All in the game
Compiled by MARY HANNIGAN
Super Mario just keeps on giving
How he wasn’t chosen as Time magazine’s ‘Person of the Year’ we’ll never know.
The Balotelli chap was a God for those entrusted with the task of compiling footballing quotes of the week in 2012, because he was the subject of half of them.
Was he universally adored?
Not according to former Everton manager Joe Royle: “He is like Marmite – you either love him or hate him. Me, I’m between.”
“I told him if you played with me, 10 years ago, I give to you every day one punch in your head” and “I don’t speak with him every day, otherwise I would need a psychologist” – both from his sorely-tested manager, Roberto Mancini.
And words of fine wisdom from the man himself: “If I buy a Fiat Uno, I read that a guy like me is better suited to a Ferrari, but if I choose a Ferrari, they write that I should keep my feet on the ground and buy a Fiat Uno.
If I laugh then I am unprofessional, if I do not laugh then I’m the miserable rich guy who cannot enjoy even the best job in the world.”
It was put to endless good use in 2012 by footballers, but none better than AC Milan’s Stephan El Shaarawy: “The moment I got to Serie A, my sex life multiplied by 10. I use Facebook to pick up all my women. You find so much stuff on the internet.”
“Watched all three presidential debates. If I had to vote would vote Obama.” – Wayne Rooney using Twitter to endorse Barack, and with that it was four more years.
And then there was Gary Lineker’s rather splendid touché in a Twitter battle with Piers Morgan, who had explained to his American followers who Lineker was: “Soccer player who never won a World Cup, the League, or a tackle. Fled to Japan, big ears.”
Morgan: “Did you ever actually tackle anyone?”
Lineker: “Nope never hacked anyone.”
PS: Sam Allardyce hates Twitter, but even he was influenced by it in 2012 – on Andy Carroll’s latest injury setback: “Hopefully he’s only tweeted his hamstring.”
“I’ve just watched the replay and there is absolutely no doubt – it’s inconclusive”
– Garth Crooks
“I’ve been consistent in patches this season”
– Theo Walcott
“There are some luminaries who believe that only one type of football exists on earth. These people only know football through Google. They swallow knowledge, but know nothing”
– Jose Mourinho, according to Google
“I suspect that his father came from Krypton and brought the boy to Earth in a rocket, because the only thing that makes sense is if he is Superman”
– Santos president Luis Alvaro Ribeiro on super-hero Neymar.