Wobbly cameras, Twitterface and England's new kit
Hello everybody. I am sitting in the football office after this week's meeting feeling a little sorry for myself. I was slightly sleep deprived last night (all my own fault) and so far today my only sustenance has come from a stale hot cross bun.
I have a triple-edged blog for you this week... reaction to Saturday's programme, some more Twitter-based fun from Darren Bent and news on the new England kit.
Saturday was certainly an interesting show. We decided to go with a lengthy chat about the John Terry situation because it was something we just couldn't ignore. I was actually surprised at the strength of opinion from our trio on the sofa. Lawro, Lee and Martin all said that Terry should lose the England captaincy.
I was also impressed with the way they managed to ignore the camera crash that took place during the discussion. We have one camera (number 5) that moves about on a swinging jib. Unfortunately, it was a bit lower than normal so when one of the floor cameras (number 2) swung round they smashed into each other. For a few seconds, it looked like the studio had been hit by a Klingon bird of prey. You can see Martin looks a little disturbed.
Normally I would have made reference to the incident, but I was about to ask the boys to clarify their position on Terry's captaincy. Probably not the best time to start giggling about a wobbly camera!
On a more positive note, I hope you liked the 'Focus 5'. The consensus from our end is that it certainly has legs but needs a bit of work. The guests enjoyed it and it was great to have so many suggestions for topics via this blog and Twitter as well as loads of emails on the day. I think you'll see the 'Focus 5' once a month from now on.
It was interesting that Darren Bent did not pick himself for England's World Cup squad. When Garth asked him to name his four strikers for South Africa, he went for Emile Heskey, Wayne Rooney, Jermain Defoe and Carlton Cole! The interview also demonstrated that Garth knows almost as little about social networking as Lawro.
I thought it would be hard to beat Lawro's reference to 'Twitterface' from last week's Friday Focus but Garth topped that by asking Darren if Steve Bruce was "a twitter".
Anyway, we had quite a few questions sent to us on 'Twitterface' last week for Mr Bent. Garth put the best of them to the Sunderland striker...
Whilst writing this blog, I am munching on some cold curry from two nights ago. Why is it that cold curry is so magical, cold pizza works a treat but cold Chinese is a big no-no?
There was some tremendous nosh on offer at the secret launch of the new England away kit last night. The do was held on the 32nd floor of a tower block in London. The views were amazing and you can always tell it's posh when your chicken caesar salad arrives with a perfect poached egg on top. Of all the ways to cook an egg, there can be nothing as wonderous as a humble poaching!
Umbro were understandably being hugely secretive. When we walked into the room there were three mannequins covered in black drapes. I wanted to have my picture taken with the new kit, but sadly this is as much as I am able to show you (see pic).
Until that night, the only people who had seen it were the designer Aitor Throup, the head honchos at Umbro, the workers in their factory and a select bunch of England players.
There was a strange mix of people in the restaurant - an artist called Phil who painted the picture of Tony Blair in the Houses of Parliament, a magazine guru from Japan, the curator from the Victoria and Albert Museum and various luminaries from the world of fashion and music.
When the kit was finally unveiled - between the main course and dessert - the doors were secured, the bouncers positioned and the lights dimmed. I will try and describe it as best I can. The shirt is inspired by the 'spirit of 1966' but made with all the usual trendy, stretchy fabric that makes anyone carrying a bit of timber look like they've eaten a bowling ball.
It's got a round neck with a slight ruffle in it and the long-sleeved version has some lovely white cuffs. The material wraps around from the back and then matches up in panels at the front.
The shorts are white with a red stripe and sloped from front to back so they don't "distract the player" by rubbing against their calves whilst running. That might be where I've been failing all these years! The socks are straight out of the '66 team - red and white, with the white bit rising up above the level of the boot.
We'll try and get hold of one to show you over the next few weeks, but it's safe to say that if you are already a little excited about the World Cup, seeing the red beauty will really get the juices flowing for South Africa.
Right, the whole of Focus comes live from Turf Moor this week for Burnley's game against West Ham. So far this season, we have averaged over four goals a game in the matches we have featured in the on-the-road programmes. Hopefully that will continue this week.