George Lawrence’s Summer Shorts: Zebroski’s away goals count trouble

Sunday 2 June 2019

There was a Twitter takeover on Chris Zebroski’s socials this weekend. The Big Zebroski was on loan from Millwall in 2007 contributing a missed penalty in the Conference play-off semi-final defeat to Exeter City. He’ll be expecting more penalties after he met someone called Layla, who got him on his knees (probably). He’ll ‘be begging darling please’ after his wife tweeted from his account a series of incriminating messages between the man she is soon to call her ex and the women she called ‘Ugly Fat C***’ Layla’; which coincidentally was the working title of the Eric Clapton classic whose lyrics are painfully laced throughout this paragraph. Despite her posh quadruple barrelled name, we doubt she’ll ‘ease his worried mind’.

And in other news, Zebroski doesn’t have Twitter anymore.

Monday 3 June 2019

The club used Josh ‘Ruffles’ Ruffels to reveal next season’s home kit; thereby labelling him the player good enough to get game-time next season, but not good enough to be sold before August. According to the Puma marketing drones, the design includes a sublimated flux, which is either the faulty component of the Delorean in Back to the Future or the unintended consequence of consuming a jar full of pickled cucumbers.

Tuesday 4 June 2019

First West Brom now Middlesbrough are reported to be wafting a plate of smoked kippers in an attempt to lure Christophé Wïlldê back into the Championship. Wïlldê is unhappy that off-the-field problems may scupper Sheffield United’s relegation preparations and reports suggest that Boro are desperate to be brought down a bit after a year of Tony Pulis’ special brand of miserablism.

Wednesday 5 June

The club have announced that they’re to play a prestige friendly against Scottish giants Glasgow Rangers. If you’re not familiar with Scottish football, it’s a bit like The Conference, if two of the teams had a massive hang up about 5th century Scottish church reform. The Tax Avoidance Derby also offers an opportunity for entrepreneurial photographers to get KRob and Steven Gerrard pictures, which would make a great ‘before and after’ shot when promoting dangerous weight loss pills on the web.

Thursday 6 June

John Mousinho may be about to follow his dad Jose into management as KRob has told him that he won’t play much next season despite an appearance related contract extension. That’s like doing your marriage vows then leaning across to your beloved and whispering ‘that’s all just a figure of speech, right?’ KRob would like to offer Mousinho the opportunity to become a player-coach, or as he’ll be known ‘a coach’, or to use its technical term; cone management technician.

Friday 9 June

Grab a spatula, this news barrel won’t scrape itself. The club’s Head of Star Jumps Chris Short has signed a new contract for next season. Short, who is as handsome and rugged as Bear Grylls’ arsehole, is credited with improving the team’s fitness leading to a slew of 94th minute winners in the closing weeks of the season. He’ll be working on improving the other 93 when the players get back together in a few weeks.

Saturday 8 June

We’re assuming it was due to the relentless jumping about in silver drainpipes and orange winklepickers, but the Oxford United Jedward Gavin Sykes and Mark Whyte, or whatever, were split up for Northern Ireland’s game against Estonia. Whyte – who Sky reckoned is now worth £4 million – made his first competitive start for the national team in their 2-1 win whereas Sykes didn’t make the bench.

George Lawrence’s Summer Shorts – Hall and notes

Monday 27 May 2019

Sunderland Till I Die was a Netflix smash chronicling The Mackems’ glorious march to Premier League promotion that built, like a classic Hollywood fairytale, to a humiliating relegation. They are now led by former Oxford United saviour Charlie Methven and his doe-eyed cash-puppy Stewart Donald featuring a side-order of Wondertroll Chris Maguire. Filming for series two wrapped at Wembley yesterday with defeat to Charlton in the League 1 play-off final. The producers now face the enviable task of committing to film a redemptive story of how this once great club fell to League 1 and heroically stayed there.

