Tag Archives: cracker

Newcastle lout Barry Rogerson admits punching Bud the horse but claims the spooked animal "charged at him" during derby rampage

Newcastle lout who punched horse apologises and says he loves animals

By
John Drayton

PUBLISHED:

06:07 GMT, 17 April 2013

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UPDATED:

07:00 GMT, 17 April 2013

The Newcastle lout who punched a police horse during ugly scenes after the Tyne-Wear derby insisted he was an animal lover who was acting self-defence.

Shamed Barry Rogerson said he was living in fear after his name and address were posted on the internet by animal rights activists.

Scroll down for video of the incident

Horse boxer: This Newcastle-supporting lout squares up to Bud

Horse boxer: This Newcastle-supporting lout squares up to Bud

I'm an animal lover': Barry Rogerson with his dog who says he panicked when the 'charged' towards him

I'm an animal lover': Barry Rogerson with his dog who says he panicked when the 'charged' towards him

Not horsing around: Bud, the horse that was attacked, pictured in the paddock on Monday

Not horsing around: Bud, the horse that was attacked, pictured in the paddock on Monday

Rogerson was pictured aiming a right
hook at the Shire-cross, named Bud, as Newcastle fans ran amok after
losing 3-0 at home to bitter rivals Sunderland on Sunday.

But the 45-year-old, who lives near Morpeth, Northumberland, claimed the footage, posted on YouTube, gave the wrong impression.

Rogerson said he had pulled a scarf over his face because a filling had fallen out of a front tooth.

And he only hit out in panic after the horse was spooked by a firecracker and charged at him.

Pitched battles: Police try to hold back Newcastle fans attempting to break through their lines

Pitched battles: Police try to hold back Newcastle fans attempting to break through their lines

Charge: Mounted officers try to hold back rioting fans

Charge: Mounted officers try to hold back rioting fans

Derby day violence in Newcastle

Rogerson,
living on disability benefits after quitting a factory job in 2005
because of a lung condition, told The Sun: 'It all happened so quickly. I
had just left the pub after the match and I walked straight into the
middle of it.

'The horse was spooked by a fire cracker and charged at me.

'At
first I tried to get him away from me with my left hand and then I
punched him with my right. It was sheer panic. I believe it made contact
with the horse.

'It was an instant reaction. The horse just came towards me and I reacted stupidly.

'I apologise for it — I did not actually go out to attack a horse. I love animals. I have got three dogs and a fishpond.

VIDEO: Newcastle lout punches horse after the game

Rioting in Newcastle after Geordies lose Tyne-Wear derby 3-0

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Manchester United are Premier League festive fixture specialists – club-by-club stats guide

Is your club a Christmas cracker or a Yuletide turkey Shock, horror, Manchester United are the festive fixture specialists

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UPDATED:

12:36 GMT, 21 December 2012

They're already sitting six points clear at the top of the Barclays Premier League – and now there's even more bad news for Manchester United's chasing pack.

In the last five seasons, they have won 19 of their 25 December fixtures, and traditionally use the festive period as a slingshot for a sustained title challenge.

This season, with very winnable matches against Swansea City, Newcastle United, West Brom and Wigan ahead, United could be disappearing from view by the new year if they gain maximum points.

Sitting pretty: Man United lead the Premier League by six points and there's every chance they'll extend that over the Christmas period

Sitting pretty: Man United lead the Premier League by six points and there's every chance they'll extend that over the Christmas period

The outlook is particularly bleak for Newcastle, who travel to Old Trafford on Boxing Day – Man United have lost just once on that date in the past 20 years, while Newcastle have won just one out of nine.

Arsenal, meanwhile, will be hoping to break into the top four over the Christmas period and they're also specialists at putting together a sequence of wins as the temperatures grow colder.

They've won 17 of 28 December matches in the last five seasons and this year have the advantage of a shorter run of fixtures after their Boxing Day match with West Ham was postponed because of a planned Tube strike.

That may be a blessing for the Hammers – Arsenal have lost just one of their last 16 Premier League games played on Boxing Day.

