ITV and the art of awful football commentary

It was a real pleasure to watch the Champions League match on SKY Sports tonight having had to put up with the dreadful ITV during what was a pulsating match between Liverpool and Arsenal last night.

People might like to moan about footballers and the theatrics, but ITV lost all sense of proportion last night and showed a degree of bias of have not heard before and sadly set a very poor example to anyone watching regarding the way the game should be played.

In the first instance, it was hardly even handed to have an ex Liverpool player as part of the commentary team, which instantly showed a degree of bias on ITV's part, but what was evident throughout was a level of support for Liverpool which was sometimes blatant rather than hidden.

This ITV bias became obvious in the last few minutes when Arsenal equalised to make it 2-2. Arsenal's second goal was astonishingly good with Theo Walcott beating half the Liverpool team, running 60 yards and squaring the ball for a simple tap in for Adebayor. My expectation was that ITV might eulogise about the goal. Instead we were told that the reason for the goal was an error by a Liverpool player who was "weak" because he "should have brought Walcott down by fouling him deliberately on the half way line" and the Liverpool player should have "taken a yellow card for the team".

What a dreadful message ITV's commentary team was putting across for the publi at large, and for anyone children watching whatever sort of example does this set ?

The fact that Liverpool scored two minutes later from what to me seemed a dodgy penalty (which ITV had no doubts about despite the replays showing it to be not clear cut), seemed to send ITV in to a further spin referring to the Liverpool penalty as " a fairytale goal". It was a dodgy penalty, not a fairytale goal, but ITV seemed so caught up in supporting Liverpool that they lost the objectivity that was required.

I do expect British TV to show some bias towards British teams when they are playing foreign teams. this is only natural as most of their viewers will be wanting the British team to win. But when two British teams are playing each other you expect even handed objectivity, not lessons on how one team should have kicked a player of the pitch and eulogies about one team as opposed to the other team.


Grendel said...

Fair comments really but in addition,

A) That's why I will always listen to the Radio 5 commentary whilst watching games.

B) How come that was a penalty when a virtually identical infraction by a Liverpool player went unpunished at 'Dubaibury' during the first leg.

Grendel the miserable Goonerxxx

Johnny Norfolk said...

I thought the comments were fair and balanced, and the better team won on the night.The comments reflected the better teams performance. Thats how I saw it as a person who is not a supporter of football.

Edis said...

Totally agree, it was an appaling comment complaining about the lack of a so-called professional foul.

I also hate the way players are praised for'winning a penalty'.

I am a grumpy old man in training I suppose.


Anonymous said...

It speaks volumes about some people that they feel that hacking a player down on the halfway line is a "fair and balanced" thing to say.

Mr J Norfolk, shame on you.

Johnny Norfolk said...

Shame on you for being anonymous.

Anonymous said...

Considering you hide your profile, that is some hypocrisy.