Robin Scott Elliot: White's window on Sky transfer day showed all but told less

Transfer deadline day, Sky Sports News

The most disturbing part of Sky Sports News' blanket, duvet and eiderdown coverage of the transfer window was the moment they brought us live coverage of Jim White, a television sports news reader who works for Sky Sports News, arriving at the office. It's the equivalent of the Budget day shot of the Chancellor waving his red box as he leaves No 11 being replaced by live and exclusive film of a random Dimbleby waiting for a No 33 bus to take him into Television Centre.

But it was not the footage of White coming through a door and walking up some stairs that best summed it all up, it was that this moment, an employee arriving at his place of employment, was considered so pivotal it featured on the following day's "best of" montage. Where were you when Jim White came to work?

Sky Sports News is a world where irony is someone who has a leaning towards West Ham. The channel is a thrusting part of today's junk-food culture, the desire for immediate gratification and it provides it on transfer deadline day quicker than Robbie Keane can say "I always dreamt of playing for [insert club name here]". White is the father figure for Sky Sports News presenters. When he's not on air he can be found at their cloning facility near their Isleworth HQ advising on what suit to wear, the ideal cleavage line for high digital transmission and passing on ready-made quips to link seamlessly into ad breaks.

White and I go way back. He used to present Scotsport, straight after Glen Michael's Cartoon Cavalcade on a Sunday afternoon (there's a Scottish football joke in there somewhere), where he made his name asking Rangers players searching questions along the lines of "Why are you so good?" If White were to interview his channel – it could happen – that is the sort of question he would demand an answer to. At one point on deadline day, an email from Sky arrived offering pictures of their presenters in action as the confusion between the story and its delivery grew ever more muddled. They may have offered us Peter Crouch at one point as well.

The plum role on the year's biggest day has become the grassy knoll outside Tottenham's training ground. A car drove in. A car drove out. "Was it Kaka, Harry?" "No," said Harry. Back in the studio, White wondered: "Do you believe Harry?" "No," said Dave Bassett, who looked as if he had just polished off a plate of lemons. Poor Harry. Redknapp is the one manager who always stops to talk and then he promptly has his honesty doubted. There was a Thatcher (Margaret, not Ben) moment at Tottenham when Redknapp appeared in the background during a live report and climbed into his car. "He's behind you," yelled White at the reporter. The car started and stopped. Harry got out and got back in. Seatbelt problems.

What deadline day did suggest is an easy and cost-effective way to combat any future rioting by our young people who like to sport hooded leisurewear. If trouble is brewing Sky Sports News camera crews could be stationed outside football grounds. Before the reporters had time to reveal that they understood club sources could or could not confirm something, there would be a boisterous crowd of happily gurning teenagers, ringing their mates, who message their mates to tell them their mate is on telly. Or failing that Bassett could chuck lemons at them.

Sport
sportSo, how closely were you paying attention during 2014?
Arts and Entertainment
Dennis speaks to his French teacher
tvThe Boy in the Dress, TV review
News
One father who couldn't get One Direction tickets for his daughters phoned in a fake bomb threat and served eight months in a federal prison
people... (and one very unlucky giraffe)
Arts and Entertainment
Joel Edgerton, John Turturro and Christian Bale in Exodus: Gods and Kings
film
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
The Plaza Theatre in Atlanta, Georgia was one of the 300 US cinemas screening
filmTim Walker settles down to watch the controversial gross-out satire
Arts and Entertainment
Amy Adams and Christoph Waltz in Tim Burton's Big Eyes
film reviewThis is Tim Burton’s most intimate and subtle film for a decade
Life and Style
Mark's crab tarts are just the right size
food + drinkMark Hix cooks up some snacks that pack a punch
Arts and Entertainment
Jack O'Connell stars as Louis Zamperini in Angelina Jolie's Unbroken
film review... even if Jack O'Connell is excellent
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Aren’t you glad you didn’t say that? The worst wince-and-look-away quotes of the year

Aren’t you glad you didn’t say that?

The worst wince-and-look-away quotes of the year
Hollande's vanity project is on a high-speed track to the middle of nowhere

Vanity project on a high-speed track to nowhere

France’s TGV network has become mired in controversy
Sports Quiz of the Year

Sports Quiz of the Year

So, how closely were you paying attention during 2014?
Alexander Armstrong on insulting Mary Berry, his love of 'Bargain Hunt', and life as a llama farmer

Alexander Armstrong on insulting Mary Berry and his love of 'Bargain Hunt'

From Armstrong and Miller to Pointless
Sanchez helps Gunners hold on after Giroud's moment of madness

Sanchez helps Gunners hold on

Olivier Giroud's moment of madness nearly costs them
A Christmas without hope: Fears grow in Gaza that the conflict with Israel will soon reignite

Christmas without hope

Gaza fears grow that conflict with Israel will soon reignite
After 150 years, you can finally visit the grisliest museum in the country

The 'Black Museum'

After 150 years, you can finally visit Britain's grisliest museum
No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

Doctor Who Christmas Special TV review
Chilly Christmas: Swimmers take festive dip for charity

Chilly Christmas

Swimmers dive into freezing British waters for charity
Veterans' hostel 'overwhelmed by kindness' for festive dinner

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect