Tuesday, 19 March 2013

Getting to Rio

It's nice to see, as the world celebrates the arrival of a new Bishop of Rome, that the notion of the late withdrawal still has some purchase.

Rio Ferdinand's decision to exclude himself from the little matter of a trip to San Marino and Montenegro has left most of us feeling bewildered. (Although not quite as bewildered as I feel when hearing various Catholic commentators, and in particular, cardinals, getting mildly erect when talking about the new Pope. I can't help seeing them under the bedsheets with a torch and a copy of Vatican weekly - which is at least a preferable image to the one that they'd prefer you didn't know about. But I digress.)

Ferdinand couldn't come to play for England cos he has an 'intricate, pre-planned fitness programme'. There was a lad at our school who skipped swimming lessons cos he had a 'chronic, ongoing and debilitating aural condition'. Yes it sounded like a skive to me n all, but I'm sure if you had asked him he would have reassured you as to his passion and commitment to swimming.

The thing is, if Rio can't come on these trips cos Fergie won't give him a note, then what the fuck's the point of him insisting he really wants to play for England? If he has this complicated schedule - and it sounds as if he can't break wind without the Govan Beetroot sniffing the air and giving it the thumbs up - then essentially he's saying I can play for England, yes, but he has to fit in with my plans.

That's a non-starter. So just retire, Rio. Okay?

I mean it begs the question just what does he do with his week? Clearly he's got a more secure handle on it than he had when he missed that drug test. He must have a window set aside for 'shopping for jumpers' now.

Now I like Rio. I think he's a top player and if I was Hodgson I'd be dead keen to have him in the team. There was a time not too long ago when pundits were purring about the great depth of talent that England had at centre-back: Terry, Ferdinand, Cahill, Jagielka, Lescott, Dawson... and Smalling and Jones getting better all the time.

Now that just reads like an injury list. When I was growing up centre-backs were made of iron. Even if you were armed with a sledgehammer and a forklift truck you still wouldn't be able to get them off the pitch. Maybe it's just bad luck but these days they're about as sturdy as puff pastry.

I can't imagine Jack Charlton or Terry Butcher insisting that they'd have to skip an international fixture cos I've got some raiki massage at 10 am that day and then I'm doing some intense visualisation exercises at half-two. Indeed Butcher would have been more likely to say "Let me take out my own stitches out before I get on that plane".

Of course recent history is also littered with the debris left by Cap'n Terry. His retirement, huffily done and only after the FA kind of insisted that the words 'cunt' and 'black' had been used in reference to a fellow professional, was welcomed in most quarters.

Of course while Terry was captain, Rio was left out when Terry was captain for 'footballing reasons' which is a bit like leaving out Bradley Wiggins from the Olympics for 'cycling reasons'. You could argue that a centre-back partnership between a user of racist language and the brother of the victim of that racist language might not make for a good football team, I suppose.

Ironically, Terry would be quite handy now, even if he too suffers from chronic back problems and has been left out by Benitez. (Although Benitez also leaves out Eden Hazard... just how - how??? - is he still in gainful employment?)

So Hodgson is left with the onerous task of cobbling together a pair of centre-backs and crossing his fingers. It'll be Caulker and Smalling most likely. Against San Marino it could be Walcott and Lampard for all it matters.

The last time an England manager was rooting around desperately for a pair of centre-halves before a vital qualifier was November 21st, 2007. Yes it only feels like yesterday, doesn't it? That night England's back four were Richards (remember him?), Campbell (a plodding 33 at the time), Lescott (in a wonky-wheeled shopping trolley of a performance) and Wayne Bridge who played like a man who had one eye on the fact that John Terry wasn't on the pitch. They were a bloody shambles but weren't much helped by Scott Carson's awful performance.

Now I don't doubt that Hodgson will have his team, whoever they are, better organised than McClaren. And I'm more than certain that Woy won't have an umberwella handy either. In Montenegro, I wouldn't be surprised if the owl-faced gaffer doesn't break the record for the number of holding midfielders in a starting eleven.

But the omens aren't great. Much emphasis is always put on Rooney but sooner or later we will embrace the idea that the top-weaved terror of Toxteth is nowhere near the potential genius everyone hoped for when Clive Tyldesley hollered "Remember the Name! Wayne Rooney!" And with no Wilshere we might just have to rely on Sturridge or Welbeck fulfilling some of their promise.

I expect to see this team v Montenegro: Hart, Johnson, Smalling, Cahill, Cole, Milner, Carrick, Gerrard, Cleverley, Rooney, Welbeck.

But between then and now let's work hard, boys n girls, to just dampen down any residual optimism that some foolish people might have gained from that win against Brazil that took out national team to 4th in the FIFA rankings.

Yes. Fourth. Try explaining that to your children when they say 'But I thought we were shit, Daddy."







229 comments:

  1. First!

    back of the net!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Second

    Hit the post

    ReplyDelete
  3. Third

    Hit the corner flag.

