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Prince Charles, Alastair Campbell and me

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Dan Walker | 12:01 UK time, Thursday, 11 February 2010

Greetings, brothers and sisters. This blog is all about last week's trip to Burnley, which started off in one of the worst hire cars in history.

The cuboid beast had a sizeable dent in the driver's side and the door didn't actually fit. Once I hit the big 70mph (and no more, officer), the wind was howling through the wagon and I had to have the radio on full blast just to hear it.

The heady combination of honey-roasted cashew nuts and custard creams kept me going until I got to the M6 toll, at which point I stumbled across a late-night radio debate about deaf cats that got me through Staffordshire.

The following morning didn't start particularly well. We were due at the ground for the visit of HRH Prince Charles at 9am. Producer Pete 'Nicest man in television' Andrews and I met for a power breakfast at 7.30am.

The waiter arrived with a fully fried number but as he passed it to me I inexplicably threw it on the floor. I blame the excitement of seeing a black pudding. The bloke rolled his eyes and returned to the sanctity of the kitchen to probably do something terrible to breakfast number two! I still ate it.

We made for the ground and filmed the arrival of the future King of England. As he left, his final words - to a man bedecked in claret and blue - were, "Is one at home tomorrow?" He needs to work on the football lingo.

dancharles.jpgMe and Prince Charles - he's in the background

Lawro turned up about 3pm to film Friday Focus. It wasn't long before he was fielding the first phone call asking for his views about John Terry's demotion as England captain. For the next two hours, I took on the role of Lawro's secretary. You can tell a sports story is big when BBC Radio 4 want a piece of it - theirs was one of six interviews he did between 3.30pm and 5.45pm.

Back at the hotel, I had a good chat with Burnley manager Brian Laws before dinner. What a nice fella he is! He was staying at the same place and told some great stories from his playing days. He also bemoaned the lack of personalities in the modern dressing room.

The rest of the Focus crew turned up about 8pm and I retired to room 704 at about 11.30pm to write out the all important cheat sheet for Saturday's show. The next morning we were up bright and early - there were no breakfast disasters - and the show went off without any major hitches after we got to Turf Moor.

The programme buzzed by as usual, and for the second week running we had to rip up the running order on Friday and talk Terry at the top. Laws told us he got married in the trophy room, Matthew Upson said relegation hasn't crossed his mind and Alberto Acquilani claimed his English is better than Jamie Carragher's!

The on-the-road format is a real challenge and I think I notched up about 5k's pegging it around Turf Moor. Some stuff works, other bits will go the way of the Dodo. It was great to see so much of the place, but I thought it was a bit too busy. We probably won't do live darts again and we're still searching for the comedian that switched the TV to Jeff Stelling in the dressing room!

After the show, we went to thank the Burnley chairman for giving us free reign at his club. The conversation went like this...

Barry Kilby: "Thanks for that, really enjoyed the programme. Hopefully you'll bring us some luck today. Can't believe you went on about the sausages (with reference to the butchers where the bangers are named after players)."
Me: "It's funny you should say that because I got an email from Alastair Campbell yesterday telling me he didn't want to see any chimney stacks on Focus... he didn't mention sausages!"
Barry Kilby: "Be careful what you say... he's behind you!"
Sure enough there he was eating a Yorkshire pudding]
Alastair Campbell: "Hi Dan, I watched the first part of it in a service station. Well done for avoiding the chimneys."
Me: [Not entirely sure what I said next because I was ogling his Yorkshire pudding].
Alastair Campbell: "I've just had a text message from Tony Blair saying 'Are you watching Focus? It's all about Burnley.'"

Apparently, the former PM is an avid viewer ever since he appeared on the programme a few seasons ago claiming that Arjan De Zeeuw was his favourite player.

By this stage, I had started drooling and thankfully Barry extended an invitation to join him for dinner. It may well have been because Jimmy Anderson was there, but I was happy to hold on to his cricketing coat-tails. We conquered the roast dinner and then Jimmy produced a request that caught us all off guard when it was time for pudding...

"Can I just have a bowl of custard, please?" he asked. When I enquired about his slightly odd choice, he replied: "I just love the stuff." Sometimes he takes a pot out of the fridge, sticks it in the microwave for 30 seconds and nails it. I have a deep admiration for custard, but I don't think I would ever go that far.