Jonté Angle Smith brushed aside his Oxford United woes with a goal for Bermuda in their Gold Cup warm up game against a team of part-time cleaners from San Miguel Azores. As it happens GLS once scored when playing with a spritely part-time cleaner from Ormskirk after drinking San Miguel in the Azores, but that just resulted in a rather nasty itch.

Tuesday 28 May 2019

Strong and silent type Niall, ‘don’t call me Niall, it’s Neal, just spelt Niall’ McWilliams insists that negotiating for a better stadium deal with Uncle Firoz is not futile. Donning a colander as a helmet and a rusty bin lid as a shield, the veteran of four winding up campaigns will appeal to Uncle F’s special kind of kindness to take a bit of the toxicity out of the relationship.

Wednesday 29 May 2019

The Aylesbury Ashley Young Rob Hall has signed a new one-year contract. Hall has had a wretched couple of years with his football brain writing cheques his knee ligaments won’t cash. KRob is hoping that the witch doctors at the club will have put those woes behind him.

Swansea City are rolling out the big guns in their quest to return to the Premier League. Mr Big Guns himself, in fact. MApp is apparently glaring menacingly at an offer to take over as their manager; look, it’s just his normal face, right?

Thursday 30 May 2019

The original man-bun, Ryan Williams has been called up to the Australian national team. Williams was the break out star of the 2013/14 season on loan from Fulham. If that doesn’t ring any bells then perhaps the words ‘Waddock’ and ‘Animaletes’ will jog your memory. Williams, who was like Ricky Holmes with a more serviceable back, has just left Rotherham, whose relegation has resulted in a call-up for The Digerisoccerdoos’ game against South Korea.

Friday 31 May 2019

The Oxford United Jedward Mark Sykes and Gavin Whyte will be finishing each other’s sentences and doing attention seeking peace signs in Estonia and Belarus after being called up to Northern Ireland’s squad for their Euro 2020 qualifiers. Expect KRob to make a statement about wanting to play them in a kickabout in the park he’s organising for his kids at the same time.

Saturday 1 June 2019

He may have the continental swag of a Shirley Valentine knee trembler, but Premier League sophisticate Chrïstophé Wïldê could be about to return to his alter-ego Chris Wilder. West Brom are considering an audacious move to drag Wilder back to Championship. Apparently he is unhappy with some off-the-field shenanigans at Sheffield United and may be tempted to leave.

George Lawrence’s Summer Shorts – Dyer’s Traits

Monday 20 May 2019

There’s only one question asked for more often by Oxford United fans than ‘What is Danny Philliskirk up to these days?’ and that is; ‘Who the hell is Danny Philliskirk?’. Well, he played four memorable games on loan from Chelsea for us in 2010 scoring no fewer, and no more, than zero goals. Like Sam Smith, but less prolific. Having largely disappeared off the scene for a while, he resurfaced on Sunday to win the FA Trophy with Fylde against Leyton Orient.

Tuesday 21 May 2019

Signing-alert! You can’t judge a book by its cover, but you can judge a signing by its shirt sponsor. Or lack thereof. 17-year-old full-back Kevin Berkoe was announced with all the pomp and circumstance we’ve come to expect from a new signing, though his Singha-less shirt reminds us the cheeky scamp is likely to be a Junior Yellow.

The Oxford United Jedward, Gavin Whyte and Mark Sykes, have been called-up to Northern Ireland’s training camp, where they will be kayaking, whittling and welly wanging, THAT’S WELLY WANGING GAV.

Jonte angle Smith could console himself after being released a couple of weeks ago by nabbing a spot in the Bermuda Gold Cup squad.

Wednesday 22 May 2019

God we miss the football season; the goals, the excitement, the winding up orders. The club that’s had more winding ups than Lawrence Vigouroux in a Chris Maguire factory was due in court to face Uncle Firoz over its unpaid debts. Tiger checked down the back of the sofa and found the cash to pay the debt, so the case was dismissed.

In a tactic straight out of Theresa May’s Brexit playbook of doing the same thing repeatedly in the hope of getting a different result, the club will put aside 20 years of animosity and vitriol and return to Firoz Kassam with a proposal for a better relationship. That’ll work won’t it?

