Mediawatch: Isn’t Vardy just ‘loveable’?

Date published: Friday 10th June 2016 12:00

Love me, love my racism
‘The unlikely lads: a guide to the born-again bloke’ is the headline in the Evening Standard magazine to a piece by Samuel Fishwick. It’s a bad place to start but it gets worse…

‘We’re a nation full of them. But where on the scale are you? On one end, we’ve fallen at the feet of Jamie Vardy, the loveable England footballer whose misplaced tweets and casino misdemeanours only fuel the online meme ‘Jamie Vardy’s having a party’ fervour.’

After all, who doesn’t love a bit of racism? Especially when it’s simply a ‘casino misdemeanour’…


Bad boys…stick together
The loveable Jamie Vardy, with his racism, does not make it onto a list of Euro 2016 ‘BAD BOYS’ in the news pages of The Sun but they do find room for the following…

  • Paul Pogba. Because he had ‘Pogboom’ shaved onto the side of his head.
  • Radja Nainggolan. Because he has tattoos and he ‘was mistaken for a terrorist in Antwerp last year’. Ie. he looks a bit dark.
  • Oleg Shatov. Because his name sounds a bit rude.

All much badder than a man who previously wore an electronic tag after an assault conviction and last year racially abused a man in a casino misdemeanour.


The Vardy boys
The Times
, Daily Telegraph, Daily Mirror, Daily Express and Daily Mail all report the news that Raheem Sterling and Adam Lallana will face Russia on Saturday night, with Jamie Vardy left on the bench and Wayne Rooney dropping into midfield. But only the latter claim the story as an ‘exclusive’. Is that because they had to justify a three-handed by-line of Charles Sale, Matt Lawton and Sami Mokbel? Did they write 154 words each?

Mediawatch wonders which of the hardworking trio wants to claim these sentences?

‘If Vardy does discover he is indeed on the bench on Saturday, it will cap an already difficult week for the Leicester striker, who is still agonising over a massive money offer from Arsenal.

‘It is unclear if that distraction is influencing Hodgson’s decision but the manager has already given Vardy time off to get married in the build-up to the tournament.’

‘An already difficult week?’ Because it’s absolutely rotten when the top two teams in the Premier League want your services? The poor, poor b***ard.

And we think we can clear up the mystery behind Vardy’s demotion to the bench, fellas; it’s because he was sh*t against Portugal.


‘Roy Hodgson orders Fort Knox-style security and 7ft tarpaulin screening at England’s training base to stop being spied on’ – The Sun, June 6.

‘Hodgson is so determined to keep his line-up secret he has ordered 12-foot screens around the perimeter of England’s already heavily secure training base’ – Daily Mail, June 8.

‘There are unprecedented levels of secrecy that extend beyond the erection of nine-foot screens around the the training pitch’ – Daily Mail, June 10.


Double top
The latter description of England’s screens comes from a quite bizarre column from Matt Lawton in the Daily Mail in which he suggests that ‘the mood in the camp seems as tense as it has ever been since Kevin Keegan masterminded an early exit from Euro 2000’, which is at odds with everything else written from Chantilly.

Lawton writes:

‘On Wednesday England’s coaching staff would not even confirm if Ryan Bertrand had trained, never mind reveal what kind of ‘knock’ the Southampton full-back had suffered.

‘Goalkeeper Joe Hart said Bertrand had returned to training yesterday – and then denied any involvement in those aforementioned darts competitions he is said to have organised.’

Oh the intrigue. Just who the hell is organising these darts competitions if not Joe Hart? Maybe Lawton can round up Mokbel and Sale and this could be their next exclusive?

Oh, wait a minute, Sale has already got that one covered:

‘Darts is the sport of choice for the England players during their down time in Chantilly, with a big competition on the go in the games room at the team hotel.

‘So seriously are the squad taking their arrows that close friends Joe Hart and James Milner took advance orders from their England team-mates as to what type and make of darts they preferred.

‘They then went to a specialist shop to buy the equipment. The squad believe a group darts match is far better for team bonding than individuals playing computer games in their rooms.’

In summation: The England squad is ‘tense’ because Joe Hart refused to talk about darts.

As Lawton himself writes: ‘England are not here to satisfy the media…’

It’s a bloody good job.


Ignorance is bliss
Excellent work from The Sun’s Martin Blackburn, who is predicting that Croatia’s Alen Halilovic will be the ‘new star’ of Euro 2016.

It would be a truly remarkable achievement for a player not actually at Euro 2016.


England, my England
It’s not that The Sun’s football writers have narrow knowledge of their specialist subject but three of them have chosen West Ham’s Dimitri Payet as the player they are ‘keenest to see’ at Euro 2016. You’ve been watching him all sodding season, fellas. Three of the remaining six chose the little-known Gareth Bale.

A special mention here to the Norwich’s finest and The Sun’s Football Editor Charlie Wyett, who predicts that Bale will be the player of the tournament, names Payet as the player he is ‘keenest to see’ and Dele Alli as his choice for ‘new star’. Someone’s been reading World Soccer.


Breaking news
From Mailonline, published nine hours before the start of the tournament:

‘Euro 2016 could be a 24-team nightmare…teams can get to the knock-out round WITHOUT scoring and fans could be left in limbo as they wait for other results’.



Big slur
‘ROO SLUR ‘WITH LOVE” is the headline in the Daily Mirror that is trying to be way too clever for its own good.

So what is this ‘Roo slur’ that has ‘turned up the heat on Wayne Rooney’?

Well it’s Russia coach Leonid Slutsky saying that “it would be unfair to say that Rooney is worse than before but he is very different”, of course.

How the f*** dare he?


Modest mouse
Neil Ashton, The Sun, April 14:

‘MARCUS RASHFORD turns up for work and parks his modest Audi A3 next door to a £300,000 Rolls Royce belonging to Memphis Depay.

‘Rashford, with six goals in 11 starts for Manchester United, is the £1,500-a-week footballer with his feet firmly on the floor.

‘His family, including mum Melanie, brother Dane and half-brother Dwayne, have formed a human shield around him since he broke into the United team.’

Neil Ashton, The Sun, June 10:

‘MAN UNITED starlet Marcus Rashford, 18, is moving in the right direction after signing a new contract.

‘He was renting with his family in Sale but will move into a plush pad in footballers’ favourite Bowden when the Three Lions are knocked out of the Euros.’

It’s almost like he was driving a modest car and living with his family because he was a Manchester United youth team player and not because he is somehow morally superior to Memphis Depay.


Recommended reading of the day
Matt Stanger on the Czech Republic at Bamber Bridge
Jonathan Wilson on likely tactics at Euro 2016
John Foot on the rise of Paul Pogba


Thanks to today’s Mediawatch spotter Luke Nicholas. If you see anything that belongs on this page, mail us at

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