Anorak News | Eye Of A Storm

Eye Of A Storm

by | 22nd, December 2004

‘WHY football clubs still hold Christmas parties given the proven inability of players to hold their booze is quite beyond us here at Anorak.

‘You get fined peanuts…’

But it takes some special kind of idiot to do what Manchester City midfielder Joey Barton did at the club’s party on Sunday night.

After a drunken argument with reserve-team player James Tandy, Barton stubbed a lit cigar out in both of Tandy’s eyes.

The Mirror says trouble flared just before midnight at the fancy-dress party in Manchester’s Lucid club.

Barton, who was dressed up as Jimmy Savile, had apparently sneaked up on several of his teammates and burned them on the arm with his cigar.

But when Tandy responded by holding a cigarette lighter to the 22-year-old’s T-shirt, Barton erupted and pushed the cigar into the teenager’s face.

“As his victim screamed in pain,” relates the Mirror, “Barton is understood to have realised the severity of what he had done and attempted to apologise.”

Tandy, says the Mail, was taken to Manchester’s Royal Infirmary where he was treated for burns to the eyelid but is unlikely to suffer lasting damage.

Manchester City insist that it was an accident – but have nevertheless fined the player £110,000, or six weeks’ wages, for gross misconduct.

That is more than double what the Spanish FA were fined by Fifa for the racist chanting at the recent friendly against England.

And the Sun is not alone in thinking the punishment “feeble”. Making monkey noises at England’s black players, it seems, is worth peanuts.

No such problems in South Africa where England’s cricketers are seen celebrating their eight Test win in a row – the best winning streak in our 127-year history.

But as the Mail salutes England run machine Andrew Strauss, captain Michael Vaughan is far from satisfied.

“We haven’t played to the standards we’ve set ourselves,” he says.

“It’s very hard to play a 100% game, but there were periods where we were quite shoddy and that mustn’t happen again.”

The second Test starts in Durban on Boxing Day, where England will be aiming to make it nine wins on the bounce.

But they have a long, long way to go to match the Australians’ record of 16 Test wins in a row…’

Posted: 22nd, December 2004 | In: Back pages Comment (1) | TrackBack | Permalink