Just before we went out to watch the game, someone came over and in slightly hushed tones said: "The chairman has spotted that you aren't wearing ties." We took it to mean: "Get these on you clowns, you're messing up the joint." I was happy to oblige because everyone at Burnley had been so welcoming and helpful.

The game was a great watch and I had a perfect view of Brian giving one of the finest displays of fist-pumping ever seen on the touchline. When Daniel Fox made it 2-0 with a free-kick, the Burnley boss treated us to three in a row and. Just when we thought he'd finished, he threw in the biggest one of the lot. Tremendous.

Just before we left, I managed to squeeze in a little behind-the-scenes action for you over by the press room/interview area. I hope it hits the spot. Get those comments in.

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Comments

  • Comment number 1.

    Not a big fan of custard myself.

  • Comment number 2.

    There's nothing wrong with neat custard hot or cold.

  • Comment number 3.

    Dan,
    Top blogging as always. You've added an extra dimension to FF and the BBC's football aspects.
    However, whats this King of England stuff? The Queen (and any future King) relates to the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Please rememeber that your audience stretches across borders.
    I can manage cake without custard, but the other way around just isn't quite right.

  • Comment number 4.

    Sounds like you borrowed my car then...

    Dan your wife wont be happy you have banged in quite a few food references here... eating a fry up at half 7 is a bit much for me though..

    Sounds like Jimmy Anderson is a bit of an undercover Kids Menu fella.. they guys that order happy meals and kid on its for the children..

  • Comment number 5.

    Hi Dan, a long overdue response from myself. On the custard issue hot chocolate fudge cake and cold custard is a real winner indulge next time you have the opportunity.

    In terms of football, it suprises me a little that Laws is such a well received guy. Two main incidents that come to mind when I think of him are the Aldridge incident in the 1989 Fa cup semi, and the plate of chicken wings that broke the cheekbone of Ivano Bonetti at Grimsby.

    When he talks about a lack of characters, maybe it is his duty to generate such people as a manger as i'm sure Clough did with his team which is what I suspect he is referring to.

  • Comment number 6.

    This is becoming the best blog on this site! Always funny and always hasgood content! And it doesn't always focus on the top four!

    Would have been interesting if Jimmy had got the Yorkshire pudding and plopped it in his custard (take that as you will...)

    Great Blog Dan, keep them coming

  • Comment number 7.

    I swear alistair campbell is a poltergeist. he is everywhere - always silently appearing in places behind people. wouldve made a perfect scooby-do baddie. I mean, who just appears... eating a Yorkshire pudding? he might well have had a knife! :o)

    and then you have the chairman, of whom people only speak of in 'hushed' tones. but then just maybe I'm getting a little carried away...

    cold custard > hot



  • Comment number 8.

    Did the breakfast land the right way up or the wrong way up? Not suggesting you should have eaten it either way, it just has a great bearing on how much you annoyed that waiter.

    I actually quite liked the fact that you were running around everywhere, it was sort of organised chaos. Particularly that bit when you were jogging down the touchline chatting to Lawro who was sat in the dug-out about twenty yards away.

    Gutted they've moved the Bluebirds game to an early kick off on Saturday, means I'm going to miss Focus. Although it could be worse, I worried they'd move it to Sunday, wouldn't have gone down well with my girlfriend. Is it worth me setting up a second telly do you reckon Dan? Given that I give us about four and a half minutes before we go behind?

  • Comment number 9.

    It seems that Jimmy's custard leanings are of interest.

    thebhoy (#3) you are entirely correct about the scandalous 'future King of England' line. I meant no harm to our brethren across the various borders. 1000 apologies

    Mikey (#4) I think she has just given up pal. She sees the power of the food references and she, like Keown, will have to embrace it. Jimmy is definitely a chicken nugget and chips man.

    tomefccam (#5) Thank you for providing the balance in the 'Brian Laws - What a Nice Bloke' debate. Poor old Ivano. I think Mr Laws was getting at the fact that there are very few Jimmy Bullard's around these days and people like him have a very positive influence on those around them.

    foonyroo would give both his knees to hargreaves (#7) ZIKES!

    anightatthechopra (#8) Glad you enjoyed the wandering and yes... you need 2 tellies! Alternatively you could record Focus and then watch it afterwards once you know all the outcomes of the matches and see how good the pundits were!





