Sports news, commentary and scores with wit and added value. We compare and contrast the best and worst sports reporting in the mainstream press, blogs, TV and online. We love the English Premier League (Arsenal, Liverpool, Spurs, Manchester United and Manchester City) and all things football but we cover cricket, rugby, the Olympics, tennis, golf, F1 and highlights of the sporting year.
Northumbria Police declare:
“At 9.55am this morning police received a report of racist tweets and are carrying out inquiries to trace the person responsible.”
“A 21-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of publishing written material to stir up racial hatred and is currently in police custody helping police with their inquiries.”
LET’S all laugh at Chelsea FC. Those fans yelling for Rafa Benitez to go are missing their target. The former Liverpool manager was given a way back into top-level manager by Roman Abramovich, Chelsea’s sugar daddy who views managers as a harem of talent. Roberto Di Matteo was not shunted aside by Benitez. He was sacked by Abrahmovich. He delivered the favoured son (Champions’ League success) and was then put out to pasture.
At Chelsea, the boo boys don’t dare attack the owner. You will not hear the fans telling the Russian “You don’t know what you’re doing” and “We want out Chelsea back”.
FACE Of the day: Welterweight boxer Ricky Hatton is defeated by Vyacheslav Senchenko at the Manchester Arena. This was Hatton’s comeback fight. It and he was stopped in the ninth round – defeat was followed by retirement:
“I worked hard and I got my answer, I’m a happy man. I don’t feel like putting a knife to my wrist and killing myself. I’m happy. I’d like to think I can be a man now and admit I gave it my best and it wasn’t there. That’s the end of Ricky Hatton.”
Hatton has doubled with cocaine and contemplated ending it all. But he’s witty and grounded. The Hitman owns a Robin Reliant (he loves Only Fools And Horses), plays darts and follows Manchester City. Expect to see him on the telly, often…
JOEY Barton, currently playing in Marseilles, develops a French accent. He’s gone all Steve McLaren:
YOU on Fergie Time? That’s the time zone operated by Sir Alex Ferguson, the Manchester United boss who has turned Old Trafford into a separate time zone. If United are losing, referees give them an extra minute to score:
ASHLEY Mills, 25, from Brentwood, Essex, was with around 30 other Spurs fans having a drink in Rome’s Drunken Ship pub ahead of Tottenham’s match with Lazio. At around 1am, as many as 50 people masked in motorbike helmets and bandanas attacked. Armed with pepper spray, knives, cobblestones, knuckledusters and staves they set about the drinkers. Nine Tottenham fans, including Ashley’s brother Bradley, 30, who had been coughing blood, and an American bystander were also taken to hospital. Mills was stabbed in the groin. The blade severed his artery. His life was saved by 19-year-old Alberto Di Giovanni.
“When I saw what happened, I went to the bar to help. I told the barman to close the shutters to prevent anyone else coming in. I saw the first body. I called an ambulance because he was not breathing well. He was face down, choking on his blood. I facilitated his breathing and turned him over.Three English guys brought Ashley. They said, ‘Help him.’ His leg was bleeding. I held his head and tried to stop the bleeding. I talked to him to try to stop him going into shock. He did pass out three times. He woke up and swore up at me. I said, ‘Keep it coming…’ ”
IF you’ve played Football Manager (or Championship Manager, or whatever the other one is called), you’ll know what a life ruiner it is. Men have been reduced to wrecks, pacing around their living rooms in their best suits, worn specially for cup final day. Degrees have fallen to the wayside as sleep-deprived students aim to get AFC Wimbledon into the Champion’s League.
And all for nothing, right?
SO. Roman Abramovich has sacked Roberto Di Matteo as the team’s coach. It’s news right up with the shockers that Katie Price sleeps on her back. But how do the papers react to it?
The Sun tops the lot, yelling:
“FOOTBALL STUNNED BY BRUTAL SACKING”
WORLD Cup Willie was the original football mascot. Willie, the first Word Cup mascot, was the first modern mascot of all in a marketing and branding kinda way. It as Willie wot won it in ’66:
MANCHESTER City are having a mixed season. On the verge of being knocked out of the Champions Laegue, the Blue Mooners nonetheless top of the Premier League and are scoring loadsa goals. But the Daily Mail senses boredom. It sees Roberto Mancini, the side’s likeable if inceasingly spiky boss, asleep at the game. Yeah, really. So boring are City – so dull is the job of being their coach – that Mancini nodded off during the match.
The Mail tweets:
Roberto Mancini falls asleep during Manchester City v Tottenham
The Sun follows up: “WE WATCHED TULISA SEX TAPE TOGETHER – Prem rat mocked TV judge’s ‘technique’.”
FOOTBALLERS are dreadful aren’t they? They get paid all that money and for what? To roll around on the floor pretending to be in agony while overweight people tell them that they’re rubbish at their job. It really is astonishing. Then they go and kiss their badges before buggering off to the next better offer. Dreadful.
And now, to cap it all off, they probably hate people with disabilities.
CHELSEA chairman Bruce Buck explains the brutality of football management. When the club sacked Andre Villas-Boas, now making it up as he goed along at Spurs, glory followed:
‘”The proof is in the pudding: Andre was terminated and we wound up winning two trophies. I want to hear you congratulate Mr Abramovich and Chelsea for making that change.”
