So here we are, post-Cup and pre-Liga. For those of us whose teams broke our hearts, said organs are still tender but on the mend. For those of us whose teams broke records, we still smile, but not with all our teeth. And for all of us, the inner ear no longer vibrates quite so violently with echoes of a vuvuzela drone.
The first season I watched the last Barça match with the Hunky Soccer Husband, I sighed at the final whistle. ‘It’s all over,’ I said. ‘What to do until September?’ He blinked at me with surprise and disappointment, the way Sister Mary Holywater always did when a particularly gifted student gave a particularly stupid answer. ‘What ‘over’?’ he demanded. ‘It’s Transfer Time!’ And then he wrung his hands, like an old-timey villain in a silent film.