Bramble-gate manager claims Robbie Earle defence

FCT manager at the auction
Pantomime villain: FCT manager fingered at auction

THE MAN at the centre of an illegal bidding scandal that rocked the Kenna this week has claimed he had been ‘naive’.

At Tuesday night’s Emmanuel Olisadebe auction ahead of the tournament in Poland and Ukraine, the FC Testiculadewland manager was discovered to be deliberately trying to buy a second French player, Karim Benzema.

Under auction rules, the FCT manager would invoke the Titus Bramble Ruling – forfeiting Franck Ribery, the most expensive of his two Frenchmen.

It is thought the manager was attempting to free up funds late in the auction.

The practice, which has come to be known as ‘tactical Brambling’, caused outrage among fellow managers, who traditionally view the forfeit procedure as a punitive measure.

In a leaked email to Kenna HQ, the FCT manager said: “I was a bit naive, I honestly thought it’d be an acceptable thing to do at the time.

It was only my second auction and I’d seen Brambles flying here, there and everywhere. I thought if you were willing to take the Bramble then people would be okay with it.”

The reasoning is similar to that of Robbie Earle, who was implicated in a ticketing scandal at the 2010 World Cup.

The former Wimbledon striker claimed he’d been ‘naive’ when tickets he’d given to a friend ended up being used in a ambush marketing stunt at the group match between Denmark and Holland.

As a result, Earle lost his job at ITV Sport. The fate of the FCT manager hangs in the balance.

The Bramble player in his team for the forfeit Ribery, Alexandros Tziolis, has been cut from the Greek squad due to ample defensive-midfield cover.

Vote now!

“We’ve received an appeal from FC Testiculadew to replace the bubble and squeak. We’ve decided to put it to a vote. Managers are invited to choose what the fate of FCT should be,” read an official league statement.

Managers can vote below. The results will be confidential until they are revealed on Wednesday (6 June).

[polldaddy poll=6277059]

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Auction marred by ‘unfit conduct’

Player list
Glass empty: moral bankruptcy marred proceedings

AN ETHICS committee is to be formed at Kenna HQ after last night’s controversial Olisadebe auction.

Two incidents of note relating to the Titus Bramble Ruling, where a manager forfeits an illegal player, caused heated confrontation, with the Horn of Africa manger threatening to resign halfway through proceedings.

Later in the evening, the FC Testiculadewland boss was found to be engaged in ‘tactical Brambling’ – knowingly attempting to buy an illegal player to free up funds from the one he would forfeit.

Despite working for on the case for almost 24 hours, Scotland Yard are still scratching their heads as to just where the spirit of Kenna has disappeared.

“Two incidents of note at the auction betrayed some truly unfit conduct from managers. The Kenna has always been a place of genteel manners and this type of histrionic or devious behaviour will  not be tolerated,” said the Chairman in an official league statement.

“We will form a Kenna Ethics Committee to establish a managers’ code of conduct. We’re also looking to develop a ‘fit and proper persons test’, although looking around the table last night we shouldn’t make it too difficult,” continued the Chairman, who definitely didn’t fall asleep on the bus home and wake up in Enfield.

Full teams will be published soon.

Bunch of twits

Fag and handjob tweet
Top tweet: Despite almost walking out over it, The Horn of Africa loses Robben on a Bramble

Broadcasting the auction live on Twitter, the Kenna gained a grand total of two new followers.

“Controversy aside, we think the rest of the auction went rather well,” said the Chairman.

“Although interaction with the online community was limited, the tweets do provide an excellent chronicle of the evening.”

Live broadcasting the summer auction is to be decided pending review.

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Live auction tonight at 7pm: the 16 teams competing

Olisadebe signing
Phoenix from the flames: Kenna HQ recreate the moment Emmanuel Olisadebe is declared eligible to represent the country after the Polish FA rush through his immigration paperwork at breakneck speed

THE WAITING is over and the day has come for 16 intrepid managers to take part in the very first fantasy football auction to be broadcast live on Twitter.

At 7pm tonight, in a pub not far from Elephant & Castle tube station in south London, the first player will be introduced to the bidding for the 2012 Emmanuel Olisadebe European Cup.