    Spider

    ReplyDelete
  4. Not sure why there's links on the words 'retire' and 'forklift'. It's bloody annoying mind you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. it was possibly a misheard quote from Fergie to Rio, "retire you fuckwit"

      Delete
  5. Robbo, you've defended your views so well that you may be a late call-up for the Montenegro match.

    "Yes. Fourth. Try explaining that to your children when they say 'But I thought we were shit, Daddy.'"

    I keep asking about this, especially given the U.S. are 33 (and on recent form, deservedly so). But Brazil are 18, so that should help stop you from dampening your drawers.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I've given up explaining to my children why Ipswich are shit.

    Nice opening line as well Del Boy.

    As for Forgetmenand,well he'd have done in the short term for the game against Montenegro,owing to the great shopping list of injuries we have,but it's the briefing about how he'd never turn his back,have his bags packed to join up straight away etc etc followed by the 'intricate, pre-planned fitness programme' excuse that smells a bit off.

    Still,at least this farrago spares us a blog about the woes of the Boro making a late burst to join the relegation battle.

    ReplyDelete
  7. I fail to see how it is difficult for anyone to understand why Ferdinand pulled out of the squad.

    1) Hodgson treated him very badly, when leaving him out for "footballing reasons" . I mean how dare Ferdinand have a brother who had the temerity to get racially abused (personally I think Terry isn't a racist, but the abuse was) by EBJT .

    2)The man has injury issues. Hence he has to manage every day of his training. His current plan would have been tailored with the view of him playing the Reading game and then getting 2 weeks off, specially during the International break. Hodgson just went for Rio cus he does not have any decent options left. Hence the lack of notice period for a player who definitely needs it to make sure he doesn't get injured.

    3) Glory with United (this should help him extend it no doubt) or the usual "Goddammit that was insipid" experience with the England team (where his own Manager doesn't appreciate him, until the said manager's ass is on fire cause he has to pick Caulker . )
    PS_ Why is Steven Taylor not being called up ??

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yash, you're in the ballpark on my name for the call-up. However, I've traced back about five generations and it seems my roots are Russian, without any English at least that far back.

      If I understand correctly, that makes me eligible for your rugby or cricket sides, though.

      Delete
  8. As I was fifth and now sixth, I'll hit the showers.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Especially given how far off my count ended up.

      Missed the links, Robbo, but I'm sure some spammer is hoping you'll want to buy a timeshare and some construction equipment.

      Delete
  9. good stuff Robbo. We should all stop bashin' the Bishop!

    He might as well have 5 ManU players starting, they've got fuck all else to do in Europe.

    Big Jack told Sir Alf that he was going fishin' in the mornin', he'd stop for 20 Woodbines, call in at the chippy and be at Wembley by quart to 3. Them were the days.

    ReplyDelete
  10. http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/21843906

    Michael Appleton's got the bullet.

    He'll obviously now take over at one of the 5 clubs left in the FA Cup.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Appleton for Chelsea, ASAP!

      His story this season reads more like something out of Football Manager.

      Delete
    2. Nailed on for Chelsea job then

      Delete
    3. Gotta think Abramovich is eyeing that Rosenior record.

      Delete
  11. http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/21839361

    Owen to retire.

    Why retire from benchwarming? Good gig if you can get it. If he was a center back he'd be in the England squad.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Top blog as ever Robbo. A few points (which is all Spurs will get if they play like that again: good time for the international break):
    1. What the f**k are the Venkys playing at? Turning Blackburn into a laughing stock. Now on their 4th manager of the season. Makes Abramovich look like a long term decision maker.
    2. Surely Rio must have known about this "intricate pre-planned fitness programme" for some time (the clue is "pre-planned"), so why didn't he make himself unavailable? Forgot due to a shopping trip, I suppose. "I still want to be selected but I'll only play when I can be arsed" is not a strategy guaranteed to provide a long term England career.
    3. I thought Owen had retired years ago. Been trading on reputation since before he left Liverpool (obviously the prototype for Fernando Torres then).


    Jedi

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Jedi,

      1. There is no truth in the rumour that a "Manager of the Week" award is being instigated to give Blackburn Managers a chance to win something!
      2. I think this is all a plot by SAF to humiliate Woy, otherwise why didn't Rio simply pull out citing an injury (unsuccessful frontal lobotomy)?
      3. Owen, retired? I thought he was dead!

      Spider

      Delete
  13. NEW HEADLINE -

    DR WHO GETS MANAGER SACKED BY CELEBRITY LOVING BOARD

    Last week, Dr Who actor and Blackburn fan Matt Smith told BBC Radio 5 live: "It's an absolute farce, a joke, it's being run by complete numpties. Great players, great team, great club and those berks have ruined it.

    "They talk about getting rid of Allardyce because of the long ball - what the hell was that against Millwall?

    "It was a woeful performance against Millwall. It's the first time I've been embarrassed at the way the team played."

    Why didn't he just get in his TARDIS and tarvel back to each match with the following days paper and get the team changed

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Maybe,and this is just a suggestion Adam,because it's a fictional device.

