Jermaine Jenas avoids physical attack before FA Cup tie

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Top football analyst Jermaine Jenas was saved from being physically attacked when TV security staff stepped in before the FA Cup tie between Nottingham Forest and Arsenal.

Jenas was walking between the BT Sport compound and his broadcasting position when he was confronted on Forest’s City Ground concourse by a hostile supporter.

Fortunately, BT Sport had increased protection around their pundits for the match, which helped prevent an ugly incident. A BT spokeswoman said it was not known which team Jenas’s assailant supported and he quickly disappeared.

Jenas played for Tottenham, Arsenal’s arch-rivals, from 2005 to 2013 before carving a second career as a respected pundit.

Jermaine Jenas (C) avoided attack before the Nottingham Forest and Arsenal FA Cup match

Jermaine Jenas (C) avoided attack before the Nottingham Forest and Arsenal FA Cup match

The average live viewing figure for BT Sport’s coverage of the Ashes was a disappointing 84,000 — not helped by the dull final Test in Sydney attracting an average of just 69,000 overnight viewers. 

A BT spokeswoman said the figures would be boosted by those watching highlights on their app and website. But if Sky don’t improve on BT’s numbers when they show England’s upcoming tour of New Zealand, cricket has a serious problem.

In light of her central role in the sexism saga that led to Richard Keys and Andy Gray leaving Sky Sports in 2011, it was unfortunate that the team sheet for the Huddersfield v Burnley game listed the assistant referee as Mr Sian Massey. 

There was disquiet at the Rugby Writers’ annual dinner in London this week over Owen Farrell, the super professional talisman of English rugby, failing to appear in person or via video link to collect the main award. But it is understood Farrell wasn’t able to attend for medical reasons.

Owen Farrell failed to collect the main award at the Rugby Writers’ annual dinner in London

Owen Farrell failed to collect the main award at the Rugby Writers’ annual dinner in London

The surprise appointment on Thursday of former Vodafone UK boss Guy Laurence as Chelsea chief executive looks to put pressure on commercial director Chris Townsend. After all, chairman Bruce Buck heralded Laurence’s arrival by highlighting the role he will play leading the commercial operation.

But Chelsea insist that Townsend is doing a ‘fantastic job’ and Laurence was selected after a long recruitment process because the club need a CEO again after three years without one since Ron Gourlay departed.

Laurence’s football background is limited to him being a director of Maple Leaf Sport & Entertainment, who own Major League Soccer’s Toronto United.

Former Vodafone UK boss Guy Laurence has been unveiled as the new Chelsea chief executive

Former Vodafone UK boss Guy Laurence has been unveiled as the new Chelsea chief executive

It is strange that Yorkshire captain Gary Ballance has been dumped from England’s Test squad for the New Zealand tour when he did not play at all in the Ashes. 

It suggests Ballance joins Ben Duckett in being made an easy scapegoat for the squad’s drinking exploits early in the tour. None of the batsmen who played in the 4-0 Ashes humiliation have been axed. 

Icy blast for Chapman   

The viewing public have had the last word on ITV Racing irritant Matt Chapman, with the reaction to his first Dancing on Ice commentary being so negative that he has been axed after one show. Chapman’s over-exuberant style bombed so badly that he has been paid up for the series following a short negotiation with his agent Peter Burrell.

ITV Racing continue to embrace Chapman’s style and he will be on trophy-presentation duty again this year — although probably not for the Derby, having been stood down by Epsom after introducing Oaks-winning trainer John Gosden as ‘Johnny G’.

ITV Racing irritant Matt Chapman has been axed from Dancing on Ice after just one show

ITV Racing irritant Matt Chapman has been axed from Dancing on Ice after just one show

Triple S, the agency that represents Wayne Rooney and Harry Maguire, have acquired the North West-based celebrity events company Julie Perry, who are best known for organising footballers’ weddings — including the Rooneys’ big day in 2008. 



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