From there the auction will roll on until every team contains a goalkeeper, four defenders, four midfielders and two strikers – each of the 11 players hailing from a different nation.

Every manager will be hoping for glory and planning to avoid ignominy.

“The Olisabdebe promises to be the best auction yet. When a group of gentlemen met for the first ever auction seven years ago, none of them ever thought it would reach these heights. I wish every manager the best of luck,” said the Chairman.

Follow the auction live on Twitter @jeffkennaleague or #eurosauction on Tuesday 29 May from 7pm (BST).

The 16 managers competing for glory

A brief profile of each competitor can be found below, as well as the teams that failed to qualify and the final standings from the 2010 Doctor Khumalo World Cup.

1. Make Party (Eng) – Having won in South Africa two years ago at the helm of Nelson’s Column, the Make Party manager has the pedigree of international success. Claims this season’s rocky domestic form with Vasco De Beauvoir was down to it being a transitional year.

2. Chernobyl Forlov (Eng) – Came a very close second in 2010 managing South Afrikaans are Rasc1st Santander, and still in the Zurich appeal courts after the Fifa Technical Committee awarded every goal of the tournament to Nelson’s Column midfielder Wesley Sneijder. Will be looking to get one over Make Party. Disappointing in the league this season managing Hairy Fadjeetas.

3. Aston Birra (Cat) – Took a sabbatical from the domestic game this year to keep fresh for the summer. Hoping to better his run out in the Khumalo where his team Nottingham Miedo came a respectable third.

4. Just Put Warsaw (Cat) – Another Catalan doing well in 2010, come fourth with Where’s MaraVilla? Preparations marred by stuttering league campaign with Just Put Carles and Catalan public spat.

5. Bwing on the Euwos (Wal) – A consistent performer at domestic level, with one league title to his name managing Young Boys, the Welshman is yet to win silverware at international level. Mid-table finish at the helm of Paul Gadd’s U16s in 2010.

6. Utoya Island XI (Wal) – A mid-table manager at every level. Got the best of our Robin van Persie in the league at Judean Peoples’ Front this season. Resemblance to Anders Breivik unhelpful.

7. Just FEMEN (Sco) – Disastrous league campaign this season led to her sacking from Polonia Forsyth. Led Anyone But England in disappointing 2010 tournament. Needs to pull her kni… socks up.

8. Welease Wio! (Eng) – Also sacked earlier this month for leading The Dan Terry Seduction to relegation. Provided one of the comedy highlights of the 2010 auction by introducing Scott Chipperfield to the bidding. Probably reading up on useful fly halves, hurdlers and wicketkeeper-batsmen, if reading up at all.

9. The Horn of Africa (Som) – Growing tired of major tournaments hosted by countries with rac1st tendencies. Hopes to better his 2010 performance at the helm of RIP MJ. Impressive domestic season with Spartak Mogadishu.

10. Hoodyanika Bolokov (Eng) – Won the Claudio Caniggia 2006 World Cup, although its validity recently brought into question. Calamitous beginnings to 2010 when he bought an injured Samir Nasri at auction. Pikey Scum team finished mid-table this season.

11. Everybody Gdansk Now (Eng) – After seven years still looking for a trophy at any level. Led Newington Reds to third place in the league this season.

The following managers are all making their international debut

12. Testiculadewland (Eng) – Was so successful in his debut campaign with FC Testiculadew that an official league inquiry was launched two months before the end of the season. Can he become the second ever manager to win the triple?

13. Bunga Bunga Euro Tour (Eng) – Domestic cup runner up this season in charge of Headless Chickens.

14. Every Pole’s a Goal (Wal) – Mid-table domestic finish with Bala Rinas.

15. Doing the Poznan (Eng) – Mid-table domestic finish with Lurliners.

16. The Eurosceptics (Eng) – Mid-table domestic finish with Dynamo Charlton.

The following teams failed to qualify for the tournament, in most cases for legal reasons:

  • Dnieper’s Creepers
  • Tatry Sauce
  • The Don
  • Azov Now
  • Right in the Donets
  • S3x Slavs
  • It’s Bloody Baltic
  • Soviet Terror Balls
  • Black Sea Monsters
  • The Cleaners from Work
  • Lebensraum
  • Do you mind if I Katyń?
  • Do you mind if I Krakow?
  • Lech Kaczyński’s Flying Circus
  • Concentration Champs
  • Kill Howard Webb

2010 Doctor Khumalo World Cup – final standings

2010 Khumalo World Cup - final standings



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Probably the worst team at Euro 2012

Special bus
All aboard the special bus: Titus Bramble XV named

STEWART Downing, Andy Carroll and Gareth Barry have all been earmarked as amongst the most average players taking part in the upcoming Emmanuel Olisadebe European Cup.