      Besides which,if anyone could do that I'd request that they go and speak to Mrs Lowe and Mrs Tennant and suggest contraception to them.

      Delete
  14. Oh. Meant to say, England are playing San Marino, and everyone says how easily we should win, then Montenegro, which is a "tough game". Yep, that's Montenegro, with a population of 625,000 (or 1% of England's population). In the words of Ali G "Is it becoz we is crap?"


    Jedi

    ReplyDelete
  15. Jedi: " What the f**k are the Venkys playing at? Turning Blackburn into a laughing stock.":

    Laughing stock is a key ingredient in Venky's Chicken Stoop (to New Lows).

    ReplyDelete
  16. Nice one RR.

    I 'm not so sure what caused Rio to pull out, but if I had to hazard a guess I would say it was an ego thing. I don't think he ever got over been dropped in the first place, it was a massive dent to his pride.

    Maybe he wasn't quite the player he once was, but he was still good enough and had more then enough experience to warrent a place, at the very least, in the squad. The whole sordid affair started with that nasty piece of work JT and his brother, Anton's, let's say, altrecation. The media, as they do, jumped on that and the whole thing became a circus. The, then, England manager Cappello sided with his captain (the Itailian sticking up for the white guy, go figure), which ultimitly cost him his job and put Hodgson in the hot-seat.

    Now Woy had a choice to make, the Terry trial had inexplicably been pushed back 'til after the Euro's, meaning that by law he was still innocent (untill proven a cunt), but it was painfully obvious that a JT/Rio combo wasn't going to work and it probably wouldn't have been the best plan to have them together in the squad. For Woy this was a lose/lose situation.

    In the end Woy chose for Tewwy and left Wio out fow footbawling, sorry, ahem, footballing reasons, now this may very well be true, but Rio, feeling the pain of rejection, threw the "Is it b'coz I is black" card on the table, which if I'm honest, he had every right to do, but all that ever did was throw more fuel on the fire of a pretty volitile situation. Once again England went into a tournament where the football was just a side note to the contreversy off the pitch, not the greatest preperation now, is it? Through it all Rio has said he would always be ready to return to the England set up, tantamont to the noble retiring statesman, that has been forced out in the name of progress and what is right for the country, if you will

    JT kinda vindicated Woj's choice by having a good tournament in which England performed better then expected. On return home the whole circus started up again culminating in JT's "But I'm the victim" retirement speach from International football, seemingly totaly oblivious to the carnage he had left in his wake.

    A year on, JT's contribitions to Chelsea have been few and far between while Rio has redifined himself and has been a major factor in Man U's league success. With Terry out of the way, Woy has come a knocking. I believe that that is all that Rio ever wanted. It proves (mostly to himself) that he was good enough and belonged in the squad, his ego has been stroked, his pride has been restored. The only thing left for him to do was say;

    "Thank you, but go fuck yourself".

    Can't say I blame him.

    ReplyDelete
  17. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-21829682

    Nazi salute celebration?! This one isn't all Greek to me. Isn't Golden Dawn something to do with R Kelly?

    I get that the kid is 20, but he has massive potential as an idiot. I hear Man City might sign him if Chelsea don't make him their manager first.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. For a second there, I thought you were saying Goldie Hawn was being put in charge of Chelsea.

      Delete
  18. Good luck Michael Owen, his retirement's a bit late but he was a good 'un in his day. Anyone who gets a hat-trick against the Krauts deserves a pat on the back.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Venkys probably have their eye on Dravid or Tendulkar to come in as the new coach. Absolutely idiotic the way they are destroying the club. To think Steve Kean had them in 2nd spot and was run out by a combination of fans and idiotic board. I'll bet those fans wish they could go back in time and stop slating Kean ( or prevent Henning Berg from being his replacement).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Frank Lee............................ my dear, I don't give a damn.

      Delete
    2. Leave Bells out of it. She's up for the Chelski job when Rafa leaves.


      Jedi

      Delete
    3. Bell, Book and Candle. The first two played for Citeh in the old days.

      Spider

      Delete
    4. by golly I've got it. Fox! They need a fox in the hen house! It'll be the Leicester manager whoever he is!

      Delete
  20. This is just unbelievable;

    Robbie Savage;

    If myself, Joey Barton, Ryan Shawcross or Lee Cattermole or anyone else with a reputation for tackling had made that challenge, then there would have been people saying ‘throw the book at them, they are a disgrace’.


    Yeah, the whole footballing world saw you as a hard tackling enforcer.

    *excuse me while I go change the pants I just wet from laughing.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. In fairness H,if he chose to go in hard with his hair,he could leave a nasty case of nits.

      Delete
  21. England coach Gary Neville believes the national team's strikeforce is the envy of a host of countries across the world.
    Full story: the Sun


    By across "the world", I take it he means Great Britain!?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. H2H, If it's Welbeck and Rooney up front then I think "the world" means Manchester, if not Old Trafford.

