A BBC insider has revealed the lengths the corporation has gone to entrap the Match of the Day team- into uttering something so heinous that they have an excuse to sack them immediately.
The Match of the Day team are known to have long-term contracts with a variety of cast-iron clauses preventing them from being moved on for otherwise career-ending misdemeanours, including traffic offences, affairs, comparing a tackle to rape or not knowing anything about Hatem Ben Arfa.
This contractual impasse has forced the corporation to think more creatively if they want to move on the creaking Lineker, Hansen, Shearer and Lawrenson. Our insider, who has worked as a cameraman on the Saturday night show since 2006, detailed the BBC bosses’ various attempts to engineer an outburst from the team including:
- A ‘provocative’ dress-code enforced for all runners, production assistants and Lee Dixon.
- Offering Manish Bhasin a bonus if, for the mid-MOTD “toss” to preview The Football League Show, he can alarm the pundits by growing an unnervingly long beard and speaking through a loudhailer.
- Double bonus if he wears a hook on his hand.
- A 20 year plan where players where paid to dramatically feign injury, don alice bands and wear increasingly garish boots – all with the hope of getting Mark Lawrenson to embark on a homophobic rant that lasts an entire half.
- Colin Murray.
Incoming BBC Director General George Entwistle confirmed the existence of ‘Project 19th Hole’ clearly relishes the task facing him. “After ITV got into racism ‘early doors’ and Sky ‘smashed’ sexism, I’m hoping that under my stewardship the BBC can take it to the next level”.
Entwistle has already ordered the technical team to rewire all autocues to replace Gary Lineker’s closing puns with a selection of David Irving material. Meanwhile, catering staff have been ordered to replace all water with vodka, or, in Alan Hansen’s case, white spirit.
Entwistle brings considerable experience: “Having recently masterminded a project which very nearly wiped out the entire light-entertainment presenter division at a stroke, I know that I can finish the job here”.