World Cup sticker albums. World Cup wallcharts. World Cup based offers on crisps and drinks in the supermarket. It can mean only one thing... it’s marching season.
Before you think I’m about to launch into a column about one of the most contentious issues in our province, you’re mistaken.
I was leading you up the garden path and will now return to the safe trodden track of picking the bones of football’s biggest spectacle.
So what of the old World Cup? We’ve had cooling off periods, disappearing free-kick spray and every colour of boot in the spectrum. I pity the schoolboys in the playground trying to recreate their favourite moments with jumpers for goalposts and two solar powered calculators and a battery tester in lieu of goal-line technology.
I’ve watched the vast majority of games, many of which have gone on for significantly longer than their allotted timescales. In the case of ITV this has meant an ad break bonanza.
As such, the appearance fee for McLean bookmakers’ star player Refundinho must be through the roof. He’s starting to look like a quality acquisition for any Premiership side - though most players, fictional or otherwise, will look world class next to Adrian Logan.
Elsewhere Daniel Sturridge is doing his bit to promote childhood obesity. Given the frequency of his Subway ads since the World Cup started, I reckon I’ve watched the England striker wolf down six subs a day.
Despite some cracking innovations and some awesome football taking place on the pitch it’s one of the most controversial moments in World Cup history that has been grabbing the headlines.
During the closing stages of the Italy vs Uruguay game Luis Suarez sunk his teeth into a hearty Italian.
Perhaps he’s also been watching his club mate Daniel Sturridge’s Subway ads or more likely, he’s just clean mad.
Shortly after the incident Suarez tried to say he’d collided with Chiellini with his teeth. In his submission to FIFA he said: “In the run up to the impact my knees came together, I lost my balance and that destabilised my body and I fell into my opponent. In that moment, my face came into collision with the player, causing a small bruise on my cheekbone and a lot of pain to my teeth.”
After reflection he eventually made a ‘proper’ apology via Twitter and promised never to bite anyone again.
To add insult to injury at the end of this sorry tale, Suarez was gutted to arrive home and find his he’d exceeded his broadband download limit. When he phoned to complain he was told he had used his last megabyte.
Both Lucy and Ben have been taking an interest in the World Cup due in no small part to me not allowing them to watch their own programmes when it’s on.
Lucy will occasionally tell me to turn off the football though Ben is struggling to articulate his feelings.
Last week I said to Karen it was only a matter of time before he issued his first words. I was right.
Just yesterday, out of nowhere, during a game of chasing, Ben bit Lucy.
I was about to read the riot act when he looked at me and said: “In the run up to the impact my knees came together, I lost my balance...”
He’s now banned from all talking related activity for four months.