23 October 2018   |  Last Updated 28-11-2014 04:08

      Thursday 27, November 2014

      BLOG: Monday Night Football team tackling film

      Ed Chamberlin's tip for PFA Player of the Year 14-15

      With Claudia Winkleman replaced by the more scholarly Ed Chamberlin, will Monday Night Football and Film ever be the same again. Ben Reese tackles the question...


      "They were nice and compact throughout.”


      “I agree Nev, decent solid shape about them.”


      You might be forgiven for wrongly identifying the source of this exchange. Surely, it’s from any of the standard 17 hour chow-down that follow a Monday night Premier League game on Sky Sports

      1. It’s just Neville and Carragher talking formations right? Partly true…


      Formations, yes. Monday Night Football, no. The units in question were not assembled in Cobham or Carrington…but in Mordor. Sky’s football analysts are in fact reviewing the shape of cohesive battle phalanxes assumed by goblin warriors; as the lay siege to the Lonely Mountain in The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies. The context: Film 2015 With Ed Chamberlin.


      Critics Barry Norman and Mark Kermode having been put out to pasture, the BBC pull off a major coup in replacing them with renowned cinephiles; Jamie Carragher and Gary Neville .


      The charming Claudia Winkleman, deemed too lightweight by producers – an experiment lasting four years too long – has been replaced by the more scholarly Ed Chamberlin. Indeed, such is the depth of Chamberlin's movie-going knowledge, he recently likened Carragher and Neville to 21 Jump Street's hapless cops Jonah Hill and Chaning Tatum. Evidently the Sky pundits have much in common with high-school drugs busters.


      With only room for two on the BBC’s reviewers’ sofa, Graeme Souness will be bitter at failing to land himself a job on Film. He is after all, an avid movie-goer.


      After being outnumbered by fellow pundits on his ‘Wayne Rooney all-time great?’ stance, Souness was heard spouting dissent when leaving Celtic Park last Tuesday, “Sod this heap of bol****s, I cannee wait to get out of this sh** heap. Somebody get me a cab to Ibrox..nay, Imax, somebody get me a cab to an Imax”, yelled the former Liverpool captain.


      Chamberlin was an obvious choice for anchor and accordingly the reviewer spaces were filled by his MNF cronies. Why obvious? Well, anyone familiar with the post-match advertising shenanigans on MNF, will have seen Ed plugging Sky Movie’s late-night fodder. This week he did a splendid job of promoting ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ , the latest in a line of fantastical titles encroaching into our hard-earned match analysis.

      What makes the whole thing so utterly preposterous is that Chamberlin recites a brief preview for these films. Completely incongrous and shamefully misjudged, this is a faux pas on Sky’s behalf.


      Viewers tune in to see Mr Chamberlin coaxing the best from the thoroughbread colts flanking him, not reeling off sci-fi plot synopses. Fortunately, Chamberlin seemed only too aware of the ridiculous state of affairs this week and wryly referred to Carragher and Neville as ‘Guardians of the touch screen’.

      As stated, Chamberlin may be harbouring some hitherto unheralded film expertise. He has after all recorded a My Movies Playlist for Sky. Not being a Sky Movies subscriber, this reporter was regrettably unable to access this no doubt highly enlightening run-down.

      It has long been common practice for sport presenters to promote upcoming events/fixtures in all areas of sport. Our brains can deal with this Sky. However, throw wormholes, space pirates and genetically modified racoons  into the mix and we get confused. A simple plea Sky. Please refrain from force-feeding the honest football fan with movie fayre. It severly upsets his/her stomach and certainly addles their sense of time, place and identity.

      Ed Chamberlin’s Top 10 Movies of all time (in no particular order)


      1. When Saturday Comes

      2. Purely Belter

      3. Zidane: A 21st Century Portrait

      4. Green Street

      5. Soccer Dog: European Cup

      6. The Damned United

      7. Dr Zhivago

      8. The Miracle of Bern

      9. Bedknobs and Broomsticks

      10. Guardians of the Galaxy

      By Ben Reese