Sunday, August 8, 2010

Robbie Rants

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Who cares if Rooney has a fag as long as he lights up the Premier League?
By Robbie Savage

Zidane did too.

When I was at Blackburn the four words I dreaded to hear were, "Fancy a lift, Robbie?" Especially when they came in a Turkish accent from my pal Tugay.

I love the fella and what a player he was for us. But he loved a fag and, as a consequence, his car stank of smoke. You'd need to pin four Magic Trees to your jumper before you got in!

I used to see Tugay on the motorway into work every morning. I'd accelerate past his car and see him putting one cigarette and lighting up another.

After matches the press would want to speak to him because he'd almost always have been brilliant. But he'd be hiding out on the pitch, have a crafty smoke!

I thought about my old mate when I saw those pictures of Wayne Rooney outside a nightclub with a cigarette this week.

I've never been a smoker - apart from a massive cigar I had on holiday once with Darren Eadie. Darren is 5-foot-7 and I think our stogies were about six foot.

When I'd finished laughing I lit up and hated it.

I've never had a fag in my life but my mum's a smoker and I hate the habit.

No kids looking to become a footballer should take up the habit. It's going to hamper the flow of oxygen around your body and affect your ability to run faster.

Yet some of the greatest players the world has ever seen - Johan Cruyff, Zidane, Socrates - have smoked and I simply can't believe the outrage that Rooney is doing the same.

Have we really got to the stage when a 24-year-old going to a nightclub in pre-season and having a pint and cigarette is front page news?

Wayne is doing himself harm in the long run, but to suggest, as one paper did this week, that it is affecting his performances now is rubbish.

I wish we would care a bit less about what players do off the pitch and care more about what they do on it.

I don't like cigarettes but I don't really care whether Rooney lights up as long as he lights up the Premier League this season.

Although I'm not sure I'd fancy a lift if his car's anything like Tugay's!



The end of pre-season reminds me of a classic from my missus when we were first going out.

I'd just finished a friendly with Crewe and I was pleased when she phoned me up on the bus home to say she'd been looking for the result on Teletext and was pleased we'd won 3-2.

"But," he said, "you didn't tell me you'd got a new signing. Who is this bloke Og who scored for you? Have I met him yet?"

Then I had to explain what an own goal was...

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