All In The Game: Wesley Hoolahan the cream of Cambridge
Ireland and Shelbourne legend is named in League Two team of the year, aged 38
Grumpiest Ref of the Week
We’ll go with Joelson Nazareno who was in charge of the quarter-final clash of Águia de Marabá and Remo in the Brazilian Campeonato Paraense.
As well as handing out 15 yellow cards - 15! - he sent off Maraba’s Gilmar after he had been substituted for being quite rude to one of the ref’s assistants.
Was he done there? Not quite.
Maraba forward Romarinho was so incensed by Nazareno’s performance he described it as “shameful” during his television interview after the game. At which point Nazareno, who had heard the chat, reappeared and, well, gave Romarinho a red card. “He offended my honour and moral integrity during his interview,” he explained. Romarinho’s jaw is still on the floor.
Quote of the week
“I never bothered about anything else apart from football. I never bothered about school. Teachers were a pain in the backside .... the careers officer sat me down and said I was stupid. So if that careers officer is still alive, up yours.” Sam ‘look at me now, baby!’ Allardyce.
Number of the week
39 - That’s the birthday Wes Hoolahan will celebrate on May 20th - and he’s just won promotion with Cambridge United and been named in the League Two team of the year. Ageless, that fella.
World of mouth
“He has the stride of a marathon runner, the solidarity of a communist, the voracity of a panther and, let’s not get confused, the talent of a great football player. No one from Madrid will forget about N’Golo Kanté.” Real Madrid old boy Jorge Valdano with the mother of all tributes to the Chelsea man.
“Madrid are eliminated, and look at Hazard, Two years taking the piss out of Madrid fans. Two years overweight. A lot of people say he is the new Gareth Bale. He laughs at everyone. Hazard cannot continue for one second more in Madrid.” An extract from Spanish TV presenter Josep Pedrerol’s highly epic response to the sight of Eden having a chuckle with former team-mate Kurt Zouma after Madrid were beaten by Chelsea last week.
There’s been many a tale down the years about parents giving their new-borns unforgivable names in honour of their beloved football clubs, like the two Liverpool-worshipping Norwegian couples who called their daughters Ynwa (pronounced ‘Unn-wah’ - yes, ‘you’ll never walk alone’) and Tia (This is Anfield).
Then there was the Norwich-based Japanese couple who named their son Kiraku Farkelife Tomii - Farkelife being the tune sung by the Norwich faithful in honour of their German manager Daniel Farke (yes, to the strains of Park Life). And the Australian man who suggested to his wife that they call their brand new daughter Lanesra because the name was “unique and romantic”, only for her to cop two years later that it was Arsenal spelled backwards.
To our knowledge, all those parents were sober when they selected the names, but that can’t be said of the father of a now 57-year-old English lady. “My dad got a bit drunk and decided to call me ‘Wembley Lester’,” she told the Leicester Mercury last week.
The fateful decision was made in the pub by her father Jack, a diehard Leicester City fan who wanted to mark the team reaching the FA Cup final which took place four days after his daughter’s birth. We can only assume Wembley Lester’s mother was as big a fan of the club, otherwise, surely, she would have made an intervention.
Wembley Lester is, then, very excited about Leicester’s upcoming Wembley date when they’ll play Chelsea in the FA Cup final, although, sadly, Wembley won’t be in Wembley having failed to get a ticket.
But, she said, “I’m very proud of my name. It’s definitely an ice breaker when we meet people for the first time. I get some odd looks sometimes, but mostly it’s positive.” At least her Da didn’t call her Retseciel. Small mercies.
More word of mouth
“You’ve got the worst of the worst .... it’s like when you sign a player who is finished. Mourinho is finished in every conceivable way. He doesn’t even play football, he plays anti-football .... he’s the worst you could possibly get.” Apart from that, Paolo Di Canio thinks Roma have made a good appointment.
“The most difficult player to face at Chelsea? No player has ever taken my sleep in 15 years. They play well as a team, but I can’t tell you a name.” Real Madrid’s Toni Kroos ahead of that Champions League game. He could probably have told you a few Chelsea names come full-time.