Tag Archives: Tottenham Hotspur F.C.

Roy Keane “No Longer Softest in Man Utd History” as Rooney Hits the Deck – by Rob Atkinson

Wazza in his final sentient moments before the lights went out

Wazza in his final sentient moments before the “lights went out”

Life, Leeds United, the Universe & Everything can exclusively reveal that Roy Keane, he of the trademark glower and scowl, optimistically intended to give the misleading impression that he is hard, has been stripped of his long-standing title of “Softest Git in Man United History” after Wayne Rooney‘s virtuoso exhibition of glass-jaw softness in his own kitchen the other day. The incident in question was described as “a friendly sparring match between old mates whilst Colleen was safely away on a foreign break with her two other children.” Unfortunately, Wazza was unable to take the pace, or anything like a decent punch – and ended up “swooning on the floor like a big fat girl”.

Rooney’s conqueror was former team-mate Phil Bardsley, who managed to lay out the until-recently bald English talisman with a classic short left jab, sending the Scouse lightweight to the floor in a non-too-graceful manner not unlike that of an overbalancing sack of manure. Bardsley was reported to have said afterwards “It was only a love tap, I was shocked when he went down like a bag of sh*t*. I’d clipped him just before, so maybe he was a bit confused and thought he should hit the deck for a penalty, like at Preston North End.”

The abrupt and seemingly painful way in which Wazza the Dazzler hit the floor initially caused some alarm at Man U, a spokesman for whom remarked that they pay their striker £350k a week to stay fit and score goals, not “ponce about with the toy gloves on and look stupid”. The club’s concern increased when it became clear that Rooney may have struck his head on a chair on the way down. “We were a bit concerned about possible brain damage,” said a member of the Pride of Devon medical staff, “but we realised that his hair implant would have absorbed a minimum 90% of the impact. Anyway, he hit his head, not his backside, so any cerebral or neural damage is most unlikely,” chortled the un-named medic.

Fighting Phil Bardsley, the one-punch marvel who dropped Wazza in a heap in his own kitchen, later expressed concern that, as a result of the incident, Rooney was now being heralded as the softest git in club history. “That’s rubbish,” insisted Bardsley. “It’s still Keano who’s the softest, soppiest git for me, easy. Look at how he backed down before Mick McCarthy in Japan, and ran halfway round the world to hide at home. Scuttling up from behind and elbowing harmless little Jase McAteer, that was about Roy’s mark. Even Shearer had him cacking himself. And he couldn’t take a punch, no way. Listen, Bryan Robson or Cloughie could lay that fairy out simply by breathing on him after a decent boozing session. Keane is all front – you can’t say that about Wazza. He’s mostly arse.”

The incident was caught on video and can (at the time of publication, anyway) be viewed from a link within this BBC article. Viewers should exercise caution due to the clip’s extreme levels of dangerous comedy humiliation, which could cause some sensitive readers literally to laugh themselves sick.

Louis van Gaal, the man in charge at the Theatre of Hollow Myths, was not impressed by the story, telling Life, Leeds United, the Universe & Everything: “I’m schimply not impressed by this schtory. Boxing is not conschistent with a footballer’s lifeschtyle. This must schtop … schtraight away.”

Rooney, who scored against Spurs on Sunday while still only semi-conscious, was unavailable for comment. It is reported that he will not be giving any interviews until the results of a custom-designed “below-the-waist” brain scan are available. Roy Keane, reported to be on a short, bromantic break with Adrian Chiles in Brighton, was also keeping a tight-lipped silence in the face of requests for a quote. He is believed to be furious at accusations of softness, but – being too frightened dignified to face Bardsley up and settle the matter like men – is settling for a few glowers instead.

Colleen Rooney is still a broad on holiday. 

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We Hate Man United, We Hate Tottenham Too – by Rob Atkinson

Unrivalled support

Stand up, if you hate the scum….

I’ve taken a bit of stick lately, through the “Comments” facility of Life, Leeds United, the Universe & Everything, for appearing to nurse a degree of hatred towards certain other football clubs – and their supporters.  It’s a serious accusation, so I should make my position clear straight away.

