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Back pages | Anorak - Part 59

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Premier League news. Stories from the newspapers and BBC sport – sports news from tabloids Daily Mail, Daily Express, Daily Star, the Guardian, Daily Mirror, the times, daily telegraph

The Indian Cricket Mutiny

THE Indian-Australian cricket row boils on:

i-am-mark-benson.jpg

Source

Posted: 11th, January 2008 | In: Back pages | Comment


Steve McClaren’s Sinking Ship

newbeckham.jpgSAYS former England football manager Steve McClaren (“the wally with a brolly”) in the Times: “I could have worn a woolly hat, and England cap. I’d have got soaked to the skin and looked like a drowned rat walking way from the bench and that would have been the depiction of the England manager.”

Much better to have the England team lose and the self-conscious manager remain dry and cocooned from the rain falling on his players and the fans by a huge golf umbrella…

Image is all.

Pic: The Spine 

Posted: 11th, January 2008 | In: Back pages, Broadsheets | Comment (1)


Let’s Lynch Tiger Woods

WATCHING the Golf Channel, men in Comfi Slax will have heard commentator Kelly Tilghman and Nick Faldo musing on how Tiger Woods could be beaten:

Faldo and Tilghman were discussing young players who could challenge the world’s No. 1 player toward the end of Friday’s broadcast at Kapalua when Faldo suggested that “to take Tiger on, maybe they should just gang up for a while.”

“Lynch him in a back alley,” Tilghman replied.(Source) [Both were chuckling at this point, see the video below]

Another Don Imus?

Of course, it is all just a joke. Racism in golf. Tsk! As if…

Posted: 10th, January 2008 | In: Back pages | Comment (1)


Alex Curran’s The Bag Of Dorian Gray

celebrity-handbags.jpgWAG Alex Curran is holding a bag. It’s made from the perineums of a million organic-milk-reared snakes.

The Suns says the bag costs £1,500 and after it’s been born in Geppetto’s bag studio it is injected with botox.

This keeps the bag fresh and alive. Of course, had Curran kept abreast of bag trends she would be stepping out in the company of the still warm, hollowed out and springy-skinned cadaver of a Siberian tiger.

But Botox it is. And given the amount of skin-ravaging sunshine the average Wag imbibes, the Curran bag takes on Dorian Gray properties.

Keep injecting lest bag and bag lady become indistinguishable…

Pic: 14 

Posted: 10th, January 2008 | In: Back pages, Tabloids | Comment


Five Football New Year Resolutions

motty.jpgFIVE football new year resolutions that should have been made but either weren’t made, or have been broken far too soon

1. Fans who visit other clubs’ message boards and announce themselves ‘West Brom fan in peace’, as if they are involved in a particularly bloody and long-running tribal war, rather than a spot of harmless time-wasting. Then follow with comments such as ‘You lot are doing well and I think you might get a win at our place, what do you lot think? And what about Nigel Donnington? We had him on loan from Bury a few seasons ago and he looked quite useful.’

2. Players who ‘celebrate’ goals by pouting crossly and wagging their finger. This was irritating enough when it was used to remonstrate with officials who had just adjudged them offside. Now it seems to be used as a self-righteous gesture to the gods and the world at large, as though by scoring, the player has proved himself right, and disproved those inferior beings who had the temerity to doubt him.

3. Players and managers – including non-league exponents – who use the latest football jargon as naturally as if they had been speaking it since they were were knee-high to a bung. Particularly annoying examples are ‘to be fair’ and ‘in fairness’, which are used with complete disregard to their non-football meaning. What they are trying to indicate is that they are about to be critical of somebody. The phrase they require is ‘to be honest’.

4. John Motson’s new hard-edge style, and his liberal use of the phrase ‘innit’ – or ‘intit’ as Motty has it. Not that we want the old-style Motson back, but at least you knew where you were when he discursively speculated about tea-trays and family meals during important live matches. What next – a rap record?

