‘To put it mildly, he’s a complete loon’

IAN COLE’s weekly round-up of sporting quotes laments Rio Ferdinand’s injury, regrets Laura Robson’s “slut” remarks and celebrates the taciturn Ryan Moore’s Derby-Oaks double

“We have to pray. Help us. No more. It is the curse of being captain. It could not have been much worse on our first day” Fabio Capello, the England manager, on losing his captain, Rio Ferdinand, with a knee ligament injury on the first day of World Cup training in South Africa.

“One minute I’m trying to arrange my holiday, then I get a call asking me if I’ve already gone on holiday…then I get a call saying I’ll be picked up in an hour” Michael Dawson on a whirlwind three days in which he was left out of Capello’s final 23 for the World Cup and then rushed out to South Africa to replace Ferdinand.

“He was dreaming of lifting that World Cup above his head and had a great chance to do so. Now he may never play in one again. I signed him as a kid and I despair for him. Even in this game it doesn’t get more cruel than this” Harry Redknapp on Ferdinand.

“He said he was sorry but I hadn’t made the squad. I wanted to ask him why, but didn’t get the chance. He said I would be a big part of his plans for the European Championships in 2012, and that was it” Theo Walcott

“Jose Mourinho said the Champions League final was bigger than the World Cup. He may be the ‘Special One’, but he doesn’t understand what is really special in football” Sir Geoff Hurst

“If he didn’t have the appetite for the game he wouldn’t be at Anfield every week, week in, week out. Maybe now is the time he can turn the tide, make sure everything gets on track, take the club to where it should be” Bruce Grobbelaar heads the list of Liverpool old boys calling for Kenny Dalglish to replace the departed Rafa Benitez as manager.

“Ryan is paid to be a jockey, not to laugh or joke or even entertain. I wouldn’t want him to punch the air when he passes the post or do a flying dismount. In fact, I’d be annoyed if he did” Gary Moore on his monosyllabic champion jockey son, Ryan, who did the Derby-Oaks double on Workforce, pictured above, and Snow Fairy.

“Some of the tennis girls, they’re sluts. They go with every guy and make such a bad name for themselves – and you don’t want to be known for stuff like that. You want to be more discreet” Laura Robson, ever so slightly indiscreet in an interview in Vogue.

“She is 16. I remember when I was 16 I did and said some really silly things and I was glad there were no journalists around. We’ve all done it, it’s part of developing as a professional. The players will laugh about it because of Laura’s age” Elena Baltacha, British women’s tennis No1, on Robson.

“All good things come to an end. It was a great streak and I’m proud of it. Now I’ll just have to get another streak going” Roger Federer’s defeat to Robin Soderling in the French Open ends a run of 23 successive Grand Slam semi-final appearances.

“I thought I was enthusiastic until I met this bloke. To put it mildly, he’s a complete loon” Graeme Swann, joker and self-confessed nutter of the England cricket team, finds a rival in Yorkshire’s newly capped fast bowler Ajmal Shahzad.

“We wanted to be bold, northern and to make a statement” Jim Cumbes, the Lancashire chief executive, responds to criticism of The Point, a huge red conference centre shaped like a shipping container which has sprung up beside the elegant Victorian pavilion at Old Trafford.

“I honestly feel that between now and the next World Cup could be a real golden age for Welsh rugby with the regions doing well and the national team doing well” Warren Gatland, the Wales coach, before his side was narrowly beaten at home by world champions South Africa’s weakened team.

SJA MEMBERS: Make sure your profile details are up to date in the 2011 SJA Yearbook by clicking here