There have been plenty of profanity-laced coaching tirades in American sports, but until you've seen soccer coaches go at it with the British press, you really haven't seen anything. Here's Newcastle United interim head coach Joe Kinnear, exchanging pleasantries with some newspaper writers during his first press conference on Thursday. Yes, his first press conference. The Daily Mirror estimated that Kinnear swore 52 times in a five-minute span, a feat which I'm afraid even Tommy Lasorda or Jim Mora would have trouble matching. It began thusly:
Joe Kinnear: Which one is Simon Bird [Daily Mirror's north-east football writer]? Simon Bird: Me. JK: You're a cunt. SB: Thank you.
And we're off! More excerpts from the nearly-15 minute exchange:
JK: You are trying to fucking undermine my position already. SB: Have you read it, it doesn't say that. I knew you knew they were having a day off. JK: Fuck off. Fuck off. It's your last fucking chance. SB: You read the copy? It doesn't say that you didn't know. JK: What about the headline, you think that's a good headline? SB: I didn't write the headline, you read the copy. JK: You are negative bastards, the pair of you.
JK: I have done it before. It is going to my fucking lawyers. So are about three others. If they can find something in it that is a court case it is going to court. I am not fucking about. I don't talk to fucking anybody. It is raking up stories. You are fucking so fucking slimy you are raking up players that I got rid of. Players that I had fallen out with. You are not asking Robbie Earle, because he is sensible. You are not asking Warren Barton? No. Because he is fucking sensible. Anyone who had played for me for 10 years at any level ... [but] you will find some cunt that ... Other journalist: How long is your contract for Joe? JK: None of your business.
Steve Brenner (football writer for the Sun): We are all grown men and can come in here and sit around and talk about football, but coming in here and calling people cunts? JK: Why? Because I am annoyed. I am not accepting that. If it is libellous, it is going to where I want it to go. Newcastle press officer: What has been said in here is off the record and doesn't go outside.
Oops. Yeah, about that ... Here's video of the exchange, which has been censored, sadly. And here's some background on Kinnear and Newcastle. My question: Why couldn't the Vice Presidential debate have been more like this? Audio: Joe Kinnear Swears An Amazing 52 Times In A Five-Minute Rant At The Daily Mirror [The Daily Mirror] 'I Have Had A Million Pages Of Crap Written About Me. I'm Ridiculed For No Reason. I'm Defenceless' [The Guardian] Joe Kinnear Confronts His Newcastle Critics Head On [The Times]