Check our form table to see how your team has fared in December fixtures over the last five seasons:

December Premier League table

Festive specialists: Arsenal usually play well over Christmas and can use their shortened run of fixtures to break into the top four

Festive specialists: Arsenal usually play well over Christmas and can use their shortened run of fixtures to break into the top four

Former Arsenal favourite and Sportsmail columnist Martin Keown points out that Premier League sides well versed in balancing the demands of domestic and European competition perform best at Christmas, as they're used to only a few days' preparation between games.

He said: 'The teams playing in Europe are used to playing every few days and have the squads to cope with the games coming thick and fast.

'It won't faze teams such as Manchester United to be playing again, and they will probably relish concentrating on one competition over the coming weeks.

'Teams who are used to seven days' preparation might struggle. Expect the teams involved in Europe to start making their mark – it's the reason the cliche about the table taking shape exists.'

BOXING DAY BOOST

Manchester United have won 17 and lost just one of their last 20 Boxing Day fixtures and they have won the last eight in a row.

Chelsea have lost none of their last seven Boxing Day games (W3 D4 L0), but have drawn four of the last five.

Manchester City have won four and lost none of their last five games played on Boxing Day.

Liverpool have lost just one of their last 10 Boxing Day matches (W7 D2 L1).

Aston Villa have won just one of their last 11 Boxing Day fixtures (W1 D4 L6).

Tottenham have won five and lost none of their last seven Boxing Day games.

Reading are unbeaten in their last eight Boxing Day matches, winning four and drawing four.

It's no coincidence, therefore, that the top six in the December table since 2007-2008 are Man United, Arsenal, Man City, Tottenham, Liverpool and Chelsea – all regulars in European competition.

It's this record of Christmas consistency that will stop Man United running away into the distance over the festive four games.

Man City will target maximum points from a fairly soft run of fixtures that includes Reading, Sunderland, Norwich and Stoke.

One wrong move from third-placed Chelsea and they could find themselves cut adrift from the Manchester clubs by the Big Ben bongs.

OTHER FESTIVE FACTS

Chelsea – Rafa Benitez has won five of his six previous Premier League Boxing Day games

Everton – Have lost more games on New Year's Day than any other team in the Premier League – seven

Liverpool – No side has drawn more home games (12) in the festive period than Liverpool, in PL history

Norwich – In 2007, Norwich drew 0-0 with Southend United on Boxing Day… this year they host Chelsea at Carrow Road

Queens Park Rangers – QPR have never won more than once in a festive stint, losing six of their last eight games in this happy period

Stoke – Have scored just 0.7 goals per game in the festive period, the worst rate of any current PL side

Swansea – In 2004, Swansea were playing Kidderminster on Boxing Day, a game they won 5-1 with three of their goals coming after the 89th minute

Tottenham – Suffered their biggest ever Premier League defeat between Christmas and New Year when they lost 1-7 to Newcastle on December 28, 1996

West Ham – Jussi Jaaskelainen has conceded more goals on Boxing Day (20) than any other PL keeper

Hectic: Rafa Benitez's Chelsea will play nine matches in December

Hectic: Rafa Benitez's Chelsea will play nine matches in December

They go to Norwich on Boxing Day and have dropped points on four of their last five December 26 matches.

At the opposite end, Queens Park Rangers will take heart in the fact they've won their last two Boxing Day games and face a West Brom side fading from form.

Harry Redknapp will be optimistic his side can get something from matches with Newcastle and Liverpool having finally recorded their first Premier League win of the season against Fulham last weekend.

MOST FESTIVE GOALS

Man United 155
Arsenal 124
Liverpool 119
Chelsea 118
Tottenham 107

Source: Opta

Premier League games from weekend before Christmas to FA Cup 3rd round weekend

MOST CONCEDED

Everton 103
Newcastle 94
Tottenham 89
West Ham 86
Aston Villa 82

Source: Opta

Premier League games from weekend before Christmas to FA Cup 3rd round weekend

Reading, who slipped to the bottom after QPR's result, are in real danger if they fail to get anything from a tough set of fixtures against Man City, Swansea, West Ham and Spurs.

It may be cliched to say so, but the table will take shape over Christmas and the new year period – by January 1, Man United could be nine or even 12 points clear, while Reading and QPR could be sunk.

