England’s training ground secrets revealed (and approximated)

Ahead of ANOTHER MOST IMPORTANT GAME OF THE TOURNAMENT SO FAR™ between England and Sweden, our resident snoop Staan Coollymoore (in know way affiliated with anyone who happens to have a strikingly similar name and appearance) has been observing the England team’s preparations at their training camp, having both covered himself in turf and pretended to be their pitch and hidden inside Gary Neville’s moustache. Here are his (more than likely exaggerated, if not entirely falsified) findings:


James Milner has been rubbing butter on his knees to make them “extra supple”. This has attracted an army of tree ants who have been gnawing at the midfielder’s legs unrelentingly for the last two evenings, proving extremely counter effective. Expect him to be on the bench.

Steven Gerrard has been locked in exchange of nods between himself and his own reflection in the mirror for 10pm yesterday, where he wished himself goodnight. Unwilling to break scouse law and not return a nod, the coaching staff have been so far unsuccessful in their attempts to tear him away, making it touch-and-go whether or not they can do so before this evening’s fixture.

Jack Butland, who spent the entire plane journey yelling “WHY AM I HERE?!” to nobody in particular, has fallen into a deep existential crisis. After reading all of the works of Jean-Paul Sartre and Albert Camus, Butland has began work on his first novel about a young goalkeeper who massacres his entire team and then shrugs because it doesn’t matter.

Manager Roy Hodgson has taken to standing on the sidelines, popping a Werther’s Original in his mouth then glazing over and going ‘ahhhhhh’ for upwards of five minutes, before he repeats the process with another. England’s medical staff are worried that he has “given himself every type of diabetes” with this behaviour.

Michael Owen has sporadically turned up disguised as an unconvincing Danny Welbeck in an attempt to break back into the England squad, momentarily confusing former captain John Terry who was unsure whether to racially abuse pass to him or not.

Jordan Henderson has been unable to go outdoors due to the intense amount of Ukrainian paparazzi who have been following him, believing him to be someone else more noteworthy. Sid from Toy Story perhaps.

Theo Walcott has been running around the perimeter of the training camp yelling “Look how fast I am! Look!” for no obvious reason or use. Expect more of the same if he starts later.


Exclusive: Why O’Neill Quit Aston Villa And Why He’s Taking Milner With Him

After the ‘sensational’ international retirement of England fringe players Paul Robinson and Wes Brown, quitting has become all the rage in football and ex-Aston Villa boss Martin O’Neill has become the latest person to jump on the resignation bandwagon, leaving the Villans after four years with immediate effect.

Speaking exclusively to Perez Shilton, O’Neill has revealed the reasons for his sudden departure; (Warning: a lame attempt to transcribe O’Neill’s Irish accent follows) “Oi want to go an’ work on t’fields in Ireland like me pa used to, become a potato farmer y’know like?

And oi’m takin’ yer man James Milner with me too. That boy loves agriculture more than he loves gravy and mining, which is quite a lot oi can assure ye’. He was driving tractors when he was jus’ five years old and by t’age o’ twelve he was mating with the livestock.We’re gonna have a grand ol’ time together, so ye can stick that one up yer bollix Man City.” This last statement is thought to be in reference to Manchester City’s relentless pursuit of Villa player Milner during this summer’s transfer window, in order to add him to their growing collection of ‘midfielders who will not be played regularly enough, become unsettled and will probably leave by this time next year’.

This retiring phenomenon is expected to result in the resignations of Harry Redknapp, Arsene Wenger and Sam Allardyce, who are to become a fruit and veg seller on a Hackney market stall, a nude art class model and a medical experiment test subject respectively, by the end of the week.