More signings, of sorts, crime fighting Aarons; McCreadie and Heap, have signed six month contracts for the Junior Yellows. Nice one Aaron-squared.

If you’re one of those people who thought that Chris Wilder was the new Sam Allardyce, it turns out you’re wrong. Sam Allardyce is the new Sam Allardyce; the grandson of statistically England’s greatest manager has signed for the Junior Yellows.

Star baker Canice Carrol, whose promising career has been dogged by a period on loan at Swindon Town, has been called up to do substitute fist bumps for the Republic of Ireland Under 21s.

Thursday 23 May 2019

Fulham, who were accidentally promoted to the Premier League, but righted that particular wrong last season by being relegated at the earliest opportunity last season will visit The Kassam in July. This is the game in which our new signing will score his fifth goal of pre-season and his last before Christmas.

Friday 24 May 2019

We’ve hit that point in the summer when you need to have a good rummage around George Lawrence’s Shorts to find anything of marginal interest. In Deep State Oxford United, Des Buckingham, one time Oxford United coach is taking New Zealand to the Under-20 World Cup. Meanwhile, Stoke’s Nathan Collins; a prospect as hot as his dad, former Oxford United Dave was forgettable, is wanted by plucky mid-table Premier League Manchester United.

Saturday 25 May 2019

Truth hoover, The Sun, reports that a black man – former Oxford United midfielder Alex Dyer (M’Lord) – has been appointed as Scotland’s black assistant manager alongside white manager Steve Clarke. The paper, who aren’t racist because some of their best friends have friends who work with some people who are black (not black African black, just normal black, almost white, you might say).

They neglect to mention that White Clarke and Black Dyer have just worked together with great success at Kilmarnock, which might have been an influencing factor. Obviously Black Dyer isn’t quoted in the story because he might say some black things; that honour has gone to White Steve and Kilmarnock’s owner White Billy Bowie.

George Lawrence’s Summer Shorts: Magnetic feels

Monday 13 May 2019

We open the week with an apology; GLS maintains high standards of professionalism and we forgot to mention the escapades of our benchmark professional Daniel Crowley. If you don’t recall, Crowley was a diminutive attacking midfielder who joined us on loan from Arsenal in 2016 – think Jack Payne in Cuban heels. Crowley’s time was cut short due to Michael Appleton’s dark mutterings about his conduct (following a spell at Barnsley, who made dark mutterings about his conduct). His career has been revitalised Jadon Sancho style by moving to Europe – taking his brand of ill discipline to Willem II in the Eredivisie. A couple of weeks ago, Willem II, which is Dutch for Will.I.Am, lost 4-0 to Ajax in the Dutch Cup Final with Crowley coming off the bench for the last half hour.

In other news, lovable Le Petite Boule de Bowling, Alex MacDonald had play-off heartbreak when Mansfield were knocked out by Newport County on penalties. Armani Little – which also describes the only clothes GLS ever finds at Bicester Village – scored in Woking’s play-off final Conference South win; The Millennial Julian Allsopp, Harvey Bradbury, was a late substitute.

Tuesday 14 May 2019

As they say in Game of Thrones; The North Remembers, unfortunately the south forgets. In the hullabaloo about new contracts and released players last week, the name T’ony McMahon was completely overlooked. The whippet worrying full-back remains on our books despite spending a good chunk of the year on loan at Scunthorpe who he helped steer to a comfortable relegation spot last season. KRob doesn’t expect him to return south next year; he doesn’t want to take a “bad signing and make it into a good signing.”; applying his trademark bewildering logic. Some would argue he spent a decent part of last season achieving the exact opposite. Not us, though, not us.

Wednesday 15 May 2019

Exotic foreign coach Chrïstophé Wïldé has beaten Pep Guardiola and other Johnny Foreigners to become the LMA Manager of the Year. The Brexiteers’ choice is responsible for the Oxford careers of legends Tom Newey and Ben Futcher; the award is recognition for Wïldé’s journey from non-league to the Premier League via the second best footballing team in League 2. He says his success won’t change him, although we understand that he’s already started buying Carte Noir coffee and is shopping for some of the more premium brands in Home Bargains.