      Spider

      Delete
    2. England's strike force is the envy of the world? Which world? Messi, Aguero and Tevez quaking in their boots? Villa, Fabbyarse, Xavi and Iniesta worried? Ibrahimovic concerned?
      Quick tip, Gaz. If you're going to spout, make it faintly believable.

      Or is it the wages they envy ("how do you get so much if you're complete crap?").


      Jedi

      Delete
  22. One for Jedi

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-highlands-islands-21842269

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Nice one H2. Now repeat after me:

      I hereby promise to be faithful to the Gooners until they win a trophy.

      Keep repeating until end of time.

      I hereby declare you man and Gooner


      Jedi

      Delete
    2. Ha ha.

      Ofcourse I'm in it for life.

      I'm not a plastic manc or chav. ;)

      Delete
    3. 8 year trophy drought is nothing.

      We went 17 years between tiltles when I was a nipper.

      I wssn't even born the last time Sp*rs won the league

      Delete
    4. Thanks for the last swipe, H2, fair enough. I was 3 at the time (don't remember a lot about it!).


      Jedi

      Delete
  23. WTF?

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/2013/mar/19/callum-mcmanaman-fa-massadio-haidara

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I believe Flabber Gasting is the new Reading manager.

      Delete
    2. Don't you mean Blackburn?

      The initials FA are there for a reason such as FA use. They are simply a laughing stock and, hopefully, too pathetic to survive much longer.

      Spider

      Delete
    3. "However, Magpies assistant boss John Carver and Wigan coach Graham Barrow have both been charged after a half-time fracas related to the incident."
      ---------------------------------
      Hahaha..truly hilarious.

      Delete
    4. I hate to say it, but I agree with Derek Lambias. The system isn't fit for purpose. I propose a new definition for FA: Feckless Arses.

      Delete
  24. Fine blog Robbo. Ledley King used to have a similar problem with his fitness needs between games, in that he couldn't do any, which is similar to Rio. But he still turned up when selected by England. I think Rio was told no by Taggart - as blogs mentioned on the previous blog, he has a history of encouraging his players to put Utd first, country second. I think Rio wanted to say he was available so that people didn't think he was turning his back on his country, knowing that he'd then be withdrawn from the squad, so both he and Taggart get what they want.

    Steven Taylor has finally been called up due to an injury to Cahill. There's no reason why between Taylor, Caulker, Smalling and maybe Shawcross if selected, we couldn't get past San Marino and Montenegro. I think a lot of people underestimate Montenegro - they have Mirko Vucinic and that Jovetic bloke up front, and a very, very hostile support. I'm expecting at least one stabbing incident, unfortunately.

    ReplyDelete
  25. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Our strike force isn't really the problem as Rooney and Welbeck would we welcomed by any Premier League team and most in the Champions League it is in the midfield and defence we are knackered

      Delete
    2. I think you're over rating Rooney a tad there mate.

      As for Welbeck........ You're joking right?

      Delete
    3. Sorry for pulling the post guys, just wanted to add something extra.

      Even allowing for your obvious bias Adam, you are making those comments with your tongue firmly in your cheek... yes?

      Delete
    4. Not at all. If you rang Arsene Wenger and told him he could have those 2 up front next season he'd bite your hand off

      Delete
    5. I bet he wouldn't.

      He might kick you in the balls though.

      Delete
  26. 'I expect to see this team v Montenegro: Hart, Johnson, Smalling, Cahill, Cole, Milner, Carrick, Gerrard, Cleverley, Rooney, Welbeck.'

    Fuckin' 'ell... that team almost, I say almost, makes me wish for the golden generation days again. This team woudn't win the PL, let alone qualify for amajor championship. Points against San Marino and Montenegro are definitely not assured.

    Is this the strike force that is the envy of the world...it's not the envy of the teams in the Championship.

    ReplyDelete
  27. I think there is a lot in common between the Catholic church and Rio's situation. In both cases they advocate abstinence from activity as a means of control. This is why Rio pumps away madly trying to get into the england squad and then pulls out just before he comes.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Both also surrounded by money and overseen by a creepy old man who does not take well to criticism.

      Delete
  28. Spot on nik. We're just wasting out fucking time trying to understand this in terms of reason or consistency although for marketing purposes and maybe self validation rio is playing that game

    No Man utd is a hybrid between catholism (pope alex the only)and the firkin Moonies with it's control freak charismatic leader. He's not going to retire, he's going to lock the team into old Trafford and burn it all to the ground mwwahaha.

    Dawkins would call this the Rio Delusion. 'thinking you want to play for England when in fact you just want to get another contract from the Leader and look good for the cunts on twitter'

    Dangerous game through rio. To have everything timetabled to the millisecond like that ultrahigh as you say Robbo since the notorious 'how am I sopposed to know when the drug test was I've smoked sooooo much wacci bacci my fucking watch has melted' episode Pope Alex has assigned rio his own omnipresent PA who walks behind him carrying a big red comedy stop watch and tutting.

