Date:Thursday December 7 2006
Sunderland players get their knackers out in front of each other, film it, and it finds it's way in the Sun.
Shock, horror and scandal on Wearside as four Sunderland players - some of which have left the club - have been caught on film participating in consensual sex with a mystery girl. Wearside is rocked.
Chris Brown, Liam Lawrence, Ben Alnwick and Martin Woods (now at Rotherham) are all involved in the seven-minute camera-phone video, and the Sunderland Echo reports that they may face disciplinary action from a 'fuming' Roy Keane as both he and Niall Quinn begin an 'investigation'.
The club's marketing and communications director, Lesley Callaghan, said on behalf of the board: 'The behaviour of any individual that adversely affects the image or good name of Sunderland Football Club is obviously disappointing, and we will be handling this matter internally.'
Now, please do let me know your views on this, as it seems that I may be the only one who thinks this may be a case of over-exaggerration on the part of the club. Affected the image or good name of the club? I'm sorry but last season's pathetic all time low top-flight tally of 15 embarrasses me more than a couple of lads filming themselves getting laid.
Clearly, as footballers and therefore high profile figures, they probably shouldn't be letting a film of this sort end up in the wrong hands. Indeed that is foolish of them.
But before everyone goes churning out the old 'footballers are a disgrace' argument, let us just remember here that, unlike previous high profile cases to have hit the news regarding footballers and sex acts, they aren't being accused of doing anything wrong. They have not broken any laws.
They have as much right as anyone else to have sex with a consenting adult, aswell as film it as long as all parties are aware.
Clearly, the character and attitude of some of the players participating can be and has been questioned, and considering three of those involved either don't play for the club anymore or are on their way out, it seems that Keano doesn't appreciate their attitude either.
But regardless of their character, with no legal arguments and accusations coming to light as yet, it's fair to say that all The Sun has reported this morning is that some young lads have had sex with a young woman. It really must be slow news for the tabloids these days.
Regardless of whether The Sun should be printing stories like this or not, it is noticeable how the reaction toward a sex scandal of this type changes depending on who the high profile figures are. Pop stars see an upturn in popularity, film stars see sales of their films shooting up, while glamour models rake in money from the magazines wanting photo-shoots. Why is it then, that the public feel the need to disgrace lads who kick a ball about for a living, for doing the same thing?
Brown and co should face a ticking off for being silly little boys, but nothing more.
All Sunderland fans should care about is that he scores more on the pitch.
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