Give it a (head)rest
The Sun have taken a sh*t on the UK with their backing of Brexit but as we face recession, an environment in which racists are given a mandate to be racist and the collapse of the political system, they have settled on the big news.
And once we have acknowledged that Little Mix’s Leigh-Anne has a rather lovely behind, though we wonder at what point ‘wearing a swimsuit on holiday’ became ‘doing a Kim’, we move on to the second biggest issue of the day.
Yes, it’s the ‘news’ that FA communications chief/’bigwig’/’fat cat’ Andy Walker has posted a pic on LinkedIn of his personalised headrest (and yes, it is one word regardless of your attempts to fit it into a simplistic headline). And did he sh*t on that headrest? Did he daub the words ‘free Raheem Sterling’ in his own excrement on said headrest? Did he rub his genitals…have we gone too far?
No, he put his head on said headrest. The utter, utter b***ard.
To be fair, it probably wasn’t sensible to post the picture online – especially if you’re a communications chief – but it’s unlikely that he could ever have predicted that the UK’s biggest-selling newspaper would ever think that a social media post about a headrest would be deemed the most important story in Britain.
Of course, the modern media being the modern media, it’s not Walker’s use of a personalised headrest that is the ‘EXCLUSIVE’ story, but the ‘fans’ fury’, because if there is one thing that is unusual on the internet, it’s people losing their minds over something entirely inconsequential.
One ‘fan’, Chad Mayoh, said (on The Sun’s front page):
“Maybe if we concentrated on developing footballers rather than fancy head rests we may get somewhere.”
Because of course Roy Hodgson was personally sewing personal head rests for the FA’s communications chief when he should have been teaching Harry Kane how to take free-kicks.
At best, this is a pathetic attempt to fill a front page on a slow news day. At worst, it’s the nasty, opportunistic persecution of a man for simply doing his job. It just happens that his job occasionally entails the use of a headrest.
Guilt by association
‘Other pictures of Mr Walker showed him with England duds including Raheem Sterling, who last week marked the team’s humiliation by posting a Snapchat video boasting of his millionaire lifestyle.’
Alternatively, Raheem Sterling’s friend posted a Snapchat video in which a 21-year-old man showed him around the house he had kindly bought for his mother.
You may remember the Daily Mail’s Christian Gysin, he of ‘No wonder they’re losers! As England’s flops slink home, how Rooney & Co were distracted by dodgy hair, lucrative ad deals…and pouting WAGS’ fame. Well, not fame but considerable Mediawatch ire.
Well he’s back to bash England again and this is apparently the best he could muster…
‘Just when England fans thought things couldn’t get any worse, it’s emerged the three Wales goalscorers in their win against Belgium were all born in England.’
Yes, it has ’emerged’ – presumably through Wikipedia – that Ashley Williams was born in Wolverhampton (in 1984), Hal Robson-Kanu was born in Acton (in 1987) and Sam Vokes was born in Southampton (in 1989).
Emerged? Surely this is worth a REVEALED.
The most earnest post-school run tweet ever?
French/Portuguese mums at school gate asking why England always disappoint when we have many good players. Like the FA I have no answers.
— Matt Hughes (@MattHughesTimes) July 4, 2016
Let the mind games begin
Not to be upstaged by The Sun’s news team, the back end (arse?) of the newspaper is almost equally horrific.
— Nick Sutton (@suttonnick) July 3, 2016
As you can see from the above back page, Pep Guardiola has ‘come out fighting’. If you squint, you may also see that he ‘has promised to be the last man standing in the Clash of the Titans with Jose Mourinho’.
Except, well, he really f***ing didn’t.
In fact, the only time he mentioned Mourinho was in this sentence: “There is Klopp, Conte, Ranieri, Mourinho, Pochettino. Koeman but the reason I work here is just to help the players.”
That prompted a Daily Star headline of ‘NO MOUR WAR’ but, according to the headline on p55 of The Sun, it was his ‘FIRST DIG AT MOURINHO’.
It sounds more like a dig at Arsene Wenger to Mediawatch. EN GUARD.
