Pundit watch

Is Tony Adams the new Tom Waits?

Arsenal legend provides welcome alternative to the matey blandness of Shearer and pals

Tony Adams

Match of the Day 2 has been cleaning Match of the Day’s clock for a long time now. Personable Chiles is better than link-machine Lineker, Lee Dixon is a bright and insightful analyst, providing stiff competition for alpha pundit Alan Hansen’s cold, all-seeing defensive eye. Meanwhile Alan Shearer’s preference for stating the obvious is threatening to drag the flagship beneath the waves.

Now, with the addition of Tony Adams to “Day 2″, “Day” has slipped even further behind. At first sight he exhibits a quite disturbing level of discomfort at being on television, yet the ill-fitting, poorly coordinated clothes and the hair that product forgot provide the perfect framework for his troubled observations. While the main MOTD is all sweatery banter, straight from the golf club, even the most routine of Adams’ remarks come from a place of anguish. It’s like punditry straight from the AA meeting, and it works because it’s so sincere.

Even the revelation that he was wearing “hilarious” patent leather shoes had the effect of making him look vulnerable and human, yet were such a discovery to be made at the end of Mark Lawrenson’s leg, say, there would be ribbing, but the wearer would still be puffed up with self-importance at his expensive and courageous fashion statement.

“Day 2″ has built its reputation on having presenter and old-pros alike talk as if they were normal people, only this time they’ve taken their definition of normal a step further. Hansen, get your transfer request in.

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