Pale faces in RTÉ as Eamon Dunphy makes it a bleepy day

Immortal words of ‘We’re not on air are we?’ with poor Didi stuck in the middle

Eamon Dunphy left  Bill O’Herlihy pale-faced after a four-letter word slip.  Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Eamon Dunphy left Bill O’Herlihy pale-faced after a four-letter word slip. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Wed, Jun 18, 2014, 15:19

Day Six and Richard Sadlier’s cheeks were sizzling when Tony O’Donoghue introduced him as “the thinking woman’s Eamon Dunphy”, the implication being, of course, that if you’re not a thinking type, then you prefer Eamon Dunphy. Harsh.

And, you feared, it might have led to some internal RTÉ World Cup squad tensions, a bit like the Dutch used to have before they started loving each other. “Now, now lads, there’s no ‘I’ in team,” Bill van Herlihy would have pleaded as it all kicked off in the Montrose dressing room, while Ossie Ardiles tried to separate the Dunphy/Giles/Ronnie and Tony/Kenny/Richard factions.

And then Tony finished up by describing Richard as “very beautiful”, the insinuation being that Eamon was no oil painting, the conflict now intense enough to have Ban Ki-moon tossing and turning at night.

Video: Dunphy makes an F word slip

Come the moments before kick-off in the Brazil v Mexico game, though, any thinking woman (or even man) couldn’t but feel love for Eamon when he uttered the immortal words: “We’re not on air, are we?”

And which one of us hasn’t been there, thinking, say, Granny was out of earshot when we emoted in a decidedly indelicate way?

Back from the break .

Eamon to Kenny and Didi: “The pitch was a ****ing bog.”

Billo: [Pale-faced].

Eamon: “When Neymar was shaping up to take that penalty I thought he was ****ing dreading it.”

Bill: “Oooooh.”

Eamon: “Sorry.”

Bill: “We’re on air.”

Eamon: “We’re not, are we?”

Bill: “We are.”

Eamon: “Oh.”

Didi and Kenny’s faces: [WTF]

Eamon: “I apologise for that.”

Bill: “Obviously that was an inexactitude.”

Eamon: [Looking over his shoulder to check with studio people that his remarks were indeed broadcast live to the nation].

Bill: “Sorry about our hiccup there, it was entirely accidental.”

It was, then, a bleepety bleep day for RTÉ, much to the nation’s devilish amusement, the gut reaction to Bill’s earlier request for questions on Twitter for the panel “with hashtag #askthepanel”: “Noooooo!”

He read out some of them, but skipped a few (which we’d love to repeat here, but we’re trying to avoid a ‘we’re not on air, are we?’ moment). Some of the printable ones, which Bill neglected to mention: “Who is this “Lakuku” chap that Eamon spoke about earlier - thought I knew all the Belgian players already?”

“What is Bill’s favourite biscuit, and why?”; “If I was to drink a shot of vodka every time Kenny Cunningham raised his eyebrows mid sentence, how close would I be to death?”; “How does Didi Hamann feel about sharing opinions with people who’ve achieved about as much as Enda Kenny?”; “Any chance Ossie can speak a bit slower or could we have subtitles?”

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