Photo of David ColemanColemanballs have probably been around since man first learned to speak, but they get their name from David Coleman, pretty much the master of the art, both in what he said, and how often he said them.

They’re most closely – though not exclusively – associated with sport, and sports commentators. Perhaps it’s the speed at which things can happen which so often results in things being said that, if you had the time to think about it, you’d probably have phrased differently.

Nowadays pretty much any subject can become a sub-set of these by adding ‘-balls’ to the end of the subject, just like Watergate spawned a plethora of subjects, perceived to be a cover-up of one form or another, such as Diana-gate, Iraq-gate, etc.

Possibly the most well known Colemanball, and still one of my personal favourites, is a comment made on Pot Black, a televised snooker tournament.

“And for those of you who are watching in black and white, the pink is next to the green”Ted Lowe

Ted Lowe was almost as prolific as David Coleman when it came to making on-air gaffes. He once told viewers that one player, struggling to rest one leg on the edge of the table in order to reach a long shot, “is getting on a bit and is having trouble getting his leg over“.

"Arsenal are streets ahead of everyone in this league and Manchester United are up there with them."  Craig Bellamy 
"We had two shots saved off the line by the post."  Craig Brown
"I would not be bothered if we lost every game as long as we won the league."  Mark Viduka 
"I spent four indifferent years at Goodison Park, but they were great years"  Martin Hodge
"Robbie Keane's not the second choice, he's my first choice. But Jermain Defoe is as well."  Martin Jol
"The best thing for them to do (Ireland) is to stay at 0-0 until they score the goal."  Martin O’Neill
"You're on your own out there with ten mates."   Michael Owen
"I was feeling as sick as the proverbial donkey."  Mick McCarthy
"No regrets, none at all. My only regret is that we went out on penalties. That’s my only regret but no, no regrets."  Mick McCarthy 
"He has got his tactics wrong tactically."  Mick Quinn
"The underdogs will start favourites for this match."  Craig Brown 
"An inch or two either side of the post and that would have been a goal"   Dave Bassett