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Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Outside the Box – Football on TV: You’re On Sky Sports… or should that be Moron Sky Sports?

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There are three clearly defined pursuits enjoyed by the average football fan. One, demonstrating the unwavering certainty that they know the best way for their team to play. Secondly, morphing into yob-like tyrants at the very sight of an opposition supporter and lambasting them with vociferous anger in the guise of cheery chants; and thirdly, and most indulgently is the unquenchable desire to moan about all that is wrong with their club and the game in general. It’s lucky then that Sky give us a platform to vent our chronic misery in the shape of You’re On Sky Sports.

Presented by former Chelsea and Spurs defender Jason Cundy, it is a freewheeling phone-in show akin to those rant-heavy talkSport radio programmes and acts as a soapbox for passionate supporters up and down the country to throw their two pence worth in on any issue they see fit. It has a bracingly ramshackle air about it that contrasts nicely with its stylish counterparts amongst the rest of the Sky Sports coverage.

Alongside the ridiculously barra’-boy cockney JC, is his co-host Chloe Everton and their back-and-forth questioning of each other is sometimes a little bewildering; one minute she’s asking him for his views on Phil Jones’ defending, the next he’s pressing her to reveal her thoughts on Kenny Dalglish’s tactics. It seems at times to create a burning sexual tension as their heated debates threaten to spill over into passion; fortunately they then begin to talk about Tony Pulis and Stoke which indubitably kills any feelings of lust and romance.

As with any show with the phone-in format, the bulk of the entertainment stems from the varied plethora of callers and their blustering views. The vast majority of them call in to either have a pop at their team’s local rivals or disagree with everything JC has said. And he too seems to enjoy winding them up as well.

Chelsea fan Tristan (yes, Tristan!) called in to bemoan his fellow Blues supporters for neglecting the excellent performances of Ramires and Juan Mata by constantly banging on about Fernando Torres and his many problems, and called for people to just stop talking about Torres. JC had other ideas though and no sooner had Tristan completed his tirade than JC began to question him on his thoughts on Torres’ current predicament thus negating Tristan’s frustrations completely.

JC also might have upset Aaron from Mill Hill, who was a Liverpool fan. Discussing Andy Carroll and his current malaise, JC likened the burly striker’s problems to those of Torres; the difference being that Torres might be suffering from the pressure of 'moving to a big club' after his transfer to Chelsea. I’d steer clear of Anfield for a while if I were you JC.

You’re On Sky Sports is not ground-breaking, it’s not flashy and it’s not particularly entertaining. JC admits as much in the show’s opening when he tells the viewers 'we can’t do the show without you'. To be honest they can barely do it with you, but the one thing it has going for it is its Saturday early-evening slot. I mean, it’s got to be better than watching the X Factor hasn’t it?

Later on Saturday and there were worrying developments over at Match Of The Day where Alan Shearer’s on-going feud with his own hair seems to have spread to Mark Lawrenson too. Lawro doesn’t so much have hair now as half a dozen scraggily feathers protruding from his head; I just hope Messrs’ Linekar and Hansen are keeping a thorough eye on their own heads, otherwise the MOTD sofa could soon resemble a Right Said Fred concert.

Different issues arose the following day on Live Super Sunday during the QPR v Villa game. Was Martin Tyler nailing his political colours to the mast when he spotted David Cameron amongst the Loftus Road crowd? As the game ebbed into its final moments and our plum-faced Prime Minister sat there pretending to enjoy the football, Tyler praised him for 'not leaving before the end' and added that it was 'to his credit'. Tyler’s brazen support for Cameron’s staunch faith in his Coalition government is admirable, but in the interests of impartiality Sky should now rectify the balance. Perhaps they should invite Ed Miliband to ring into You’re On Sky Sports. On second thoughts, it probably isn’t a good idea; JC will only stoke the fire by calling him David or something.

Related Articles:

Has Soccer AM lost its morning glory?

Football Focus' Clem and dancing balls

Sky's golden oldies prove to be real masters

Manchester United ensure a Super Sunday

Strong showing by the Football League Show

Match of the Day hits the target . . . just

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Chris Pettitt



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