Anorak News | Spit Roasted

Spit Roasted

by | 30th, November 2004

‘ACCORDING to Peter Marsh of the Social Issue Research Centre in Oxford, spitting is like “insulting someone by saying you want to pee on their grave”.

A spitting image

The Times holds Marsh up as an expert in such matters and uses his weighty opinion to support the notion that football’s most prolific spitter, El-Hadji Diouf, is nasty piece of work.

To those few of you who have not yet been spat on by the Bolton footballer, the news is that the club’s manager, Sam Allardyce, find his player’s behaviour “unacceptable”.

This is not exactly damning the Senegalese striker, but why should we expect anything but soft words from a sport which, Chelsea’s stance against Adrian Mutu aside, fails to stamp on abuses of privilege.

Thankfully, in such matters at least the press are there to pour the right amount of scorn on players like Diouf, who shame the game that feeds them so well.

In “GOB YOB”, the Mirror shows a picture of the player grabbing his crotch and asks: “Bloody El, Diouf! Just how many filthy habits do you have?”

We get no answer. Diouf is not speaking – or else no reporter is game enough to stand within spitting distance of the foul-mouthed berk.

But over in the Sun, players’ football union apologist Gordon Taylor is happy for Diouf to seek professional counselling for his problem.

And like Allardyce, he too is upset by the player’s antics, calling the spitting “unacceptable”.

While we outside the game call it revolting, disgusting and pathetic, the Sun also hears news on that other hot topic in football today – racism.

Barcelona defender Juliano Belletti is furious that, when his team played fellow La Liga club Getafe, opposing fans abused his black colleagues, Ronaldinho and Samuel Eto’o.

“We’ve seen two big examples of racism in Madrid,” says Belletti, alluding to the appearances of England and Barca in the Spanish capital.

He goes on: “Can you imagine the 2012 Olympics held in Madrid with all the black athletes competing and the atmosphere it would create?”

Well, since he’s asking, yes, we could. Racism is, as many footballing types would have it, “unacceptable”, but it would be crass to sully an entire city, a country even with the antics of some boneheaded football fans?

By the same token, should the Games be staged in London, home to a few numbskulls who masquerade as Millwall FC fans, or in England as a whole, where in some parts the BNP are seen as the political party of first choice?

That’s a tricky one. Perhaps if we ask the members on International Olympic Committee what they think.

Is the former government secretary for sports to racially enlightened former Spanish dictator Francisco Franco, Juan Antonio Samaranch, still in charge of that outfit?

Or should we ask someone else?’

Posted: 30th, November 2004 | In: Back pages Comment | TrackBack | Permalink