Will you be bringing a date tonight, sir?
It’s never anything less than a pleasure and a joy to hear from a member of the ever-growing Interestment family, and today it’s the turn of Steve – a funny man with football on his mind. He had this to say about tonight’s matches and more…
England play football tonight and the question on everyone’s lips is “who will play up front with granny’s favourite footballer, Wayne Rooney? Big lad Heskey or pocket rocket Defoe?” Fabio has already flipped a coin, had a game of paper, scissors, stone with himself and played eenie, meenie, miney, mo with his bare toes before sitting down and making an actual decision, but he’s not letting on…..or is he?
“I think it’s not important to be tall or small, it’s important the movement you do,” coughed the Italian, his eyes shifting around from side to side.
It seems he’s had us all fooled, but the proof is right there – he’s going for the greatest mover of them all, the Robot Master Peter Crouch! The Croatians will be no match for the lanky tit from Spurs, who is such a good mover that he even danced the lovely Abbey Clancy into bed. In fact she’s still so impressed by his gormless bodypopping that she’s agreed to marry the lurching beanpole! Forget scoring goals, that is true power.
Over in Argentina, Carlo Tevez’s mother, Diego Maradona, is facing the chop as his side slumped 3-1 to arch enemies Brazil. The team in gold even rubbed salt into the gaping wound by letting the wonderfully big boned Adriano onto the pitch, presumably to wander around panting and looking for scraps of food. He went hungry, bless him, as he couldn’t physically bend down for fear of his impressive gut exploding.
Things got personal in France as the beautiful Thierry Henry attacked his manager’s hair:
“… there is no style, no guidance and no identity.”
He had threatened to enlist the help of Gillette buddies Roger Federer and Tiger Woods to help shave his head but both declined, saying they liked the Donald Sutherland look. As do we.
And finally, George Burley bit back at all his critics by revealing his masterplan for International football:
“I haven’t got a clue and I’m not really worried.”
The Braveheart spirit lives on.
Not including this old man…
Wow, how about that Ashes. Monty out there, eyes bulbous like a deer nervously answering questions at gun point. The other guy at the other end using his plank of wood to stop the heavy red tennis ball shattering the Spinal Tap Stone Henge wooden sculpture behind him. It was gripping stuff. Hence, we thought it high time that we list our best Ashes team, not including people from the black and white days, because we have no idea what they were like. That means no Fred Trueman, no Don Bradman (pictured), no Jim Laker, and no Richie Benaud. Sorry chaps…
1. Geoff Boycott, England
The most stubborn man to ever walk the planet, Boycott would probably struggle to lend an elderly woman three pence for a horse ride home in his native Yorkshire. All traits which made him a remarkable cricketer, who appeared to be constantly laughing on the other side of his face in between making runs.
2. Allan Border, Australia
One of the greatest Allans to take up the game – alongside Lamb – this Allan was a constant thorn in England’s side during Ashes matches, as he sternly notched up big scores without ever raising a smile. A moody gentleman.
3. David Boon, Australia
With Merv Hughes unable to make the team, in comes Boon with the all-important comedy moustache. A very handy batsmen, he didn’t only look hilarious, but he once reportedly drank something like two hundred beers during a single flight. Very roughly.
4. David Gower, England
If Boon can get away with joke moustaches, then Gower deserves massive props for his brilliant curly perm. Blonde as midnight snow, he was an elegant striker of the ball, who can now be found doing an impression of Des Lynam, only minus the furry lip slug.
5. Steve Waugh, Australia
Anyone who switched on their television sets during the late 80s to watch cricket will only ever have seen Steve Waugh bat. An unnervingly Australian man, he could stand in one place for weeks at a time without blinking.
6. Adam Gilchrist, Australia
Like so many marvelous sportsmen, Gilchrist was cursed with gargantuan ears to compensate for his unbelievable cricketing skills. This wasn’t a problem while he was smashing the world’s finest bowlers about the pitch, but now that he’s retired and prowling for skirt? We shall see.
7. Ian Botham, England
Ahh, Beefy. Beefy would walk into any team with his crazy antics, his impressive gut, and that delicious early 80s beard which soon morphed into a sexy mid 80s moustache. These days he can be found talking at length about some of the funny things him and Lamb used to say to each other in front of glazed over groups of extremely disappointed cricket fans.
8. Shane Warne, Australia
The bad boy of Australian cricket, Warney had the look of a man who would happily join a bongo circle and have a toke on a peace pipe in between test matches. But with those zany twisty-turny balls, he might just be the greatest bowler ever to walk the earth. Above, he’s hilariously dressed up as a woman.
9. Dennis Lillee, Australia
As the photo depicts, Lillee was probably the Tom Selleck of cricket for a time, and was occasionally known to sport a curious headband when he bowled. His raw pace obliterated many a fine opposition, while his metal bat (below) was just weird.