FULL FESTIVE FIXTURES

All 3pm kick-offs unless stated

Saturday December 22

Wigan v Arsenal (12.45)

Man City v Reading

Newcastle v QPR

Southampton v Sunderland

Tottenham v Stoke

West Brom v Norwich

West Ham v Everton

Liverpool v Fulham (17.30)

Sunday December 23

Swansea v Man United (13.30)

Chelsea v Aston Villa (16.00)

Wednesday December 26

Everton v Wigan

Fulham v Southampton

Man United v Newcastle

Norwich v Chelsea

QPR v West Brom

Reading v Swansea

Sunderland v Man City

Aston Villa v Tottenham (17.30)

Stoke v Liverpool (19.45)

Saturday December 29

Sunderland v Tottenham (12.45)

Aston Villa v Wigan

Fulham v Swansea

Man United v West Brom

Norwich v Man City

Reading v West Ham

Stoke v Southampton

Arsenal v Newcastle (17.30)

Sunday December 30

Everton v Chelsea (13.30)

QPR v Liverpool (16.00)

Tuesday January 1

West Brom v Fulham (12.45)

Man City v Stoke

Swansea v Aston Villa

Tottenham v Reading

West Ham v Norwich

Wigan v Man United

Southampton v Arsenal (17.30)

Wednesday January 2

Chelsea v QPR (19.45)

Liverpool v Sunderland (19.45)

Newcastle v Everton (20.00)

Neil Lennon relishing Celtic v Juventus in Champions League

Lennon looks back on Juve thriller as Celtic draw Italian giants in Champions League

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UPDATED:

12:32 GMT, 20 December 2012

The draw for the Champions League has brought back fond memories for Celtic boss Neil Lennon after pairing the Hoops with Juventus.

Lennon played against the Italian giants twice in 2001-02 but it is the home game at Celtic Park he will look to draw inspiration from.

Martin O'Neill's side won a thrilling match 4-3 and Lennon, after the draw for this season's last 16 set him up for the first leg at home in February, tweeted: 'Boooooom…..absolute beauty of a tie…very tough but then they all potentially were..brings back great memories.'

Bring it on: Neil Lennon (right) watches the Champions League draw with Garry Parker (left) and Danny McGrain

Bring it on: Neil Lennon (right) watches the Champions League draw with Garry Parker (left) and Danny McGrain

That night over a decade ago was a glorious failure for the Scottish side as they just failed to qualify from their group, but it was another European cracker at Celtic Park.

The SPL leaders qualified behind Barcelona, unbeaten at home after drawing with Benfica and seeing off the Catalans and Spartak Moscow.

Hoops dreams: Chris Sutton (2nd left) scored twice as Celtic beat Juventus 4-3 in Glasgow in 2001

Hoops dreams: Chris Sutton (2nd left) scored twice as Celtic beat Juventus 4-3 in Glasgow in 2001

Lennon said: 'The home game is pivotal. We’ll have to take some sort of advantage to Turin. Celtic Park is a very special arena and I’m sure the fans will raise the roof again.

'In terms of glamour it's a beauty. Juventus are one of the great traditional European teams. They're current Italian champions and finished the group stage very strongly. So in terms of glamour it's great, in terms of qualification it is going to very tough, but it could have been any of the other teams and it would have been just as tough.

No fear: Celtic got the better of Barcelona in Glasgow during the group stage of the Champions League

No fear: Celtic got the better of Barcelona in Glasgow during the group stage of the Champions League

'We believe over two games anything is possible. Juventus are littered with world-class stars and have been very consistent over the last 18 months and have got a great winning mentality, but so have we.

'To come through the group as impressively as we did, you just never know where you'll be in a month or two's time in terms of fitness and form.'

John Greechan – chief sports writer at the Scottish Daily Mail says…

This is a draw suffused with history and laden with potential.

Neil Lennon’s memories of playing against Juve 11 years ago – when a blatant dive by Nicola Amoruso saw Celtic robbed in Turin, then a remarkably dramatic 4-3 win back in Glasgow couldn’t prevent elimination in the group stages – will certainly drive the manager on.

Believe it or not, Lennon cheekily quizzed legendary Juve boss Marcello Lippi about that infamous Amoruso tumble when the Italian was delivering a Hampden lecture recently; the Irishman is not one to forgive and forget.

