Taking the mic Live and direct from the Royton Riviera

Columnist Jack Dearden shares his views on the sporting scene

THE first column from the Royton Riviera’s own Jack Dearden in our November paper was well received. 

Jack Dearden

Here is what is getting BBC Radio Manchester’s popular broadcaster hot under the collar this month.

Let’s start where we left off with Financial Fair Play. I had my say on this in my last column (it’s still around on social media),

Clearly, Manchester City decided to produce their own interpretation on the UEFA directive of FFP.

Third goal against Manchester United in the recent derby match. Forty four passes. Proper FFP.

Brilliant. Still didn’t win goal of the month on Match of the Day though!

Remember the ref David McNamara, who was suspended a few weeks ago for introducing a new method of deciding who kicks off? Instead of tossing a coin, David decided to go for rock, paper, scissors.

Great initiative in my view. Let’s give it a go. Glad to see his fellow refs supporting one of their own and showing a bit of solidarity and risking suspension themselves by using the game instead of a coin toss to decide who kicks off. Let’s hope the penny drops with the FA.

Don’t even get me started regarding the suggested £5 million departure bonus pay-off to out-going Premier League chief executive Richard Scudamore.

Give me strength. It just shows how out of touch these people are with the real world, and the thousands of genuine footy fans who cough up their hard-earned cash week in and week out.

The guy has done a good job and generated lots of money with TV deals, for which he’s been handsomely rewarded.

Why even consider a pay-off? Seriously, you couldn’t make it up.

On a brighter footballing note hats off to good old ‘Arry. Redknapp on I’m A Celebrity.

He was a real breath of fresh air: witty, great one liners, but why should we be surprised?

The chap has been the man at the helm as a manager for just short of 1,400 matches.

It looks like the PM, Mrs May, found herself on a sticky cricket wicket recently after comparing her stubborn approach to Brexit to Geoffrey Boycott declaring ‘I’ll stay at the crease until I get the runs.”

Clearly, she has no boundaries when it comes to Brexit. I don’t hold any political bias whatsoever but if we’re talking cricket and Brexit, maybe an umpire should be introduced during any future EU discussion. At least we’d know if we’re in or out!

To use another cricketing analogy I’m pretty sure lots of people will be glad when it’s OVER!

On the subject of cricket, guess when the County Championship starts? April 5.

If you’re thinking that’s before the Champions League has reached the quarter final stage you’d be right.

Cricket is a great sport and the opening day usually guarantees snow. Why not alter the date – how about April 1?

I thought when England Rugby Union decided to part company with Andy Farrell it may come back to bite them on the backside. Now, I’m convinced it will.

Farrell will take over as Ireland coach after the 2019 World Cup and arguably with a point to prove.

Don’t be surprised if former England coach Stuart Lancaster joins him as part of his backroom staff.

Andy’s son Owen has also been making headlines after his tackling technique was questioned after a couple of shoulder charges went unpunished by the referee. Why?

Owen played a key role in helping England to beat South Africa and Australia recently.

Now we hear the former Irish international Brian O’Driscoll is suggesting he needs to improve his tackling technique.

Tell you what, just let opponents walk past you. Let’s not bother with tackling at all.

Oh hang on a bit, we’re talking rugby union here. Blimey, I was getting concerned there for a moment.

Keep the faith.
Yours in sport,


You can hear me on BBC Radio Manchester and find me on Twitter @TheJackDearden

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