The ‘long-awaited’ return of a transfer trail
At 11.38am on Monday, the Daily Telegraph’s football account tweeted the following story.
— Telegraph Football (@TeleFootball) July 4, 2016
Now the Telegraph is a very serious newspaper, so naturally Mediawatch was intrigued. We’d heard about Van Persie being linked with Crystal Palace and West Ham, but not Arsenal. ‘Set for’ sounds like the serious paper were sure too, and they used the word ‘poised’ in the headline. It’s on!
‘Robin van Persie could make a shock return to Arsenal after his current club, Fenerbahce, revealed that the striker would be leaving the club this summer,’ their story begins. ‘The Dutchman, who joined the Turkish outfit last summer, has been unsettled at the club ever since his arrival, and The Mirror are reporting that his preferred move would be to the Premier League.’
Okay, so we’re off to the Daily Mirror, with a little less pep in our step.
‘Robin van Persie could return to Arsenal after Fenerbahce admitted the striker is on the move, report the Independent,’ the Mirror’s story begins. ‘The Dutchman is free to leave the Turkish club and the Premier League is thought to be the striker’s favoured destination.’
Right. So we’ve gone from ‘set for’ and ‘poised’ to ‘could’. Still, we’re off to the Independent now. Keep up.
‘Robin van Persie could return to the Premier League after being put up for sale by his current club Fenerbahce,’ their story begins. ‘Despite signing a four-year deal with the Turkish side, the former Manchester United and Arsenal player has already expressed his desire to move away from the club.
‘West Ham and Crystal Palace have both been linked with the striker after missing out on Marseille’s Michy Batshuayi, according to the Sun. In light of the news that the forward would be moving away from Turkey’s Super Lig, Arsenal fans have already made calls for Arsene Wenger to bring back one of their most prolific strikers.’
Right, so the actual story is that West Ham and Crystal Palace are interested – according to The Sun – and that a few Arsenal fans, presumably on Twitter, have said they want the club to re-sign Van Persie. Tomass from Latvia is in charge of the news:
I would take back Robin van Persie back at Arsenal,he has elite mentality .
— Tomass. (@Coyete__) July 2, 2016
The Telegraph should be ‘set for’ shame. Or does this come under ‘online debate’?
Only when I laugh
Last week in the Daily Mail, Martin Samuel touted Steve Bruce for the England job and we laughed.
This week Martin Samuel has a riposte: ‘A lot of those now sneering at men such as Steve Bruce, for not winning the Champions League with Hull, would have had exactly the same contempt for Coleman, who led Fulham to ninth, 13th and 12th-placed finishes, and left them in 15th and fighting relegation.’
Just to be clear, Martin, we are not sneering at Steve Bruce for not winning the Champions League with Hull; we are sneering at Steve Bruce for not winning the Championship with Hull, after a relegation from the Premier League that came as no surprise despite him spending over £65m in two years. That’s why we’re sneering.
Bat out of Hull
Samuel ridiculously suggests that Jurgen Klinsmann try his hand at Hull or Sunderland but concludes that ‘those aren’t the sort of jobs that foreign managers take. It is only the English that trash their reputations at no-hope outposts’.
Nationality of the last four permanent managers of Sunderland before Sam Allardyce: Dutch, Uruguayan, Italian and Northern Irish.
Oh and we seem to remember at least one foreign manager taking a chance on ‘trashing his reputation at a no-hope outpost’ this time last year. How did that go, Claudio?
While we’re here…
‘BOURNEMOUTH have signed Watford’s Young Player of the Year. How can that be?’ asks an incensed Martin Samuel, before going on to explain that the player in question is Nathan Ake and the ‘signings’ are in fact loans.
‘Isn’t it grand how the loan system gives young players a chance?’ he writes. ‘Although not so much the young of Watford and Bournemouth.’
Curse those relegation-threatened clubs and their attempts to maximise their chances of survival by signing excellent young players available from bigger clubs.
And as for the youth of Watford and Bournemouth, the loan system gave them a chance at Birmingham, AFC Wimbledon, Blackpool, Ipswich, Portsmouth and Yeovil. Because – and this is crucial – that’s how the loan system works.