The Madchester Trip: Conlethians Party (and spend) Like Sheikh Mansour!

Many moons ago, when on the ‘red’ side of Manchester a certain ginger midfielder was passing with aplomb and tackling with fury, and a young winger was running like the wind and exposing his chest hair with glee, a then-cub reporter of ours accompanied Mr. Shay Keenan on a Junior School trip to Paris.  Said cub reporter was an American and thought soccer was for ‘girls, sissies and foreigners’.  Said Mr. Keenan set him straight, lecturing him on the glorious history of United and its demigods.  Then they both tuned in to some footie that happened to be on the television in the eh … museum: It was the 1999 Champions League Final.  QED by Mr. Keenan and Gunnar Solskjaer.  This time around, the journey was a bit harder to stomach, for both the lads, who settled quickly settled into a ‘sweets-spew-sweets’ routine on board, and Mr. Keenan, who had to endure both a triumphant night for the nouveau riche of Maine Road and a rather ignominious drop into the Europa League for his beloved Red Devils.  Thankfully, Mr. Sheridan was also there, and his twelves hours of consistent snoring somehow soothed the soul.  Of course, Mr. Keenan was man enough to forget about the current plight of the plodding Huns and PSV-cast-offs who are desecrating Old Trafford and joined in the fun: the boat-trip of giddiness and nausea (but fun nausea!), the mall invasion where the Conleth’s kids adopted the spending habits (and lack of savvy) of the City director and the match itself, which honestly was a classic with goals galore and some memorable (but not to be repeated in a family publication) chants.  And Mr. Kilcommons took it all in, as he always does, with a well-earned sense of bemused satisfaction.