5. Players (and managers) who talk about themselves in the third person. Nothing new about this, but it’s still happening, and the world seems to have stopped caring.

Posted: 9th, January 2008 | In: Back pages | Comment (1)


Alan Hansen’s Carbon Bootprint

alan-hansen.jpgTV football’s nodding head Alan Hansen is standing before a fireplace in his house.

But what looks like an advertorial for Grecian 2000 or a new debt free YOU is Hansen sharing his views on football with a TV crew.

A source says that the Scot asked if he should put the fire on to make it look “more homely”. The producer agreed. And then Hansen invited the company to pay the gas bill.

The Sun is shocked. But this is entirely proper. Hansen is nature’s friend and would not care to go in studs high up Mother Nature, leaving a carbon footprint deserving of a red card.

It is a time for cool heads…

Posted: 9th, January 2008 | In: Back pages, Tabloids | Comment (1)


Denton, Arsenal, Sex Pistols And What English Football Is All About

denton-johnny-rotten.jpgDENTON, Arsenal And What English Football Is All About.

I stood on the Clock End for years. I loved it. My sister used to stand with me. Gooners.

Now we sit at the Emirates.

The story is here. The video is here. If you have better, please let me know…

Football, and why we go:

WRITES John Lydon on his blog: “The flag in respect of Denton Connell, which flew at the Pistols Brixton shows, has been handed over by John and John to close friends; who they know will protect and honour it.

Posted: 8th, January 2008 | In: Back pages | Comment


Chelsea’s Joe Cole Rewrites West Ham’s History

joe-cole.jpgJOE Cole plays for Chelsea. He was signed by Chelsea from West Ham United for £6.6million.

Says the Times: “Chelsea are adamant that they will not pay over the odds for Anelka, with Joe Cole articulating the frustration felt by many at the club at suggestions that they are buying success.”

Chelsea buy success? The club owned by Roman Abramovich, the oligarch who has invested over £300 million in the club since acquiring them from Ken Bates and other shareholders for £60 million and paying off £80 million of debt. Not a chance…

Says Joe Cole: “It riles me when people talk about Chelsea buying the league. I’ve never seen a pound note scoring a goal and I’ve never been at a club with as good an atmosphere.

“I supported the club, was a ballboy at the club, have played for them, came through tough times at the start and made myself an important player. I was very proud to have the captain’s armband for 50 minutes against Aston Villa on Boxing Day. I have a connection with the fans and know what it’s all about. I’m one of them.”

He’s born and bread Chelsea is Cole. Only what was that bit about his playing for West Ham and going to Chelsea in a big money move?

Anyone care to help Joe out..?

Posted: 8th, January 2008 | In: Back pages | Comment (1)


Football’s Shame: Ford And Prison

JOEY Barton is in prison. “CRY BABY BARTON,” says the Sun’s front-page headline.

“You hear him crying in his cell at lights out time,” says an “insider”. A fellow insider has reportedly called Barton “scum of the earth”.

The Guardian looks at other jailed footballers. Cars play a big part. And looking through the list, we note that Tony Adams, the former Arsenal captain, was jailed in 1990 for drink-driving after crashing his Ford Sierra into a wall.

A Ford Sierra. The shame!

Posted: 3rd, January 2008 | In: Back pages, Tabloids | Comments (6)


Manchester United Christmas Party Quiz

COMPLETE the News of the World’s front-page headline: “MAN U £1m ‘RAPE’ PARTY FINE”

a) And dandy…
b) EXCLUSIVE
c) Romance

Postcards to the usual address

Posted: 30th, December 2007 | In: Back pages | Comment


Joey Barton’s Annual Headline

joey-barton.jpg“JOEY Barton charged with assault”

See you next year, Joey

Posted: 28th, December 2007 | In: Back pages | Comments (4)


Brains And Prawn: The Manchester United Cook Book

manchester-united.jpgTHE Official Manchester United Bar-B-Q cook book has yet to hit the shelves.And if the club’s manager, Sir Alex Ferguson, has anything to do with it fans will have to make do with their prawn sandwiches and other non-roasted fare for some years to come.

