Outside the Box: Commentators do World Cup ditty but Motson's a turn-off

There will be an England World Cup song after all this year, recorded by an unlikely alliance of 11 television football commentators and the Cotswold Male Voice Choir, in aid of the Prince's Trust. Singing on "Let's Hear It England" has, wisely, been left to the choristers; the broadcasters have recorded clips of commentary. A sample will be available on www.commentatorsunited.com from tomorrow. Outside the Box can reveal that there is no place for John Motson or Jonathan Pearce in a line-up that reads: Champion; Brotherton, Darke, Branyard, Brackley; Wilson, Drury, Mowbray, Hawthorne; Tyler, Tyldesley. They will do well to match 1970's "Back Home" and the much-loved "World In Motion", both No 1 hits, but must hope to outdo the 1986 offering "We've Got The Whole World At Our Feet". Not the pop world – it peaked at No 66.

Durham perform miracles

It has been an astonishing week for Durham City, who began it with a record of 28 defeats from 28 games in the Unibond Premier League, only to win twice in four days. The club's season had been ruined in advance when the major sponsor and consequently the first-team squad all left after being told they were not eligible for promotion because they have an artificial pitch (Outside the Box, 20 December). Fielding a team of youngsters every week, they finally broke their duck last Saturday by winning 2-1 away to the Manchester United rebel supporters' team, FC United. In front of a crowd of more than 2,000, Durham came from behind and held on as the goalkeeper Rhys Jobling saved a penalty. FC United were so stunned that their website, which lists matches as W, D or L put "D 1-2". Then on Tuesday came an even more extraordinary game at home to Whitby, the FA Vase holders featured here last week after their three floodlight failures this season. Whitby were rabbits in headlights this time, dazzled by conceding three goals in the first seven minutes and eventually beaten 4-3. The two results have left Durham a mere 23 points behind at the bottom of the table on nought points, having been deducted six for fielding an ineligible player; a penalty that their website, presumably in the interests of morale, ignores.

Ware has chivalry gone?

More non-League quirkiness: After Ware of the Ryman League North scored an unsporting goal against Romford, having failed to return the ball when it was kicked out of play, their manager ordered his team to let Romford equalise. At the first attempt, one of his players, who had not heard the instruction, messed things up by making a tackle. Then Romford's Martin Heed was allowed clean through but panicked and missed. At that point Ware gave up being chivalrous and carried on, eventually winning 4-3.

Put shirt on Baggies

Good cause of the week is West Bromwich Albion's shirt auction in aid of Talcahuano, the home city of the Baggies' Gonzalo Jara, which was badly affected by the Chilean earthquake. Albion, who have no regular shirt sponsor, wore "Help Chile" logos for a home game with Sheffield Wednesday and are auctioning 18 signed players' shirts for a minimum bid of £50 each. Deadline is 7pm on Friday. Go to www.wba.co.uk.

s.tongue@independent.co.uk

Comments