  • Comment number 10.

    Hi Dan, a great blog as ever! First time posting here, but have read all of your blogs and I find the comments to be equally as entertaining.
    Unfortunately, having lived in Canada for almost a decade now, I haven't seen you on FF and wished that it was available over here! Ah well, maybe one day, now that footie is starting to get a little more recognition over in this part of the world.
    Love the food talk. It sure reminds me of what I am missing, and oh how I miss it! Regarding the breakfast that you *threw* on the floor ... I'm guessing that black pudding is becoming more of a rarity and it's a bit of a Walker fave? Nothing beats a full English breakfast - bacon, eggs, sausages, black pudding, plum tomatoes, fried toast (you can almost feel the arteries clogging up on that one). While on the topic of food, ever heard of a poutine? Good stuff!

  • Comment number 11.

    On the subject of yorkshire puddings, a really good option is to make a nice big one, say 8 inches in diametre, then serve the rest of the roast dinner inside it.

    And there is nothing wrong with a big bowl of just plain custard for afters.

    Dan - loved seeing you out of breath doing that link down behind the goal.

    All round a good show. Always facinating to see inside different stadia. When are you next on the road and where?

    Is Focus 5 going to make a return, or was that just a flash in the pan the other week?

  • Comment number 12.

    The Thursday quiz has just started on twitter @danwalkerbbc

    Question 1...

    There are 7 players that have played for Two top 4 sides (ManU, Che, Liv, Ars) and in La Liga. Name them!

  • Comment number 13.

    Dan,
    No worries.
    Whilst we are talking cross borders, any chance you could take the cameras on a trip round Lennoxtown, chatting to the newest EPL imports on the way?

  • Comment number 14.

    Dan, slightly off topic but thought you might want to hear of it...

    If your going to tour football grounds for Focus you need to come up to Middlesbrough and try the local delicacy now being served around and inside the ground known as 'Parmo in a bun'.

    Take a look at a local news article to see exactly what it's all about http://www.gazettelive.co.uk/news/teesside-news/2010/02/11/parmo-in-bun-a-winner-at-the-riverside-84229-25809076/

    I would love to see what you think of the grease feast that is the parmo! I for one love em... well I am from Boro!

  • Comment number 15.

    diarra and pennant are two.


  • Comment number 16.

    1. Mark Hughes(man u, chelsea)
    2. Nicolas Anelka(arsenal, chelsea)
    3. Emmanuel Petit(arsenal, chelsea)
    4. Michael Owen(duh!)
    5. bolo zenden (liverpool, chelsea)
    6. Jermaine Pennant (Liverpool, Arsenal)
    7. Can't think of number 7, can't wait to find out though!

    More importantly, Custard is a delight on it's own. Easily take it on its own. It's like soup, only sweeter!

  • Comment number 17.

    The seventh has to be Lassana Diarra

  • Comment number 18.

    I would happily eat custard on its own, hot or cold. If I had to choose between custard and rice pudding though the latter would win every time.

    Dan, I have to say that I thought that the comment about the Chairman's lounge being grand enough for King whoever was a bit facetious. On the telly it looked like a meeting/conference room in a motorway hotel.

  • Comment number 19.

    Right you are cheeseisthedevilswork, Lass Diarra was the 7th. Cheers for that, should of known it really, custard hot or cold is a gem either way.

  • Comment number 20.

    Dan,

    I thought Focus was excellent from Turf Moor, it was so nice to see a really old fashioned English stadium up close; let's face it, over the next twenty years more and more of them are going to be replaced with spanking new ones and we should explore and document the old ones while we can. Whilst I was reading this latest post there was a BBC advert on celebrating Eastenders' anniversary and asking 'What is your favourite dum dum, dum-dum dum dum-dum-dum moment' when the end credits roll in, so what is your favourite? I reckon Lawro's is 'Your not my MUVA!...Yes I am!'
    Anyway I have a new post up on my football blog at http://footballshorts.wordpress.com if you ever have a spare second! have a good show on Saturday!

  • Comment number 21.

    One of the best blogs I've seen on the website in a long while Dan -- top stuff!!
    Brian Laws is a great bloke, I'm a Sheff Utd fan, so I had mixed feelings when he was at Wednesday, but now I'm rooting for Burnley to stay up, he's a fantastic guy.
    Tony Blair an avid follower, eh? And I bet you were thinking "But I'm only a TV presenter..."

