In sensational news, the 2010 football World Cup could be staged in England, after building problems in South Africa have put the tournament plans in serious jeopardy. FIFA president Bert Slappet has been in touch with the English FA to ask them to kick-start their contingency arrangements.
FA Chief Executive Brian Barsteward said he was excited at the prospect of staging the footballing extravaganza, and shortlisted Old Trafford, Stamford Bridge and the Emirates Stadium, home of once-great Arsenal, as venues for the later stages of the tournament.
"For the group stages", he said, "we have provisionally selected sites that will introduce travelling foreign fans to England's cultural and historical delights."
He outlined the thinking behind this hairbrained scheme:
"The County Ground, home of Football League founder members Notts County, is one of them, with its connections to Sherwood Forest and, of course, Robin Hood."
"Blackpool and their Bloomfield Road stadium, have also been shortlisted, with its miles of golden sand, amusements and donkey rides for the dirty little foreign kids."
"Oakwell at Barnsley is a constant reminder of England's coal mining past, and some of the houses in the area are still covered in thick black coal dust dating from the 1850s. Culture-hungry Europeans won't be able to get enough of this authentic Anglo Saxon claptrap."
Herr Slappet, who is German, would not comment on the English plans, but said he was looking forward to seeing the New Wembley Stadium.
"I hate ze Englischers", he said.