10. Glenn McGrath, Australia
If Warne was the wild one, McGrath was Steady Eddie, known for his dogged consistency, eroding batsmen like he were a strong westerly wind and they were a withered rock on the edge of an old hill. As with cruel nature, the wind always wins.
11. Bob Willis, England
And finally, another Englishman joins Beefy in the bowling attack, and no, it’s not Kevin Keegan’s older lankier brother, it’s Bob Willis – a tall man, who fashioned early attempts at the white-fro. He could bowl the ball pretty fast, so they say.
Even this man was too old…
Did anyone see Arsenal at the weekend? Wow. The average age of the team was something like 14, and yet they still managed to win. Win real good. Of course, it’s nothing new for young footballers to destroy older teams, just visit a park on any given weekend and you’ll spot decrepit alcoholics getting hammered ten-nil by teenage glue sniffers – with their hooded tops, and their crunk music. Still, we thought it high time to compile the greatest young England team ever…
Goalkeeper, Peter Shilton, 21 years old (1970)
In goalkeeping terms, 21 is literally embryonic. Yet, that was Shilts back in 1970 when he first pulled on an England shirt. Young, dumb, and full of enthusiasm. He did, of course, go on to afro wigs, and allowing Maradona to humiliate him. Twice.
Right Back, Micah Richards, 18 years old (2006)
What’s happened to Micah Richards? Just a couple of years ago he was the teen sensation galloping up the right hand side like a maniac. We thought he was the new Jesus Christ. Now he’s just some grumpy old soothsayer going around Manchester shouting at people. At just 20.
Centre Back, Jonathan Woodgate, 19 years old (1999)
Just before he decided to dabble in race hate, Woodgate looked like a shoo-in for the England defence for years to come. But he didn’t – he went loco, then got mangled, then he upped and left to Real Madrid to concentrate on growing his hair. Now he’s back in Blighty with Spurs, and when he’s not sobbing in sick bay demanding that Nurse rub some more Deep Heat into his aching groin, he’s still pretty good at football.
Centre Back, Rio Ferdinand, 19 years old (1997)
He’s been around for ages, that Rio Ferdinand, but there was a time when he was just a strange shaven-headed boy from West Ham attempting to make friends with Sol Campbell. Tough gig. He’s since gone on to outshine his former defensive partner, both on the pitch, and when it comes to merking people.
Left Back, Gareth Barry, 19 years old (2000)
It’s easy to forget that before he became the sturdy oak in midfield, Barry was a zippy left back with a strange face – like something from the mind of Edvard Munch. Little Kevin Keegs gave him a run out in 2000, which is enough to keep out Ashley Cole – who, by the way, is a loathesome little oik who once stopped midway through sexual intercourse with a hairdresser to be sick, before carrying on. Behind his wife’s back.
Right Midfield, Theo Walcott, 17 years old (2006)
Everyone went barmy when Walcott kept Defoe out of the 2006 World Cup squad, but now it looks more like a masterstroke. Now shifted out right for the sake of his football education, he still has the face of a confused 7-year-old French exchange student, which is fitting, because he looks all set to morph into England’s version of France’s Thierry Henry.
Centre Midfield, Joe Cole, 19 years old (2001)
For so long, little Joe Cole was the New Gazza, with his zany box of tricks and cheeky little face. Of course, becoming the New Gazza is getting less and less appealing these days. He just looks so thin. Becoming the new Joe Cole on the other hand…
Centre Midfield, Steven Gerrard, 20 years old (2000)
The old man of the team, Gerrard made his England debut one whole day after his 20th birthday. As everyone knows, he has since gone on to replace Robbie Fowler as the closest thing Liverpool has to the lord God him/herself. A man never without a curious furrow in his gentle brow.
Left Midfield, Aaron Lennon, 19 years old (2006)
Like Micah Richards, Aaron went a little skewiff after his early England games, zooming down the wing like an angry mouse on a motorbike. He was great. The good news is that he’s starting to resemble that young man once again. The bad news is that he still spends at least two hours every morning carefully applying completely pointless go-faster stripes in his eyebrows. Crazy.
Centre Forward, Wayne Rooney, 17 years old (2003)
Rooney has always been terrifying, but never more so than when he was a 17-year-old former boxer looking for a fight. What a great Euro 2004 he had. It was around that time that he also discovered his lust for old women prostitutes.
Centre Forward, Michael Owen, 18 years old (1998)
To look at Michael Owen now – with his miserable face, his robotronic voice, his Phil Collins CDs – you’d never think that he once lit up the entire planet with his electrifying football. And yet he did. He absolutely did. He was so quick.
No room for these particular lookalikes…
Some people literally spend their entire lives staring thoughtfully at pictures of Phil Neville or Wayne Rooney, pondering which particular screen monster they should lump them alongside this time. It’s a great way of becoming a popular face in football circles – a finely judged facial observation about Michael Ballack can diffuse fights in pubs, start chit chat that eventually leads to sex with hairdressers, or simply make your mates laugh until they vomit Becks Vier all over the pavement. With that in mind, we thought we’d compile our own well-observed team of football lookalikes… sick bags ready, people.