I’m guilty as charged.  Guilty as hell.  Guilty as a weasel in the hen-house.  I do indeed hate, among others, Man U (the scum), Tottenham Hotspur and Galatasaray (Galascum).  It should be emphasised that this is not an exhaustive list.

My reasons are varied, according to the club involved – but those reasons are entirely valid, as far as I’m concerned.  They’re also entirely personal to me.  I don’t invite anyone to correct me over this and I wouldn’t dream of infringing on anyone else’s hatred territory. And, most importantly of all, though I have entered above a plea of guilty, I don’t feel guilty.  Not a bit of it.

Before I go on, let me state this as a guiding principle: there is a place in football for hate

Now, that might seem a rather provocative, not to say controversial statement, in these happy-clappy days when going to the match is supposed to be all about families, and fun.  When oompah bands high up in the stands, are strategically placed so that the newly-gentrified population in the 36 quid seats should not have to hear anything raucous or profane. 

But it’s true, nevertheless.  Football is tribal, football is cathartic, football is where you get to let off some steam after gritting your teeth all week. 

And, for all of that, you need someone to hate.

Hate is a much misunderstood, wrongly demonised word nowadays.  It’s not really to be found in the lexicon of the politically correct.  It sends out the wrong message, don’t you know, and speaks of the extreme edges of emotion and feeling, where those of pallid personalities do not wish to be seen. 

But hate is a real human emotion, and you can’t simply wish, or indeed legislate it away.  Properly expressed, it’s just about the best catalyst for atmosphere at a good old traditional sporting fixture.

The professionals should stay out of it, and get on with the game – it’s not really within their remit to get caught up in the atmosphere a bit of hate generates (although it’s frequently more entertaining than the football when teams DO let the passion affect them).  However, the real arena is in the stands, or on the terraces, as we used to say in happier times. 

Here is where the mutual dislike, felt in extreme measure in some cases, can safely be vented.  Two sets of supporters, bound by a common loathing, hurl insults of glorious vulgarity back and forth, each seeking to outdo the other in a contest outside of the on-field engagement.  The feeling is atavistic, and there’s no actual need for it to spill over into physical confrontation for honour to be satisfied.  The occasion as a whole is enhanced by these pieces of human theatre.

The modern tendency towards crowd interaction being drowned out by super-powerful P.A. systems, pumping out crap music, has detracted from this phenomenon, as have the silly drums and trumpets they call “bands”.  My own beloved Leeds United made an ill-advised decision, quite a few years back now, to promote a “band” – but the masses behind the goal did not approve.  The occasional toot and drumbeat were heard, only to be swiftly squashed by a throaty “Stand uuuup, if you hate the band”, and the experiment died an early and unlamented death.  Rightly so, too.  Bands at football stadia prosper only where the indigenous support lacks the moral fibre to resist such contrived attempts at a “nice” atmosphere.  Sheffield Wednesday is the obvious example.

Sadly, it appears that the good old days of free expression, where a cadre of like-minded fanatics could express their hatred of “that lot from ovver t’hill”, are soon to be behind us for good.  Yet there are still football clubs and fixtures which can conjure up some of the old atmosphere, so deeply do feelings run. 

I’m glad to say that dear old Leeds United is one such club, so pathologically hated by so many other sets of fans, and so willingly disposed to return that sentiment with interest, that our matches against a select group of old enemies roll back the years, and set the blood pumping with an almost-forgotten vigour.  Long may that remain the case – these are the real football clubs, with the real fans, and it’s this unreconstructed minority which is striving to hold back the tide of plastic, family-orientated, artificial bonhomie that so threatens to dull the palate as the 21st century progresses.

It’s not politically correct. It’s frowned upon by the self-appointed guardians of “The Good Of The Game”.  And admittedly, it too often spills over into taboo references, or actual violence, which is never something to be condoned.  But come the day when they finally kill the last wisp of hate-fuelled atmosphere, at the last old dinosaur of a non-modern non-Meccano stadium, they’ll be well on the way to finally reading the last rites over the corpse of the game as we used to know it.