    I mean what if the missus don't want to shag at the SAF allotted time of 6.22am? And Jesus Christ what if John Terry gets hold of your shag shit run eat fart tweet schedule. You're fucked then rio.or at least your missus is.

    ReplyDelete
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    ReplyDelete
  30. One b in robbo, there's only One b in Robbo, one b in Robbo...........

    Arsenal fan.

    I really fancy a game of Kerplunk.

    I once lost 40 quid at Battling Tops. Those were the days. We would bet on anything and everything. Oh, and 300 quid lost on Cluedo.

    Gambling stories?

    My mate won over 1000 pounds (fucking Finnish keyboard without pound sign) on 3 from each section. 15 correct scores. He gave me 20 quid.I put it on 3 correct scores. Won 1500.

    I was in the bookies once. Guy and his girl were studying coupon next to me. Hahahahaha, heard them arguing. Girl wanted to put 5 pounds on Rangers winning 8-0. Guy tried to explain intricacies and nuances of Coupon gamblage. FAIL.

    ReplyDelete
  31. HA: I really fancy a game of Kerplunk.

    That's the one where you bet on which side will have the bottom drop out of its season, right?

    I'll go Man City (4th). QPR, Reading, Sunderland to go down.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Spurs 5th will have the bottom fall out.

      Reading, Wigan and Villa to take the drop

      Delete
  32. I'm hoping Southampton and Reading both go down after their treatment of their managers. QPR still favorites to join 'em but there's some fight in 'arry's army.

    ReplyDelete
  33. QPR are done, as are Reading, last relegation place will be decided very close to the last day.

    Or maybe not.

    ReplyDelete
  34. Blackburn insist they want a big-name manager to replace the latest departee from Ewood Park, Michael Appleton, and Chelsea interim boss Rafael Benitez, 52, is thought to be on their list.
    Full story: Daily Mirror


    That's the funniest one yet.

    ReplyDelete
  35. Not sure if even Rafa would want to manage in League One,seeing as he's a CL winning manager and all that. Wouldn't rule out Sparky or Sven though.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Not forgetting he is also Club World Cup Winner too AH

      Delete
  36. what are the odds for whoever the next Chelsea manager is, being sacked by Christmas? And the odds please, for whoever the manager is after the next manager after Rafa, also being sacked by Christmas?

    ReplyDelete
  37. When it comes to Chelsea managers, it's always odd.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. But nothing's ever too odd for them.

      Delete
  38. As if MotD wasn't dire already;

    "When Michael (Owen) first did some work for us, we wondered just what he would be like. The last thing we needed was another dreary, bland footballer telling us nothing at all. But he came in and was brilliant and surprised a lot of people. He seemed to instinctively know what to say and how to say it."

    Action packed Mike the dynamic!!

    At least they have admited now that the rest are indeed dreary and bland.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "The last thing we needed was another dreary, bland footballer telling us nothing at all."

      So why do they keep Lawro and Shearer on?


      Jedi

      Delete
  39. From tennis to football, Tim Henman for Blackburn!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Im still putting my money on Tendulkar or Dravid, Or maybe Venkys will move Blackburn to the IPL .

      Delete
    2. That would explain all the sackings - they've all been fired for not getting the wickets and bats out

      Delete
    3. IPL is the only premier league they'll be sniffing anytime soon. Unless you count the Blue Square Premier. Otherwise, they're plucked.

      Delete
  40. Arsenal Ladies beat Torres 3-1
    ----------------
    Didn't realize it'd gotten quite so bad for the poor bastard.

    ReplyDelete
  41. Heh, heh. Just tweeted that AH. Great minds... alike.. fools... never differ... etc.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. He would still have probably been the prettiest one on the field.

      Delete
  42. Former Stockport Grammar School pupil and ex-NBA basketball star has claimed Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson's management style belongs in the past.

    Speaking at the Securing Sport 2013 conference, Amaechi said: "Give him his due, someone like Sir Alex Ferguson, who I think is a remarkable individual, there is no other job he could do as a manager.

    He added: "His style of management, we would not tolerate that in any other environment.

    "If he was a French teacher at a school, he would last five minutes."

    He has obviously never worked in a shipyard or factory then and has no idea of secondary school PE teaching either

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. he would struggle as a french teacher. he dont speak french

      Delete
  43. There are strange things happening on this blog. There was a post below Adam's, from our resident spammer, pointing to his blog which has just disappeared. Not even the usual 'this post has been removed by the author', just disappeared like it was never there.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think the cauthor of the original piece (ie Robbo) has the power to remove anything from the blog.

      He giveth and he taketh away.

      Delete
  44. yeah, something about paper products! Maybe the google techies are on his trail.

    ReplyDelete
  45. I see Rio's "pre-planned training programme" involves flying out to Qatar for work as a TV pundit on the England game.

    Can't see Woy selecting him again.


    Jedi

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Woy has never been a strong manager. If SAF decides he wants Rio to play after all, one phone call should do the trick.