The three Englishmen join 12 others from across the continent to make up the Titus Bramble XV (full line up below).

All are expected to have little or no impact on the tournament, and will be employed as forfeit players for managers breaking rules in tomorrow night’s auction, due to be broadcast live on Twitter from 7pm.

“We’re delighted to announce the Titus Bramble XV for the auction, including, for the first time ever, two honourary VIP selections from the host nations. These fifteen players will replace anyone forfeit tomorrow night,” said the Chairman, before being escorted into a waiting car by sharp-suited, severe-looking men from the Vatican.

Titus Bramble XV


Grzegorsz Sandomierski (Pol) – Will have an excellent view of proceedings from the bench.


Behrang Safari (Swe) – A good defender relies on clean sheets and clean sheets are built upon team unity. With 22 men playing for the democratic monarchy of Sweden and one for the evil, Slavic autocracy of Emperor Zlatan, goal-shy Safari must surely be a wildcard at best.

Simon Kjaer (Den) – Recently named one of the worst signings in Serie A this season who ‘has consistently been tortured by quick attackers’, the Dane can only struggle against the speed and precision of German and Dutch forward play.

Per Mertesacker (Ger) – Surprising inclusion in a slick Teuton outfit considering his lumbering form and recent injury at club level.

Rolando (Por) – The poor man’s Ronaldo.


Nigel De Jong (Hol) – Nicknamed ‘The Lawnmower’ for his combative style of play, there’s more chance of De Jong being able to repair a Briggs & Stratton engine during a match than avoiding the book or finding his way onto the score sheet.

Alexandros Tziolis (Gre) – From Tziolis’ agent wikipedia: “He plays a ‘silent’ role in the game, and he tends to occupy the role of a deep-lying playmaker more than a defensive stopper. His crisp passing and physical strength are also positive aspects of his game.” The content of this summary is as doubtful as its syntax.

Keith Andrews (Ire) – Tournament highlights: booked against Croatia scything down Modric, booked against Spain upending Andres Iniesta, misses Italy game.

Stewart Downing (Eng) – No goals, no assists and spent most of the league season looking like a timid schoolboy on the ball, must be quaking at the prospect of playing in the bread basket of Soviet terror.


Andriy Voronin (Ukr) – On average, the Steppe’s answer to Tarzan scores a goal every 10 games for his country. Even if an unlikely Ukraine get to the final, he’s left with just over half a chance of netting one.

Georgios Samaras (Gre) – Thinks he’s Ronaldinho. Is not.


Andy Carroll (Eng) – striker – played really well for the last three games of the domestic campaign, but for the rest of the season has shown less talent than a Tuesday afternoon in Gateshead Weatherspoon’s.

Gareth Barry (Eng) – midfielder – Against a similar standard of opposition, but without the likes of David Silva and Yaya Touré a short pass away, Barry is in for another tournament ride bumpier than Fred West’s patio. Will be replaced by Jordan Henderson if injured.

Honourary host nation representatives

Yulia Tymoshenko (Ukr) – Libera – The ‘Gas Princess’ may score as many goals as Bobby Sands this summer, but in international terms the PR value she brings to any outfit is welcome to Olisadebe managers who tend to lurch from one media disaster to another. At 51 still has the looks to alleviate the inevitable curse of squad boredom.

Pope Jean Paul II (Pol) – Goalkeeper – A regular between the sticks for his school and university sides, the former pontiff is the reason why there are so many top-level, Polish ‘keepers around. Spiritual contribution cannot be overlooked.

Follow the auction live on Twitter @jeffkennaleague or #eurosauction on Tuesday 29 May from 7pm (BST)

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How to pick a winning tournament team

Andres Iniesta
Tempting at this time of year: Andres Iniesta scores goals and gets assists

MANAGING a team in regular fantasy football contests offers little true variance.