The Sun reports that United have been banned from partying, even if they win the Premier League.

Says the Sun: “A title victory in May will be greeted with the normal on-pitch celebrations with champagne among family and friends.”

Of course, this would be United’s tenth Premiership title. Habit dilutes the thrill. And we should not expect such sobriety from other less successful clubs for whom the thrill would be total.

Indeed, should West Ham United win the title the family do, involving Lee Bowyer, Lucas Neil and Kieron Dyer, could descend into fisticuffs before the PA puts Bary White on the turntable and the staff of Romford’s Chittychittybangbang Nite Venue make full use of the corner flags…

Posted: 26th, December 2007 | In: Back pages, Tabloids | Comment (1)


Micah Richards And Manchester United Christmas Cook Up

delia-smith.jpgMICAH Richards faces a “grilling” says the Sun. This follows Sunday’s news that he “spit roasted” a girl in a disabled toilet cubicle.

And this after the story that three Manchester United players “roasted” a girl at the club’s office do, where women were treated like “pieces of meat”.

Not since Graeme Le Saux’s pancakes a la mode lit up the Celebrity Masterchef kitchen have footballers been so enamoured by cooking.

A book is surely in the offing…

Other famous footballing cooks: Delia Smith (Norwich City owner, pictured), Gordon Ramsay (Glasgow Rangers) and Nigella Lawson (Arsenal)…

Posted: 24th, December 2007 | In: Back pages, Tabloids | Comment


Manchester United’s Christmas Roast: Cocks Of The North

stuffed-manchester-united.jpg“THREE MAN U STARS ROASTED GIRL No.2,” announces the Sun’s front-page headline.

“Get in there,” shouts the crowd as the lads got stuck in to the game bird. “Well done son,” come the words of encouragement.

“You don’t know what you’re doing,” chant more. “Keep it up,” extol others. “We are United the cocks of the North,” goes the rousing tune from the terrace at Manchester’s Great John Street Hotel.

John Evans, Manchester United’s “sex-scandal soccer star” denies raping a woman at the club’s Christmas do. But while that matter continues to be investigated the Sun hears a “sickened party guest” describe the moaning and groaning coming from an upstairs room.

A “pretty” girl, “19” is having sex with five or six men, “including three United players”.

Says the girl, now emerged from the room: “They said I was a great shag.”

A “thank you”, “best wishes” scrawled on a souvenir napkin or a firm handshake would have sufficed but these day players are versed in media training and now that there image is important. They go the extra yard.

Indeed, the Sun looks on as the United “stars” visit a hospital. Not for themselves and a nasty itch, but to meet sick children.

Not sick and perverted. But really ill…

Posted: 21st, December 2007 | In: Back pages, Tabloids | Comments (6)


Crapello: Learning English With Fabio Capello

capello1.jpgFABIO Capello is now well on his way to becoming Fabio Crap-ello the man who brought down English football and scarred a nation – for ever!

And that could mean trouble for Michael McElinney, who is now Capello’s official look-alike.
Capello impersonators can earn up to £350 a time, says the Express in a piece entitled “Absolutely Fabio-lous”.

Says McElinney: “I don’t speak a world of Italian but if Mr Capello is going to learn English in a month who is to say I can’t learn it?”

Well, not we who have been boning up on our Itanglish or Englaly. Key phrase to look out for: “We cannot pasta the ball”, “Eye-Tai (should England play Thailand), “Eye-Tie” (a draw) capo” and “E IO Adio”…

Posted: 21st, December 2007 | In: Back pages, Tabloids | Comments (6)


Jesus Christ Was A Celebrity: Danielle Lloyd’s Wondering Star

jesus-celebrity.jpgDID Jesus have the X Factor?

No one attracts celebrities like Jesus. And today Star readers spot Danielle Lloyd telling Star readers how she’s going to celebrate the birth of A-lister Jesus Christ.

