In a frank and open interview Craig Burley reveals the human toll of the demise of Setanta Sports, his hopes for the future and all things Burley in between.
FA: So Mr Burley, George… may I call you George?
CB: Iss fuhkin..Craaig, ya wank
FA: I’m sorry George, I didn’t quite catch that. Moving on…. SO.. George; SETANTA, what went wrong and was Scottish football to blame?
CB: C-R-A-G, CRAG, or do I have to write it backwards on my fist in ink and stamp it on your heed? Aah’m no drunk.
FA: We didn’t suggest anything of the sort, the question concerned the decline of Irish sports broadcaster Setanta; and, more specifically, your thoughts on why it occurred?
CB: Ah dinnae like sultanas.
CB: Aye, I was sad when I got the call. I haven’t wept as much since 2003. Dundee went intae administration. The records say 2 appearances, no goals, and ah wis rather blase at the time, but that doesn’t tell the troo story. They took ma baby away, are you getting this?I felt like they’d slit ma stomach and took the seed of Scotland from me. I lost a lot of money. Had tae make a lot of cutbacks; why, did ye know that Ribena and Domestos, all shoogled up, tastes just like Valpolicella?
FA: No. I did not know that. Nor did I want to.
CB: Dissolves the curly straw though.
FA: Anyway, having been in this situation before, do you feel you have been able to draw on your past experiences in order to cope?
CB: Well, you see, there were Dundee and then ma little restaurant business and THEN Setanta, so aye I guess you could see I’ve been in this situation before. Each time I’ve managed to cope using Craig Burley’s patentid 4 step plan. WAAAN, go to Bargain Booze. TOOO, select booze. THREE, pay for said booze, and finally FIVE, drink till your eyes cry bitter tears of special brew. But get this, I’ve no money, look at ma wallet, nothing, just tickets to Michael Jackson at the O2 and a sympathy card from Andy Gray, so what am I going to do? You couldn’t spare me a couple of shillings to warm my bones on this cold evening could you?
FA: Craig that isn’t a wallet. That is in fact a piece of paper with hair sellotaped to it.
CB: Ah, that was my severance pay, sorry, here is my wallet. D’you like it, 8 pounds and you can have it matey… the sick smell will go with a few bleach washes.
FA: We’re OK thank you. Please focus Craig, no that is MY watch. Look, are you looking to remain in punditry, or like Alan Shearer would you try your hand at management?
CB: Definitely. I know what you’re thinking, how is an dirty drunken BAAAASTAD like me going to handle the day-to-day running of a football club? But I say to you, you you gaudy English prick, I’ve managed things, I’ve managed things with little success and managed to rack up a huge debt in the process and if that doesn’t qualify me for at least a short term contract at Newcastle then paint me brown and get Ron Atkinson to call me something racist.
FA: Well that’s just lovely. Listen let’s wrap this up before that trickle makes its way ALL the way down your leg. Describe yourself in 3 words.
CB: Not George Burley.
FA: Thank you Craig.