But this draw is as much about the present as the past. And what an opportunity this presents for a Celtic team to test themselves against one of the most glamorous clubs in the game, the current Serie A champions and leaders.

Veteran midfield magician Andrea Pirlo, who apparently has covered more ground than any other player in the Champions League this season, up against monstrous man mountain Victor Wanyama – plus the terrier-like Scott Brown – stands out as a key confrontation already.

England goalkeeper Fraser Forster’s boyhood hero was Gigi Buffon, so the big Geordie was grinning from ear to ear after the draw, which left the Celtic squad dreaming of making their own history.

Watch video highlights of Celtic 4 Juventus 3

Wimbledon dog race ends in 30million-to-one triple dead heat

Anyone have a pound on that Three dogs cross line at same time in 30million-to-one finish

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UPDATED:

11:18 GMT, 17 December 2012

We've heard of finishing neck-and-neck, but the London's Wimbledon track saw something different on Friday, as three dogs crossed the line nose-and-nose-and-nose in a 30million-to-one finish.

There was nothing between Murlens Houdini, Lightning Speed and Tinas Luke, not even one-hundredth of a second. They finished so close to one another that not even computer technology could pick a clear winner.

And amazingly this isn’t the first time that three greyhounds have finished in a trio. It was only in January last year that the first ever triple dead heat occurred at Romford, with Killishan Masai, Ayamzagirl and Droopys Djokovic all finishing at the same time, over an even longer distance.

What a finish! The three dogs cross the line at the same time at Wimbledon

What a finish! The three dogs cross the line at the same time at Wimbledon

They raced over 925m, the furthest distance used for greyhounds, making it even more astounding that they finished together.

The event was unlikely the first time around, but the chances of it happening again were 30million-to-one.

On Friday the dogs were racing in the third heat of the John White Christmas Cracker over a shorter distance of 480m.

With six in the race, it was Murlens Houdini that took an early lead. The other two soon caught up though and they all crossed the line at a speed of over 40mph.

They covered the distance in less than half a minute, with a finishing time of 28.87 seconds. Punters received a third of their stake at full odds.

Gone to the dogs: The incredible finish also happened at Romford in 2011

Gone to the dogs: The incredible finish also happened at Romford in 2011

Unfortunately the final can only include
two dogs. After a draw it was decided that Tinas Luke will be the
reserve while Murlens Houdini and Lightning Speed will race in Friday’s
final.

'I doubt we'll ever seen another one like that,' said Gary Matthews, Wimbledon's racing manager.

'When we announced the triple dead heat a huge roar went up.'

A spokesman for the Greyhound Board of England likened the event to someone winning the lottery and being hit by a meteorite in the same day.

2.5 billion is wagered on greyhound racing each year in Britain, on over 70,000 races.

Darren Barker v Kerry Hope on Lee Purdy v Carson Jones December 8 undercard

London return for Barker against Hope on Purdy-Jones undercard in December

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UPDATED:

12:32 GMT, 22 October 2012

Darren Barker will hope to put an injury-plagued year behind him when he tackles Kerry Hope in a battle of the former European middleweight champions in London on December 8.

After undergoing hip surgery following his defeat to Sergio Martinez over 12 months ago, he tore tendons in his arm just weeks before his scheduled return against Simone Rotolo last month.

But Barker will finally feature at the Olympia on the same bill as Lee Purdy's clash with Carson Jones and British lightweight champion Gavin Rees' potential fight against forgotten man John Murray.

Christmas cracker: Darren Barker will fight Kerry Hope at London's Olympia on December 8

Christmas cracker: Darren Barker will fight Kerry Hope at London's Olympia on December 8

Welshman Hope won and lost the European title against Grzegorz Proska in four months earlier this year.

Rees, meanwhile, added the British strap to his European belt when he beat Derry Matthews in July while Murray has been in the wilderness since losing to an overweight Brandon Rios last December, which followed defeat to Kevin Mitchell.

Terms have been agreed for that fight but it is subject to confirmation.

Steve Harper told he won"t stop Robin van Persie

Harper's son tells Newcastle stopper: You can't stop Van Persie and Rooney!

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UPDATED:

21:30 GMT, 5 October 2012

Steve Harper would have been forgiven for thinking his days of facing Manchester United had gone.

