Feed the monkey

Nasa decided they’d finally send a man up in a capsule after sending only monkeys in the earlier missions. They fire the man and the monkey into space. The intercom crackles, ‘Monkey, fire the retros.’ A little later, ‘Monkey, check the solid fuel supply.’

Later still, ‘Monkey, check the life support systems for the man’.

“The astronaut takes umbrage and radios Nasa, ‘When do I get to do something?’

“Nasa replies, ‘In 15 minutes – feed the monkey’.

This then was part of Roy Hodgson’s (the England football manager) half time team talk last Tuesday night,

It’s been labelled racist by some, inappropriate, innocent, harmless, generational (gap) by others. Continue reading “Feed the monkey”

Make Bales of hay while the sun shines

The last minute transfer scramble on football’s deadline day continues to keep aficionados glued to the TV screen in the hope their club has landed a big fish. The cash is splashed without a care in the world. During this transfer window English clubs spent a record £630 million on players! It’s no secret I’m a football fan myself but even I find the money Real Madrid forked out on Gareth Bale beyond the pale. Gareth, fine player that he is, will take home a cool £300,000 a week in wages. No doubt, there will be other bonuses and perks in the small print to boost his coffers.

When will this Madness stop? When will the limit be reached? There is no way this can be sustained. Throughout Europe there have been teams that have faced financial difficulties and gone to the wall. Some of these clubs have dallied in the upper reaches of the game but what needs to happen is for a Real Madrid or a Manchester United to get into trouble before sanity, and lower pricing structures, comes into force.

Welcome to the 21st century

I remember when then head of S.A. cricket Dr Ali Bacher (whom I watched play back in the ’69 series against OZ) convinced Panasonic to install cameras at our grounds way back in the ’70’s. There were 2 cameras at each end to help the umpires with run-out decisions, we called them “Pan-eyes” How things have changed since then!

Rugby, athletics and tennis have been using technology for years as have almost every other major sport with the exception of football, ’till now that is.

So then, are we finally going to get those crucial offside decisions which often affect the outcome of many games sorted? Sadly not! Continue reading “Welcome to the 21st century”

The Perfect Ten

It was the little chap’s birthday a few days ago. This is only a selection of his passing abilities. Witness a cavalcade of precision passing with the perfect weight on the pass to the best placed team-mate. Correct decision making and supreme execution. This is what you call a football brain. I could have easily uploaded montages of dribbling expertise or unbelievable Maradona training skills (nonchalant keepie-uppie with a golf ball anybody?) but I thought I’d underplay the football hand. I await a series of responses by rugbyistas that show off the “skills” of their number tens. Catching a ball and kicking it over a bar is quite clever, I suppose.

Banyana Banyana

My Olympic viewing started yesterday evening, the ladies football has started, and if I’m honest it was certainly watchable.

Banyana Banyana (The Girls, the men’s side is nicknamed Bafana Bafana, The Boys) are currently ranked a lowly 61st in the world rankings while Sweden, their opponents last night are ranked a mighty 4th. After going 3-0 down early on our girls held the Swedes for the next hour or so. (final result 4-1)

South Africa’s goal was a Beckhamesque lob over the Swedish keeper from almost the centre circle, exquisite.

The first London Laughable Moment arrived earlier than even I expected Continue reading “Banyana Banyana”

Portugal win !

Click pic for larger view

Ja well.

Members may well have read my comments about the standard of journalism in my local read. It’s awful, it’s been awful for years and unfortunately it’s going to be awful for many years to come.

This is a scan of the main story on the back page of today’s E.P.Herald.

Thankfully I only buy the thing for the DT cryptic crossword.

Mark Ogden, the apparent writer of this garbage is of course a Daily Telegraph journalist, in fact the article is credited to “© Daily Telegraph” (full scan of article here)

I wonder how Mr Ogden feels about this?

For the record it was Spain who won 4-2 on penalties to send Portugal packing.


Pushy parents – turning kids off sport?

According to newspaper reports this morning,  pushy parents can turn their children off sport for life. So what? Do we even care? Is it important that kids should try out and excel at some sports or is it all about churning out the next generation of national champions to boost patriotism?

I think sport is good for those who will enjoy it. If you discount the drugs and cheating in professional sport, training, competing and winning is incredibly character-building and keeps kids occupied during the formative years when they could easily find less desirable ways to get their kicks. Continue reading “Pushy parents – turning kids off sport?”

No sport?

Is nobody on this site interested in sport? (Well, I know Soutie and John Mackie are, but they need to be drawn out.) These are interesting times, but not a whisper here … it’s as bad as ‘the other place’.

First, did anyone watch Barcelona dismantle Arsenal on Tuesday? I’ve followed Arsenal since I was ten years old, but I’d have been disappointed had they knocked Barca out … the football that Xavi, Iniesta, Messi et al. play is so wonderful that I’d like to see them win every match. Man U v. Bayern was primitive in comparison.

It’s a pity Barca are up against Inter in the semis … it might have made a great final. No English clubs remain, whereas there were three in the semis last season … then it was presented as incontrovertible evidence that the Premiership is the greatest league in the world; now we see it was just part of the ebb and flow. Man U look a spent force, and the Ferguson era may finally be drawing to a close.

As for rugby, an exciting weekend is in prospect with the Heineken Cup quarter-finals. Leinster and Munster have tough ties, but at least they’re both at home. An entirely French/Irish semi-final line-up is not unlikely, in my opinion (only Northampton and Ospreys can prevent it, and they’re both playing away).

I’m looking forward to the weekend, starting with Leinster v. Clermont Auvergne tomorrow night. And looking forward to Barcelona v. Inter already.