The announcement of the forthcoming retirement of Alan Hansen has hit the nation across the face with all the power and punch of a carelessly tossed cotton wool ball. Fair play to him for walking, mind you. Stuart Broad, wherever the hell you might be, take note.
But it brings to the fore the thorny issue of just how shite Match of the Day has become. While BT Sport are thrusting their little hips around in the form of Jake Humphrey and a studio the size of Dunstable, and Gary Neville's wielding his Sky gadgetry like some Mancunian Gandalf, MotD continues to chunter away in the corner like an ailing uncle.
So what's up with it?
The boy Lineker is still comfortably at the helm, but that saintly smirk stopped working when he employed it for the 723rd time in yet another Walkers crisp commercial. (What does he have over them, exactly - has he caught factory workers lobbing toe-jam into the cheesy Quavers?)
Plus there's the fact that, as a former professional footballer himself, why does Gary need to ask the opinion of other former professionals? It makes him look like he's being deliberately dumb, like some coquettish blonde with a first from Cambridge.
Television loves doing this. Take Ready Steady Cook. The chef Ainsley Harriot asks chefs how to cook. Former French Open champion Sue Barker asks tennis players how to play tennis. What next? Geri Halliwell asking Kerry Katona how to go about making a living from doing fuck-all?
Ideally your main man/woman should be a keen amateur enthusiast - your Des Lynam, your Clare Balding. Adrian Chiles works much better as a host of a footy programme precisely because he wants to know what it feels like to be stepping out on the park in an England shirt for the first time.
Of course you have to hand it to Lineker that he manages to keep a programme rolling when the punditry is delivered by Newcastle's answer to Stephen Hawking, Alan Shearer, and the lolling Lancastrian Lawro.
There used to be a kind of twinkly-eyed detachment in Lawrenson. He was the dressing-room 'wag'. He was the twot who put the 'pun' into pundit. These days he looks as bored as we are looking at him.
In the wings there are a whole host grisly options - and I excuse Pat Nevin from these cos by Gawd I like the bloke.
There's Robbie Savage who, despite preferring to look like a bearded Charlie's Angel, can be relatively coherent, although he can't help spouting contentious twaddle because he secretly thinks that's why he's been employed - he's a kind of footballing Richard Littlejohn. He's ruled Man U out of the title race already, according to the Beeb's website. The twit.
There's Martin Keown, who carries a Garth Crooksian gravitas with him and is an expert mixer of metaphors - the other day I heard him say that Arsenal were struggling because they hadn't managed to get the players in that they'd 'nailed their hats onto'.
Poyet - well I can't understand him (he always sounds like he's got a particularly chewy squid ring in his mouth); Hartson - he's straightforward enough but he never says owt that every bloke in my pub wouldn't say; Danny Murphy - promising enough but oh so mild.
But then each and every one of the new boys suffers from one drawback - Savage possibly aside - they just can't quite slate a former fellow pro like they should do.
And if you fumble down the back of the pundits' sofa you will find it clogged with one compromised opinion after another. The only time I've ever seen a BBC couch unite in condemnation is when England play in World Cup Finals. And hellfire in those circumstances even Mother Theresa could be forgiven for calling the wallies in white a bunch of useless malfunctioning cocks.
Of course one of the better pundits at the moment is Roy Keane, not because he is necessarily more acute than any of the others, but that he doesn't give a shite about what people think. You can tell just how challenging that is when people like Southgate wince as if the outspoken teenager has just dissed the head of chemistry again.
It is though, time to move on for Match of the Day and the fact that Hansen, there at the very dawn of the Premier League, has decided to spend more time on the golf course, and that the Beeb have given Lawro 'a reduced role' is a good thing.
They won't be much missed and within the year, I can see both of them talking up the delights of the latest sale at DFS:
"Hansen: 'I used tae miss my sofa'.
Lawro: 'Me too. I was never a City fan, but I'm dead sure I'm a settee fan, eh, Al?'
Hansen shakes head and smiles at his irrepressible friend."
In their place I should like to see the following:
The host cannot be Lineker, he knows too much. I'd have Holly Willoughby. On the programme I mean. And Craig Revel-Horwood for balance.
My pundits would all be genuine and unreasonable. Joining Keano I'd have Geoff Boycott, Nick Faldo and a parrot that has learnt all it has to say from the football pundit handbook 2013 (or, if you will, Michael Owen).
Expert analysis a la G-Nev I would put in the hands of Dermot O'Leary lookalike, Tomasz Schaeffernacker. Foreign nationals, you may not know this fella but he's a BBC weatherman with all the swagger and pizzazz of a very cool cocktail waiter. Failing that I'd use Tracey Emin.
Viewers get to vote off a pundit each week, and they are replaced the following week by someone else effortlessly objectionable. Cowell? Mark Wahlberg? Neil Warnock?
You could press the red button and access such special extras as:
Thatch of the Day - one for the ladies in which Robbie Savage talks us through the best hair around; Snatch of the Day - not what you're thinking - but the most incompetent finish from a striker when one-on-one with the keeper (featuring the Frannie Jeffers Trophy);
Catch of the Day - a bit of a specialized one presented by Peter Shilton and mainly for old-school goalies who still reject the modern keeper's tendency to punch rather than claim....
Feel free to add to this list.
All I do know is that MotD is going to need a radical overhaul and I don't just mean Shearer's shirts or Lawro's appalling barnet. And at least this is a start. Cos let's face it, we don't have to pay shedloads to get this programme so it'd be nice to have it done well. Or better.
And good luck Mr Hansen. I can't help but like you a bit.