The Spoiler presents: Football commentator top trumps

Gotta collect ‘em all!


Britain collectively released a heavy-hearted sigh on Wednesday morning (what, you didn’t hear it?), as the official TV listings for World Cup 2010 were released. ITV have got this lot, the BBC are showing these… to The Spoiler, none of it really matters, since watching football on either channel is like being propositioned by Billy the puppet out of Saw. Where do you want these rusty nails? In the face or in the groin?

Handily, we’ve come up with some helpful devices to take your mind off the asinine musings of terrestrial TV’s finest – football commentator top trumps! A print-out-and-keep game sure to provide you with a whole 35 seconds* of fun.



John Motson
BBC Commentator
TACTICAL INSIGHT: [8] – one of the original stattos
LUCIDITY: [0] – literally senile
VOLUME: [7] – prone to loud bouts of confusion
LIKEABILITY: [9] – the nation’s adopted granddad


Jacqui Oatley
BBC Commentator
TACTICAL INSIGHT: [1] – accurately reports the patently obvious
LUCIDITY: [9] – gets the point across with schoolmarmish authority
VOLUME: [9] – dial stuck at ‘shrill’
LIKEABILITY: [3] – it’s a bloke’s game, innit?


Alan Hansen
BBC Pundit
TACTICAL INSIGHT: [8] – on the wane in recent years
LUCIDITY: [7] – communicates solely in nouns
VOLUME: [6] – relatively cool
LIKEABILITY: [7] – usually one of the good guys. USUALLY.


Mark Lawrenson
BBC Pundit
TACTICAL INSIGHT: [4] – has periods of utter contempt for football
LUCIDITY: [5] – on occasion
VOLUME: [7] – half-hearted indignance/talking over someone to tell a bad joke
LIKEABILITY: [2] – only because no-one is more hateful than Tyldesley



Jon Champion
ITV Commentator
TACTICAL INSIGHT: [6] – takes a less nerdy approach
LUCIDITY: [8] – sensible appraisal of events
VOLUME: [5] – very polite, sometimes lively
LIKEABILITY: [6] – “alright, I guess”


Clive Tyldesley
ITV Commentator
TACTICAL INSIGHT: [7] – undeniably solid collection of match facts
LUCIDITY: [7] – will often speak for no reason
VOLUME: [8] – 9 when mentioning Wayne Rooney
LIKEABILITY: [0] – if you didn’t know better you’d think it was a joke


David Pleat
ITV Pundit
TACTICAL INSIGHT: [8] – good when he writes it down
LUCIDITY: [1] – like talking to an wise tramp, balancing sensible with mental
VOLUME: [3] – the odd yelp when surprised
LIKEABILITY: [7] – ‘Shimbomba’, ‘DrogBAR’, ‘Vieira/Vieri’ what’s not to like?


Andy Townsend
ITV Pundit
TACTICAL INSIGHT: [3] – not nearly as good as he imagines
LUCIDITY: [4] – talking shit at any given moment
VOLUME: [9] – LOVES the sound of his own voice
LIKEABILITY: [1] – absolute git



Martin Tyler
Sky Commentator
TACTICAL INSIGHT: [8] – consumate professional
LUCIDITY: [9] – razor sharp banter
VOLUME: [3] – emits a reassuring old-school tone
LIKEABILITY: [8] – extremely hard to dislike


Rob Hawthorne
Sky Commentator
TACTICAL INSIGHT: [6] – s’alright I guess…
LUCIDITY: [7] – …wasn’t really listening
VOLUME: [4] – will shout when called for
LIKEABILITY: [4] – even the most staunch Super Sunday fans will say “who?”


Andy Gray
Sky Pundit
TACTICAL INSIGHT: [9] – on the mark 97.6% of the time
LUCIDITY: [8] – dripping in arrogance
VOLUME: [8] – smug hoots or cries of TEK A BOO, SON
LIKEABILITY: [4] – that shouty, but fairly knowledgeable fella down the pub


Jamie Redknapp
Sky Pundit
TACTICAL INSIGHT: [6] – considering his dad’s a manager…
VOLUME: [6] – too cool to get overexcited
LIKEABILITY: [5] – more laughing stock than hate figure

N.B. If you don’t know how to ‘play’ trumps, go and take a long, hard look at yourself, then go over here.

* Duration of fun experienced may be considerably less than 35 seconds. 

2 responses so far
  • richard // March 29, 2010 at 7:10 am

    How on Eart did you manage to give Jamie Redknapp 6/10 for tactical insight?

    The man has LITERALLY never said anything tha isn’t completely inane. I would expect children to provide analysis with more depth.

    What’s particularly depressing is the possibility that some tv bigwig will now read this and extent the contract of LITERALLY the worst commentator on tv.

  • richard // March 29, 2010 at 7:12 am

    (It’s always embarrassing when you criticise someone for being stupid, and manage to mis-spell or mis-type half your comment. So for the record: ‘Earth’, ‘that’, and ‘extend’.)

Leave a comment
  1. View comments in RSS feed