Anorak

Anorak | Quinten Hannbags

Quinten Hannbags

by | 29th, April 2004

‘“NOBODY TELLS ME WHERE TO GO,” screams Leeds United’s pugnacious striker Alan Smith from the Sun’s back page.

Hann strokes his glass jaw

The paper says that those were the words Smith blurted out when he heard his club planned to sell him whether they escape the drop or not.

Of course, Smith is wrong. Many people tell him where to go, usually in no uncertain terms, and that includes referees who have been known to direct Smith towards an early bath.

Smith should realise that footballers are just commodities to be bought and sold. And as one van arrives at Arsenal, another prepares to leave Manchester United.

The Mail says that the Gunners have bought Dutch striker Robin van Persie for £2.5m. And he speaks good English.

“When I was 16,” says van Persie, “I told my friends that, if I had to chose between Manchester United and Arsenal, I would always sign for the Gunners”.

Whatever he plays like, he cannot be accused of lacking confidence.

But while one Dutchman looks to a rosy future at Highbury, the more established striking talent of Ruud van Nistelrooy prepares to relocate to Real Madrid.

The Mirror puts the story in bald terms, leading with the headline “VAN GOING”, and saying how Alex Ferguson is in a fight to hang onto his most prized asset.

But United fans should not pull on their Torquay and Ipswich shirts just yet. Football fans must realise that behind every former hero is a new idol.

For instance, the Mail’s Ian McGarry claims that Christian Vieri is unhappy at Inter Milan and that he can go for nothing.

Famed for his lack of intelligence, the big Italian would feel right at home at Old Trafford.

But Fergie could opt for any footballer from a list of players the paper claims to be up for grabs.

The list is too long and speculative to repeat in full, but it does include the likes of David Trezeguet, Francesco Totti, Pavel Nedved and Luis Figo.

But the biggest draw in town is not any number of foreign footballers, but the world snooker championships semi-final between Ronnie O’Sullivan and Stephen Hendry.

It is, as the Rocket tells the Express, “the one everyone wanted to see”.

The last time the pair met in the top tournament was two years ago. Back then, the game was something of a grudge tie following comments made about the Scot by the Chigwell flyer.

But two other snooker players are preparing to take things further, and the Sun reports that Mark King will step into the boxing ring with the mouthy Australian Quinten Hann.

King plans to knock seven shades of brown, black, yellow, green and even blue out of the Australian who had a go at King’s mate Andy Hicks in an earlier round at the Crucible.

King offered to fight for Hicks’ honour and Hann agreed. The bout of four two-minute rounds will now take place on June 11.

Loath as we are to take sides, we can only say that we hope King thrashes the little sod until he cries like an abandoned puppy…’



Posted: 29th, April 2004 | In: Back pages Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed: RSS 2.0 | TrackBack | Permalink