Written by B. Keaton
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Sunday, 18 June 2006

image for New Ball "Too Bendy" say World Cup Stars
Teamgeist: "Swerves Offensively"

The 2006 world cup has already seen some of the greatest goals since sliced bread, and it will be no revelation to football fans that FIFA president Sepp Blatter is hailing the new ball design he himself championed as the reason for the netbusting spectacle.

The adidas "Teamgeist" may be among the most ridiculously named inanimate objects anywhere in the world, but Blatter waxed lyrical about its qualities:

"I feel like I'm there at the birth of the next big revolution in the football world. Not only that, but I'm holding the foreceps. Right on!"

Disappointing news for FIFA however, is that many of the tournament's top players have expressed concern and frustration at the object they are multi-lingually terming 'El balon de boomerang'.

Notorious bender and famous crosser of balls David Beckham says the uniquely round design of Adidas' new sphere has caused him all kinds of problems already in the tournament. "A lot of the time I'll be havin' a pop at the goals from out there on the touchline, and bu**er me if the blasted thing doesn't swerve offensively away and land right on that big lug Crouch's head, or worse still bobble off young Michael's boot and away from goal."

Italy's Francesco Totti is another dissenting voice. "The flippin' thing was flyin' all over the gaff," complained the cultured Italian playmaker after the Azzuri's crushing 1-1 draw with Team USA.

The ball's radically deviant aerodynamic design is the brainchild of brainy child Sonny Pike. A former Ajax protege at age 11, the youngster more recently enjoyed an equally prestigious spell at League 2 club Barnet. After being released for 'repeatedly dangerous hairstyles' he turned his attention to doodling, and inadvertently impressed Blatter with his sketches at a playgroup luncheon the balding Swiss weirdo was inexplicably attending.

Blatter has flip-flopped wildly since the protestations, in turns calling the ball "a revolutionary, almost messianic arrival into the world of football" and "a hilarious misunderstanding - I was half joking when I proposed it."

Ageing fairytale and Earth Spokesman for football Pele had this to say: "Straight-shot problems are a common footballing dysfunction, but with the correctly-branded footwear, can be treated over time." He then walked away in slow motion as the sun set magnificently on the ocean behind him.

The world cup rages on.

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The story above is a satire or parody. It is entirely fictitious.

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