A Monkey in space? What on earth was Roy Hodgson talking about? Read the transcript here


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The Independent Online

Was Roy Hodgson's space-monkey gag during half-time of the England Poland game racist?

Andros Townsend, Wayne Rooney and Stan Collymore all say no, but now you can make up your own mind by reading a transcript of the speech taken down by our undercover international footballing reporter.

You may be shocked by what you see...


Gentlemen –

These are trying times. Wojciech Szczesny looks a hard fellow to break and these Polish fan are beginning to get on my nerves.

Now, I’m not going to waste anyone’s time by talking tactics here, but suffice to say: we should pass the ball to Andros more often.

Plus, we've only got five minutes in here so I'm going to get straight to the important stuff.

Now I want to turn to the wisdom of Saul Bellow - nay, Philip Roth –for an analogy to explain my purpose.

I think it was in Portnoy’s Complaint that Roth claimed  “In the time of chimpanzees I was a monkey”.

What did he mean?

Nothing, most likely.  But his words should give us all pause for thought.


So it’s time for all of you to ask yourself that age old question.

Am I a man? Or am I a monkey?

(Long Pause)

Because –  and I hasten to remind you – it's not men we’re looking for on this team. It’s monkeys flying through space (as I think I’ve made ABUNDANTLY clear in training).

So let's get back out there, strap our booster rockets on, and send these Poles back to Pluto!

(Pause followed by low muttering from audience)

Good luck in the second half boys. May the force be with you.


Any questions, wait behind at the end.