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   Saturday, 4 January, 2003, 11:30 GMT
Crocked fans
BBC Sport Online picks out some of the quirky, offbeat or plain daft stories doing the rounds.


Crocked fans

The chairman of a Romanian football team is becoming so exasperated by the behaviour of the club's fans that he is planning to install a moat around the pitch - filled with crocodiles.

This is not a joke - I think the problem will be solved once and for all

Steaua chairman

Steaua Nicolae Balcescu are in danger of being expelled from the Fourth Division unless they can prevent fans from invading the pitch.

"This is not a joke - we can get crocodiles easy enough and feed them on meat from the local abattoir," said club chairman Alexandra Cringus.

"The ditch is planned to be wide enough that no one could manage to jump over it. Anyone who attempted to do so would have to deal with the crocs.

"I think that the problem of fans running onto the pitch will be solved once and for all."

That may be true - but the next problem Mr Cringus might have to deal with is an unusually high turnover of ball boys.


Good neighbours

Elsewhere in Romania, the national team will no longer have far to go for a team talk.

Nine luxury properties are under construction in Bucharest, each of which will house one of the country's top players.

Romania's football team line up at the 1998 World Cup
Romania's footballers like to stick together

The brilliantly named "Footballers' Street" is already a hit with Milan's Cosmin Contra, one of the first to buy into the scheme.

"It's such a brilliant idea, and from the first moment I heard about it I agreed to it," he said.

"We spend a lot of time together with the national team, so it would be great to be here with all our families."

Cristian Chivu has also bought one of the houses, and Adrian Mutu will join him - provided his request for a bigger garden is granted.


Body blow

Tattoos are never the best way to impress your mates - especially when the inscription in question bears the name of your most-hated rivals.

Arsenal fan Pete White was so confident that his team would win a match against Manchester United that he challenged his United-supporting pal to a bet.

However, his confidence proved to be misplaced and White ended up with a Manchester United tattoo on his chest.

"I was gutted," said White, understandably.

"A bet is a bet - but my missus wasn't very happy."

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
 BBC's reporter in Bucharest Oura Neag
"They want to install a crocodile filled moat"
See also:

02 Jan 03 | Funny Old Game
30 Dec 02 | Funny Old Game
27 Dec 02 | Funny Old Game
20 Dec 02 | Funny Old Game
19 Dec 02 | Funny Old Game
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14 Dec 02 | Funny Old Game
11 Dec 02 | Funny Old Game
13 Dec 02 | Funny Old Game
10 Dec 02 | Funny Old Game
Links to more Funny Old Game stories are at the foot of the page.


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