Word that co-commentator Andy Townsend is set to leave ITV at the end of the season has divided the watching public. Here’s why…

Sure, there has been the occasional geographical mishap:

“The Belgians will play like their fellow Scandinavians, Denmark and Sweden.”

His metaphors sometimes ran aground:

“Arsenal have the wind in their sails and they need to put their foot to the floor.”

But he’s as smart as a rock:

“Tim Howard is as sharp as a tank.”

And rarely fell between two stools:

“Henry is like a laxative, he goes straight through you and there’s nothing you can do about it.”

His innovative side may yet find an outlet on Celebrity Apprentice, having shown remarkable technological vision when a coach struggled to get a message through to his players during the South Africa World Cup:

“You kind of need a mobile vuvuzela where you can maybe dial a number on it and get through to someone else.

He has also made some groundbreaking discoveries in the area of physics:

“Jelavic used all the speed of the cross to take the pace off the ball there.”

He wasn’t always up to speed:

“The players are always greeted with such velocity here at Old Trafford.”

Though he was after Chile beat Australia 3-1:

“If Australia had scored a couple more, it would have been a very different result.”

There was that eureka moment:

“England have fallen short in the last third, which is a key area.”

And that other one:

“England are really dangerous to watch.”

He sometimes gets ahead of himself:

“In the end, Rosicky did initially well.”

He’ll have time now to indulge his DIY enthusiasm:

“Fabio Capello needs to nail his hammers to the mast.”

But check the measurements if he lays a carpet for you:

“Look at Cole on the penalty spot. Roll it to him and he’s got a tap in from seven or eight yards.”

He has his own means of evaluating the big calls:

“That was six of a dozen and one of the other.”

And his personal motto is one to live by:

“It’s never easy sometimes.”

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