A premiership footballer yesterday declared his life-long allegiance to the team now paying him £30,000 a week at the expense of his previous life-long favourite team who are no longer paying him £20,000 week.
Craig Gardner moved from Aston Villa to local rivals Birmingham City for £3.5m before claiming to have been a fan of his new club since his childhood, directly contradicting previous statements.
Gardner told reporters, “I might have said I was an Aston Villa fan who had sung on their terraces during famous cup victories, but I was clearly remembering something else by mistake.”
“All it took was a slap around the face from a cheque worth £1.5m a year to bring me to my senses and remind me that I’d actually always supported my new employers, Birmingham City.”
“People might say it is unusually fortuitous to switch allegiance between bitter rivals on the day you transfer between them, but I would ask those people if they’ve ever been hit with a really big cheque?”
“It can have quite a disorienting effect on the memory, and really puts the truth into focus.”
With some Birmingham City fans questioning Gardner’s past as an Aston Villa fan, the player himself offered the most plausible reason for the perceived transgression.
Gardner continued, “I can only think that my previous incorrect memory of being an Aston Villa fan was a side effect of being repeatedly hit around the head with a slightly smaller cheque worth just £1m a year.”
“There was a while back there where I might have been a Wolves fan, but the insultingly small cheque they slapped me around the face with failed to bring back any childhood memories of going to Molineux.”
Birmingham City boss Alex McLeish explained his delight at the capture, “It was nip and tuck there for a while, but I gave him an almighty whack with a massive cheque and suddenly he was a fan and couldn’t wait to join us. I’m absolutely delighted.”
Gardner concluded, “I can guarantee I will give everything to my new club, right up until the point where I get hit on the head with a cheque worth upwards of £2m a year by someone else.”