There was an assistant manager glare-fest at The Hawthorns on Tuesday as John Terry and Michael Appleton faced each other down in their play-off semi-final. Villa sneaked through on penalties, although everyone agreed West Brom took the better footballing spot kicks.

Thursday 16 May 2019

They say what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger; so we can say with a degree of confidence that nobody killed Robbie Cundy during his time at the Kassam. With his career solidly rooted in a single Oxford United appearance against Dagenham and Redbridge in the JPT in 2015, Cundy dropped out of the Football League in 2017 eventually joining Bath City. As a result of his performances as The Romans’ Jake Wright to their Ryan Clarke, who also happens to be the actual Ryan Clarke, Bristol City have signed him up on a two-year contract.

The curse of the play-off semi-finals continue. After Alex MacDonald on Sunday, MApp on Tuesday, The Roofe was not on fire on Wednesday as Kemar sat in the stands watching Leeds get mauled by Derby in their play-off semi-final second leg. Chris Maguire is up tonight in Sunderland v Portsmouth. Uh oh.

Friday 17 May 2019

Johnny Mullins has retired. Mullins was part of the promotion winning team of 2016 before leaving for Luton Town. He was at Cheltenham Town last season, but has chosen to jack it all in. Mullins was known as as The Magnet because he twice scored from a corner in 127 games. At approximately 5 corners a game, that’s a magnetism of 0.2%. Coincidentally, he also has an excellent, if slightly pricey range of kitchens.

Trolly is on his way to Wembley – Charlie Methven’s Sunderland featuring Chris Maguire drew 0-0 with Portsmouth last night sending the Mackems through to face Charlton.

KRob has spoken. Let’s face it this is not an unusual thing, he seems to have spoken continuously since the end of the season. So much so that it’s possible he’s still standing pitchside at Kenilworth Road speaking to an increasingly weary Nathan Cooper. That’s probably not true, although it’s exactly the kind of thing he’d do, isn’t it? His latest ejaculation focuses on his wish list for next season. Nothing remarkable about the list, although he did mention that he was hoping to bring back Wonderfoot Luke Garbutt and ban-magnet Ahmed Kashi and the sloth in the box, Jerome Sinclair.

Saturday 18 May 2019

It’s the day that the whole nation stops, gathers together around the TV set and watches a great annual institution play out in front of them. As well as Eurovision, it’s also the FA Cup final. It’s Watford’s first appearance since 1984 when they were captained by former Oxford United player and now Youth Team Officer Les Taylor. You can read him banging on about it like your drunk uncle here.

Back in the future, Leeds’ capitulation against Derby as raised question about Kemar Roofe. With a year on his contract, speculation is that he’ll be snapped up by a Premier League club this summer. Wait, who’s the cat in the beret with Yvette Carte-Blanche from Allo Allo on his arm? It’s only remodelled bon vivant Chrïstophé Wïldé. He wouldn’t would he?

Sunday 19 May 2019

Our week closes with the news that conscientious objector Callum O’Dowda has joined us the the Republic of Ireland squad. Nothing unusual about that except he hasn’t played for Bristol City since March due to a mystery injury. Always a highly principled young man, O’Dowda and his medical team have searched for a diagnosis. It appears that it could be suffering from a broken contract resulting from an inflated ego with a number of Championship and Premier League teams interested in his signature. All very treatable if you apply a great pile of money to it.

George Lawrence’s Summer Shorts: Xemi-final heartache

Monday 6 May

KRob will need a bit of a sit down after his trip to Luton at the epic conclusion of this season’s blockbuster saga we call: Shambles: Endgame. Shod of his patent black puffa jacket, a fashion statement not seen since Kevin and Perry Go Large, he was quick to condemn Luton fans who celebrated their promotion on Saturday by slinging a smoke bomb into the Oxford end. KRob, ever one to set a good example, would have preferred them to follow his lead on how to conduct oneself during a promotion party by simply smacking someone in the chops.