And then – why, I’ll throw in the towel, say my goodbyes to Elland Road, and sulk off to watch Frickley Athletic play those twats from FC Scum of Manchester – confident that there will be enough curmudgeonly old reprobates on both sides who will be happy to spit venom at each other for 90 minutes – just for old times’ sake.

Sherwood an Aptly Mediocre Appointment for Fading Spurs – by Rob Atkinson

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Hmm, I’ve got the job, then. Now what?

The news of Tim Sherwood‘s appointment as Tottenham manager, some say until the end of next season, will come as a surprise to many, a shock to some and confirmation of Spurs’ continuing decline to the knowledgeable few.  To say that the response of the White Hart Lane faithful is unenthusiastic is to be extremely charitable.  The Spurs fans are trying to put a brave face on the whole matter, trying to understand what is going on behind Daniel Levy‘s petulantly dissatisfied expression – but you can tell that deep down inside, they’re glumly watching the big clubs disappearing over a distant horizon which, not so long ago, represented the tantalisingly attainable Promised Land for North London’s second club.

As I’ve previously written, the failure of Spurs to pip Arsenal to Champions League qualification was the death-knell to their immediate ambitions of being a truly big club themselves.  It wasn’t an easy opportunity to miss; Spurs had been in a great position – seemingly almost home and dry.  And yet, against the odds, they managed to achieve failure from out of the very jaws of success.  They contrived somehow to squander their best chance of dining at the top table, and thereby put the tin lid on any chance of Gareth Bale (or “Spurs” as he was widely known last season) wasting any more of his meteoric career yearning for a team to suit his talent.  So it’s likely to be a diet of crumbs for Spurs from now on, especially if they manage to miss out on Europe altogether next season – a distinct possibility for the envious mid-table outfit.  It’s this kind of losing habit that has seen an allegedly major club fail to win a League Title for over half a century.

There is, it appears, a subtext behind the appointment of Sherwood, and the gist of what’s to be read between the lines is: “Louis van Gaal (nod, wink) … after the World Cup, of course … keep it under your hat, old fellow.”  Quite why a coach with the reputation of van Gaal would want to move from a post with one of Europe’s better national sides, to take up the reins of a London club in the perpetual shadow of giants Arsenal, is not explained.  The additional niggle that Spurs will probably be Champions League onlookers again, with all the top players studiously avoiding eye contact when a move to N17 is mooted, is hardly likely to help turn fanciful ambition into blessed reality.  World-class coaches are hard to recruit for urchin clubs who have their noses permanently pressed up against the sweet-shop window, whilst the rich kids gorge inside.

Spurs may after all find themselves having to grant Tim Sherwood his desired longer-term contract, something that is currently causing Daniel Levy to wear an expression even more pained and long-suffering than usual.  Levy’s desire for a cheap stop-gap appointment, prior to a high-profile swoop after the summer’s shenanigans in Brazil, may well be thwarted by circumstances beyond even his control.  How ironic it would be if it turned out that AVB had been made to walk the plank, only for it to transpire that the newly-promoted 3rd mate can’t even navigate, causing the ship to founder for want of an experienced presence on the bridge.  3rd Mate Sherwood’s total lack of impressive top-level qualifications, or indeed any real experience, is worrying more than a few with the club’s best interests at heart – and I find it rather puzzling, too.

What seems certain is that Sherwood, for all his fighting talk of wanting to be at the helm for ten years, is in Levy’s confused mind very much of a short-term, dodgy quality option for the here and now – with the indistinct future more a subject for wishful thinking.  After all, a slightly scratchy win at Southampton seems an odd basis for what is a crucial appointment; there is an air of the knee-jerk about it, a feeling of sticking plasters being applied to an arterial gusher that threatens to bleed Tottenham’s season dry.  Arsenal’s current minor stumble is but cold comfort to any Spurs fan with clear vision and a nose for stormy weather approaching.   The Gunners still seem set fair for a continuation of their top four habit at the very least, whilst there is no sign of any significant improvement in Spurs’ own more modest possibilities.  Sherwood as boss is no more and no less than a chilling confirmation of those uncomfortable, unpalatable facts.  It’s not going to be a very Happy New Year for the fans of North London’s also-rans.