But 18 months after his last Premier League run of games – and with Tim Krul's elbow injury ruling him out for a month – the 37-year-old will be back in goal for Newcastle on Sunday and looking forward to claiming a 'keeper's hat-trick' against Van Persie, Rooney and Co.

If only his nine-year-old son James shared the stopper's confidence.

The opposition: Robin van Persie (left) and Wayne Rooney (right) are likely to partner up against Newcastle

The opposition: Robin van Persie (left) and Wayne Rooney (right) are likely to partner up against Newcastle

A bigger test: Steve Harper (left) has been told by his son, James, to expect a tough game against Manchester United

A bigger test: Steve Harper (left) has been told by his son, James, to expect a tough game against Manchester United

Harper said: 'I've played against some pretty useful strikeforces down the years but not too many as good as Rooney and Van Persie.

'In fact, James is taking great delight telling me how good the two of them are!

'Apparently, he knows more about all the strikers in Europe than I do and he's looking forward to it as much as I am, although I think he's expecting a busy old afternoon for Dad.

'Our manager certainly has options and with Demba (Ba), Papiss (Cisse) and Shola (Ameobi), someone said to me it will probably end up 6-6.

'With all this talk about top-quality strikers, how am I going to get to sleep at night

'Having Rooney and Van Persie in tandem is mouth-watering for United fans. A clean sheet against that strikeforce would really mean something. For a start, it would mean we've got something out of the game.

'I had one against United about 15 years ago when we beat them 3-0 and big Dunc (Ferguson) scored a cracker. Shearer scored as well.

'John Burridge used to say to me when I was a kid just starting out here that a clean sheet is a goalkeeper's hat-trick and I've quoted that a few times. So I'm after a hat-trick!'

Newcastle manager Alan Pardew is looking for a repeat of last season's 3-0 home win over United.

Pardew said: 'I think this will be close but the first goal won't decide it – the last one will and I hope it will be ours.

'The venue and the passion from the fans plays a part – you can't ignore that. It's an easy cliche to use for a manager – they are our 12th man.'

Ready Alan Pardew is likely to call upon big guns like Demba Ba (right) again

Ready Alan Pardew is likely to call upon big guns like Demba Ba (right) again

Lethal: Van Persie bagged both United goals against FC Cluj in midweek

Lethal: Van Persie bagged both United goals against FC Cluj in midweek

Ricky Hatton confirms return to boxing

It's on! Hitman Hatton confirms comeback with home fight in November

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UPDATED:

10:54 GMT, 14 September 2012

Ricky Hatton will fight at the Manchester Arena on November 24 after confirming his comeback at a press conference on Friday morning.

It will be Hatton's first fight since a brutal defeat at the hands of Manny Pacquiao in Las Vegas three years ago.

The former two-weight world champion, who turns 34 next month, will take on an as yet unnamed opponent.

More to follow….

Lights out: Ricky Hatton was hammered by Manny Pacquiao in Las Vegas in 2009

Lights out: Ricky Hatton was hammered by Manny Pacquiao in Las Vegas in 2009

Lights out: Ricky Hatton was hammered by Manny Pacquiao in Las Vegas in 2009

Battler: Hatton got the better of Kostya Tszyu in 2005 - the Aussie never came out for the 12th round

Battler: Hatton got the better of Kostya Tszyu in 2005 – the Aussie never came out for the 12th round

Cracker: Hatton did some damage to the ribs of Jose Luis Castillo during their Vegas bout in 2007

Cracker: Hatton did some damage to the ribs of Jose Luis Castillo during their Vegas bout in 2007

Staying down: Castillo could not get up after Hatton delivered the crucial blow in round four

Staying down: Castillo could not get up after Hatton delivered the crucial blow in round four

Different class: Floyd Mayweather had too much for Hatton when the pair met at the MGM Grand in 2007

Different class: Floyd Mayweather had too much for Hatton when the pair met at the MGM Grand in 2007

Brendan Rodgers promises tough test for Manchester United

Rodgers warning for Manchester United as Swansea head to Old Trafford

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UPDATED:

12:55 GMT, 5 May 2012

Swansea manager Brendan Rodgers has warned Manchester United they face a dangerous opponent at Old Trafford as his side relish the chance to help decide the destiny of the Barclays Premier League title.

