SniperTube episode 4: El Tel, O’Neillism, Head-over-heelism

Football and music have generally had something of a blustery relationship. The times when they have got it right can pretty much be counted on one hand: World in motion, Three Lions, and…well I wanted to say Diamond Lights, but there’s quite a few people who would disagree. To put it mildly. But despite the slim pickings, they both return to the well from time to time to try and rekindle something from the dying embers of what should have been a perfectly decent romance, only to find a mausoleum of bitter memories of why they didn’t get on in the first place.

We will remember Kevin Keegan for many things. A glittering career with Liverpool, Hamburg and Southampton. Winning the ballon d’or two years in a row. That post-match rant. His disastrous spell as England manager. But Keegan was never shy of dabbing his hand in other areas of the media, appearing on BBC’s Superstars gameshow and avertising Brut aftershave in a spot alongside Henry Cooper. (Well if you must see the two legends in the shower together, it’s here). But for our first main event, Keggy dons a brown jacket and some pretty exciting cream flares, picks up the microphone and quite literally lets rip with a torrent of vocal transnificence:

In all fairness, he makes a relatively decent fist of it, but you can see the look of absolute terror in his eyes. This is a man who has agreed to something without a full knowledge of the possible ramifications: dressing up like a crooner and miming someone elses song in front of some TV cameras and an audience. The song reached #31 in the UK chart, but, blazing a trail for Anglophonic curly-haired career-mutant David Hasselhoff 10 years later, reached the top 10 in Germany where he was based at the time. I’m just finding it hard to imagine Gary Barlow writing a schmaltzy love song for James Milner to warble, though I’m sure it would be quite enjoyable in a sado-masochistic way.

Speaking of Take That alumni, we now look at a memorable encounter between Robbie Williams and the legendary Martin O’Neill:

Williams struggled for long periods with self-esteem issues, and one can’t help feeling O’Neill’s brazen face-to-face evaluation of his talents – “[You] can’t play, you can’t write, you can’t strum a guitar – I thought you’d really struggle” – really can’t have helped matters. Credit is certainly due for him not being a fawning media luvvie, however.

From a chilling slapdown of one man’s talents, to someone that definitely didn’t have any naysayers around to stop him from going on TV and making an arse of himself, it’s Terry Venables. If you thought Keegan looked scared, the look on the faces most of Venables’ QPR team mates in the audience is akin to a group of men waiting to be ushered into a gas-chamber:

The notable exception being Frank McLintock, who must have either hated Venables, or had a father that insisted on his family attending weekly karaoke sessions at the local boozer on a Saturday night, and was therefore so accustomed to a grown man going up in musical flames, he had no way of empathising with the shame.

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