Dressed as Jesus would have been at the moment of his birth, albeit with a thong and fluffy hat to keep out the chill (it’s a lot warmer in Bethlehem, folks), Danielle says she is seeing her footballer on Christmas Day.

Lloyd tells us that the OK! Christmas party was “great”. But she won’t be eating too much over Christmas, even if gravy can stain your skin a light browny orange. Danielle has a fitness DVD coming out.

Keep fit with Danny by pulling on a G-string, standing in a chilly photographer’s studio and flapping your arms about, dashing along a pavement to Messers Nip ‘n’ Tuck’s offices, and chasing footballer’s cars…

Amen

Posted: 20th, December 2007 | In: Back pages, Celebrities, Tabloids | Comment


Ricky Hatton Below The Belt

gazza.jpgSAYS Ricky Hatton: “I feel like a woman at the minute, I can’t stop crying.”

Of course, Ricky means to say he feels like a footballer, a reality TV show contestant or an American evangelist.

Jeremiah was ever a man…

Posted: 20th, December 2007 | In: Back pages | Comment


Wayne Rooney In Hello!

SAYS Wayne Rooney in Hello! magazine on the matter of his summer wedding to Coleen McLoughlin: “I wouldn’t invite people for the sake of it.”

Although Hello! might well invite its readers on Wayne’s behalf…

Posted: 18th, December 2007 | In: Back pages, Hello! | Comment


Ashley Cole Shall Not be Moved

ashley-cole.jpgGOOD news for Chelsea’s Ashley Cole.

After yesterday’s “Cole in V-Sign row” (Express), “Ash in dock” (Star) , “V-sign Cole is facing FA rap” (Sun), Cole “gestures” to Arsenal fans (Guardian), the evocative “FA may finger Cole over gesture” (Mail) and the Mirror, Independent and Telegraph all publishing pictures of Cole giving a two-fingered salute to the crowd, the Times says the England player will not be punished.

Why? “Because there are no moving pictures of the incident.”

The Anorak urges the FA to solve this matter by lining up the newspaper images and flicking through them rapidly by way of finger and thumb, so enabling Cole to move, or transfer, as Cole might call it…

Posted: 18th, December 2007 | In: Back pages | Comment (1)


The Best Football Videos Of 2007: Hitler, Football, Arsenal, Spurs, Sheffield United And West Ham

HITLER, Football, Arsenal, Spurs And West Ham – the best football videos of 2007:

Sheffield United relegated:

Arsenal 3, Tottenham 1

Posted: 14th, December 2007 | In: Back pages | Comment


Wag Watch: Alex Curran Horror Over Steven Gerrard’s Gift

alex-curran.jpgTHE good news is that Alex Curran, Wag to England footballer Steven Gerrard, likes shopping. She may even live for it.

The bad news is that her next shopping expedition has been triggered not by England making it to Austria and Switzerland for this summer’s European Championships of Shopping but by a raid on her family home.

In “OUR TERROR”, Curran tells Mirror readers: “It was terrifying – a horrendous experience. I’m still traumatised by the whole thing.”

Inside the paper, over two more pages, Alex manages to find an outfit to put on, a ring and a necklace, too.

It is apparent that the four robbers did not take everything. And in the Star, Alex can be seen in black leggings, black boots and carrying a bag that should comfortably hold the contents of a mid-sized department store.

On the Mail’s cover, Curran is wearing a plunge-necked dress in tope. And in the Mail the outfit is a silver mini-dress, bejewelled strappy black shoes and a clutch bag.

It is clear Curran needs more stuff. So it’s off to the shops for her. Although there is some confusion over what she needs to replace. The Star says the £10,000 Cartier watch she told the world she was buying her footballer for Christmas has been stolen but the Sun says it was missed by the robbers.

Of course, now the surprise is ruined. So Curran will just have to buy another one, perhaps for Gerrard’s other wrist.

