The Football Association has given England manager Gareth Southgate its nearly unqualified backing – by saying they will dismiss him after he is compared to his fourth separate root vegetable by the media.
FA spokesperson Tom Wilson said: “We are all behind Gareth’s plan to continue building this England team ahead of 2020 and 2022.
“Obviously that would have to change though in the unlikely event the tabloid press turn him into a complete laughing stock by scapegoating him for a couple of disappointing results – which is why we inserted the vegetable clause.
“We’re hopeful it doesn’t come to that though. Four different root vegetables is a lot. He does look a bit like a parsnip, I reckon, so expect that comparison to get wheeled out if we fail to beat either Tunisia or Panama.
“Turnip was already used, of course, so once he’s been likened to a potato and a carrot – quite possibly straight after a World Cup that fails to live up to inflated expectations – there isn’t a lot left.
“At that stage you’re really going into celery and parsley root territory. I just wouldn’t expect the media to stoop that low – unless our European qualifying campaign doesn’t get off to an entirely smooth start, of course.”
Image courtesy of Ben Sutherland via Wikimedia Commons