Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 30 August 2014

Billy on the Box: His royal Souness is Tyler-made for Martin

it’s nice to see that Martin Tyler has bounced back from the trauma of his split from Andy Gray to find a new partner in Graeme Souness.

However he does seem to have a type as his application at the online punditry dating site shows. Cuddly commentator seeks Scot in his fifties, with a past penchant for perms and a knowledge of party tunes. Good sense of humour essential and must not be put off by the tightness of Jamie Redknapp’s trousers.

Souness left Jamie’s crotch behind him as he moved to the commentary box for the first time in Manchester United’s Champions League romp against Schalke on Tuesday, and was first class.

Knew when to speak and when he did it was with the insight of a man who has really done it all, although I did snort when he wanted Fabio to show more discipline. This from a man who would have maimed his granny, and if he was in charge of Rangers now would mean the UN patrolling Govan.

Other points of note from the game included the return of some old friends — no, not Andy but Mr Papadopoulos. He’s a Schalke player but I’m sure he was the bloke you never saw who owned the laundrette in Eastenders. Mind you, more chance of him popping up in your smalls than Andy appearing on Sky again.

I’m still not convinced that Jeff Stelling is the man to replace Richard Keys, but he did introduce us to a new description for missed opportunities at half-time as Javier Fernandez, or Little Pea as he is known, had a podful of chances. Still not as annoying as Jonathan Pearce on Match of the Day pronouncing Chicarito’s (how many names does one man need?) with more Zs at the end than a Rip van Winkle tribute act.

And while there may not have been a royal there was a Raul, the ‘old fox’ as Graeme called him. Did he not play for Norwich?

Still, no need for Delia to find the perfect mix, this royal Souness is a match Tyler-made for Martin.

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