THEY came from nowhere… Meet the lower-league legends who graced the highest stage of all.
Wilfried Zaha’s call-up to the full England squad has raised eyebrows among those accustomed to the Premier League closed shop that has become the norm in recent times. But there are historical precedents for the Crystal Palace wide man’s sudden rise to fame – and not all the lower-league debutants are from the dim and distant past…
NASCAR is not do dull. Jeff Gordon and Clint Bowyer’s team taking it outside the cars.
Driver Kevin Harvick speaks for many sports fans:
‘‘The sport was made on fights. We should have more fights. I like fights,’’ Harvick said after the race. ‘‘They’re not always fun to be in, sometimes you’re on the wrong end, but fights are what made NASCAR what it is.’’
THE third part in that amazing photograph of Jimmy Savile meeting the Yorkshire Ripper, Peter Sutcliffe, in Broadmoor is Frank Bruno. The former heavyweight boxer wants to put the record straight. Bruno was there opening a gym. He says Savile tricked him into shaking Sutcliffe’s hand. He says Savile apologised.
Bruno is called the “BOXING hero”. Of that 1991 meeting he says:
“I didn’t know who he was.”
SO. Brendan Rodgers Liverpool lose 1-0 to the mighty Anzhi Makhackkala in Moscow. Rodgers picked a largely young, inexperienced side. Would the club’s star names have fared better?
“I don’t think I should have brought the likes of Gerrard, not at all…We just got punished for one mistake, otherwise the players who were here did fantastically well, and it wouldn’t have mattered if those other players were here.”
THE Society of Black Lawyers is not a work of parody. The head of SBL is one Peter Herbert. He says he will complain to police if Spurs do not stop their fans chanting songs about Yids, chiefly that they are Yids and proud to be part of a Yid Army.
The police will then do something, possibly chuck Jews out of Spurs’ ground for calling themselves Yids. The words Yids will then be discussed in courts. Everyone wil be talking about Yids until Yids is trending on Twitter. All things being possible, a Jew will then end up in prison for being a self-yidding Jew.
Herbert tells BBC Sport:
“Clearly Tottenham have a distance to travel before they learn of the offence that is being caused.”
IS Spurs manager Luís André de Pina Cabral e Villas-Boas crap? Following the team’s home defeat by Wigan, The Daily Mirror’s John Cross wrote:
“…if you are a rational Spurs fan, just take a step back and remember we are only 10 games into the Premier League season and AVB’s side are sitting in fifth place. Yes, fifth place. Hardly a crisis… But he surely deserves more of a chance than he is currently being given by the White Hart Lane faithful. You get the feeling he is only ever one bad result away from the fans giving him stick.”
Those fans, eh, demanding that their team win, or try their best to. (My opinion is that Villas-Boas makes it up as he goes along.)
FACT: Mitt Romney’s fourth cousin twice removed is Maria Nash, 32. Her husband, Simon Nash, earns a living as Deepdale Duck, the mascot of Preston North End Football Club.
True enough, Simon Nash is seven degrees separated from Mitt Ronmey, and may be more closely related to Kevin Bacon. But Kevin Bacon never was much of a football mascot.
TO Edenbridge, Kent, where a 30ft effigy of Lance Armstrong wearing a Jim’ll Fix it badge is to be burned. DO NOT INHALE!
THE Daily Mail is aghast and agog. Jonathan McEvoy can’t get his head around the sight of a white Chelsea fan apparently pretending he’s a monkey. The Chelsea fan seemingly scratching his armpits as watches his team take on Manchester United is called Gavin Kirkham. In allegedly incriminating photo, United’s Danny Wellbeck (black) can be seen in the foreground. It doesn’t look good. But it’s not proof of anything. Still, here’s McEvoy:
There appears to be no uniform or even logical standpoint among Chelsea fans. Ruud Gullit, as long ago as 1996, was the first black manager in the Premier League; Didier Drogba was one of the icons of the Abramovich era; the current assistant manager, Eddie Newton, and technical director, Michael Emenalo, are both black. Yet the yob thought to be doing the monkey routine allegedly taunts an opposition player on the basis of his skin colour. The club are owned by a Jew and their chairman, Bruce Buck, is a Jew. Yet, as recently as a week ago last Saturday, Chelsea fans made their customary hissing noises at the Tottenham fans, imitating the gas chambers of the Holocaust.
“CLATTENBURG – REFEREE – LEADER- LEGEND.” So declares the banner unfurled by Manchester United fans at Chelsea’s Stamford Bridge. This might well be the world’s second best banner. The winner was unveiled at the same match.
It’s ok to laugh at Chelsea, who conducted an investigation into the allegation that referee Mark Clattenburg called Blues’ midfielder John Obi Mikel a “monkey” after going public.
Chelsea captain John Terry got a four match-ban and an FA Bentley-sized fine for racially abusing QPR’s Anton Ferdinand – Westminster Magistrates’ Court said Terry was not guilty of the same. Clattenburg has already been suspended from refereeing Premier League matches. His entire career is in jeopardy: