I think that Dick Lukkien sometimes thinks back to his bizarre year as a football coach at home over a glass and a snack | Sports column Evert ten Napel

Christmas and New Year’s Eve are just around the corner. At the Christmas tree it is time for reflection and looking back on what went well and what went less well. The New Year is for looking ahead.

I think that Dick Lukkien sometimes thinks back to his bizarre year as a football coach at home over a glass and a snack. Relegation with FC Emmen, completely unnecessary. What went wrong and what did I do wrong?

And then his long-awaited move to FC Groningen. Also downgraded, also completely unnecessary. Oh well, thought every football expert (including myself), Groningen will immediately promote again with targeted purchases and with Dick as trainer. What went wrong in the disastrous start to this season? It must have given Dick and his staff a headache. Then take rigorous action. Top signing Kevin van Veen on the bench, a goalkeeper change and youngsters like Prins, Blokzijl and Schreuders added, resulting in an undefeated 7 league matches and beating Willem II in the cup this week.

What goes through Fred Grim’s head? How is it possible that FC Emmen got off to a good start and is now being beaten one after the other, especially in the final phase? His exchange policy is wrong, reports the Radio Meerdijk podcast. Merry Christmas gentlemen trainers!

What am I doing? Like every year on Christmas Eve, so on Sunday this time, with a whole group of friends we went to the Lucaskerk in ‘s Heeren Loo, a large psychiatric institution in our village. Enjoy singing together and especially with the disabled residents.

Speaking of music? What a wonderful evening last week in De Deel in Sleen, where my colleague and good friend Herbert Dijkstra, together with his friend Jan Vayne, played on the grand piano. The main guest was Evert van Benthem who spoke fascinatingly about his 2 victories in ’85 and ’86 at the Bonkevaart. He and his wife had just come over from Canada and are looking forward to a new tour.

Looking ahead during the oliebollen and drinks? FC Groningen is promoted immediately, FC Emmen plays the play-offs and then?

And I? I’m waiting for that one phone call from NOS or ESPN that all the commentators have lost their voices due to too much drink and I can hold the microphone one more time in the Euroborg or the Oude Meerdijk. I wish everyone a very happy and healthy 2024!