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  Monday, 3 February, 2003, 13:58 GMT
Sunderland's slack cats
BBC Sport Online columnist Derek 'Robbo' Robson on the farcical events at Sunderland, Terry Venables, Takaloo and poker.

Wilko and Out

It's goodnight from the Stadium of Light. And quite right, your team's been s***e.

The three own goals on Saturday just about summed it up.

You might say it was hard luck, but when your leading scorer in the Premiership and the bloke you bought to get you a few are tucking them past your own keeper, you've got to ask why they were facing the wrong end in the first place.

Howarfd Wilkinson
Taxi for Proctor!

I have to say I'd have been chucking me bovril at the nearest red and white shirt, so the Mexican wave the home fans summoned up was pretty amazing.

But all you Wearsiders knew when Murray hired that ray of sunshine Wilko that you'd end up having to entertain yourselves on a Saturday afternoon.

Next weekend, I'd get the dominoes out and head for the local.

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The Plumstead Poker Machine

I was surprised to hear that Steve Davis had got to the final of some poker match or other. But we shouldn't be shocked, should we really?

Steve Davis
Davis is a man of many talents

His face never gave much away at the snooker table, either. A raised eyebrow, a sip of water and a sit down - that was all he could manage. He was the Roger Moore of snooker.

I'm not much of a poker man meself. Oh, I like the smoke-filled rooms and the sound of chips mounting up in the centre of the table.

(I suppose one day we'll play for cash but for now we play for chips).

It's mainly cos the missus always insist on joining in after a rum and coke.

She'll say things like "What's a full house again?" - and when we tell she grins like a three-year-old and we all fold, 'cos we know she's won.

And if she's had too many rum and cokes you have to remind her that in stud poker you can keep your top on. Have I said too much?

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Patronising Glenn

Gerard Houllier, Glenn Roeder and Phil Thompson
Don't listen to them, Glenn!

Man U beat 'em 6-0, Fergie has a word with Roeder. Liverpool beat 'em 3-0, Houllier has word with Roeder.

Both of them think he's a nice bloke so they offer some advice. Don't you two prats realise that the reason he needs all this counselling is 'cos your team just stuffed his!

Talk about rubbing it in.

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Give That Man A Passport

He's lived here since he was five, he wants to fight for Britain and he calls Kent his home.

And let's face it, if that's the garden of England, I don't want even want to look in the garage.

I hear Scarborough's nice this time of year

So give Takaloo a passport. So what if he sounds like a mixture of spinach and potato? Or a portable bog? He's the WBU champ, for God's sake!

(By the by, where did the WBU spring up from? Honestly, these days all you have to do is think of a letter that hasn't been used yet and you've got your own boxing board of control).

Any road, back to Takaloo - the poor lamb says he can't even leave the country to take his wife and kids on a little holiday.

You don't need to leave the country to have a holiday though, Taka!

Scarborough, Whitby, Saltburn - a warm welcome is guaranteed from all. All right warm's not the right word, but the pies are always good.

Lamentable Leeds

Terry Venables
The Barrow Boy done good

Things have come to a pretty pass when the only bloke who seems to be coming out of a crisis with any honour whatsoever is the original dodgy geezer, the Barrow Boy Tel.

I know he wasn't a fan of the transfer window but he must be grateful for it now.

If there'd have been another week of it, he'd have had no-one left at the club.

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