DICTIONARY CORNER
It’s only words

Don’t trifle with Brian Kerr: “I think there’s been a lot of pavlova around the whole Beckham thing.”

Peter Reid: “Dzeko went down a bit theoretically.”

Phil Babb: “There’s some kind of falsity going on.”

Barry Fry after delivering his own granddaughter: “Got a text from my daughter; she was having contraptions.”

Charlie Nicholas on Tony Pulis: “He’s encaptured his team with a lot of new ingredients.”

Sam Matterface: “He stretched out one of those telegraphic limbs.”

Perry Groves: “Gareth Bale has been levitated to the status of one of the best players in the world.”

Jamie Redknapp: “An Arsenal win would be a great fillet.”

Will Perry: “Fulham are on that mythological 40-point mark.”

BBC’s Darren Fletcher: “They lacked steel, fire, desire, confidence; go through the adjectives.”

Michael Appleton curried favour: “People will say it’s been a case of footballing korma.”

Danny Dichio: “Sunderland players will be full of emulsion at half time.”

Geoff Shreeves lifted Gary Neville onto Fergie’s high horse: “What was he like in the sanctimony of the dressing room?”

**

PUNBELIEVABLE JEFF
Stell got it

“Rotherham score through Ben Pringle – a crisp finish.”

“Gerken in the Bristol City goal clearly getting in a pickle.”

“Zander Diamond sent off for violent conduct – a rough diamond.”

“Hitchcock the scorer. I think he took 39 steps before he hit that one.”

“Three Egyptians in the squad today, as far as Hull as are concerned. I suppose if you want to climb the football pyramid…”

“Erik Thorstvedt said Spurs had sold Elvis and bought the Beatles; but a Norwegian would.”

**

IFS AND BUTS
What might have been

Trevor Francis: “If that ball had dropped to a West Brom player, who’d put it in the net, that would have been the equaliser.”

Alan Smith: “It certainly would have crept under the bar had it been on target.”

Steve McClaren: “If Villa hadn’t conceded three goals, they’d still be in this game.”

**

SWEET TALK
Sugar-coating it

Roy Hodgson on Ashley Young: “I don’t like to use the word ‘dropped’. He just fell outside the 23.”

Stephen Hunt: “If you look at the last ten games and you turn the league table upside down, we wouldn’t be far off top six.”

Roberto Martinez: “The draws were more victories without goals.”

Peter Drury: “Howard, despite letting in two goals, hasn’t had a save to make.”

Stevenage manager Graham Westley, after one win in ten: “To me, we are winning here right now. The reason we are winning here right now is the loss rate is dropping.”

**

BACK TO THE FUTURE
Time just wouldn’t stand still

Alan Brazil: “City midfielder James Milner joins us to look ahead to yesterday’s remarkable display.”

Paul Ince: “I’m sure David and Alex will sit down and decide who should be the predecessor to his job.”

Guus Hiddink: “I never can predict my future because a big part of the future is already behind me.”

Matt Le Tissier on Ryan Giggs’s career: “I don’t think we’ll ever see that again in the history of football.”

David Moyes: “I remember my first game against Fulham – I remember it like it was tomorrow.”

**

UNBELIEVABLE BELIEF
Destiny’s children

Callum McManaman: “I always believed we’d win it.”
ITV reporter: “How does it feel?”
McManaman: “I can’t believe it.”

Paul Merson pondered the Mancini-Balotelli relationship:
“He probably believed in him and thinks he’s an unbelievable talent.”

**

A WAY WITH WORDS
Smooth talkers

Robbie Savage: “You need to take your rose-scented glasses off.”

Niall Quinn: “They’ll be going there with a step in their stride.”

Gary Cahill: “I was glad to get that duck off my back.”

Christian Purslow: “I think you’ve hit the needle on the head.”

Paul Merson on Sian Massey: “Great decision by the lady linesman.”

Niall Quinn: “Wes Brown has stepped into the plate.”

