goal against Algeria.
The universe is all about balance. As such, now that Fellaini's playing quite well for United, his Belgium form will fall to pieces. He'll get sent off against Cyprus early in the first half, and deal his country's Euro 2016 hopes a near-mortal blow.
"Looking back, the warning signs were all there. Though Jonny Evans was coping well with the Finnish attack, something seemed wrong with the Manchester United defender. He seemed distracted, agitated, slightly on edge. Then he fell to his knees, clutching at his head. The referee and the physios sprinted over, but it was too late. We watched in horror as his head exploded and an entire hour's worth of suppressed footballer phlegm covered the pitch. The poor man. He'd managed to not-spit himself to death.
"Paddy McNair replaced his club colleague and the game ended in a draw."
Against Turkey, Daley Blind will start, look tidy, complete nearly all of his passes, fall over once, spend some time at left back but most of it in midfield, manufacture one good scoring chance, get knocked off the ball twice, and end the game with perfectly mysterious hair. Against Spain, Daley Blind will start, look tidy, complete most of his passes, fall over twice, spend some time in midfield but most of it at left back, manufacture one good scoring chance, get knocked off the ball once, and end the game with mysteriously perfect hair.
David de Gea's future is clouded and unclear. In one possible future, he starts ahead of Iker Casillas in Spain's qualifier against Ukraine, excels, confirms himself as Spain's No.1 for the foreseeable future, and joins Real Madrid in the summer. In the other, he stays on the bench, Casillas throws one into his own net early on, the cameras keep cutting to De Gea's studied and neutral face for the rest of the game, and then he starts against the Netherlands. And joins Real Madrid in the summer.
So, not that unclear.
Argentina are heading to the USA for their friendlies, and this is being seen as a chance for Angel di Maria to really run himself back into some form. However, it's not going to be that easy. Though he'll do well against El Salvador, he'll endure a frustrating day against Ecuador, finding himself entirely marshalled by the greatest right back in the world, Antonio Valencia. Louis van Gaal wins again, Angel. Louis van Gaal always wins.
Finally, to Colombia. Well, to the middle East, since Radamel Falcao's merry men are visiting Bahrain before playing Kuwait in Abu Dhabi. It'll be nice for him to get away for a bit: Manchester's obviously weighing heavily on his shoulders. He'll have a fascinating day visiting the Dilmun burial grounds in Riffa, and he'll find himself overawed by the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque before enjoying a drive around the Yas Marina circuit.
What? Goals? Don't be silly.