All in the Game: Bobby loses his jobby after half-time delay

Mourinho reminds us why he’s so special, the great-grandson of Mussolini joins Lazio

Gloomy José

You'd imagine Sunday's win over West Brom cheered José Mourinho up a bit, his mood after the previous Thursday's home defeat by Chelsea a bit on the gloomy side.

In the absence of Harry Kane, Spurs had the look of a team that wouldn't have scored if the game lasted for a week, so there was a bit of head-scratching over Mourinho's decision to leave Gareth Bale on the bench.

Journalist Alison Bender, not unreasonably, decided to ask him why he didn't bring Bale on. "Good question," Mourinho replied, "but I don't think you deserve an answer." And with that he walked off.

Bender, predictably, got some abuse on anti-social media for daring to ask such an, eh, outrageous question, which reminded telly man Ned Boulting of one of his Mourinho experiences.


“I once asked him (many years ago) if he’d been disappointed with Michael Ballack’s performance (Chelsea had just drawn 1-1 with Wycombe). He asked me if I was anti-German and then I was banned from interviewing him.”

Yep, José’s special alright.

Bobby’s tale of woe

Sacking of the Week: Undoubtedly, the firing of poor Bobby Bulloch by Hamilton Academical after his rather eventful night last Wednesday when he was on co-commentating duty for Accies TV for their league game against Ross County.

In case you missed Bobby's tale of woe, the gist is that it began with him arriving 10 minutes late for the game, leaving Marcus Nash having to do a solo run in the commentary box, because he mistakenly thought Hamilton were away to Ross County. So, he turned up at an industrial estate in Glasgow, which houses the studio Accies TV uses for away games, instead of 12 miles away at New Douglas Park.

And then he was late back to the commentary box for the second half, explaining to Nash what had delayed him. “I went away for a jobby at half-time . . . it was just a wee bit of poop and I was a wee bit late back over because I had to squeeze quite a bit.”

A man’s got to go when a man’s got to go, of course, but the club felt Bobby went too far by sharing his half-time experience. “A contractor used by the club on co-commentary duties overstepped the mark this evening with a very poor attempt at humour. The club didn’t find this funny and the person will not be used again. Our apologies for this.”

While gutted about losing his gig, Bobby insisted that “a sense of humour is important during these difficult times . . . remember that the next time you’re doing a jobby.” Quite right. But as way too many people pointed out, poor Bobby is now off to the Jobby Centre.

Quote of the week

"If we have the ball and there's no pressure on us and we don't capitalise, then we destroy with our backside what we build with our hands. It is a translation from a German phrase."

Jurgen Klopp. Beyond that, we can't help.

Numbers game: 2,170,000

That’s the cost, in Euros, of the most expensive hospitality package that went on sale last week for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar (for a 40-seat suite at Lusail Stadium which will host 10 games, including the final). We’ve bad news, though - they sold out.

Word of mouth

"The burdensome surname? The only thing that matters is whether he deserves to play. Nothing else." Mauro Bianchessi, manager of Lazio's youth team, on the signing of 18-year-old Romano Benito Floriani Mussolini, great-grandson of, well, you know.

"Nobody likes Scousers. Not even Scousers like Scousers." And after 'quoting' this 2013 tweet, Ben Davies added "ha ha ha" and a wink. Wisely, though, he deleted it last week after leaving Preston for . . . Liverpool.

"It is of course incredibly annoying. Something went wrong with the computers." Ajax coach Erik ten Hag on the 'administrative error' that saw record signing Sebastien Haller left out of the club's Europa League squad. Apart from that and their goalkeeper Andre Onana being banned for a year for a doping violation, it was a good week for the club.

"Has anyone ever told you that you look like Mick Hucknall?" A question put to Burnley gaffer Sean Dyche by a journalist last week. We feel a Specsavers ad coming on.

"I watched it on my phone on the coach when we were coming back from Crystal Palace. I wanted to be there, but that's the world we live in at the moment." If Wolves' Ruben Neves had travelled to be with his wife Debora, who is back in Portugal, he'd have had to go in to quarantine when he returned. So, he viewed the birth of his third child on FaceTime on the team bus. Most pandemic-y thing ever?

"James Milner always sums up my session very skilfully, often screaming with all the words necessary to light the boys' bums on fire." Jurgen Klopp on Milner's bottom-burning skills.