Battle of the World Cup Pundits…..
The World Cup has been more than the expected stop-gap for Gooners until August brings us the Emirates Cup and the welcome return of our much-missed team. No, it’s been a fillip, a shot in the arm to our flagging spirits as we lollop around in our comfies, attempting in vain to ignore the inane transfer shite that fills our every waking minute.
It helps that it’s been thoroughly entertaining, the snoozefest of Nigeria Vs Iran aside. Goals, goal-line tech, goal-line tech cock-ups, errors and questionable team-selections. It’s been what I remember a World Cup being. A festival of football, a smorgasbord of soccer, the luminaries of our beloved game uniting in an attempt to be crowned the World Champions. I know I’m getting a tad sugar-coated, but isn’t it nice when football is without the added ingredient of Sultans cash, hated rivals goading and the loathed transfer speculation. It’s all we enjoy ( minus the cannon ) with the added bonus of all Vuvuzelas grouped together and recycled en masse, to create a spectacle.
Back to my cynical self. Ooh, that IS a comfortable fit. An enjoyable side-mission to the matches and trying to predict the scores is gauging the pundits. As Gooners, we only have a select cadre of supposed ‘specialists’ who aren’t so biased they would make a referendum in Iran blush. We all have our most hated as well, a vile cognoscente that surely take up a place in the Deep Below, being continually shown our Invincibles season. BBC and ITV, our Chief purveyors of the games, have made a lot of their recruitment of ‘Super Pundits’, a phrase of such epic buffoonery I will not type it again. The line-ups of each channel is as follows:
Townsend ( ? ) Keown
So, if you look at it objectively, then you would say both have their fair share of knowledge and star quality. Who has the best line-up though? Who can claim to have the best show thanks to their array of leading lights? In the immortal words of Harry Hill, there is only one way to find out………………FIGHT!!!!!!
LADIES AND GENTLEMEN, IN OUR RED CORNER, COMING ALL THE WAY FROM MANCHESTER ENGERLUND, STOKE, GIVE IT UP FOR THIS ARSENAL LEGEND, THE SCOURGE OF THE BBC, LEEEEEEE DIIIIIXXXXOOOOOOONNNN!!!!
IN OUR BLUE CORNER, EMINATING FROM THE FRIGID NORTH OF NEWCASTLE, THE ENGERLUND GOAL-HERO, THE MAN WHO LET HIS COUNTRY TAKE HIS HAIR, ALAN - IM BETTER THAN THE OTHER ALAN, SSSSHHHHHHEEEEAAARRRRRRRRRREEEEERRRR!!!!!!
It is quite easy to be overtly cruel on Shearer, especially faced with Dixon, who is beloved by all who are synonymous with the Cannon. I will caveat in though, that I personally think that Shearer has upped his mojo somewhat. On MOTD, I think he was dragged down by the drudge of Hansen. He isn’t quite the beautiful butterfly who has been set free of the manacles of the morose, but he is being a tad more opinionated, which will help soothe the splinters in his arse from the season passed. He still loves a cliche but his knowledge isn’t bad. Loses points when attempting ‘BANTZ’.
Dicko is undoubtedly missed by the BBC. Why on earth he was shipped out is beyond me. He speaks sense, knows the technical side but can portray it without losing the untrained viewer, he has a lovely airy manner in front of camera and doesn’t look out of place alongside Cannavaro and Paddy. That’s because he IS a legend in his own right. Loses points on wardrobe selection as he dresses very M&S.
Verdict - Dixon with a TKO
IN THE WHITE CORNER, WEIGHING IN AT AN EVER-INCREASING 350 POUNDS, THE FORMER POSTER BOY OF ENGLISH FOOTBALL, TURNED FAILED FOOTBALL MANAGER, THROW YOUR HANDS TOGETHER FOR GLENN, THE FAITH HEALER, HOOOOOODDDDDDDDLLLLLEEEE!!!
IN THE ORANJE CORNER, COMPRISING COMPLETELY OF RIGID MUSCLE, A LEGEND OF THE GAME, A PROMISING MANAGER CUT SHORT BY A BUMBLING BOARD AT MILAN, GIVE IT UP, FOR CLARENCE, ‘OLE DOUBLE-THIGHS’, SEEEEEEEDDDDDDOOOOOORRRRRFFFFFF!!!!
It is hard to judge this. I’ve heard nuggets of wisdom from Hoddle and I happen to think his England team was the best in the last 15 years, but the photo showing his male ‘camel-toe’ has horrified me so much that whenever I look at him, I see his scrunched up junk housed by chinos. A shame as he has the knowledge and has an easy style in front of camera, but does enjoy a sit on the fence.
Clarence is still involved with the present day game, which gives him a distinct advantage. He has sampled football in many countries and his English is accomplished. Smiles A LOT, if English were his first language then he would be a shoo-in, but sometimes, for all his knowledge, his occasional English faux-pas and over-reliance on technical talk can have viewers losing their attention.
Verdict - Seedorf on the judges cards, thanks to a lack of male camel-toe.
Next up -
A BATTLE OF THE FOREIGN PUNDITS, PUT YOUR HANDS TOGETHER FOR FABIO ‘ITALIAN STALLION’ CANNAVARO AND THIERRY ‘VA-VA-VOOM’ HENRY!!!!!!!!