Sitting at your computer and picking the same two strikers 100,000 others have, while the War Office reminds you it’s bin day tomorrow is unpreferred.

Having to then spend the tournament logging on to make transfers and, God forbid, ‘pick captains’, is quite frankly unacceptable.

In the Olisadebe auction, managers lock horns in that most competitive of arenas, the pub.

Once the auction’s over, managers are free to enjoy the tournament in the patented Ruud Gullit ‘bars and discotheques’ style.

For the uninitiated, here an idiot’s guide to the rules:

  • Each manager has £100m to buy 11 players in a 4-4-2 formation
  • Each team may have no more than one player of each nationality
  • Managers breaking the rules are subject to the Titus Bramble Ruling.

The second rule in particular makes the Olisadebe ultimately challenging. Buying a bottom-drawer player from a top team is folly.

Going around the table, each gaffer takes it in turns to introduce a player to the bidding. The auction ends when every team is filled.

The Olisadebe ‘Brambles’ will be announced next week.

What experience tells us

Looking below at the top performers from the last international tournament, the Doctor Khumalo 2010 World Cup, the immediate thought is: what the bejabbers was someone up to spending £31.5m on a holding midfielder like Schweinsteiger?

During a domestic season, steady Eddies like Bastian ‘Pig-overseer’, making regular appearances and nicking the odd goal can be useful.

But in tournament football, where an absolute maximum of six games awaits, the only successful midfielders are those scoring just as many goals as their striking counterparts (Wesley Sneijder).

Forwards regularly finding the net and back fives from organised teams picking up clean sheets offer the best return on investment.

Creative wing backs getting assists and goals, while their side keeps clean sheets, are a handy addition.

The second thing you’ll notice from the table is that some household names went for chicken feed. There are three reasons for this:

  1. all the other managers had bought their quota from that country (Iker Casillas)
  2. those at the auction simply hadn’t considered that player of value (Thomas Muller)
  3. the player had initially been bought for a large sum, forfeited through the Titus Bramble Ruling and bought on the cheap later in the evening (David Villa)

Top European’s from the 2010 Khumalo World Cup in South Africa





Auction price

Thomas Muller





Wesley Sniejder





David Villa





Iker Casillas





Gerard Pique





Carlos Puyol





Sergio Ramos





Mesut Ozil





Miroslav Klose





Manuel Neuer





Phillipe Lahm





Arne Friedrich





Arjen Robben





Bastian Schweinsteiger





Andres Iniesta





Giovanni van Bronckhorst





Follow the auction live on Twitter @jeffkennaleague or #eurosauction on Tuesday 29 May from 7pm (BST)

Look out for more news and features about the Olisadebe in the build up to the auction.

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Olisadebe Euro 2012 prizes announced

Emmanuel Olisadebe shirt - back
Strike it rich: Unofficial, replica Olisadebe shirt (with superficial damage) awaits tournament winner

KUDOS, riches and glazed-over, gyrating, Slav human traffic leggier than a recent Scott Parker performance have long been the trappings of international success, but the Olisadebe offers that little bit extra.

Not only will the victor trouser £100 in cash, but they will become the proud owner of an unofficial, replica Emmanuel Olisadebe Poland shirt.

“Gained at no great expense, the shirt is almost exactly like the one, like the one worn by Emmanuel during his prolific spell for Poland. Any manager would be thrilled to hang the shirt in pride of place, so long as they can overlook the superficial damage,” said the Chairman, before returning to a heated telephone call about unkept promises with a storage solutions company.

Second place will land £50 while third will scoop £20.

The manager ending with the top individual points scorer in their team will also have something smile about.

“This tournament we’re offering a whopping £60 for player of the tournament. We hope it’ll bring out some big bids on the auction night,” said the Chairman.

Follow the auction live on Twitter @jeffkennaleague or #eurosauction on Tuesday 29 May from 7pm (BST)

Look out for more news and features about the Olisadebe in the build up to the auction.


First: £100 and the unofficial, replica Emmanuel Olisadebe Poland shirt (with superficial damage)

Second: £50

Third: £20

Top individual player score: £60

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Euro 2012 auction to be tweeted live

For all the latest updates follow #eurosauction

THE EMMANUEL Olisadebe European Cup auction is to be broadcast live on Twitter, organisers announced today.

