“We are absolutely delighted,” declared Moz Dee at the weekend. “This is great for the radio industry. It continues our commitment to investing in top talent.”
The managing director of TalkSport was looking forward to yesterday’s debut of foul-mouthed misogynists Andy Gray and Richard Keys following their forced transfer to TalkSport from Sky.
Asked whether the station had had any qualms about employing Grey and Keys, Dee responded: “They are two very experienced, top-notch presenters. They recognise the situation, but it’s time to move on.”
The notion that Gray and Keys have suffered enough and should now be allowed to resume their careers unmolested isn’t confined to TalkSport. The pair have not lacked for supporters much closer to home. “Just banter between the lads...Politically correctness gone mad”. (“Politically correctness gone mad” is a phrase commonly used by knuckle-draggers in the belief that its invocation excuses whatever bigoted outburst they are about to come out with.)
In fact, a glance back at a video clip of “the lads” in action leaves no room for doubt that this wasn’t banter. They weren’t smiling or giggling or even sniggering, but were stern-faced and entirely serious as they suggested that women, of their nature, are incapable of understanding the off-side rule. Look at it again on YouTube. Note the snarl in their voices and on their faces as they rubbish Sian Massey running the line.
Keys: “Somebody better get down there and explain offside to her.”
Gray: “Can you believe that? A female linesman! Women don’t know the offside rule.”
Keys: “Course they don’t.”
And later: Keys - “The game’s gone mad. Did you hear charming Karen Brady [of West Ham] this morning complaining about sexism? Do me a favour, love.”
What you’ll detect is anger at the notion that women might be competent to referee a game or head up a board of directors.
And then, to Jamie Redknapp of his former girlfriend Louise Glass: “Did you smash it? Mind you, that’s a stupid question - if you were anywhere near it, you definitely smashed it.” Ms. Glass is now married to former Carlisle goalkeeper, Jimmy Glass, with whom she is bringing up twins.
Using “smash” to describe sex with a woman and the woman as “it” says a great deal more about Grey and Keys than about Ms. Glass. She’s suing the pair of them. I hope she drives them into the bankruptcy courts.
One of the more interesting aspects of the affair was that Redknapp, 37, was clearly embarrassed by the drooling adolescence of Keys, 54.
Then there was Grey, 55, fingering his fly as he asked presenter Charlotte Jackson, 24, to stuff a microphone down his trousers. What a low-life. And what a pity she didn’t stuff it elsewhere.
Kenny Dalglish’s daughter Kelly hit the right note of disdain: “Just read about something called ‘the offside rule’. Too much for my tiny brain. Must be damaged from nail polish fumes”.
Read more Eamonn McCann every Tuesday in the Journal