And on an even better note, the combined value of the two watches will help counter accusations that Curran has gone downmarket…

Posted: 13th, December 2007 | In: Back pages, Tabloids | Comments (2)


England Put Wags Out Of Business

wags1.jpgTHE fallout from England’s failure to quality for Euro 2008 continues to hurt.

And it’s bad for business. Reality has collided with the reality TV show Wags Boutique. What the odds?

As the Sun reports, the show has been “axed” because of England’s on-field failure.

In this show, ten Wags were split into two five-a-side teams and each team given a shop to run for profit. But now the shops have closed.

It is a shocking decision. But then, the show was always mired in controversy, chiefly in the selection policy.

In the white heat of battle, Michaela Henderson-Thynne has separated from her footballer Stewart Downing, and Cassie became known as the former girlfriend of Chelsea’s Michael Essien.

And there was Danielle Lloyd, who appeared as a Wag shopper under the banner “on/off Wag”.

Viewers and pub professors wondered if Wives And Girlfriends extended to ex wives and girlfriends? Were the Wags to be rebranded as Exwags?

Of course, ITV, which broadcast the show, has missed a chance to enliven a moribund summer for football fans. Our advice would have been to put the show out at primetime and for a full 90 minutes.

Like you and the BBC’s cameramen, we searched for the Wags in each and every break in play. This was the chance to remind us what football really is all about…

Posted: 12th, December 2007 | In: Back pages, Tabloids | Comment


Scent On: The Smell Of Wayne Rooney

rooney-perfume.JPGWAYNE Rooney is to offer you the chance to sell like Wayne Rooney.

Girlfriends and significant others can already smell like the fragrant Mrs Rooney, the scented Coleen McLoughlin.

Coleen X boats “a top note of sweet orange with a heart of marine accords and patchouli and a base of vanilla, amber and musk”.

Each morning, a team of odourlogists “press” Coleen’s bedding and trap the resultant tincture in a thimble. Then by a process known as “science” they add this and that to produce the smell that is Coleen.

What Wayne smells of we are uncertain. But can expect top notes of last night kebab and crushed nuts. “Wayne Rooney: Errr” arrives in bottle fashioned on a raised boot stud. Retails at £120,000-a-week, when available…

Posted: 12th, December 2007 | In: Back pages, Tabloids | Comment


Steve McClaren And The Star’s Plain English

DEEP into the awards season, the Star brings news of the gongs meted out by the Plain English Campaign.

In “MAC: I’VE WON CUP AT LAST!” the Star shows that when it comes to plain speaking it is master, dropping adjectives, pronouns and superfluity in pursuit of plainness.

The Plain Speaking award is for those who have not spoken plainly, so the Star is ruled out.

The top prize goes to former England football manager Steve McClaren (see “bungling England football flop”).

His offerings feature:

* “We’re not as good as we think we are. We needed to go out there and prove that.”
* “He [Wayne Rooney] is inexperienced, but he’s experienced in terms of what he’s been through.”
* “It’s no-win situation for everyone. We knew we had to win, and we did.”

McClaren wins “for putting foot in mouth”, says [the] Star…

Posted: 11th, December 2007 | In: Back pages, Tabloids | Comments (2)


Jose Mourinho’s (Not) Going To Wembley

jose.jpgOVER the past week or more the Sun has been featuring Jose Mourinho and reporting on his chances of becoming manager of England’s football team.

This was not the Sun dictating selection policy, readers were told, rather the paper of record responding to the fans’ clamour for the petulant Portuguese. It was what we wanted. All of us.

Banish all thoughts that the calls for Jose was being triggered by the Sun’s editorial staff keen to get the man who would give them the best headlines, quotes and fits of pique. The Sun does not tell, it merely shows.

But now: “JOSE: THE DREAM IS OVER.” It’s front-page news. Mourinho is attempting to pull of the trick of turning down the job he was never offered and becoming the best England manger England never had.

That might well be Jose’s dream. But what the Sun dreams of can only be guessed at…

Posted: 11th, December 2007 | In: Back pages, Tabloids | Comment (1)