Players kicking the ball out give Kenny Cunningham the itch: “It’s a real bedbug of mine.”

**

UNCONTESTED STATEMENTS
With Eamon Dunphy

“Ribery isn’t a first-team player.”

“Javi Martinez is a bit of a donkey.”

“The Spanish manager is on around €50,000 a year.”

**

RUNNING A SURPLUS
Losing the numbers game

Mickey Quinn always gives 110 per cent: “Possession stats at one point were 77 per cent to 33 per cent.”

Will Downing: “That’s the first goal Southampton have conceded in seven hours and 77 minutes.”

Sam Matterface: “Chester is never going to out-leap him. Chester is what; about 5-foot-11, 5-foot-12.”

David Pleat: “In the last year, 46 of the 92 managers have lost their jobs – that’s over half.”

Steve Bruce scoffed at conclusion-jumping journos: “People are putting two and two together and getting four.”

**

LET’S TALK ABOUT FACTS
The inside track

Stan Collymore: “Quite simply, we’ve got to be honest, there’s a very large Polish community in Poland.”

Peter Taylor: “What I saw in Holland and Germany was that the majority of people are Dutch in Holland and German in Germany.”

Steve Staunton refused to be pigeonholed as just a football pundit: “Spanish is probably one of the top languages in the world.”

Clive Tyldesley: “Tottenham have lost all their European quarter-finals since they last won one.”

Steve McManaman: “When I joined Liverpool as a schoolboy, of course I was still at school.”

**

MONEYBALL
The debit side

Ronnie Irani gave Vincent Tan a leg-up: “He’s a billionaire – estimated worth around £850million.”

Darren Gough on Alisher Usmanov: “He’s got loads of money – we know that from his wealth.”

Packie Bonner on Celtic windfall: “They know there’s financial money coming to them now.”

**

HARSH WORDS
Cruel to be kind

Stephen Alkin: “Elding was on the point of giving up the game – indeed he was going to sign for Limerick.”

Lawro was cool on Mertesacker: “Looks like he’s pulling an old fridge when he runs.”

Iain Dowie: “Some real positives for Wales. Their back four’s not bad, sometimes.”

Jeff Stelling: “If you’re a manger, what do you say to Lee Catermole before a game?”
Charlie Nicholas: “See you in 30 minutes.”

**

SPLITTING HAIRS
Six of one…

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Paul Merson: “I don’t know if you could give it, but it could have been given.”

Rafa Benitez: “We don’t have any problems apart from the problems we have.”

Paul Merson: “If you don’t give him a chance, what chance has he got?”

**

ANATOMY OF THE GAME
Biology lesson

Sam Matterface: “The ball came off the left breast of Sebastien Bassong.”

Lawro on FIFA: “Basically, you get sick of the sight of listening to them.”

Dion Dublin knows footballers: “Sandro’s holding his face, and you can tell from that it’s a knee injury.”

Craig Burley: “Aaron Ramsey has not often been the flavour of the Arsenal fans’ eyes.”

Niall Quinn: “It’s left a sour taste around the heart of the club.”

Phil Thompson: “Nobody would have batted an eyebrow.”

**

FAMOUS FOOTBALLING SEANFHOCAIL
Taking the proverbial

Brian Little: “There’s a saying in dressing rooms up and down the country; if you play ok that’s not good enough.”

John Toshack on Barcelona’s slump: “There’s a saying; you pay for the meal after the coffee.”

Jamie Carragher: “The old adage; if it’s outside the box, 100% free-kick.”

Jamie Redknapp: “There’s a saying; good general or lucky general.”

**

THE BIG CALLS
Neck on the block

Graeme Souness: “If you’re going to win the Premier League this season, you’re going to have to finish ahead of these two.”

Ray Houghton: “The width for Spurs is down the flanks.”

Glenn Hoddle: “He’s not going to get himself back into the team sitting on the bench.”

Peter Beagrie: “Big-game players turn up in big games.”

