Belfast Telegraph

Forget the off-side rule, I cannot understand women

By Robert McNeill

I'll get pelters for this but, crash helmet on, here goes: what are women? I speak after seeing pictures of (a) celebrity person Ulrika Jonsson and (b) Sian Somebody, a female footer linesman subjected to sexist jibes by commentator Andy Gray who was sacked for his troubles.

Was Gray's sacking harsh? For the sexism, possibly. But he should have been sacked years ago for calling everything wrong (including offside) and bluffing over his mistakes when the video evidence proved it.

As for the lineswoman, pictures in the papers show her looking glam at dancing and social activities. It's this sort of thing I want to talk about, not Andy Gray.

Nothing wrong with the pictures. She looks a million dollars. Yet look at her as a linesman. She's an entirely different person. It's like women playing hockey. I believe that, forced to watch a whole game of women's hockey, I would change my entire sexual orientation and apply to be gay (Dear sir or madam ... ).

Then there's that Ulrika, looking - and I hate to say it but live by the face, die by the face - scrawny and much older than 43 at an awards ceremony. Next thing, she's in yon Hello magazine looking spectacularly attractive. How? She looks like two different people. How do women do this?

How do you know what you're getting when you apply for one? I've only two appearances: hideous and slightly less hideous (once I've put my teeth in). But at least you know what you're getting.

You may say (if female): "Hey, big nose, why should it be an issue what the lineswoman looks like? It isn't an issue when the linesman is a man." Incorrect. There's a peculiar looking fellow with a bulbous bald head who waddles up and down the line at footer games, and he gets pelters because of his appearance. I remember another unprepossessing chap, who got a yellow card, and the crowd chanted: "Booked for being ugly."

Then there were the fans whose club narrowly avoided relegation thanks, they believed, to their rotund manager: "He's fat, he's round, he stopped us going down."

How much abuse has Wayne Rooney received - notably from women - because of his unfortunate resemblance to a monkey? It's reprehensible but it happens. Sure, it doesn't need commentators joining in (even off-air). Then again, the lineswoman under advisement has posted innocent but attractive pictures of herself standing in her pants on a beach.

More flagrantly, I've just seen an internet news story headlined 'Apprentice star [Joanna Riley] shows off her 'other side' as she strips for sexy magazine shoot.' Why? Why is she doing that? Ask her. I'm totally lost.

It's the whole femininist revolution gone wrong. I was one of these schmucks who marched for women's rights back in the day. Never again.

They weren't meant to turn out just as bad as us.

This week, Tory MP Dominic Raab called for men to burn their briefs in protest at the 'obnoxious bigotry' of modern women. Dominic goes too far - genuine women's rights still have a little way to go, as do my briefs before I incinerate them.

But you can understand his bewilderment. Women's simultaneous victimhood and over-assertive stridency are confusing. Almost as confusing as the offside rule.

But I don't think we want to go there.


From Belfast Telegraph