Anorak News | Down It Like Best

Down It Like Best

by | 6th, December 2005

‘“WHEN I grow up I want to be like George Best,” says the little Geordie lad in the replica kit. And so it is that Paul Gascoigne grew up, kicked a ball and got drunk.

When did it all go wrong, Gazza?

But Gazza missed the important bit about Best’s life. He didn’t get sozzled with a Miss World – he got inebriated in Kettering.


Given that Gazza was Kettering FC’s manager, his training methods must be called into question. Especially when we read that the former England player was once so well oiled he fell out of the team’s bus.

But why did he do it? As the paper tells its readers, Gazza has admitted to drinking before a match in memory of George Best.

Has there ever been a more valid reason to have a drink than in order to salute the man whose liver earned him as many headlines as his sublime ability with the football?

So Gazza drank. And now Gazza is gone. And he joins Harry Redknapp on the game’s sidelines.

Harry didn’t have a drink, although he may well have had a bottle of champagne on ice, ready to pop the cork when he regained his old post at Portsmouth.

But now, as the Express says in its back-page headline: “HARRY’S OUT IN THE COLD.”

The plan was for Redknapp to resign his post at Southampton and take over at Portsmouth. The first part went fine. Harry cleared his desk. The second part has proved to be more problematic.

The Saints demanded £200,000 in compensation for Harry’s defection. Portsmouth’s Chairman, Milan Manderic declined. The Telegraph says Southampton chairman Rupert Lowe was offered a “derisory” £50,000, and an additional £75,000 should Redknapp keep Portsmouth in the Premier League.

No deal. Now asked if Redknapp is on his list of potential managers, Mandaric tells the Express: “No.”

“I’m still hopeful that something can be sorted out but it is looking more unlikely,” says Redknapp.

It’s just as unlikely that Audley Harrison and Danny Williams will take their places in the pantheon of boxing legends.

In readiness for Saturday’s fight, the two British heavyweights have been talking a good fight.

Williams tells the Sun that “Harrison has only fought journeymen”. While the Telegraph’s Sue Mott dubs the bout “Fraudley v Has-Been”.

But even with such an unexciting card, all seats to see the fight have sold out. The bout has been hyped. And the hype has paid off.

As Mott says: “Somebody somewhere has been very clever, and it probably isn’t Harrison or Williams.”

Fighting talk, indeed…’

Posted: 6th, December 2005 | In: Back pages Comment | TrackBack | Permalink