Less than a week after awarding the World Cup to Qatar, Sepp Blatter has hinted that it could take place in January/February. This suggestion has been widely criticised but, as ever, Blatter seems impervious. After all, he will be 86 by 2022 and may no longer be with us, or know who he is – although he will still be president of FIFA.
Humourist Tom Lehrer said that he gave up writing comic songs when Henry Kissinger won the Nobel Peace Prize, arguing that no satire could top that. We had a similar feeling today with the news that Robbie Savage's column in the Daily Mirror has won the sports category in the Plain English Campaign Media Awards. It must have been one of those secret ballots we've been hearing so much about.
Secrecy surrounds what Prince William was offering in exchange for World Cup votes yesterday. All we can say is that "dummy issue" UK stamps featuring Sepp Blatter's head in profile may soon be surfacing on Ebay. Meanwhile, the selection of Russia and Qatar as World Cup hosts has infuriated sections of the UK press. No doubt they would still be raging at corruption in football if the England bid had succeeded.
The Scottish Football Association's plans to cope with the impending referees' strike have been hampered by officials from various countries refusing to fill in. But there is a group of people with firmly held views on refereeing who would surely be ready to help out. So let's see Chris Kamara, Andy Gray, Jamie Redknapp and Mark Lawrenson step into the breach.
As part of the final drive for 2018 World Cup votes, the hard-working president of the Football Association, Prince William, has invited members of FIFA's executive committee to his wedding. Jack Warner, Mohammed bin Hammam et al will get front-row seats alongside Prince Philip. This may not turn out for the best.
It's been another tough week for the combative Joey Barton but sources close to the feisty Newcastle enforcer tell us that he will fight hard to save his reputation.
We're old-fashioned enough to think that BT should focus on providing a good phone service and not mess about with "content" of any kind. Like this, a new football "fanzine" featuring some very unlikely quotes from man of the moment Gareth Bale, an interview with "Manchester United legend Michael Owen" and a screamingly trite "thought of the day" about Cristiano Ronaldo. Never mind this rubbish, just get your broadband working properly.
England's 2018 World Cup bid team are streets ahead of the competition in one respect – no one can match their flair for public rows. Having whined to FIFA about criticisms from their Russian rivals, they have now formally withdrawn their complaint. Meanwhile, it is unclear who is actually in charge of the bid. Claims are being made on behalf of David Dein, Geoff Thompson, acting FA chairman Roger Burden, Simon Cowell and Charlie Sheen.
News that Wayne Rooney has signed a new contract ruined our plans for the weekend. We had invited all the interested parties to get together and thrash it out. That was the Rooney family and in-laws, Paul Stretford and his team, Sir Alex, David Gill, Garry Cook, Sheikh Mansour, the Gallagher brothers, Eamonn Holmes, all those young men stood outside Rooney's house, Ian Holloway, Roy Hodgson, Ricky Tomlinson and all the distressed people in that Liverpool video, Gazza (if available), Andy Carroll, George Osbourne, Sepp Blatter and Ban Ki-moon. We'd hired a big meeting room and spent a fortune on the catering – all those vol-au-vents are destined for the landfill.
Marvellous news about the Chilean miners. After weeks of anguish, stress and painstaking toil in dank and cramped conditions, we managed to find a sticker card of Franklin Lobos, the former footballer who was the 27th of the 33 miners to be lifted to the surface earlier this week. Lobos, who spent nine seasons in the Chilean first division with four different clubs, scored from over 100 free-kicks during his playing career and was nicknamed the "Magic Mortar". After retiring he worked for a taxi firm then became a truck driver at the mine. One of his former clubs, Cobresal, may now rename their stadium after him. The miners have been inundated with gifts so the least we can do is send a box of 2010 "Here comes the summer" WSC T-shirts.