Queens Park Rangers manager Mark Hughes stepped up his search for defensive reinforcements by publicly appealing for volunteers.
The Welshman, grizzled, responded to Saturday’s 5-0 defeat to Swansea City at Loftus Road by suddenly appearing on every domestic television channel mid-broadcast to issue, with a forlorn expression, a heartrending plea for any even remotely half-decent defender to make themselves known immediately.
Speaking exclusively to Football Burp, Hughes expressed his delight at the overwhelming response he’s had to this presumably illegal encroachment of British broadcasting regulations.
He, Hughes, said: “I’m thrilled – so far Ricardo Carvalho and Michael Dawson have agreed to help out, while Jay Bothroyd’s said he’ll re-train himself to be a tough-tackling right-back.
“Tina from reception and Ed, a butcher from Hounslow, have both said they’re ready to be called upon if needed – however Steve, an electrician from Kilburn, looks like more of a deep-lying play-maker to me.
“We hope to include all of them in our squad for the trip to Norwich City this weekend, but Anton Ferdinand, Clint Hill and Nedum Onuoha will still be in Tony Fernandes’s office, lying on the floor with golf tees in their mouths while he and his associates practise their swings against one of those flashy distance-clocking nets.
“Fabio da Silva – hands up, I thought we were getting the other one. Sick as a parrot there.”
Dawson and Carvalho said: “We are very happy to be joining such a big club and we will do our best to repay the extortionate wages they’re no doubt paying us.”