Both World Cup winners. Both had glittering Club careers. Both, in my strictly heterosexual but comfortable in my own skin opinion, are devilishly handsome. As pundits though, this is a walkover. Cannavaro is handicapped due to his pidgin-English, he has a good stab at it but ultimately it means most of his statements and observations, whilst may be overflowing with sensibility and information, are not portrayed in a manner that allows it to be mentally digested. Does win points for his Italian Chic fashion sense however. Titi, I don’t want to wax lyrical, I don’t want to be biased, but I’d let him take me to a fancy hotel, Pretty Woman style, and he wouldn’t have to fork out on expensive trinkets, shall we say. He is all that I aim to be!
VERDICT - Fabio puts up a game defence, but Le King ends it in the 3rd with a brutal knockout.
A BATTLE OF THE MIDFIELD GENERALS, GIVE IT UP FOR THE WELSH BARBIE, THE WHINGING BLONDE GAS-BAG, ROBBIE SAVAGE!!!!!!! HIS OPPONENT, FROM SENEGAL, PLAYED FOR ARSE-NAL, IT’S PADDY ’ VICKS PATCH ’ VIEIRA!!!!!!
A lot has been said of Savages’ performances this season as a supposed ‘expert’. I for one, happen to think he sticks to his guns, offers up a few pertinent points and at least doesn’t wear beige. You just have to look past the outer shell of nasal whining and lack of upper-crust football. Even his host Lineker ripped the granny out of him when he was next to his more illustrious colleagues Henry and Seedorf. Still, I’d rather him than Hansen.
Paddy, on the other hand, has done it all in his playing career and is still involved ( partially anyway ) in the current game with Citeh. He is tactically sound, his English is passable and, whilst Savage wins valuable ‘BANTZ’ points, Paddy is rather sharp and pithy even. Does fall short when in more heated instances, as seen when Dixon pushed him on the Pepe dismissal. He rather often just repeated the same answer. A small criticism though.
VERDICT - VIEIRA wins on the scorecards, unanimous decision.
Last, but by no means least…..
HAILING ALL THE WAY FROM URUGUAY, FAMILIAR TO ALL CHAVSKI AND SPURS FANS, IT’S SUNDERLANDS SAVIOUR, GUS ‘MACKEM’ POYET!!!!!
IN THE OPPOSING CORNER, ONE OF ENGERLUNDS LYNCHPINS IN THEIR MODERN DAY DEFENCE, CHIEF CHOREOGRAPHER OF EVERY DAMN GOAL CELEBRATION HE CAN MUSCLE IN ON, ITS RIO ’ MY TOP LIP IS PREPOSTEROUS ’ FERDINAND!!!!!
I enjoy Gus’ passion, I enjoy the way gets animated nearly every two minutes, he dresses well, he has a sound tactical mind, but whenever he speaks, I think to myself it’s as if our Grand Creator has given a piranha the power to talk. His jaw looks like it’s going to clamp down on whoever is unlucky enough to be near. Fingers crossed for Lawro.
Rio, well, I for one think he has a case of the Nevilles’ about him. Thankfully, not Phil though. Thoroughly despised his presence on the pitch, any pitch. Couldn’t abide the way he’d run 90yds to jump on the shoulders of the player who deserved the plaudits. I also abhor his monstrous top lip. Listening to him though, his refreshing views on zonal marking, his take on tactics and his general opinions haven’t been the way of his playing persona. He has put himself across well, even in the presence of more charismatic men and may yet have a future replacing MOTD’s current defensive cuntchop, Alan Hansen. Oh yeah, I hate his clothing line as well.
VERDICT - Rio with his rangy jab keeps Poyet at bay long enough to score a points victory.
So, to sum up, Titi, Seedorf, Rio, Dixon and Vieira would all line up on the sofa and show Redknapp and the rest of the incumbent pundit squad next season how it should be done. alongside Neville, this crack corps of footballing genius would lead to much more freeflowing football viewing. The zenith of this group, the star atop the Christmas tree of punditry, would be Thierry. His wisdom, his humour, his rapier wit, all in his second language, pale into comparison when highlighting his smooth charisma. He can ‘BANTZ’ it with the rest, showcased when Robbie Savage got his just desserts twice on one show. We all know he can dress like a Hollywood leading man, his looks make George Clooney look up at the heavens and shalke a fist at Old Man God and it helps that his career has been studded with every precious jewel you can care to think of. I implore the BBC to snap him up when his contract with NYRB ends, but I suspect that, just like during his playing career, there will be a queue for his services longer than a dole line in Stoke.
All these views are my own and they are just that, views. I do realise that I’ve missed out on Keown, Townsend and a couple of others but Keown rocks everything he does and Townsends utter gibberish is only fit for kids TV, plus this blog is long enough as it is. The less said about Captain Sleep himself Phill Neville the better. Please don’t take umbrage if you think Hoddle and his man-meat should be crowned best pundit. Just send me a tweet. This was just a bit of fun to fill the time. The World Cup has been brilliant thus far and I thought I’d capitalise on this by putting out a bit of gubbins that I’d seen people commenting on. I do hope you’ll read and have a titter.
I’ve been @JokmanAFC, your Ring-announcer and Head Pundit-Killer. Enjoy the Cup.