    Nice one Dan, but not sure how you can better this next week?

  • Comment number 22.

    Re the quiz question, what about Maxi Rodriguez?

  • Comment number 23.

    thebhoy (#13) we are trying to get out of England a bit more. Hibs are on this week. How many of Celtic's boys headed down south in the end? Was it 5?

    Cameron (#14) I love the idea of a local delicacy. Cheese and deep-fried chicken... what's not to like? I think I had one in Whitby once but don't they normally come without a bun?

    Irish Rss Are Smiling (#16) and cheeseisthedevilswork (#17) have correctly identified the 7 blokes... although apparently there is an 8th!!! I will do some research and come back to you.

    cheeseisthedevilswork (#18) you are right about the chairman's lounge. It doesn't really class as 'regal' but it did have a sort of walnut-walled quality that looked very ostentatious.

    rossfox (#20) glad you enjoyed the programme comrade. You're right it is a classic old stadium but the old classics are fading out now and being replaced by the characterless concrete bowls with much better toilet facilities. I like every dum dum, dum-dum dum dum-dum-dum moment
    on Eastenders because it means it's over!

    Just off for a cornetto... brilliant.

    Randy Lerner



  • Comment number 24.

    Best blog yet Dan. How come you cant get forcus on bbc iplayer?

  • Comment number 25.

    Dan,
    Good stuff re Hibs. Yeah, WGS imported half a team to Middlesbrough and I reckon Robson and McDonald will propel them back into the Premiership no bother.

  • Comment number 26.

    Cuzza10 (#24) Loads of people ask the question about the iplayer. It is a permanent frustration and simply down to the fact that we don't have the rights to certain footage (premier league) behoynd a certain time so can't stick it on there.

    There is talk of a possible iplayer version of Focus for next season with the offending action taken out... we shall see.

    thebhoy (#25) The boro fans seem to be on Strachan's wavelength. It's been a tough few months but he has been given time to put his stamp on that side.

    Cornetto was tip-top by the way but definitely smaller than the old days.

  • Comment number 27.

    Er - the chairman gave a free reign ? Thought that was part of the crack for Prince Charles when Mum departs to celestial pastures.......

  • Comment number 28.

    Personally there's no better way to warm yourself up on a cold winter's day than a hot bowl of custard. Go on, brother!

  • Comment number 29.

    Paul Blackwell (#27) You have reminded me of a big argument that took place between 2 English teachers at my secondary school.

    Apparently 'free rein' is the original but 'free reign' is now equally acceptable and in this case - with the Prince and all - it actually works even though I wasn't clever enough to think about that before hand.

    Anybody not bored by this etymology lesson?

    Oh by the way... PHIL BROWN IN ON THE SHOW THIS SATURDAY. GET YOUR QUESTIONS FIRED IN AND - AS PER USUAL - IF USED YOU WILL GET A MENTION.

    Tommy Boyd

  • Comment number 30.

    Hi Dan,

    If you could...please pose thisone to Phil Brown:

    Does he feel that all the turbulation of last season and recovery from the publicity he faced after the half time pitch team talk has made him a better manager? Or did it all knock his confidence? It seems that since he has been distanced from the media, his Hull side appear to be playing a lot more consistently although still struggling they look a lot better and Brown more relaxed

  • Comment number 31.

    Dan something Ive wondered about for a while.. and you mentioning Phil 'Golden' Brown brought it up.. you see players running to the side to get instructions.. in this day in age with communication technology would it not be possible for say a captain or keeper to wear a small earpiece which is connected to the manager/coach???

    Obviously Phil likes his earpiece like Big Sam.. I understand there may be safety issues like the taping of rings and removal of jewellery etc.. but surely a keeper wearing a tiny earpiece wouldn't contravene this??

  • Comment number 32.

    Hi Dan,

    Great blog as always, never fails to entertain.

    Onto the important issue - Custurd is amazing, has to boiling hot though and the rule is, if i have a pudding with custurd, there should be so much custurd i can't see the pudding! (unless it's crumble that is...)

