Belfast Telegraph

Billy on the Box: Something is rotten in the state of Mr Park

I'm not here to gloat about Manchester United's demolition of that lot from up the east Lancs Road but I watched the game twice on Sunday in a state of mild hysteria.

But this was partly on medical grounds as my retinas were so mesmerised by the sheer shiny tightness of Jamie Redknapp's trousers on Sky, I had to tune in for the highlights on MOTD2 just to make sure it wasn't all a dream, or a nightmare. Or both.

Given that my least favourite United player since Eric Djemba-Djemba (so bad they named him twice) — Ji-Sung Park — scored the goal, I still couldn't be sure that I hadn't been seeing things.

Indeed when Adrian Chiles started waffling on about an unsung hero I wasn't sure if he was talking about the goalscorer or one of his relatives.

“From a Liverpool point of view it's another kick in the Niagaras,” said the newly naked-chinned Chiles, none the worse for being shaved by Christine Bleakley on Sport Relief (more of that elsewhere).

Thankfully for him, but probably not for everyone else in the world, she is from Newtownards and not Brazil, although when he said he didn't know his whatsitsname from his elbow, I began to wonder.

And we were in the same unsavoury ball park (and no, that's not another of Ji-Sung's relations), the previous evening on proper Match of the Day when Mick McCarthy got a tad scatological after Aston Villa's draw with Wolves.

John Carew was standing so offside he could have been patting a reindeer on the outskirts of Bergen as he scored the equaliser and things were as soon as unpleasant and received as warmly as an Ashley Cole text.

“I'm sure you'll analyze it until it comes out of your backside tonight but he's offside.” Thanks Mick.

I wasn't sure if we'd come back to the studio to find Gillian McKeith on the sofa beside Lawro slapping on a pair of rubber gloves and opening up a very unpleasant Tupperware lunchbox.

Setanta refugee Steve Bower hadn't learnt his lesson as he persisted with the Kelly Dalglish guide to daft post-match questions by probing (not in a Gillian way) Martin O'Neill on the same matter.

“You're asking the wrong man at this moment about refereeing decisions. Have you seen the Carling Cup Final? Have you? Then don't ask me about refereeing decisions.”

But away from the doo-doos and boo-boos, at least we could rely on Jonathan Pearce to bring a bit of sense of decorum and mature calmness to matters, even in the squeaky bum encounter between Portsmouth and Hull but there were to be more number twos. Two of them, in fact.

Hull were 2-1 to the good and then like a team-building walk, all hell broke loose, and Jamie O'Hara scored a screamer of a free-kick to level matters, or as Pearce said, ‘it's all gone Archbishop Desmond.'

To be fair though, I think Pompey will need to look higher than that to get the miracle they need.

Anyway, back to the mighty Reds of Merseypool and as the final of the Subsidiary Shield, sorry, Europa League, is being held in Hamburg, the draw was carried out by the Teutonic menace of Herr Flick's grandson accompanied by German legend Uwe Seeler.

“At this stage there is no country protection,” said mein host, as people across Poland started to flee.

There is no such escape though for viewers of Five, no tunnel or motorcycle jump to freedom can evade the glare of Colin Murray’s magical laser beam from the sky.

Keep a Thursday free to see how they highlight a player running in a replay. It looks like the start of Mr Bean.

Then again, that’s a bad subject with Mick McCarthy about the place.

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