Alan Shearer: “Defenders don’t like guys who get in the six-yard box and score goals.”
Glenn Hoddle: “Sometimes it’s better to be lucky than unlucky.”
Ian Wright on the FA Cup final: “For Wigan, this game is a cup final for them.”

**

OOH MATRON
Nurse, the screens

Harry Redknapp: “Remy looked like he might be getting over that groin strain. He showed a few flashes.”

Jimmy Magee: “It was difficult there with the tricky, sensual Fellaini.”

Mark Saggers on Spurs: “They need a bit of impotence.”

Mick Martin: “Southampton deserve a big pat on the backside.”

Cristiano Ronaldo on Twitter: “Thank you all for participation in the CR7 Boys Underwear Competition – it’s been a real pleasure to see all of your photos.”

**

TO BE SURE TO BE SURE
So good they said it twice

Jamie Redknapp on Luis Suarez: “He will improve and he will get better.”

Steve Claridge: “He’s exacerbated the situation by making it worse.”

Ian Wright: “It’s one of them days when you just say; ‘it’s one of them days’.”

Rebecca Lowe: “That’s what so magical about the FA Cup… it has that magic.”

**

STAYING CLASSY
What an anchor

Sky Sports News presenter: “Nelson Mandela, recovering in a South African hospital at the moment… but can Sunderland recover in the second half?”

**

BEYOND THE CALL OF DUTY
Miss you, Jimmy

Jimmy Magee

Many commentators would simply tell you it was cold at St Mary’s. Not Jimmy Magee:
“A lot of big cruising liners leave Southampton for the Caribbean and the USA etc. I’m sure the people on board now will be taking off … well, do liners take off … will be sailing in a couple of hours. And they’ll be hoping for warmer climes.”

**

CLEAREST CLARIFICATIONS
Setting the record straight

Kevin Keegan: “Manchester City are built on sand and I don’t mean that because their owners are from the Arab countries.”

Alan Parry: “Giggs tearing people apart – defenders that is.” Not families.

Giovanni Trapattoni: “I love Doyle. As a player, not as a man. I love women, without doubt.”

**

THE GUFF PARADE
Pure guff

niallquinn

QPR assistant manager Kevin Bond worried about new signing Javier Chevanton:
“He don’t speak the language too good.”

Dean Saunders thinks twice:
“If I was managing in Spain, I’d have a plan to stop Ronaldo… but you can’t stop him.”

Charlie Nicholas on the best league in the world:
“I know it was loaded with mistakes but this was everything we ask of the Premier League.”

Steve Staunton eyed a comeback: “At the end of the day, if you’re old enough, you’re good enough.”

Eamon Dunphy kept Barcelona in mind:
“They’ve given us memories that we will never forget, and we should remember that.”

Arsenal-Southampton gave Martin Keown food for thought:
“Neither side creating many chances, it’s like a war of nutrition in midfield.”

Who says self-praise is no praise? Not Ray Stubbs:
“If they name a stadium after you, like Dave Whelan, it shows you’ve done an awful lot of good.”

What George Hamilton gives with one hand…
“Ryan Giggs, who’ll be 40 in November – the ageless Ryan Giggs.”

Chris Kamara thinking outside the box:
“If that happens anywhere else on the pitch, it’s a stonewall penalty.”

Niall Quinn on aquarium advances:
“Tony Fernandes is in that goldfish bowl and he’s swirling around and swimming against the tide.”

Jamie Redknapp on Schteve McClaren: “In this age when everyone wants a foreign accent in the dug-out, Steve deserves another chance.”

Roddy Collins on inbred problems at grassroots level:
“A lot of the coaches of underage teams have a spouse on the team – either a son or a nephew or someone.”

Blind logic from Phil Brown:
“If you close your eyes, you couldn’t tell the difference between the two sides.”

Danny Mills let bygones be bygones… nearly:
“There is no precedent for what Suarez did, other than he’s done it before.”

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