Belfast Telegraph

Open up and say 'Aargh!'

Telegraph Sport: where the debate really gets started

With Declan Bogue

It may be the age of the confessional that is causing it but for everyone who ever offends, wrongs or misbehaves, they have to find a way to redemption. And so they confess and they talk about their failings.

It used to be that way with politicians mainly, but recently, we have noticed a worrying trend for sporting figures to choose to share their stories. Gambling addictions, unfaithfulness, alcohol abuse, take your pick. Everyone has a story to tell.

Perhaps the most entertaining example in recent times was Tiger Woods' apology to his sponsors when his rampant philandering was exposed.

Lately, an interview appeared with Harry Redknapp in a quality Sunday newspaper. Rather cringingly, the newspaper chose to flag it up on the front page of the section by saying Harry 'Opens Up' to their reporter.

Yeah sure, Harry has had to shake off the mud unfairly flung in his direction over tax avoidance, but really, 'Open up?' Opening up is what Bryan McFadden did to keep his face on the cover of tittle-tattle magazines when his various romances floundered along with his karaoke career. It's hardly what an old-school Cockney boy does when he runs a jovial eye over an eventful career in football.

There seems to be an overwhelming temptation on the behalf of some media outlets to advertise any interviews or stories on public figures as an occasion when they 'open up'. The suggestion is that you are getting something that you won't get elsewhere.

It's just part of the wider dumbing-down of culture. Pity.

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