“People said I’m a legend, but I don’t look at it like that”

Usain Bolt on legends, LaShawn Merritt’s Johnson, Lord Coe on geography, Sir Alex Ferguson on the FA, Ally McCoist on Scottish football, Fred Couples on Tiger Woods, and Paul Nixon on retirement: IAN COLE’s quotes of the sports and journalism week

Usain Bolt: legend, but not in the way he intended

“I am extremely disappointed not to have had the chance to defend my title due to the false start” Usain Bolt‘s somewhat clipped statement after the final of the 100m at the world championships in Daegu.

“This world championships is going to be the first step to becoming a legend. You have to take that first step before you can take the second, which will be the Olympics. A lot of people have said I’m a legend now, but I don’t look at it like that” Bolt, speaking a couple of days before his infamous 100m final.

“I knew I would challenge Bolt one day but I did not expect it today. I am traumatised. I am very sad for Usain but at the same time I am enjoying this very much” Yohan Blake, Bolt’s Jamaica team mate and training partner, is crowned world champion after Bolt is disqualified.

“Today is not yesterday and tomorrow is not today” Vivian Cheruiyot, new world champion, goes all profound when asked to explain Kenya’s dominance in the women’s distance events, after cleansweeps in her race, the 10,000m, and the marathon in Daegu.

“With 30m to go I thought I had it. I looked at the screen and there was enough of a gap. I said to myself ‘Just hold it’. The next thing, someone was there and my legs just didn’t have it. I didn’t have a clue about the winner. I’ve not seen him all year” Mo Farah, caught in the last few strides of the world championships 10,000m by Ibrahim Jelian, whose “meticulous” preparation appears not to have included checking out the Ethiopian team.

“Yes, that’s right, all our players seem to go down. Others don’t go down. It’s good to be aware of this difference of opinion” Andre Villas-Boas, the Chelsea manager, unimpressed withsuggestions that his players are unique in trying to con referees.

“He won the Europeans, but you have to be realistic, that was without the Africans” Lord Coe makes a geographical statement of the bleedin’ obvious when analysing the progress made by world 10,000m silver medallist Mo Farah.

“The FA may realise who has produced more players for their country than any club in the world. Maybe they will get some joy from it and realise how important we are to England instead of treating us like shit” Sir Alex Ferguson ends his seven-year boycott of speaking to the BBC with a broadside for the FA.

“As a manager I’ve played four and lost four in the Carlsberg Cup, or whatever it is called” Roy Hodgson confirms that the Carling Cup isn’t high on West Brom’s priorities.

“I don’t think people care about the competition and you’ve got to look at why” Neil Warnock, who fielded a second string QPR side that was beaten to Rochdale.

“I would never disrespect Exeter or the Carling Cup and if you have that respect for other people, maybe you’ll earn it back from them. We are Liverpool Football Club and we want to win every game we play” Kenny Dalglish, who has a slightly larger squad available to him than WBA or QPR.

“There is no reason for me to wait till September 26 to pick Tiger. He’s the best player in the world forever” Fred Couples, captain of the US’s Presidents Cup team, having not read the world rankings lately. Woods is world No38.

“Merritt said the steroid was contained in a ‘penis enlargement product’ he bought over the counter. Michael Johnson’s heir was trying to grow his Johnson!” Brian O’Connor, in the Irish Times, tries to park his scepticism, and fails, over the reduced steroids ban for defending 400m world champion LaShawn Merritt.

Ally McCoist: he used to be funnier on Question of Sport

“This is as low as I can remember. It’s a sore night for Scottish football, but we’ll bounce back. We’ll regroup, that’s life. It’s all about how you handle it and we’ll handle it all right” Ally McCoist, Rangers manager, after a qualifying round aggregate defeat to Maribor of Slovenia leaves Scotland out of Europe, before the end of August.

“The defeat is painful. I feel humiliated. But quitting has never entered my mind. How much of the blame is mine? As much as you want it to be. The time for working that out is at the end of the season” Arsene Wenger, after Arsenal lose 8-2 at Manchester United.