Swansea travel to face Sir Alex Ferguson's side with their top-flight survival already assured, while their opponents are desperately trying to retain their title.

Monday's derby defeat by Manchester City saw Roberto Mancini's men go top of the table on goal difference with two games to go.

Bring it on: Brendan Rodgers is relishing the match against Manchester United

Bring it on: Brendan Rodgers is relishing the match against Manchester United

Mancini has raised Rodgers' ire ahead of the clash by saying that Swansea will be an 'easy' game for United as he looks to try and ease the pressure his squad are under as they chase a first title since 1968.

Rodgers' insists the Italian's mind games have not affected Swansea's preparations for the trip to Old Trafford, but says the freedom of having secured their Premier League status means they can cause United plenty of problems.

'It shows the magnitude of what our players have put in that with these last couple of games against the most decorated clubs in the history of English football we can go and play with a freedom,' he said.

'If you look at Wolves, who were 3-0 and 4-1 down against us last week and came back to draw, they had a freedom. You run and play with nothing to lose.

'That's why it's not an easy game, but a dangerous game for Manchester United.

Cracker: Swansea drew 4-4 with Wolves in their last game

Cracker: Swansea drew 4-4 with Wolves in their last game

'We have freedom. We play with freedom anyway but we have been cut loose from things that sometimes can hold you back and we can go and play.'

Facing United at Old Trafford is an intimidating prospect for most sides, let alone with Ferguson and company searching for yet another league crown.

But Swansea are delighted to have the chance to play a part in deciding the outcome of the title race, particularly as the club went close to going out of business and going out of the Football League before making their remarkable climb to the Premier League.

And Rodgers insists his side still have plenty to play for, despite already being safe.

Rodgers said: 'It is a great game to be involved in and it is brilliant for the players.

'We want to go up and perform and really finish off the season like how we've been for the majority.

Tight affair: Javier Hernandez scored the only goal of the game as Manchester United won at Swansea earlier in the season

Tight affair: Javier Hernandez scored the only goal of the game as Manchester United won at Swansea earlier in the season

'There's no doubt we are not going there with nothing to play for – for me there's everything to play for because we want to carry it on into next season.

'The players want to pit themselves at the top end of things and to have a say in it (the title race) is a great feeling.'

Swansea lost the reverse fixture at the Liberty Stadium 1-0 back in November as United became the first away side to win in south Wales this season.

Rodgers felt his players were in awe of their opponents during the opening 45 minutes of that fixture, and while he feels there is less apprehension this time around, he is fully aware of the huge task his men face.

'Yes, there is less apprehension. It doesn't make it any easier though, you still have to go out and do it.

'You want to let your football do the talking and we always look to do that.

'It's a wonderful arena to play in. It's fitting for a team of their quality.'

Edge of the Box: Jim White smashes winter window again

Trust Jim White to smash the winter window as silver-haired showman reaches for the Sky

And so here we go again, another transfer window. But have you been out there Bitter, it is. You don't want to crack that window open too much or you might just catch something. Which in QPR's case, of course, is about 10million worth of strikers.

However, the chilly January night air is obviously not a problem for the folks safely ensconced at Sky Sports HQ, where the only issues were to ensure Bryan Swanson's big TV kept the 'totalizer' up to speed and that Natalie Sawyer was able to prevent Jim White exploding in what was an intensely short Transfer Deadline Day Show.

This was the result of a perverse piece of fixture scheduling which meant that Sky's now patented biannual bargain hunt was rudely curtailed by a bunch of football matches.

Window watch: Jim White was the star of the Sky show once again

Window watch: Jim White was the star of the Sky show once again

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VIEW FULL ARCHIVE

The pair were forced to play their own personal game of countdown in the space of just 45 minutes – from the rather ordinary 10.15pm to the somewhat nondescript 11pm – rendering Jim's opening gambit of 'this is going to make Djokovic/Nadal look like a quick catch up' a bit of a stretch.

Yep, this is not the window that our high-octane Scot is really at his best with.