  • Comment number 33.

    hiya Dan, re Cornetto's i'm glad you brought this up as i myself believe they have gotten smaller!

    and for custard, well it depends on a host of circumstances to whether or not this delectable delicasy is served hot or cold.

    kudos for the large Yorkie pud, i shall attempt this (drools in "Homer" like fashion)

    @31 i wouldn't have thought an earpiece would be possible due to the remote posiblity of causing a more serious injury in the event of a clash of heads; American Football quarterback can comunicate in this way with the sidelines as a result of the head protection they wear.

  • Comment number 34.

    Dan, how come there's pre-post moderation on our blog, but reactive moderation on Robbo's blog (for example)

  • Comment number 35.

    @ 34, food for thought?

    (i'll get me coat)

  • Comment number 36.

    @ 35, it took them 15 minutes to read yours!

    What's going on!?!?

  • Comment number 37.

    awwww custard creams!!

  • Comment number 38.

    Morning...

    Thanks for the excellent questions for Philippo Brown. Keep them coming.

    city_boy (#32) I love the fact that you are bringing in custard rules. My own opinion is that the pudding doesn't need to be covered but must be surrounded! None of it can be allowed to touch the sides... it's against custard regulations.

    oke2008 (#33) They are like mini-cornetto's. It's like Cadbury's Cream Eggs. Either I have an A4 mouth or those little suckers have shrunk.

    Also city_boy you have gone very deep there with your query about pre and post moderation. I have put your question to the blog uberfuhrer and am awaiting a response.

    By the way... just trying to decide on tomorrow's shirt selection. We've got a slightly psychotic floral number and a classy grey. The loser will make a debut on Friday Focus.

  • Comment number 39.

    Thanks Dan, just thought it was odd, that's all, I wouldn't have thought that comments mainly about food choices would be dangerous!

    Can I ask the reason behind you signing off as random footballers in some of your comments that I've noticed over the pat few weeks?

  • Comment number 40.

    HI Dan,
    Been snowed under over here in New England, both meterologically and with the work. I read your blogg having committed the cardinal sin of missing a few. Could not help thinking that
    (a) If that is your average road gig, then you work relatively hard... rather surprising really.
    (b) Take out Prince Charles and the cameo by Al. Campbell and the blogg is not too different from most of your others- food / food incident followed by football-stuff that does not directly relate to an actual game.

    Dan, as you know I am a keen Bluebirds fan, but I read today that they cannot even field a full subs bench for their FA clash with Chelsea. Why? because they could not buy during the transfer season. I would love to see CCFC get promoted this year. BUT there is a part of me that says they are not ready for promotion given the poverty of the squad and the bank balance. DO YOU THINK THERE SHOULD BE SOME RULE OR SET OF RULES THAT REQUIRES A TEAM TO BE ABLE TO MEET CERTAIN CRITERIA IF THEY ARE MOVING UP A DIVISION? in other words: if you are going to move up then you have to have the resources to function at the higher more demanding level?
    What does nightatthechopra think? If he is going to buy two tellies perhaps he should just give the cash for the second one to Dave Jones?
    Also city boy I have reactive moderation on Dan's blog and Robbo's.

  • Comment number 41.

    Is it this saturday that your doing a feature on hibs? Good to see. Also is the answer to the 8th player in la liga/top 4 in epl Steve McMannaman?

  • Comment number 42.

    City_boy... your query has gone right to the big man of blogs. I will let you know what he says - hopefully some time this afternoon.

    blaenorynyclwyd (#40) thanks for your a + b analysis of the programme. There was a lot running around and you have seen through the thin veneer of this blog to it's true intentions. I am not sure about your CRITERIA question. Where does it all end? If you can't cope - you go back down which is the way it has always worked.

    theshifter (#41) The 8th player was rumoured to be Alan Hudson who played for Chelsea, Arsenal and was at Hercules in 1983. The only thing is he didn't play for them so I don't know if that counts!

  • Comment number 43.

    @42 probs not in context to your original question but it would make an awesome pub quiz tie-breaker.

    back to food, i actually ate for a dare a BBQ sauce and Banana sandwich, which to my surprise was a tasty little treat.

    anyone body else found out weird combos that go really well together?
    (Dan Walker i'm looking at you)

  • Comment number 44.

    Dan,

    Great blog. FF was excellent from Burnley. Like all the other contributors above, I really enjoyed seeing a ground like Turf Moor. FF seems more organic (eh?), freer-flowing and very enjoyable. The outside broadcasts and the live feel of the show comes across really well.