“His head’s been turned. It’s probably been turned again last night. We all know what goes on in the game. Something happened last night, I don’t know what. He was okay to play yesterday morning and then all of a sudden he wasn’t” Harry Redknapp, Spurs manager, sees Chelsea target Luca Modric last 65 minutes of a 5-1 home defeat to Manchester City.

“A section of supporters once said Tizz didn’t have enough passion because he doesn’t run up the touchline like a demented monkey. Tizz answered that he found it hard to think when he was shouting and screaming. Great answer. When he moves on I’ve got an advert written to seek applications for his successor. It reads: ‘We need a manager/magician’” Steve Perryman, director of football at Exeter City, backs manager Paul Tisdale despite a 3-1 Carling Cup defeat to Liverpool.

“He told us we played in the Premier League against Manchester City and we should remember that. Then he said we’d gone to Shrewsbury in the Carling Cup and lost – and we should make sure we told our grandchildren about that too” Leon Britton of Swansea City on manager Brendan Rodgers’ psychology of a Carling Cup defeat at League Two Shrewsbury.

“One of Ferguson’s most telling accomplishments – it may well be his greatest asset – is his ability to frighten people. Much of the media and most of his fellow managers are intimidated by the sheer ferocity of his personality. Nothing goes unchallenged, no insult unavenged. Given the intensity of his workload and the weight of his responsibilities we wonder at his appetite for settling trivial slights. Yet it remains trenchantly unsated” Patrick Collins in the Mail on Sunday, on Sir Alex Ferguson’s return to BBC airwaves.

“I was speaking to him at Arsenal. I said ‘I prefer you as a player rather than a writer’. He smiled and then scored a goal” Fabio Capello, England manager, makes Theo Walcott aware he has read the Arsenal player’s criticism of the England camp.

“I had a poster above my bed of Didier. I had two Drogba shirts – one to sleep in and one to wear when I played with my friends. Didier is like a big brother. He can prepare me for the job” Romelu Lukaku, Chelsea’s teenage newcomer, meets his idol, Didier Drogba.

Paul Nixon: no more squat thrusts for him

“I’m proud of being England captain and my family are very proud of me. I could never have imagined this would happen when I captained Ireland Under-19 against England. I think it’s a huge compliment to Irish cricket” Eoin Morgan, born and raised in Dublin, leads out England for a one-day international against Ireland at Clontarf.

“It’s time to go because my body won’t let my mind do what it wants any more. I only keep wicket in Twenty20 these days which means I do 120 squats in a game. The day after each match I come down the stairs sideways and I’ve got a three-year-old daughter who I want to be able to run around with” Paul Nixon quits county cricket at 40 with the Twenty20 trophy under his arm after an outstanding 20-year career as Leicestershire wicketkeeper-batsman.

“We are in a good place going to the World Cup. I am content with everything and have an enthusiasm and excitement I have never had before” Jonny Wilkinson heads for his third World Cup after England’s 20-9 warm-up win over Ireland.

“Of all the people it could have happened to, it had to be me, the slow starter in the 400. I’m broken, you can all see I’m broken. I’ve nothing else to say” Christine Ohuruogu, Olympic champion, is disqualified after a false start in the world championships.

“I’m in regular contact with Phillips’s coach, who is employed by me, his physiotherapist, who is employed by me, and his biomechanist, who is employed by me. So we know what’s going on. I’m sure that after the London Games you will not be asking how I get on with certain athletes. You will say ‘Show me the medals’” Charles van Commenee, head coach of UK athletics, as his row with triple jump world champion Phillips Idowu rumbles into South Korea.

“The headlines in the end will be about whether I’ve won a gold medal, not about whether Charles and I speak” Phillips Idowu.

“It was my fault today, 100 per cent. I didn’t give Kobayashi enough room. Apologies to Kamal and my team. They deserve better from me” Lewis Hamilton crashes out of the Belgian GP after misjudging an overtaking move.


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