Fitzpatrick's Shels tales collected


PLANET SOCCER:We’ve long been fans around these parts of Seán Fitzpatrick’s Where Are They Now?features in the Shelbourne match programme, so it was with not inconsiderable delight we learnt that Liberties Press is publishing a compendium of Seán’s work, entitled Shelbourne Cult Heroes – From Bulawayo to Ballybough.

Bulawayo is the home of Henry McKop, brought to the club by Damien Richardson in 1995, one of several featured players to, as Seán puts it, have taken the “scenic route” through their playing careers.

Another Shels old boy ended up serving in the (first) Gulf War, another became the “Mango King” in Australia, while Marvellous Marlon Billy’s experience with the club “prompted him to switch codes to Rugby League”, where he “became a legend with the Rochdale Hornets”.

Marvellous stories all, of the “you couldn’t make it up” kind. The book is launched by the Lord Mayor of Dublin, Cllr Eibhlin Byrne, at the Mansion House on Wednesday week.

*“I’ve known Ashley for a while but I didn’t have a chip at him. He’s in enough trouble with the missus when she gets home.”

– Coventry’s Clinton Morrison on his run-in with Ashley Cole during the recent FA Cup game.

Quotes of the week

“It is a hard one to take because I thought we were the better team and the score does not reflect that.”

– Alex Ferguson after United hammered Liverpool 1-4 on Saturday.

“I did not know of them. I know nothing. Maybe with my satellite navigation I could find it. I would have no idea where it is on the map, though.”

– Newcastle’s Obafemi Martins admitting the whereabouts of the city of Hull is a mystery to him.

“Early on, one of the guys posed me a question – “Ereyergoinfersumscram?” I later understood that this was a polite invitation to go to lunch.”

– American goalkeeper Brad Friedel, now with Aston Villa, reflecting on his early language difficulties at Liverpool.

“Inter showed fantastic experience at times and showed that South American mentality . . .”

– Alex Ferguson. South American? Eh?

Rafa cracks on

CHANT OF THE WEEKEND “He’s cracking up . . . Rafa’s cracking up.” Manchester United fans, after they went 1-0 up against Liverpool, suggesting that losing to the champions would push an already strained Benitez over the edge.

“He’s cracking up . . . Rafa’s cracking up.”

Liverpool fans, after they went 4-1 up against United, suggesting that trashing the champions on their own turf had Benitez rolling in the aisles.

Byrne not giving too much away

Young Dubliner Mark Byrne, currently on loan at Burton Albion, recently did the Nottingham Forest’s Player Q&A for their match programme. We could be wrong, but we’re guessing he wasn’t hugely enthusiastic about the challenge, judging by the extracts that appeared in the Daily Mirror:

Q: Any reasons for your current squad number? A: It was what I was given at the start of the season.

Q: Who is your room-mate? Has he any bad habits? A: Brendan Maloney. He doesn’t have any bad habits.

Q: Who do you listen to on the radio? A: I don’t listen to the radio too much.

Q: What other sports are you good at? A: I haven’t really got into table tennis like the rest of the lads have since a table was installed at the club last year. It’s not really my thing.

Q: Do you download any podcasts? A: No.

More quotes of the week

“Things happened to me that made me look ridiculous . . . whenever I used to see my name in the paper it was: ‘Stephen Ireland, comma, grandmas, website, pink wheels, blah blah’. Now I just want it to be, ‘Stephen Ireland did something good on the field today’. I think I am close to that.”

– Stephen Ireland, grandmas, website, pink wheels, blah blah.

“Will I ever play in Italy? Never say never in life. I do gladly travel there, like I did last summer, because there are the most beautiful and sexiest girls in the world.”

– Cristiano Ronaldo angling for a move to Serie A.

“My son has only introduced two girlfriends to me. If I believed what other people say, he has been with more than 100 and he is a womaniser. But I know that it is not true. When he likes a girl and the relationship is serious, he presents her to his family.”

– Ronaldo’s mother. Bless.

“I think what we are doing at the moment is the closest thing to art. Our team works in the spirit of the great musicians and great ballets. We will for the victory but a victory for aesthetics.”

– Blackburn manager Sam Allardyce. Kidding, Barcelona president Joan Laporta.

“Trying to explain it to you would be impossible. It would be like you trying to explain childbirth to me.”

– Gordon Strachan to radio reporter Michelle Evans after she asked him for his thoughts on Celtic’s cup defeat to St Mirren. Evans later revealed she has no children.