    Cold custard straight from the fridge. NO MICROWAVE.

    Stornoway Black Pudding...Scotlands answer to caviar. It's THAT good.

  • Comment number 45.

    PS question for Phil Brown - Having had a major slide down the table last season, what solutions did you come up with to solve the situation, as you are now having, I think, a good season.

  • Comment number 46.

    Dan - you want to sort this out, you've been taken off the front page way too early - how are people expected to read it if it's so hard to find?!?!?

  • Comment number 47.

    Dan,
    Revised count of players that left Celtic - Danny Fox makes it 6 (plus the the five at Middlesbrough). Shouldn't really have forgotten Fox since you gave him a shout above.
    On a different note, will you be watching the Olympics and what event would you like try have a go at? I'd go for the Bobsleigh given the chance. I reckon I'd go through more than one pair of trousers if I had a shot at the Luge or Skeleton.

  • Comment number 48.

    Hey Dan enjoyable read as always,

    They hid this blog well this week, shame.

    Enjoyed FF again last week, thought all the security standing around in the hallways of Turf Moor a little strange, did that have something to do with Prince Charles or is the Burnley Chairman a security sensitive chap.

    Another question regarding Turf Moor, was the doorway to the chairmans office or are you so tall? I was worried you were going to hit your head.

    Re Phil Brown.

    30. tomefccam, has an excellent question and that´s what I would ask too. If I was in a cheeky mood I would ask him how much he earns on match days working for the call centre, or is he just doing a Madonna/Britney impression with that thing in his ear?

  • Comment number 49.

    Re 48
    Another question regarding Turf Moor, was the doorway to the chairmans office so low or are you so tall? I was worried you were going to hit your head.

  • Comment number 50.

    Black Pudding should never be mentioned in a blog, How anyone can eat the stuff amazes me haha! I managed to catch last saturday's show on the old Sky Plus and I have to say it was a fantastic watch and I look forward to catching tomorrows later on in the week.

    Also intresting to see the old fasioned boot-room, Not quite the one I imagine at Old Trafford where every boot probably has a little house and is cleaned 28 times a day!

    Another good blog Dan, Keep up the good work.

  • Comment number 51.

    Dan, you have to ask Phil Brown a custard-related question. Go-on, you know you want to.

  • Comment number 52.

    Hi Dan.

    I normally enjoy your blog and FF but saw you on the BBC News Channel earlier this evening where you made the following claim:

    'Well, both Celtic and Rangers have no money.

    Celtic have had to sell a whole load of their players to their old manager Gordon Strachan at Middlesbrough, while Rangers are in the same sort of mess.'

    I'm disappointed that you didn't do any research on Scottish football before making those comments for the following reasons:
    1) The players sold to Middlesbrough were either substandard (Killen, Flood, Robson) or had fallen out of favour with the new manager (McManus, McDonald). There was no financial motive for selling them;
    2) Celtic made 7 signings in the last window alone, while Rangers have been prohibited by Lloyds Bank from making any signings for the past 18 months;
    3) Rangers' financial difficulties have been well documented by your own employer eg:
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/teams/r/rangers/8488667.stm
    and other media outlets:
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/2009/nov/12/rangers-losses-debt-accounts
    Celtic over the same period recorded pre-tax profits of £2 million:
    http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/football/spl/celtic/2009/08/15/peter-lawwell-financial-results-are-good-but-celtic-want-silverware-86908-21598222/
    and have a debt approximately 1/30 the size of Rangers' arrears.
    1/30 the size.
    Quite simply, the idea that Celtic are suffering the same financial difficulties as Rangers (or as you expressed it, 'Rangers are in the same sort of mess as Celtic,') is laughably ill-informed;
    4) If Celtic are so strapped for cash, how can they possibly afford to pay just ONE player (Robbie Keane) more per week than the total earned by the Rangers back four and goalkeeper put together?

    I'm sure some readers will dismiss my points as the opinions of a partisan supporter, but Dan's comments this evening were completely unfounded.

    Celtic fans are license fee payers too, and deserve the truth to be told about their club.

  • Comment number 53.

    Evening everybody... what a shocker about that guy at the Winter olympics!

    I should say thanks very much for the kind comments about last week's show, about this blog and about Football Focus. I am genuinely humbled by some of things that have been said

    I am still trying to get to the bottom of the post / pre reactive posts debate... I haven't forgotten though.

