By | Sunday, January 20th 2013

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“.

"An inch or two either side of the post and that would have been a goal"   Dave Bassett
"That was a inch perfect pass to no one."  Ray Wilkins 
"What do you think of Manchester United's three Rs - Rooney, Ronaldo and van Nistelrooy?"  Rob McCaffrey
"That was the perfect penalty - apart from he missed it."  Rob McCaffrey
"Mark Hughes crossed every I and dotted every T."  Robbie Savage
"If Glenn Hoddle said one word to his team at half-time, it was concentration and focus."  Ron Atkinson
"You can see the ball go past them, or the man, but you'll never see both man and ball go past at the same time. So if the ball goes past, the man won't, or if the man goes past, they'll take the ball."  Ron Atkinson
"Think of a number between 10 and 11."  Ron Atkinson
"Liverpool will think 'we could have won this 2-2'"  Ron Atkinson
"Well, Clive, it's all about the two Ms - movement and positioning."  Ron Atkinson
"And I honestly believe we can go all the way to Wembley - unless somebody knocks us out."  Dave Bassett 
"It would be foolish to believe that automatic promotion is automatic in any way whatsoever."  Dave Bassett 

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