It’s Christmas and it’s time for Robbo-ho-ho to hand out some pressies to the great, the good and bloody awful. Obviously most of these won’t arrive in time. And given the Post Office’s price hike on stamps. I’ve decided to save some dosh and send a lot of them by minicab.
To Sir Alex Ferguson: a really comfy chair like the one Jimmy Saville used to have on Jim’ll Fix It. You’ll be able to press a button and whatever you require – a glass of red, a prawn sandwich, a hairdryer – will appear magically from within the arms of the chair. And you’ll never need to get up again. In other words can’t you just eff off and let some dopy numpty like O’Neill make a complete Horlicks of the job?
To Sepp Blatter: I thought of honey, or Demerara sugar, or maple syrup but let’s face you’ve had a year-long glut of sweeteners so how about a night out at G.A.Y. with your Qatari hombres?
"Oooh, look at me! What a great jessie I am!"
To Audley Harrison: a job in Milletts – you’ll be in the tent department, Audley, keeping a close eye on the canvass.
To Big Sam Allardyce: a telescope. That way you can keep an eye on your new side’s forward passes.
To Avram Grant: I don’t reckon Av does Christmas but just because he avoids Santa’s sack doesn’t mean that Sullivan n Gold are going to be so neglectful. I reckon they’ll give him a few months rest back home.
To Lee Westwood: a major, which will come a little easier this year as I’m giving Tiger Woods a majorette.
Arsene Wenger: a big nuggety bastard of a midfielder: I’d even go so far as Lee Cattermole. Or anyone whose spine is a tad stronger than the stem of a dandelion.
Fabio Capello: well, the obvious thing’d be an English-Italian phrasebook. I’d like to add to that some magic mushroom tea just so that his imagination gets a little run-out and he stops using his substitute bench as a replica 11 for the one he starts a game with.
Mitchell Johnson: The Steve Harmison Book Of Fast Bowling. Take some tips off from Steve’s trusty sat-nav. We can’t be having Mitch finding a bit of form at this stage in the series.
Carlos Tevez: a snood cum nijab so we don’t have to look at his gritted teeth every time he pulls on a Man City shirt.
Wayne Rooney: a DVD of Algeria-England from the World Cup. See if he can sit through it without booing his tits off by the end.
FIFA: if they can’t give us the bloody World Cup – and let’s face it we could host it tomorrow but that doesn’t leave many palms to grease does it? – then they can give us some goal-line technology. You know... so we end up with a fair result...? Oh wait, sorry, you’re FIFA! What’s fairness got to do with owt?
Howard Webb: an orange card – it’s halfway between a yellow and a red and it’s the card you wave at a Dutchman when he assaults his opponent in front of the whole world.
Arjen Robben: a right foot.
Alan Pardew: a Geordie accent. You can do a right shite job at NUFC and with one of them you can get away with it. Talking of which....
Alan Shearer: a new set of shirts cos them white cuffs and collars every week make him look like he’s trying just a bit too hard. (I mean for Chrissake I get more uppity about his outfits than I do about that Rachel Riley on Countdown, who they keep dressing like some incredibly numerate street-walker. I mean it’s tough getting a seven-letter winner when you’re fighting off a lob-on.)
"All right, duckie! Fancy a consonant?"
Adrian Chiles: a rest. I’ve never seen anyone less up for an evening kick-off in my whole life. You could put a nail bomb under his chair and he’d still mutter lugubriously ‘well clearly there’s someone here who’s not that keen on watching the footy.’
Mike Hussey: I’d like to give him a laser pen – directly into his unblinking eyes just so we can get the bleeder out before he’s stopped England in their tracks again.
AP McCoy/Phil Taylor: a job swap as they’ve neither of them owt to prove in their own sports and I think the Power could probably coax a nag over the Grand National fences. And I reckon McCoy could get a nine-dart leg if he was on horseback at the time. (Incidentally – thoroughly enjoyed Sports Personality of the Year and it’s good to see the top two get the credit their transparent genius deserved.)
Colin Montgomerie: can he hand back his ‘Coach of the Year’ award at SPOTY? He didn’t coach anyone. He just picked some players to go and play golf. He hardly found a group of golfing Fergie fledgelings and melded them into a formidable dozen. Still Capello won it last year. Go figure.
David Beckham: a lovely fluffy cloud and a buffed-up halo so he can sit in his rightful place on the right-hand side of God (aka Bobby Charlton). I’m sorry but Becks gets a Lifetime Achievement Award at the same age as Giggs just wins the normal thing. He’s 35. When he’s slowly knocked off the FA one by one and held Cameron’s bollocks in a vice till he gives us back some playing-fields and footy coaches then I’m not sure he deserves the unflinching adoration of the nation. Don’t get me wrong – I like the bloke – it’s just that he’s not Mahatma frigging Gandhi just yet, is he?
Besides which he continues to give James Corden kudos and that’s not on.
And finally Tony Mowbray. A bottle of Tanqueray. And may that be the only import from North of the border that you bother yourself with for the next three years. Oh and a fucking miracle.
Middlesbrough's first team get some pre-Christmas training in
Happy Christmas one and all - except you Sepp.