Here’s some other exclusives for you while I’m here. Graham Norton ... not into the ladies. Victoria Beckham... not into the later novels of Kurt Vonnegut. David Cameron... never eaten a pickled egg.
As usual you can’t hear yourself think for the touchline tantrums of the PC brigade. And on this occasion I’ve got some sympathy with this Sian Massey lass who Keys and Gray were having a pop at.
Here's Messrs Keys and Gray with an innocent trainee lineswomen. They're a disgrace aren't they?
First of all, it’s a crap job being an assistant referee. When I was growing up a lineswoman was the telephone exchange operator who could put you through. It’s especially tough on a lass cos them ref’s shorts look shite on a woman’s backside and you can’t exactly offset the effect on even a regular-sized arse by slipping into some three-inch heels with studs on the soles.
Frankly if they could find a more flattering outfit for the lady officials I’d welcome it. Watching Boro at home this year has required all the distractions you can get.
Here's an initial thought on the type of outfit I'm thinking of. Ladies, do advise of materials, practicalities etc.
Secondly, Richard Keys is the quintessential faceless nerk that gets to host football programmes. Clearly he’s well-qualified to espouse his views on gender politics given he’s so hirsute you literally have to shave him to find his fecking face. (Actually, I find the word ‘hirsute’ to be gratuitously sexist. Unless you’re talking about a top-tashed Tajikistani shot-putter called Tamara who can bench-press two Trabbants, the word should be his-sute.)
Keys’s job, as is the case with that Swami of Smarm Steve Ryder, Manish Thingammy and increasingly, the boy-faced crisp-whore Lineker, is to say eff-all in as unobtrusive a way as possible. In other words, don’t draw attention to yourself.
The reason I enjoy Adrian Chiles presenting the Chumps League, ravaged by the fatigue of early-morning starts as he is, is cos he’s not afraid to let slip a churlish Black Country sneer every now and then. Even Colin Murray, who can appear to be entirely caffeinated and as easy on the ear as a wasp in a jar, has a bit of devil-may-care charm and genuine enthusiasm.
Keys can come across as nowt more than a plughole of trapped pubes in a suit. If the chat about women not knowing the offside rule was supposed to be a bit of banter then remind me not to bother having a pint with them two wags down the boozer.
Of course there are aspects of women’s increasing involvement at footy matches that can get on a man’s goat. My Mrs’s interest seems to be directly related to the high totty quotient.
Mrs. Robson's personal selection this. Nah, me either, lads.
She enjoyed Italy in the last Euros n all - when their contribution to entertainment was so minimal their possession stat for the first half v Spain was -23%. But they looked good in their tops.
As Keys n Gray noted, the Offside Rule is a bone of contention between any self-respecting footballer and their partners, regardless of their sex. Anyone who hasn’t used two mugs and a bottle of gunged-up HP sauce to describe this bit of footy legislation to an Unbeliever is not truly a football supporter of any worth.
It doesn’t help that there’s now this flaming rider to the Offside Rule. The Mrs had got the hang of it until Ruud van Nistelrooy started behaving like an infant school goal-hanger and I had to re-explain the new interpretation to our lass by saying that the Dutch Man-Horse was not active when the ball was played in. So he was technically onside.
‘Not active?’ she snooted, ‘I s’pose that means you’re permanently onside, then.’
There’s a lass who sometimes sits behind us at the Riverside and is as passionate a Smoggy as you’re ever likely to hear. She’s also got a squeal on her that could be heard from bloody Neptune. Shrill doesn’t even begin to explain it. When Boro score it’s like I’m having me earwax removed by ultrasound.
I mean I’m all for the lasses getting involved but Jesus Christ, pet, can you find a lower register?
My dear old Dad (dear as in the fees to keep him at the Sunshine Home for the Bewildered are going through the frigging roof) is going a bit deaf and can’t hear higher notes and sounds now. All I can say is 'Lucky bugger'.
Point is, I might like to see linesladies in hula skirts. I might like to see lady footy fans issued with gags. I might like my wife to find more enjoyment in a slick passing movement than she does in the beauteous patterns that Man City’s groundsman is able to mow into the Eastlands turf.
But none of this has owt to do with whether a lass is capable of officiating at a football match. And to suggest that her ability to make a decision is compromised by the lack of a cock in her pants is sexist as far as I understand the definition.
Personally I’d be more than happy to see more women reffing games (as long as they’re not going to drive themselves to the game – JOKE!). They can’t be worse than the card-wielding pipsqueak Mike Dean. But the main benefit might just be that calling a lady ‘a blind fucking cunt’ is far worse a sin than shouting it at some well-meaning part-time actuary from Saffron Walden who happens to like running up and down the line in a blatant toupee.
I dunno why that should be – although some well-groomed Oxford Professeress in a trouser-suit’ll probably tell you it’s an inverted form of society’s inherent patriarchal chauvinism – but I’d more than welcome a reduction in the gobshite tendency of the modern-day footballer whenever the ref gives a decision against him or his team-mate. (NB – it doesn’t happen in women’s football.)
On the other hand, looking at the likes of your Wazza, I doubt they’d be reining in the odd ‘cunt’ and ‘fuck’.
And when it comes to odd fucks, Rooney knows what he’s talking about.