oh kay andy kayHis name is Rio

Someone please tell me that Rio Ferdinand’s holiday outfit was being worn for a bet. For those of you who missed it, the England defender was spotted taking in the sun in a crop top and a pair of denim shorts that resembled hot pants (though further investigation has revealed that they could have been denim style swimming trunks). All this comes just a few weeks after Cristiano Ronaldo also played the ‘hot pants’ card complete with pink baseball cap and a flower behind his right ear.

I’m all for players getting in touch with their feminine side but flowers! Hot pants! What really concerns me is during England’s next World Cup qualifier a cunning striker sidles up to Rio, mentions that his socks don’t quite go with his shorts and while Ferdinand goes all of a flutter – Bang – we’re 1 – 0 down. Worrying.

No longer St Michael

Imagine if you will that you are the manager or chairman of a mid-table EPL side. Looking to strengthen your squad ahead of the new season, there’s a chance to sign a proven goal scorer. His record pretty much speak for itself.

At club level, he scores a goal in every 1.7 games and internationally, his 89 caps have produced 40 goals. He’s still the right side of 30 and although he’d expect decent wages, the transfer fee isn’t going to bankrupt your club. Sounds pretty attractive doesn’t it? Now add in to the equation the words ‘Michael Owen’. Still interested?

According to the Wigan chairman Dave Whelan, Owen is a busted flush. But, given the number of big-money failures that have blown through the Premier League over the past few years, surely Owen must be worth a punt to someone?

Home boy Gerrard

Steven Gerrard says that he’s thinking of retiring when his contract runs out with Liverpool in 4 years time. I suggest that would be a great shame. No-one can question Gerrard’s loyalty to the Merseyside club or the phenomenal effort he’s put in to try and win them both the Premier League and Champions League.

But I’d argue that by leaving the game as a one club man, he’ll be the poorer for it. Get out there Steven. See what another team, country or culture could offer you. When you do eventually quit the game, you’ll be a better person for it.

Cheap shot Kings

One thing struck me about the rugby union match between the Southern Kings and the British and Irish Lions in Port Elizabeth on Tuesday and it was this. If a football team had gone out to play like the Kings did, they’d have been berated and lambasted around the world as being thugs, goons and cowards.

The Kings were an invitational side but the party they put on was anything but welcoming. Late tackles, cheap shots, swinging arms. And that was just the obvious stuff. Let’s not even imagine what went on at the bottom of rucks and in the scrum.

Football has its fair share of con-men and divers and poor though their actions are it’s still are far more acceptable than the appalling sportsmanship of the players on view at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium. And they call Port Elizabeth the friendly city. You could have fooled me.

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    1. says: Jimmy J

      Sorry hfhjkx – but where does it say in the piece that it’s not a man’s game??

      However, what it is not, is a game designed for blindside late tackles and cowardly swinging arms.

      I’m all for in-your-face physicality but as for the Kings tactics, typically South African. When not good enough to win with talent alone, they always revert to the sly rough stuff.

  1. says: Barriecuda

    Absolutely disagree on the Gerrard comment. Few players can hold their heads high at the end of the career and say “I played for one club my whole career”. Gerrard is iconic on the Merseyside, and has had the fortune to play for the club that he has followed since he was a little boy; the same club his close family member died cheering for at Hillsborough. Gerrard is the next in line to become the next legend that ‘Pool fans will be talking about for decades onwards, singing songs of, flying great banners for. While I don’t doubt this will happen even if he plays elsewhere, I think leaving Liverpool may sully some of his incredible and heroic status among Liverpool faithful.

    Stay with Liverpool until the boots are up Steven, and immortalize yourself among the followers that shout ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’.

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