Over the past few years, podcasts have become a popular tool for those who want to consume content on the go and cannot commit to watching the screen, for example when driving.
The same has been true for the consumption of football-related content, with many pundits, news reporters and even former players taking to the medium to increase their fan following.
Peter Crouch’s pod has become quite famous, and demand for The Here We Go podcast by Fabrizio Romano peaks during the transfer window.
Another one is called Undr The Cosh and is run by former players Jon Parkin and Chris Brown and a comedy writer, who is also named Chris Brown.
The podcast focuses on the experiences of professional footballers, and the hosts provide a unique insight into what it’s like to play at the highest level of the game. They share their own stories and invite guests onto the show to discuss their careers and share their own experiences.
The podcast is also known for its sense of humour, and the hosts have a great rapport that makes for entertaining listening. They’re not afraid to poke fun at themselves or each other, and their banter is a big part of the appeal of the show.
Off late, they have hosted people like Tony Pulis, Kieran Trippier, and Stewart Downing among others.
The latest to feature in the series is Danny Simpson, a free agent who started his career at Manchester United and also played for the title-winning Leicester City side. In the two-part episode, Danny lifted the lid on the start of his career, issues with management, the title-winning season and more.
Below we dissect some comments made:
In a somewhat disturbing reveal, the full-back stated that ex-PL referee Mark Clattenburg mentioned to him that he intentionally did not send off a Leicester player as he wanted the Foxes to win the title that season.
I remember Clattenburg, mate. Wow. I think he should have sent someone away. He said something like, ‘I should have sent you there, but I want you to win.’
Dude, that was crazy. That was crazy, you know, I swear to god. Good job there is no VAR but yes.
I think it was Drinky [Danny Drinkwater] actually. It was his second yellow or something and he could’ve easily sent him off but he didn’t.
While Leicester won the title by 10 points so that incident alone was perhaps not a make-or-break for their campaign, it still begs the question is referees are really fair in each game and how much of an influence can they make on sides?
It leads us to question all the decisions Clattenburg made over the years and how many matches did he deliberately impact.
Don’t worry, this one is not as serious as the last one.
After the title-winning season, Ranieri’s men decided to go to Los Angeles for a warm-up tour before the next season begins. Being winners of the league allowed them to play with the likes of PSG on the tour.
And as fate would have it, Simpson ended up on a date with a former Miss California.
Simpson, perhaps fearing ridicule, did not inform others before leaving for the date at a steak restaurant in the city. As per the player, things were not going so well before Cristiano Ronaldo turned up at the same place and surprised him. Ronaldo was on an extended break thanks to him winning the Euros with Portugal.
Simpson and CR7 played together at Manchester United and so, were former teammates, referring to each other as “Simmo” and “Ronny”.
Meets Miss California right, start having dinner and I swear to god it was going w**k. She must’ve been thinking: ‘who’s this lad, I can’t understand what he’s saying he’s from Salford’.
It was painful right, but anyway it weren’t going great and I got a little tap on my shoulder. I’ve looked up and it’s only (Cristiano) Ronaldo. He’s gone ‘Simmo’ and I’ve gone ‘Ronny!’
I’ve got up and given him a little hug and that. Anyway we had a little chat because we’re obviously in pre-season and he’s won the Euros (with Portugal) so he’s on an extended break.
After the interaction with the superstar, Danny sat back down to see his date changed and was suddenly very interested in him.
I’ve sat back down and she’s gone ‘how do you know Ronaldo?’
I’ve played it down and said ‘I used to play with him’ like it was nothing. From that second she completely changed.
Honestly it was literally a completely different person all because Ronaldo said hello to me so cheers Ronny.
Cristiano Ronaldo – making an impact on the pitch, and even off it.
Simpson also revealed that he almost found himself playing in Scotland, for Neil Lennon’s Celtic, a few seasons ago.
Back in the summer of 2019, Lennon was in search of a right back and Brendan Rodgers attempted to broker a deal between Danny and Lennon. The move, however, did not pan out as the club decided to sign Jeremie Frimpong from Manchester City.
It was a bit of a mess that summer (2019), to be honest with you. A couple of things didn’t work out. I was going to sign for Celtic, three years with Neil Lennon all sorted and boxed off.
I was leaving Leicester and Brendan helped with that because he left Celtic and he knew everyone and he said ‘Danny would be great’. It ticked all of my boxes leaving Leicester for Celtic, but it fell through and other clubs had then signed right-backs.
Playing for Sunderland on loan, Simpson revealed why he was dropped by manager Roy Keane on the final day of the season.
The club was flying at the top of the table and Simpson and co. were playing really well. So it was a surprise that Danny did not find himself on the pitch for the 5-0 thrashing of Luton.
I’d played all the games and then me being me, I went out mid-week. I woke up late, jumped up and s**t myself. I got to the Academy of Light late and I’d missed training. It wasn’t a time where I could still go out and train.
Roy was a hard taskmaster and, given Danny had broken a rule, decided to punish him by not including him in the squad.
I begged Roy and he told me that I wouldn’t be in the squad. His rules are his rules and he wasn’t going to bend them for anyone. I asked him to stick me on the bench at least, but he was having none of it.
That’s why in all of the pictures all the lads are in their kits and I’m in my suit.
I should’ve done a John Terry and put my kit on. I look back now at the pictures and it looks like I’m not involved.
What a day it was, watching the lads in the stand. Luton away we won 5-0 to win the league.
You can watch the full episode below.