      Delete
    2. I don't suppose he's in seat 36F all scrunched up. In fact, 14 hours on a flat bed might cure all and a bit of warm weather will do him a world of good.

      Delete
    3. I would concur 14 hours peace and quiet in teh 1st Class of Qatar Airways is probably the best relaxation he can get

      Delete
    4. what rio needs is a muscle relaxant a camberwell carrot maybe

      Delete
    5. on the other hand, an hour and a half, flogging your guts out for one's Country and the 40 million or so people that have an interest in the welfare of its' football team wouldn't be a bad idea.

      He's probably lining up his post football career work and this represents a chance to audition. in Head v Heart, wallet wins which is what we've been conditioned to expect with this modern bunch of footballing whores.

      Delete
    6. boring but practical - how about a trip down M6 and M1 to Al Jazeera studio in London?

      Delete
  46. At least rio can genuinely claim that he's missing the game for 'footballing reasons' .... He's commentating on it!

    ReplyDelete
  47. I don't dislike rio seems like a decent enough guy but he has GOT to stop pretending he's some kind of moral exemplar ..on race ...on loyalty ... on patriotism

    In reality he's no better than any other pro footballer a group for whom the epithet 'self interested' could have been coined.

    'Dim' is another.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. They are like multinational corporations blog... loyalty only to themselves and the almighty dollar.

      Delete
    2. i thought he's paid in poundsterling

      Delete
  48. http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/soccer/news/20130320/uefa-world-cup-qualifying-preview/?sct=sc_t11_a1

    Includes a passage worthy of McNumpty: The derby between Croatia and Serbia is the pick of Friday's matches. Both countries have never played each other since the Balkan civil war in the early 1990s...

    Sure would be odd if Serbia had faced Croatia but Croatia hadn't faced Serbia, or vice versa. Either way, that's one match I'd rather not attend without military protection.

    ReplyDelete
  49. Over time Pandora gets smarter and smarter as it gets to know you and your musical tastes.
    Craig Newmark began the service in 1995 as an email
    distribution list of friends, featuring local events in
    the San Francisco Bay Area, before becoming a
    web-based service in 1996. Clearly as the genre of neo soul continues to evolve, so will its musical direction into even more creative sub-branches of the same tree
    of soul that funk planted, that jazz watered, and that R&B
    pruned.

    Also visit my website - http://moodle.uh.cu/user/view.php?id=12102&course=1

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Do you munch on Pandora's box?

      Delete
    2. message understand, comrade. the package will be at the usual place at 12 noon on the day before the 12th day of 2nd month of the revolutionary calendar

      we shall invade the capitalists shortly after with our tanks and guns

      they will suspect nothing!

      Delete
    3. Nice to know Adrian Mole's love interest gets more intelligent.

      Sue Townsend would be proud

      Delete
  50. Oddly enough I used to use Pandora,but unfortunately you can't use it over here anymore.US Government a bit strict now on foreign users.Twats.

    ReplyDelete
  51. yeah, Pandora's box is a whole can of worms.

    ReplyDelete
  52. (Michael Caine accent) "My name is Greg Dyke, and I am chairman of the Football Association"

    well he acts like a man of the people (vs blazers) but these media types, im coming to the conclusion you cant trust a word ... most of thier effort is expended on impression formation cf Rio "pick me pick me nah" ferdinand

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm slightly puzzled as to why the FA replace a man of 70 (enforced retirement through reaching said age) with a man of 66.

      Who hasn't got a clue anyway,but even so.Only 4 years in office.He'll have only just worked out how to use the pencil sharpener.

      Delete
    2. did you post this from the bottom of a snowdrift, jacks?

      i think they must throw up a pile of newspaper photos of old men who support man utd and have featured on broadsheet front pages at some point in the last 30 years and the one that lands face down gets the job

      Delete
    3. that's it, face down or tits up!

      Delete
  53. It is slightly alpine at the moment here Blogidy.

    ReplyDelete
  54. Replace an old man with a slightly lesser old man?

    Sounds familiar.

    Are the FA taking their cue from the Vatican?

    If so, how will the pope play snooker?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The FA are playing pocket billiards. The Pope's been framed. He needs a long rest.

      Delete
    2. hes been potting the brown with some choirboys

      Delete
    3. not to mention his skilled pokes at the Canon.

      Delete
  55. Here we go:

    http://www.clitheroeadvertiser.co.uk/news/strange-but-true/burnley-fan-applies-for-vacant-blackburn-job-1-5515595?utm_medium=twitter&utm_source=twitterfeed

    ReplyDelete
  56. Wet Spam, get the Olympic Stadium;

    http://www.football365.com/news/21554/8583072/WHU-Move-Helps-Working-Class-Man-

    They will have a bigger ground then the LWC’s and the Chavs.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. it'll make them a much more attractive proposition for the next multi-billionaire buyers whose first job will be to relieve Big Sam of his duties.