Tuesday 7 May

Luton Town striker George Moncur apologised for taunting Oxford fans after scoring his team’s first goal on Saturday. Moncur magnanimously acknowledged that the Oxford fans doing nothing wrong, had done nothing wrong. His apology rang somewhat hollow when admitting he just can’t help himself in that ‘Oops! I did it again’ way Britney Spears did when coquettishly describing how she accidentally keeps dressing as a dirty old man’s wet dream.

Meanwhile, if we ever needed a reminder that we’re no longer in the era of John Durnin and Billy Whitehurst, in ‘I beg your pardon?’ news, the club tweeted its collective allegiance to King Maha Vajiralongkorn of Thailand. The newly coronated king recently announced that his security detail would become his new queen; we look forward to Tiger persuading the consort to take the Kassam Stadium into her portfolio and allow The Yellow Ultras banners back into the East Stand.

Wednesday 8 May

Like Cheers or The Simpsons, Oxford United have launched a spin-off show which threatens to be funnier than the original. The latest episode of the new show – The Oxford United Board – aired yesterday following the successful pilot episode; Whose Tax Bill Is It Anyway? and yesterday’s season opener The King and I.

This episode, entitled Filthy Rich and Cat Flap, focussed on the new board, and went something along the lines of something something great fans, something something great city, hey, why not watch this video about how eye wateringly rich Anindya Bakrie is. Classic.

Thursday 9 May

It’s happened! Transfer Christmas! Yes, it’s the day clubs announce, in the most public way possible, which players they’re making redundant. Alan Shearer’s brother Scott, spellcheck’s Fiarce Kelleher, Donegal’s finest Jon O’Bika, Cheltenham Charlie Raglan, Jonte ‘angle’ Smith have all been given the old heave-ho by KRob. They all leave with our best wishes for the… yeah whatever.

Curtis Nelson and The Aylesbury Ashley Young, Rob Hall, have been offered new contracts, Jose’s son, John Mousinho and Son of God, Jack Stephens have had their sentences, sorry, contracts, extended.

Friday 10 May

Like the time GLS ate that four day old paella, Oxford United endured an unfortunate Spanish incident a couple of years ago when it hired Pep Clotet as manager. It all passed in a blur of Dwight Tiendellis, but one little Spanish aberration has been largely forgotten.

For a short while, Xemi Hernandez was going to be our Lionel Messi, but after becoming hacked off by those uniquely British affectations like running and tackling, he ended up back home at Lleida in the Spanish 3rd division. On Tuesday, he decided to bunk off work to see the aforementioned Messi spend 90 minutes looking bewildered in Anfield during Liverpool’s epic comeback in the Champions League. His indiscretion was rumbled when he was seen on TV, resulting in a fine from his promotion seeking club.

Back home, there is no more evocative fixture in our history than Oxford United versus QPR. Yes, the game that’s best known as being the Peter Hucker derby will be re-run as a friendly in July.

Saturday 11 May

KRob is in Scotland looking for players, while others are in France and Spain, apparently there’s a ball playing midfielder in the Spanish third division who may be looking for a new club. Faz has made up a double portion cheese sandwiches for his trip to Ireland, because he won’t touch that funny foreign food they eat.

Back home, when GLS’ creepy uncle comes for Christmas, he shuts his eyes, goes to his happy place and prays the door handle doesn’t click in the dead of the night. That happy place is 2016 when everything was rosey and there was no such thing as Agon Mehmeti. So, on Saturday, GLS got that funny feeling in his trousers watching 2016 alumnus Kemar Roofe smashing in the winner for Leeds in the Championship play-off semi-final against Derby.

Later on, Wondertroll Chris Maguire larruped in the winner for Sunderland against Portsmouth while Max Crocombe was on the bench for plucky underdogs Salford City, as they won promotion to the Football League. It just goes to show that all you need is a dream and a billion pounds to make it in life.