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Paper Monitor

12:36 UK time, Friday, 3 October 2008

A service highlighting the riches of the daily press.

Florid language is salt and pepper to the Guardian, liberally sprinkled to add flavour and bite to copy. Or perhaps fresh coriander and harissa, or vanilla pods and cinnamon sticks, might be better analogies for this particular paper.

Whichever is your seasoning of choice, imagine it not so much sprinkled as ladled on by Newcastle's interim manager, Joe Kinnear, who conducted his first official press conference in language as far from the usual football cliches as possible.

JK: Which one of you is [Daily Mirror football writer] Simon Bird?
SB: Me.
JK: You're a CENSORED.

The BBC's taste and decency rules prevent Paper Monitor from reprinting what Kinnear actually called Bird, but neither of their mothers would be very pleased.

He continues in this vein for a considerable length of time, and several papers print transcripts of the extraordinary exchanges between a livid Kinnear and the assembled journalists. Suffice to say, Bird is not the only one in the firing line.

While some edit out the rude words, the Guardian edits for length alone. Bird's report in the Mirror notes that Kinnear used "52 swear words in an amazing five-minute blast", most of which are rude enough to be starred out completely ("f*******" being the one exception as it is mild in comparison).

Interestingly, the name of Bird's rival on the Daily Express, who also came in for a tongue-lashing, is also starred out completely - the same treatment given to the most anatomical of Kinnear's expressions.

The Sun avoids all mention of those singled out for criticism. Its man tried to pour oil on troubled waters at the press conference, suggesting that as grown-ups they should concentrate on the football - prompting the beleaguered press officer to attempt to make the taunts and insults off the record.

"Is that what Joe thinks?" asked one journo. "Write what you like," was Kinnear's blustering reply.

And they did. Paper Monitor imagines that if this press conference was a vindaloo, then the next will be a phal. Spicy.

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