      Delete
  57. http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/21899924

    Absolute madness this story - facing the sack over doing something half the population do on a daily basis.

    Not his fault it was a hoax. Should be dealing the Celtic fan who broadcast the call online without his knowledge

    ReplyDelete
  58. So, the bubble is about to burst in Spain;

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/2013/mar/21/eu-debt-spain-football-clubs

    La Liga is in danger of literaly becoming a two team league……

    Would anyone really notice the difference?

    ReplyDelete
  59. Speaking of Spain.....

    http://futbol.as.com/futbol/2013/03/22/primera/1363963688_528205.html

    (you'll need to google translate the page)

    Operacion Puerto's favourite Doctor, Eufemiano Fuentes, claims he's owed money by Real Madrid,but Barcelona are good payers.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Arsenal are still owed money from Barca for the Alexandr Hleb transfer.....

      I wouldn't of paid for him either.

      Delete
  60. If only Woy would be less diplomatic and tell Rio to fuck off

    ReplyDelete
  61. Interesting article that h

    I knew about the municipal bail outs.I didn't know about the massive tax debts and indirect funding via publicly owned TV companies. How else could they possibly compete with the Russian oligarchs I guess.

    As with Cyprus, the EU are bridling at giving bail outs to countries who spend public money in these ways.

    why would the German tax payer put up with it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's the same here, blogidy.

      The tax payers are up in arms about certain clubs getting leg ups or hand outs under the guise of culture. It won't be happening anymore I can tell you that much.

      Cyprus and Greece are lands non grata at the mo' too.

      Delete
    2. try the USA, free housing, food and money (while supplies last).

      Delete
  62. has anybody got a link for England match coverage please?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. watchespn has it at http://espn.go.com/watchespn/index#sport/soccer-futbol/type/livenow/ (it will appear shortly) if you've got the right cable or internet subscription.

      Delete
    2. The do-it-yourself commentary is a nice touch. Matches earlier today had commentary, but oh well. Beats most of the commentators we usually get.

      Delete
    3. Five mins in, they add the commentary. Maybe they were waiting for England to score.

      Delete
  63. If that doesn't work try (google)

    wiziwig

    or

    firstrowsports

    ReplyDelete
  64. it was all a bit worrying 'til the 8th one went in.

    ReplyDelete
  65. Surely a great match for a debut cap, and yet... Oh well. Now I see why England are ranked so highly.

    ReplyDelete
  66. Match of the Day presenter and former England striker Gary Lineker
    "Can't see anyone living with us in the World Cup now."


    England still 2 points behind Montenegro in their group....

    Dick.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think Lineker was being sarcastic.

      Delete
    2. I'm quite good at being both simultaneously. I imagine he can multitask, as well.

      Delete
    3. I think Lineker was being sarcastic

      I think he was being a bit of a tosser.

      Delete
  67. Aaron Ramsey did a decent rugby style tackle on James McArthur.

    You can take the boyo out of Wales, but……….

    ReplyDelete
  68. I watched it on x6...Joe Hart was more of a spectator than me .what a joke of a fixture that is. Reminds me of playing carmount nomads as a kid, 26-0, I scored 7 and I think even we were embarrassed by it all aged 12.

    ReplyDelete
  69. Were those blue things cones?

    ReplyDelete
  70. The Carmount Nomads families were so embarassed by that 26-0 defeat years ago that they all emigrated to San Marino and dressed like blue cones so nobody would notice them (and lived in blue cone shaped houses).

    ReplyDelete
  71. Read the small print in your cone-tract.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zVpLSRe0P1E

    ReplyDelete
  72. Reports are emerging from the vicinity of old Trafford, Manchester of an enormous explosion which have resulted in a crater equivalent to the Chicxulub impact in the Mexican gulf.

    Eye witnesses have variously reported that the crater is lined with a thin layer of Scottish beetroot and that sir Alex Ferguson had been seen reading a report about FIFA moving the 2022 world cup back to the winter

    Experts on the spot are predicting the extinction of dinosaur football managers

    ReplyDelete
  73. By then Fergie will have retired as the Glazers will have sold Old Trafford for housing for the 100.000 russian immigrants who have flooded into the UK following their country's entry into the REU (Russian European Union)to build the 30 new Power Stations needed to keep the lights on in England. FC United of Manchester will have won their first Gazprom Premier League trophy under manager Paul Scholes with evergreen veteran Ryan Giggs scoring the clinching goal.

    Spider

    ReplyDelete
  74. Anyone catch USA v Costa Rica? Not the most exciting match, but check out the snow...

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f0UywBkxG90

    or the pic from

    http://espnfc.com/news/story/_/id/1385184/clint-dempsey,-united-states-beat-costa-rica-amid-heavy-snow

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Meerkans may have embraced “soccer”, but they haven’t quite worked out the advantages of an orange ball.

      Delete
  75. The Cypriot government has phone Ladbrokes with a 10 billion Euro bet on a Switzerland win at 7-4.

