Tag Archives: Andy Gray

Out With The Old Boys, In With The New Girls

If ever there was a more symbolic moment of English football’s position of being years off the pace, it was the actions of Sky Sports’ (Britain’s answer to ESPN) main presenters over the weekend. Idolised by many,  Andy Gray’s comments over a female official highlighted the “lad” culture of the nation.

Let’s make one thing clear here. Any Englishman telling you that Gray was out of order should probably head down to his local and listen to the conversations that take place every night. It’s a footballing country dominated by alpha-male culture. In fact, the very suggestion that a woman be allowed to officiate caused an uproar on its inception several years ago.

What Andy Gray said was wrong and colleague Richard Keys was no better. In the modern day, comments like that shouldn’t be thought of, let alone muttered under a microphone on the biggest sports channel in the country.

Many in England feel Sky firing Gray and letting Keys resign was over the top, a knee jerk reaction to the ever present mass media coverage the Premier League receives. But this is an island where, and I speak from experience, girls are banned from playing football in schools to prevent the boys’ game being hampered. In fact, I’d never even seen a game between two girls until I moved to Canada four years ago.

It’s a crying shame. So while many may feel empathy for the two, I hope the majority take this as an opportunity to realize that attitudes must change. Bullish, testosterone- fuelled aggression has quite clearly never worked on a world stage for England (well, maybe away from sport it has), so how about something new?

We could start with more money for FA Academies for girls at grass roots levels, and more exposure to the Women’s game. It is 2011 after all. Heck, Keys and Gray could do worse than use their severance packages to help out.

Oh, and while we’re at it, how about Sepp Blatter does us all a favour and realizes the suffragette movement actually happened.

Sam Saunders

Leave a comment

Filed under English Football, Premier League

The Weekend 10: “Isms”

Hey Gerard, why the long face?

1) Pessimism: Is there something about being an ex-Liverpool manager that makes you whingy? Is it advanced age? My God, will someone tell Gerard HoullierRafa Benitez, and Roy Hodgson to stop thinking the football world is out to get them?

2) Alcoholism: Getting up to watching Premier League games on Saturday/Sunday is getting harder as my liver gets older… less Ales, more Rails, methinks… Maybe I’ll just start hanging out with Dennis Bergkamp

3) Racism: Fiorentina must have missed their Sunday morning caffe as they drew to Paolo DiCanio con Lecce.  I wonder how DiCanio and Fiorentina boss Sinisa Mihajlovic greeted each other after the match. Of course, Mihajlovic isn’t racist: everyone else is

4) Antagonism: Maybe the sputtering Viola are missing bad boy striker Adrian Mutu. The Romanian has been banned from the team after an alleged training ground confrontation.  Mutu denies it was with manager Mihajlovic, asking how he could he fight a man twice his size. Ummm… this is how

5) Sexism: And not even the clever kind!  The “Wait a second, the mics were on?!?!” kind…

6) Skepticism: Manchester Citeh are willing to let Shaun Wright-Phillips go for free, because they can’t find anyone who’ll pay to take on his 65-thousand-quid-a-week salary.  His agent say five teams are interested in SWP joining their team. If his negotating skills are anything like SWP’s game, he’ll probably just run all over England without actually making contact with any teams…

7) Dwarfism: ‘Arry Redknapp was robbed in Madrid when a gang of six men started pulling on his pant legs and availing themselves of the contents of his pockets.  However, Jermain Defoe managed to stay lodged against ‘Arry’s thigh, fast asleep…

8 ) Fallibilism: Speaking of Madrid, Real manager Lord Valdemorte has refused to commit his future to the club.  Ahhhh. Mourinho leaves Inter for Real… and then departs after a season. Benitez leaves Liverpool for Inter… and then he’s out after half-a-season.  Hodgson leaves Fulham for Liverpool… and then, well… Grass is greener and all that…

9) Infantilism: Cristiano Ronaldo says that of course, he changes diapers.  I had to read further into this article to find out they weren’t his own….

Hey Ruud, why the… oh never mind…

10)  Equestrianism: Hamburg have rejected a Real Madrid request to bring Ruud Van Nistlerooy back to the Bernabeu.  It appears Der Rothosen will ride out the Dutchman’s contract before putting him out to pasture….

Brent Lanthier

Leave a comment

Filed under Bundesliga, La Liga, Premier League, Serie A