    Holloway2Holland (#48) I am afraid I am just that tall. Most door frames are 6 ft 6 and as a man of exactly that stature I always have to bob down when entering a room. Once i interviewed Paul Parker and he came up to my trouser pocket!

    FN (#50) Can't believe you were offended by the black pudding mentions. Is there a pudding related story from your youth that has scarred you?

    cheeseisthedevilswork (#51) I think a custard related question to a premier league manager could be the end of me!

    nicolas_godin79 (#52) thanks for your criticism. I thought back over what I said (and what you said) and I think you certainly have some grounds for your well written points.

    I was speaking in very broad tones about the financial state of Scottish football because I did not have time to go into details. That said - I think you are right and I could (and should) have been a lot clearer and differentiated between the finances at Rangers and Celtic.

    When I said the quote about both clubs being in a mess in the studio a little bell went off in my head to say... "are you sure you said that right?".

    My broad brush was a little too broad and the picture at the end was a little misleading. I should say that Daniel Fox said to the press last week that he thought he was sold in an attempt to keep the money men happy at Celtic but I fully understand where you are coming and I will attempt to put things in clearer perspective on the programme tomorrow.

    I hope no-one dismisses your thoughts as the opinions of a partisan supporter. Thanks again for the kick in the journalisic privates.

    Right I'm off for a slice of cake

    Remi Moses

    City_boy (#39) there is no reason behind the random footballers names. I just stick down whoever pops into my head at the time.

  • Comment number 54.

    Are Dan's comments unfounded, or may he have the gift of viewing future bank balances of a club? Could Keane be a expensive and ill-informed publicity stunt to try and get support for Celtic (and future season ticket sales) back on track due to Rangers' pretty healthy lead at the top of the table? Could it be a short-term two-fingered answer to Rangers to say 'Look what we can spend, that you CAN'T' ?

    Am I playing Devils Advocate? Tune in next week.....

  • Comment number 55.

    Dan, for a sports journalist you are getting ALOT of food related comments to your blogs, it's fantastic! the day norwich city's own Delia Smith comments on one of your blogs about the state of custard or pies or cornettos that will be the day you know your blog has really hit the big time.
    I have two random questions for you - 1) if on Focus in the next few months you come to talk about which goalkeepers will make it in to Capello's World Cup squad and you are throwing names around in the studio, would you please be able to throw Steve Harper's name in to the discussion? I'm not even a Newcastle fan but it bugs me that he has never even been considered and he is blatantly as good/fitter than alot of the other contenders! Rant over. Question 2) is there any chance your blog uber fuhrer would be able to put a link to my football blog (http://footballshorts.wordpress.com%29 on to the list of 'Other football blogs' on the right hand side of the page?? I want to join you in getting sixty comments per blog post!! ta

  • Comment number 56.

    Dan,

    Good read as usual. Judging by what you consumed en route to Hull you apparently did not take me up on my chicken tikka suggestion from last week, but I forgive you.

    Question(s) for Phil Brown. Would Jimmy Bullard make a good manager? Why? Why not?

    It would be funny if you got a 'tan' before interviewing him. That would be a nice unasked question...

    As for your throwing down black pudding, when a colleague visited me in Edinburgh, he did the same thing with a cullen skink. Enthusiasm, I blame.

  • Comment number 57.

    Incidentally, Dan, this is what I got after posting my comment.

    Where's my comment?All new members are pre-moderated initially, which means that there will be a short delay between when you post your comment and when it appears while one of our moderators checks it.

    Now, Dan, you can verify that I am no new poster.

    Incidentally, have you read Kingsley Amis' Luck Jim? You remind me of Lucky Jim. I mean that as a compliment. Cheero.

  • Comment number 58.

    See what I mean? How did my comment no. 56 go in for review whilst comment no. 57 went up forthwith?

    Yours,
    Haggis Avec Kippers

  • Comment number 59.

    To #46 cityboy - save a favourite/bookmark

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/danwalker/

  • Comment number 60.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 61.

    Greetings...

    I am still trying to get to the very bottom of all this moderation stuff but it seems as though this blog is pre-moderated and we all have to deal with it.

    It might be mildly annoying but I sure we can all get through it.

    Arsene

 

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