    ReplyDelete
  76. West Ham co-owner David Sullivan has promised to bring Champions League football to the club's new home at the Olympic Stadium, adding he will hold talks on Monday about buying a "record-breaking" striker.
    Full story: Daily Express

    Eeeerm. Haven't you got Andy Carroll there already?

    Surely he has the record for biggest waste of money ever.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think he means they hope to host the final soon.

      Delete
    2. I thought it meant they were gonna let Chelsea play there.

      Delete
    3. There new striker is indeed a record breaking striker. He holds the world record for quantity of jellied eels conumed in 2 minutes.

      Delete
    4. At the first glance it looked like 'promissed to bring Championship football...' Hmh, not entirely impossible, but not really something to brag about.

      SashPie

      Delete
  77. Ex-England captain David Beckham was embarrassed during his trip to China. Paris St-Germain midfielder Beckham, 37, was wearing a suit as he attempted to display his free-kick-taking prowess but slipped as he took the kick and ended up on the turf.
    Full story: Mail on Sunday
    =====
    As embarrased as he was when he missed that penalty in 2004?

    ReplyDelete
  78. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-21880159

    Momentary tangent... it turns out Kanye West may name his child North West. I think it is a ploy to set up a baby cologne called "North by North West".

    ReplyDelete
  79. The polonium was in his rubber duck, comrade. The capitalists suspect nothing.

    ReplyDelete
  80. Tom Pope - League 2 Player of the Year. Not bad for an Argentine.

    ReplyDelete
  81. Thanks uber-anon; the audio feature here is wonderful and Robbo has been known to throw everything but the kitchen sink into his blogs. Now that we have your link, he can chuck in one of those, too.

    ReplyDelete
  82. Hasnt scored since the old Pope resigned tho Noel. Coincidence? I dont think so.

    ReplyDelete
  83. The Old Pope will probably have a trial with Bolton this Summer.

    ReplyDelete
  84. http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/21927972

    Great quotes from Montenegro's coach ahead of the match. Sounds spot on with a few of them, at least. Maybe Chelsea should hire him next just to play mind games with Fergie. (After we finish with Appleton, of course.)

    ReplyDelete
  85. Advertising at it's very best;

    http://in2eastafrica.net/ford-india-apologises-for-berlusconi-advert/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Never mind that; I wonder how Luis feels about having a car named after him.

      Delete
  86. The Ford Twat? The Vauxhall Racist? The Chrysler Eatanapplethroughatennisracket?

    ReplyDelete
  87. Replies
    1. Watt? He was a powerful player, best of his generation.

      Delete
  88. http://nhl.si.com/2013/03/25/video-insane-shootout-save-wins-the-game/?sct=uk_t2_a13

    Impressive (ice hockey) save made even more entertaining by the excitable German-speaking commentator. Weirdest part of the video is the ref's uniform, though. Ice hockey uniforms with ads are often a bit overdone, but that ref uniform takes the cake.

    ReplyDelete
  89. Prediction sure to be wrong:

    Montenegro 3 - 1 England
    Jovetic
    Lampard

    Vucinic
    Jovetic

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. (thought I had the spacing right on the Lampard prediction... he'll be scoring for England, not Montenegro)

      Delete
  90. This might be good, that guy was a legend:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-21860034

    ReplyDelete
  91. Haha Stephen, that's the worst prediction in the memory of man. You're talking about the 4th ranked team in world football, we could beat Montenegro with Stevie G's hands tied behind Wayne Rooney's neck.

    ReplyDelete
  92. Montenegro?

    Didn't Suarez get in trouble for calling someone that?

    ReplyDelete
  93. The father of ex-England footballers Gary and Phil Neville has been arrested on suspicion of indecent assault.

    The BBC understands Neville Neville has been arrested by Greater Manchester Police.
    ---------------------------
    His name is Neville Neville ?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, for real. Surprised you didn't know that.

      Delete
    2. My poor knowledge of all things Neville-ian will one day be my downfall.

      Delete
  94. H - conversation recently overheard at anfield

    LS Stevie mi amigo who are ju playeen on Tuesday
    SG Montenegro
    LS Monte.....aha karamba ju weel no catch me out again treeky eengleesh!

    ReplyDelete
  95. It's fucking Montenegro for fucks sake.not fucking psycho ninjas fc

    England 2-0 black mountain

    Sendings off that is

    ReplyDelete
  96. From the BBC website;

    ELSEWHERE

    Arsenal’s Cesc Fabregas is missing from the Spain starting line-up for the huge Group I qualifier away to France which gets underway at 20:00 GMT. Meanwhile, Manchester City’s Vincent Kompany is back from a two-month calf injury to lead Group A leaders Belgium at home to Macedonia.

    D’oh.

    ReplyDelete
  97. I was just reading about nn's arrest for indecent assault funnily enough. Very sporty family but my good they're ugly.

    ReplyDelete
  98. And now beer.match.happiness.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Enjoy me ol´ Chia.

      Here Nl already 1 up.

      Delete