Goalkeeper, David James
Once he decides to hang up his slippery gloves, David James presumably has a second career lined up as an underpants model. He’s spent years sculpting a body that would tighten Michelangelo’s loin cloth, and above is his lookalike, also called David. Big hands. Very big hands.
Right Back, Gary Neville
Fans of The Wire or Generation Kill might have noticed the above Gary Neville-alike. He’s called James Ransone, and, like young Gary, he tends to play psychotics.
Centre Back, Jonathan Woodgate
Brilliantly, we’ve decided that Jonathan Woodgate is a bit like a mummy, because he’s sometimes got a bandage on his leg. Hilarious.
Centre Back, Olof Melberg
We’ve deemed the legendary maniac Charles Manson to be the 1960s cult leader equivalent of the defender Olof Melberg. Both seem to share a similar steely hollowness in the eye, and, yes, beards.
Left Back, Ashley Cole
This might be a little harsh on Osama, but both men really are quite unpopular with the fans. Bin Laden for the whole international terrorism thing, Cole for steamrollering a hairdresser behind his wife’s back, pausing mid-coitus to spew, then carrying on. Rancid.
Right Midfield, David Beckham
Above football, Beckham prides himself on having fantastic hair and in his armory is a finely tuned smoulder that he pulls out of the bag during photo shoots. Not unlike a certain Fabio (above).
Centre Midfield, Joey Barton
Once in a while, a character will return to a soap, but played by a different actor. Needless to say, the hardcore viewers go mental. However, were Martin Fowler to trundle back to Albert Square, played by Merseyside’s favourite son Joey Barton, literally no one would notice. Until he nutted Dot for fluffing a line.
Centre Midfield, Frank Lampard
Never anything less than well turned out, Lampsie totters around a football pitch like a poodle walking into an exclusive dogs-only drinks party.
Left Midfield, Ronaldinho
Lots of people laugh about how Ronaldinho looks a bit like Jar Jar Binks, and how he could probably eat a grapefruit through a slot machine, but we tend to think of him as the exact mirror reflection of Chris Rock in the hilarious hip hop spoof, CB4.
Centre Forward, Carlos Tevez
Up front, Tevez just nudges out his team mate Wayne Rooney, thanks to his startling resemblance to the handsome young actor who plays Ugly Betty in the sitcom Ugly Betty.
Centre Forward, Peter Crouch
Stop a frightened old man in the street and demand that he describes Peter Crouch in three words, and he will definitely say Tall, Hapless, and Louche. Exactly the same three he used to describe Lurch from The Addams Family a week ago.
Not including this maniac…
With usual writer of excellent sporting insight, Eliot, away on holiday, we’ve taken it upon ourselves to honour some footballers. But rather than concentrate on the current crop – with their big watches and expensive club memberships – we thought we’d shine a spotlight on the warriors of old. Focusing mainly on their lovely hairstyles.
Hence, football’s greatest Haircut XI reads thusly…
Goalkeeper, Rene Higuita
The handsome Columbian goalie is just as famous for his great saves as he is for his gorgeous dark curly hair. The kind you could lose a stroking hand in.
Right Back, Sergio Ramos
An incredible lover of women, Ramos is famous in Spain for his prolific sex life. And is it any wonder when he has a brilliant Rachel Cut?
Centre Back, Barry Venison
Before he became a serious pundit with a normal hairstyle, Venison used to adopt womanly cuts to fool opposition attackers into thinking he might be a walkover. More fool them.
Centre Back, Des Walker
One of the first footballers to steal heavily from hip hop stylings, Des went for a flat top with an interesting kink in it.
Left Back, Alexi Lalas
Probably the most famous American footballer, he was relatively good in defence, but even better when it came to maintaining complicated hair and a manly beard. Solid.
Right Midfield, Tony Daley
This guy was like grease lightening, and just edges out Beckham, thanks to his classic toupee look.
Centre Midfield, Carlos Valderrama
The reigning champion of football haircuts, Valderrama captains the side, with his glorious My Little Pony mane. Beautiful. Absolutely beautiful.
Centre Midfield, Bobby Charlton
It’s easy to forget that footballers didn’t used to be totally vain. Bobby is here to remind us of that with his strange, elderly gentleman hair.
Left Midfield, Chris Waddle
The only thing more striking and elusive than Chris’ football skills was his actual hair. Sometimes excellent, often weird, it drew the crowds.
Centre Forward, Ruud Gullit
Gullit could play pretty much anywhere on the pitch, he was totally brilliant. His trademark locks were universally applauded as well.
Centre Forward, Kevin Keegan
It was never in doubt, Keegan was always going to lead the line. A small, strange man, he made up for his lack of natural talent by working very very hard, and striding into a local barbers and demanding something a little bit permed and unusual.