Lot-by-lot updates of the fantasy football competition, based on Euro 2012, will be tweeted on Tuesday (29 May) from 7pm.

A total of 16 managers will battle it out in a mystery pub in south London.

The contest is a ‘ties-off’ international tournament in a similar format to domestic club contest the Jeff Kenna League.

The Kenna HQ Chairman said: “The live tweet is an excellent way to showcase to the world how fantasy football competitions should be played.

“The Emmanuel Olisadebe European Cup auction, like the Kenna auction, is a face-to-face contest of knowledge and footballing acumen in an informal atmosphere. During the roller coaster, four-hour event participants experience the full range of emotions, although they mostly fluctuate between schadenfreude and humiliation.

“Picking captains and making transfers every week may be a good way for the big newspapers to drive up traffic to their websites and increase advertising revenue, but we’re convinced the auction format is the true test of fantasy footballing skill.

“Once the auction is done, entrants are left to wholeheartedly drink in every second of Euro 2012 in the patented Ruud Gullit ‘bars and discotheques’ style.”

Follow the auction live @jeffkennaleague or #eurosauction on Tuesday 29 May from 7pm (BST)

Look out for more news and features about the Olisadebe here in the build up to the auction.

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Final 2011/12 Kenna table

AS ROMAN Abramovich composes his classified ad for the Russian oligarch equivalent of Autotrader (‘millions spent, could run well for another year or so’), another season of domestic football draws to a close.

For the sake of posterity (and to make room on the homepage for the upcoming Emmanuel Olisadebe European Cup), the final league standings for 2011/12 can be found below.

Week 39 - 15 May 2012

Final Kenna League standings 2011/12
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Alan Hansen’s coloured performance chart

George Bush gets down
“No, no, no, that’s wrong. This is how you ask for marajuana in Coldharbour Lane.”

LIKE KING Kenny’s chances of being down with the kids of Brixton, the season is well and truly over.

To complement January’s big mid-season review, the Kenna has added the second half’s performance chart to the mix (below).

Back in early January, Lokomotiv Leeds had enjoyed a prosperous Christmas and dislodged FC Testiculadew from the top of the table.

FCT’s response was emphatic.

Producing what will probably turn out to be one of the highest-scoring months in Kenna history, Wayne Rooney & co were so rampant for the first four weeks of the calendar year that their manager wasn’t even inclined to attend the February transfer window.

Having lost Yaya Touré to the battlefields of Africa, Lokomotiv’s form nosedived in January and February, leaving FCT to sail over the line.

Meanwhile at the other end, Polonia Forsyth didn’t exceed average performance for the entire season.

Lurliners, Vasco De Beauvoir and the Dan Terry Seduction almost joined them.

So what does the aristocrat of Match of the Day punditry make of all this?

“Pace. Power. Determination. FC Testiculadew have it all in hatfuls.

“Solid at the back. Tight in midfield. When they get the ball in the final third, they’ve got that killer pass that makes all the difference.

“If I were to describe them in one word, it would be ‘quality’.

“When I was at Liverpool…”

We’re sure Alan will be back to provide some more insightful analysis in the near future.

Alan Hansen's coloured performance chart 2011-12
Alan Hansen’s coloured performance chart 2011-12
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End-of-season prizes announced

Cheerio, cheerio, cheerio: all three sacked managers picked up turkey of the month awards

THANKS to their league and cup double, in addition to August and January’s Manager of the Month awards, the FC Testiculadew manager has earned a tidy £212.80 this season.

Despite picking up three MOTMs, the Lokomotiv Leeds boss could only muster second place, but still goes home with £79.80.

Steady Newington Reds couldn’t impress in any particular month, but came third to pocket their gaffer £19.

The managers of Just Put Carles, Pikey Scum, Spartak Mogadishu, Young Boys and Judean Peoples’ Front all trousered £11.40 each.

At the other end, the now-former Thieving Magpies manager scooped three turkeys of the month to go with his relegation Giro queue invite.

Manager of the Month awards 2011/12
Manager of the Month awards 2011/12
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