Jim is clearly much more your man for the summer windows – nice, big French ones that he can burst through and proclaim: 'Anyone for Sebastian Bassong on a season long loan'

Instead, he was forced to cram his usually adept and engaging scene-setting into such a short space of time, it never got the chance to build to the usual operatic climax – especially as the fat lady that sang for us on this occasion was nothing more than the thrilling news that Keith Andrews would be joining West Brom on a short-term loan from Blackburn.

This is of course not to say that it didn't have it's usual moments, as all the chaps on their regional beats did their utmost to draw some last-minute blood from the stone of a frankly underwhelming mid-season shopping spree.

Of all the road team, it was probably Gary Cotterill who had the jammiest assignment as he basked in the warm glow of the Loftus Road reception, surrounded by an array of potted palms, like the Robinson Crusoe of Shepherd's Bush.

It was from this balmy location that he registered his surprise that Bobby Zamora 'is not as young as he used to be'.

Gary, it happens to us all, fella. Even to those of us stranded at QPR's desert island foyer.

Easy for you to say: Fulham's new signing Pavel Pogrebnyak

Easy for you to say: Fulham's new signing Pavel Pogrebnyak

Across the border, Charles Paterson brought us news of Celtic signing Pawel Brozek, who we must assume is a real belt-and-braces kind of guy as the pictures showed him greeting the Hoops faithful in a Celtic shirt, waving a Celtic shirt.

We then saw Harry Redknapp, looking much more at home than he has done in the last few days, in front of the post-match cameras, but without the usual car window that is part and parcel of his deadline-day interviews.

Somewhat out of kilter therefore, Harry mentioned a couple of potential movers before muttering to himself absent-mindedly 'that's it as far as I can think. There was nobody else, was there'

Meanwhile, back in west London, the cold night air was definitely beginning to play tricks with the mind and the tongue as Ian Bolton brought us news of events at Craven Cottage.

As he told us of Fulham's day, he took a lingering look at his notes before launching into an attempt at 'Pavel Poooo (studied pause) – Grebniak' before admitting: 'I've struggled with that all day.'

Back in the studio, Jim sympathised with his buddy by saying 'when you're frozen to the marrow, all you need is a name like…'

Earned his stripes in the trenches like the rest of them, did Jim. And so before you knew it, and before Ian Dowie and Dave Beasant had a chance to chew over any of the albeit meagre scraps of transfer news, it was time for Jim to turn to the 'big guy', also known as the clock tower at the Houses of Parliament, and proclaim the transfer window….closed….about a minute early, so by then adding a few hastily gathered thoughts as to what had gone on until BONG – Big Ben rescued him, the window came to a close, and we all got to go away and learn how you actually say 'Poooo-Grebniak'.

See you next window, big guy.

Nedum Onuoha joins QPR

Onuoha set for QPR bow in FA Cup cracker against Chelsea after completing 2.5m move

Nedum Onuoha revealed his delight after completing his 2.5million switch from Manchester City to QPR.

The defender has signed a four-and-a-half-year deal at Loftus Road to be reunited with former boss Mark Hughes.

Onuoha, 25, failed to nail down a regular spot at City and is now keen to kickstart his career.

Time to leave this City: Nedum Onuoha has signed for QPR

Time to leave this City: Nedum Onuoha has signed for QPR

And he could make his debut in the FA Cup fourth-round tie against Chelsea on Saturday.

He said: 'This was the right time for
me to join a club like QPR. The manager obviously played a massive
factor in my decision to come here.

'I've worked with him before and he always wants players around him who are open and honest.

'He wouldn't have come here if he didn't believe that there was a squad of players here that can achieve the goals he has.

'The ambition of the owners was really appealing. This is my club now and I'll give everything to help us succeed.'

Recruitment drive: Mark Hughes has added Nedum Onuoha to his QPR squad

Recruitment drive: Mark Hughes has added Nedum Onuoha to his QPR squad

Onuoha becomes Hughes' second signing as QPR boss after the loan deal for Taye Taiwo from AC Milan.

Hughes said: 'Nedum is a player I
know very well. He did very well for me at Manchester City and played a
number of games, probably more than under any other manager.

'He is very versatile. He can play centre back or right back, and has good pace. He is a very good addition to the squad.

'It's important that we are able to
attract good players here. Nedum had other options but his experience
with myself and the other guys here was a big factor in why he has come
to us. I am pleased about that.'